Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Polly's Booby Saves The Day...

Yesterday I proudly opened the doors to my cyber shop; officially. So far I have received some nice feedback; however I have already learned how amateur my efforts are!

I have to thank Jean; my cyber-friend in France for her constructive critique. She pointed out that I had neglected to mention what size the photo of the lighthouse is! Hmm! Well, all I can say on this score is that I will do my best to scale it to whatever size is required, as so far I have two outstanding prints of said light house sitting on my desk; one is A4 sized and the other is just under A6, ie 9x15cm (don't ask me how!).

The larger of the two pictures is quite good, in so far as it isn't too grainy, surprising really, but I must have taken it on a large format, unbeknown to myself. The A6 card is also quite crisp and doesn't seem to have lost anything in the shrinking; I am quite pleased with myself really, but obviously and thankfully now realise just how much I have to learn about this business.

Speaking of being surprised; these pictures were taken on BJK's birthday, last year. In celebration of the event she invited us; me and the two boys to join her for a week in a self catering townhouse at Castle Gardens, Bunratty, Co Clare. Unfortunately, DG was working and having already spent the best part of a fortnight under canvas back in July, was unable to join us.

On the day of the birthday in question we headed off for the small fishing village of Carrigaholt; where we had arranged to go Dolphin Watch-ing. Like so many people my Mom has always been fascinated with these beautiful creatures and took it into her head that this would be Her treat to herself for her birthday.

In fact we had been there once before; missed the boat, so to speak and the boys had been too young. At that time they wouldn’t allow an eighteen month old baby out on the boat for safety reasons.

This time the trip had been planned well and truly in advance and the boys were definitely old enough to go out. We were even quite well prepared; we had had a light brunch before our thirty or so mile trip to the pier, we’d brought warm clothing and we were really looking forward to meeting a dolphin or two.

It’s not that we were disappointed; bit the dolphins were feeling a bit shy and didn’t spend too much time prancing around the boat. Yes, we did see them and they were beautiful, but they are wild animals and they don’t perform to order. So, when they became bored at the audience on the boat they took themselves off somewhere more interesting.

Meanwhile, BJK who is a veteran smoker took herself to the stern and lit up; incurring some very dark looks from our fellow sea mates. LB was feeling decidedly sea-sick; he’s unfortunate enough to suffer with car sickness so I had bought some Sea-Legs especially and left them in the cottage!

BB was cold; having refused to wear suitable clothing, despite being instructed otherwise. He spent most of the trip nursing growing pains and shivering under my Moms cardigan!

As for me, well, I had my new camera to play with. I took numerous shots of all kinds of stuff; family shots, sea foam, landscape and seascape. I got some funny looks, but hey, to heck with that, I just carried on adjusting the settings and the ISO for each shot until I got used to which suited which the best.

Imagine my surprise when I was reviewing some bland shots at home a few days later; I had got some shots of the dolphins at play. At the time I had no idea of what I was shooting and just took one shot after another of the Atlantic Ocean. With the assistance of various photo editing software on the computer I found the booby prize which made it all worthwhile, so not only do we have the memories of a lovely day, we got more than we bargained for and photographic evidence to boot!

As you can see, it's no surprise that these two dolphins weren't noticed while reviewing my days shots, they weren't the subject matter of the photo's and therefore not focused on; the result is a somewhat bleary picture which can be improved upon by using photo editing software. A nice surprise, regardless!

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