When blue is green and sees red...

By Unknown on 16:01

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Would you believe there are 6,000 Boris Bikes in London?

Often referred to by the name of Boris Johnson, our current and hopefully next Mayor of London who himself is an avid bicycle rider, since the scheme under which they are available was launched during the period of his first stint in office, they are commonly sighted in the Zone 1 Travelcard area of Central London, covering approximately 17 square miles or 44km2 for those more up to date with the international convention of weights and measures. Liveried in the familiar colours of Barclays Bank their sponsor, they are berthed in 400 docking stations as part of Barclays Cycle Hire, a public bicycle sharing scheme. The princely sum of £1 buys you access to a day's cycling joys with the first 30 minutes of usage being free. Costs rise thereafter in order to promote the constant circulation of bicycles. Freedom to roam on two wheels except of course where even this environmentally-conscious activity is prohibited such as here in Kensington Gardens.

A scheme for everyone if not everywhere.

Canon EOS 5D MarkII
Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM

Revisiting the 50L

By Unknown on 17:00

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This experience should have a deja vu feeling about it but it doesn't.

When I last had the 50L which was almost two years ago my main use for it was as a low light lens. With the high ISO capabilities of the 5D Mark II, it remainedin the bag for the most part back then and eventually made way for a 16-35 which as readers of this blog will know, is a mainstay in my camera bag. However there is much about the 50L that couldn't keep me way and I envisage much call is needed for it in Project 2. 

My recollection of the 50L was it's weight, something noticeably different this time round. I imagine my weight-bearing shoulders having much experience of either a 24-70 or 70-200 over the past two years appreciate the much diminished mass of a 50L. Being smaller than a 24-70 additionally makes it a nimble proposition mounted on either a 5D2 or 1D4.

The need to shoot with the 50L took me to investigate both it and the snow and ice of Horsenden Hill and Wood.

It was my first visit to Horsenden, having learned of it's joys through a chance meeting with Irene, a local resident out walking Millie, her Yorkshire Terrier. I love the feel of snow beneath the soles of one's boots.  Being a townie at heart I have to admit to readily being lulled into an over-assured sense of sure-footedness. Nothing thankfully that a washing machine couldn't handle!! 

The journey through the woods up to the top of the hill reminds me of scenes from Wagner's Parsifal

beyond which lie the more open spaces that make the area home to two golf clubs.

Observers will by now have noted that I have yet to offer a sense of the thin depth of field that the 50L offers but I'm sure you'll understand the need to lose oneself in taking in the beauty of all this snow. Down to business of photography then and I think ( and hope ) you'll agree it 

gives a good account of it's capabilities.

I wonder if this fellow may have a thought or two to offer.

Canon EOS 5D Mark II
EF 50mm f/1.2L USM

All images shot at 1.2 naturally ;)

More to follow.....