Month of Squares

Two and a Half Of A Kind

Two and a half Dandelion seed heads, or clocks as we called them when I was a child.

This is my day 12 contribution to Becky’s October Squares challenge on the theme of Kind.

October Squares: Two and a half of a Kind
Monochrome Monday

Monochrome Monday: 8th June 2020

Monochrome Monday travels back a few days and a walk around the neighborhood.


Monochrome Monday: 8th June 2020



2019: Leftovers

A small selection of photos from 2019 that I edited for a post but never got used.

In no particular order.

Storm clouds over Colpoy’s Bay and the Niagara Escarpment at sunrise a few days before the summer solstice.

2019: Leftovers


Hosta leaves with a 25mm CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

2019: Leftovers


A giant red butterfly garden ornament in the snow in early December.

2019: Leftovers


A monochrome study of a Dandelion clock taken with a 35mm CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

2019: Leftovers


Colpoy’s Bay and the Niagara Escarpment at sunrise in mid August.

2019: Leftovers


Ivy leaves and rocks in the snow in early January.

2019: Leftovers


Cosmic Photo Challenge

Cosmic Photo Challenge: 2019, The Best Of?

This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: 2019: The Best Of / The Worst Of?

I had a couple of ideas for the challenge, both of which I abandoned. In the end I decided to simply go with a few of my favourites from the year.

A few days after the spring equinox and Colpoy’s Bay is still frozen. A few days after taking the photo I fell off a ladder and spent the next couple of months in hospital and then rehab.

The fourth day of Spring.


On getting out of rehab I realised that I would have to make some changes to the equipment I carry when out and about shooting personal work. With restricted movement in the right shoulder and a weaker right arm I started looking at lighter mirrorless cameras and small manual focus prime lenses. Some Dandelion clocks taken with my Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm lens from the 1970s adapted to fit a small mirrorless camera.

Dandelion seed heads.


Colpoy’s Bay and the Niagara Escarpment at sunrise on the morning of the summer solstice. I was off the crutches and walking with a cane at this point.

Colpoy's Bay at sunrise.


Red Maple leaf and Lichen on a boulder. This summed up autumn for me in 2019. Some very good colour but the wind and rain knocking the leaves off.

Six Word Saturday: Red Maple Leaf on a Boulder


Colpoy’s Bay and the Niagara Escarpment at sunrise eight and a bit hours after the winter solstice. It started thawing a few hours after the photo was taken and all the snow has disappeared for now.

Sunrise the morning after the winter solstice

Weekly Prompts

Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Clock the Time

I was considering a few ideas for the Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Clock the Time before thinking about using a timer app on a tablet to time long exposures.

My plan was to set up the shot when I was down at the Colpoy’s Bay shoreline for the sunrise. I would set the tablet on top of the camera bag as I usually do and take the shot at dawn.

The plan didn’t work out. I took my lightweight kit of three manual focus primes in a small bag so no lid to set the tablet on. Not that the choice of camera bags really mattered as I forgot the tablet. So I set up the shot at home in the afternoon.

This small tablet has a timer app allowing me to time long exposures at dawn and dusk. There’s also an app that shows sun rise and set and moon rise and set direction for any locations I’m not familiar with and an app that alerts me to the chance of a display of the northern lights.

Edit: It occurred to me after posting this that I hadn’t explained the reason why I need a timer app. Sometimes I use strong neutral density filters to given long exposure times. This allows me to blur moving water or clouds moving across the sky.

In fact there are apps that will calculate the exposure and time it for you. I have been doing the exposure calculations in my head so just use a timer app. Maybe I should investigate the calculator apps.

Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Clock the Time


Weekly Prompts

Weekly Prompts: Sepia Dandelion Clock

This is another contribution to the Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge: Sepia which is running throughout the month of August.

A sepia study of a Dandelion clock taken this summer with a 35mm CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

Weekly Prompts: Sepia Dandelion Clock.

Cosmic Photo Challenge

Cosmic Photo Challenge: Independent Lenses in Various States

This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: A State of Independence.

My first thought was a selection of juvenile birds that were independent of the adults when the photos were taken. That idea was quickly followed by the fact that this is the Canada Day long weekend so I considered a Canada Day post.

Then I thought about an ongoing project, testing a variety of lenses on a modern mirrorless camera. Most of the lenses I have tested so far are (or were) made by independent lens makers. Companies that make lenses to fit other makers cameras.

Some of the lenses are in a bit of a state through heavy use or being designed to be almost disposable. Which is why I titled the post “Independent Lenses in Various States” as a rewording of the challenge.

To the lenses

A Periwinkle flower photographed with a 35mm f/1.7 CCTV lens adapted to fit an Olympus mirrorless camera. Shot with the lens wide open at f/1.7.

This was the first CCTV lens I purchased and I found it interesting enough to purchase a couple more. They’re also known as C-mount lenses having a screw mount for attaching to CCTV cameras with the appropriate mount.

Some of these CCTV lens are very cheap. I wonder if they’re designed to be almost disposable, used where or when a lens could get damaged somehow. The lens was $38 CAD including shipping, the adapter to fit it to the camera and two extension tubes to go between the lens and the camera to allow it to focus on closer subjects.

A Single Blue Flower.

Ivy growing up a tree trunk with a 25mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. This is one of the lenses I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens used for the Periwinkle flower above.

Stopping the lens down from maximum aperture causes severe vignetting so this was shot with the lens wide open at f/1.4. Wide open the lens still vignettes a bit and as the image circle produced by the lens barely covers the sensor there’s some interesting swirling around the edges of the photo.

I have already had to repair the focusing mechanism on the lens after it first jammed and then stopped focussing on distant subjects. That probably explains why the lens cost $36 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera.

Swirling around the edges.

Last years seed pods and new leaves with a 50mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. Shot wide open at f/1.4. This was the other CCTV lens I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens.

Surprisingly good performance for $41 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera. So I’m finding it a bit disappointing so far.

Fresh growth and seed pods.

A Bracken frond taken with a Vivitar 35mm f/1.9 lens I purchased used in the 1970s. Shot wide open at f/1.9. At the time Vivitar were a U.S. brand who designed lenses that were then manufactured by various Japanese lens makers.

The same design was built with a variety of camera mounts allowing the lens to fit a wide range of camera bodies.

I have given this lens a hard life over the years and it now feels like it could fall apart each time I use it.

Bracken frond with an adapted lens from the 1970s.

Dandelion clocks (seed heads) with a “silvernose” Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 lens I purchased in 1976. As with the other shots this was taken with the lens wide open, in this case f/1.8.

I don’t know if it can be classed as an independent lens. It wasn’t designed for the camera being used and requires an adapter but both the lens and camera were made by Olympus.

The silvernose refers to a polished aluminium ring on the front of the lens and signifies that it is one of the early Olympus OM Zuiko lenses. This is another lens that has had a hard life. It has been dropped a few times and was once bounced along the gutter of Charing Cross Road while attached to my Olympus OM1 when it slipped from my shoulder as I ran for the last tube train of the night. A few years later it was being dried out in an oven after being submerged in Georgian Bay.

Dandelion seed heads.