1 EAGLETON NOTES: Thankful Thursday Already

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Thursday, 6 September 2012

Thankful Thursday Already

I'm Dinner Monitor.  It occurred to me that I'm not sure how much that will mean to many people.  For those who went to an English Grammar School or a Public School it will probably bring back memories but if it doesn't mean anything here is a brief explanation (I looked for one on Google but couldn't find one).  Each aspect of school life had a 'monitor' who was responsible for looking after it in some way.  So, for example, on the way here to cope with the peage on the French autoroutes and anything else which required money (and following John and Sue's example - thanks) Diane was appointed Coin Monitor.

Apropos nothing to do with this post Diane has just picked up a white carton and poured some of the contents into her tea.  It was pineapple juice - not milk.  I feel better knowing I'm not the only person in the world who does things like that.

So after we got home last night after a day in Sienna and after Diane and I had cooked dinner I was flakers.  I'm not sure what today's programme is but the weather looks set for sun for the next week.  That would be good.  I'm hoping today will be quiet enough for me to get a few posts written and read.

In the meantime here's last evening's picture of The View after a singularly spectacular storm which occurred here at The Villa before we arrived back from Siena (you'll doubtless hear more in my Siena post).


and this morning's view with not a cloud to be seen.  This was at about 0800.  An hour later and the photo would have been almost impossible shooting into the sun and an enveloping heat haze.


In fact the whole matter of photography here in Tuscany is causing me some thought.  It is well known that the light in Tuscany is difficult to capture and can certainly be different to anywhere else I have ever been.  It is proving to be thus for me.  For example the rainbow picture above is an evening picture and the light really was near that magical colour to my eye but not to the plain photograph from the camera so I tone-mapped it.  This morning's was into the sun and therefore very dark to the camera and  increasing the exposure simply caused burn-out.  So again it is tone-mapped to reflect as best I can what I saw.

Turning the camera so that I'm photographing away from the sun this was the picture wthout any tone-mapping.


and a house in the valley below The Villa


and a harvester I just couldn't resist


After all that who couldn't be thankful for a life that allows me to see such beauty.  I am very thankful.

12 comments:

  1. I have already sent a comment but don't know where it went.
    The light in these images is wonderful.
    It is the camera that struggles.
    Try spot metering on a greenish bit then set camera to -1EV and recompose.
    When you process try using the saturate sponge at about 15%. then dodge highlights at about 5/9%. Take several passes till you get the effect you want.
    Compress and sharpen using unsharp mask set to 80% strenght, 2 pixels threshold 0 unless you have noise...it will be evident at 100% in areas of flat colour like sky.
    Tone mapping is fine but it will try to replace blow out or pure white with 50% grey...that looks 'orrid.
    These are wonderful images. Have fun.

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    1. I'll try to absorb this when I'm not running around after lost wallets and trying to enjoy myself! Thanks.

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  2. Your photos are, as always, quit beautiful, GB. I love Tuscany. One of my sone was married there five years ago from a Tuscan castle. It was quite idyllic.

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    1. PS the worst job was blackboard monitor, because of all that chalk dust!

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    2. Thanks Frances. I'd forgotten about blackboard monitor. I don't think I ever did that after prep school.

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  3. Yes, the days of being a monitor at school....memories.
    When we travel in groups, we always allocate different folks for different tasks, especially whatever they're good at. Hence I am always the navigator and financier, and sometimes menu planner too. This way, one person is not all stressed out, and everyone shares the load.
    I have no CL-UUUE what Adrian is rambling on about, but he seems like he knows a thing or thousand on capturing great photos, so have fun using his tips.
    As far as I see it, the photos are beautiful and look like Monet paintings to me.

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    1. Virginia I'd quite forgotten about school monitors until friends who, like you, allocate jobs to one of their number when going travelling, started using the term again. Yes allocating jobs is so helpful and means each person can concentrate on their own area and relax the rest of the time. Yes Adrian's the photo guru. I just wish that I had time to learn what he tries to teach.

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  4. Truly beautiful pictures, and I know what you mean about the difficulty of capturing on camera what you really see (or, rather, perceive) with your own eyes.
    It happens to me almost every time I take pictures of the beautiful surroundings at my parents' allotment. When I later get the pictures from the camera on my computer and look at them, I think "hmmm..." and wonder why they come out so drab when in real life it is such a nice place.

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    1. I've been wondering that a lot with the light in Tuscany. Years ago I took some of the best photos I've taken here in Tuscany and I'm trying to re-capture that.

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  5. Yes, the same view can look very different depending on weather and light - and camera, and editing. This is a great one to practise on... :)

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    1. Yes Monica it is really giving me a good opportunity.

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  6. Graham, no matter the light - this is an enchanting place and you capture it well! I haven't been in to visit for quite awhile. Life has distracted me much away from blogging and reading, but I can't forget about the two cherished friends that I have made, out there in the big wide world. Peeking in for a moment and drifting through your posts :)

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