Tag Archive | Photography

Fun you can have with a fish tank


I’m trying to get some use out of my Canon 7D, and I really need to learn more about the different settings and functions on it, and a lot more about light….and everything really.

So, as well as returning to the local photography club (which I intend doing next week), I decided to embark on some photography lessons too.

Last night was spent taking photos like this.

Orange original

And then, this morning I had some fun editing this photo in Photoshop to produce this.


I like the end result, although it’s a completely different end result from the photo I saw on Facebook to promote the photography lesson.  I can fully appreciate that everyone has different views on something like this.  When I showed Ally this image she didn’t know what it was, so in a way I wonder have I pushed the editing process too far.

All comments and critique welcome as always. 🙂

Great service from MacSweeny’s Photo Shop Cork!


MacSweenys Photo Shop


I meant to post this ages ago and forgot to.  MacSweeny’s is a camera/photo shop that I’ve been dealing with for a while.  I’ve purchased my 7D and my tripod there, and some other bits and pieces over the last year or so.

Ally’s camera, a Canon EOS Rebel (similar to the pic below), had been giving a bit of trouble before the summer. The shutter release button kept jamming, and the battery would have to be removed and inserted again in order to take another photo.  All very well, I suppose, if the only photographs you take are of still life and you’ve no objection to functioning as a factory robot. Continue reading

Watermark your Work!


I’ve been asking myself for ages whether or not I should be watermarking images when putting them online.  Opinions seem to vary on the idea:

“Professional photographers watermark their images.  You’re not a professional photographer”

“Watermarking? Why would you want to do that? It destroys the look of the photograph.”

“If you’re going to do it put something discreet on it.”

And so I’ve varied between using tiny, inconspicuous print at the bottom of my photos in order not to appear pretentious and in order not to give the impression that I might even *think* I’m a Pro,  to using glaringly obvious fonts stretched across the width of the photos on my ‘I couldn’t give two hoots what you think’ days.

And then there were some photos that I never watermarked at all….like the one below…which is a photo of our dog that was taken by Ally about two years ago (and which is now watermarked with something that isn’t a watermark but big f*ck off print!).

German Shepherd

Image Tracking

After reading a post on thesnappysnapper.blogspot.com on the Unauthorised use of Photography and Copyright abuse, I thought I’d try out a couple of the links that the author, Stephen Power (Limerick Photographer), mentioned in the post, to see if any of my own images were being used anywhere.

Google Analytics showed me that several photos on my website had been downloaded at some stage or another. I took the URL of those images and typed them into TinEye where several images showed up a few times in other people’s blogs.  I wasn’t too concerned about them really, until I typed in the URL of Ally’s photo of our dog.

Cole Legal Group (www.texasinjurylaw.net)

Texasinjurylaw.net was the first website that showed up under my image search for the ‘Alsation Photo’.  At first I couldn’t see the photo on the website, but as I flicked through the site the image appeared in the flash banner.

copyright infringement

Imagine a law firm using an image in their banner without the consent of the copyright holder?  I note that they don’t mention on the site if they specialise in copyright infringement.  Yes, I’m fairly sure that a web designer somewhere is at fault here, but still….the irony of it…

I tried to contact the law company through the form on their website on Monday night but I’ve had no reply from them yet, and I’ve made another attempt to contact them through the form this evening.  Both times I was told that my form submission was successful.

They’re hosted with GoDaddy.com who state that they ‘support the protection of intellectual property’.  GoDaddy.com also explain how to make a copyright claim, so I guess that might be my next step.

Capitol K9 of Montgomery (www.capitolk-9.com)

This dog training website had the image in their ‘Personal Protection K9’ section.  I emailed them in relation to the image and they subsequently took it down and said that they ‘didn’t see the harm in sharing’.

Only they weren’t just ‘sharing’.  They were using the image to promote their business.


Der E-Kreisel (Popoela)

Der E-Kreisel appears to be some sort of rap musician.  Ally’s image has been used, it would appear, as a cover for his MP3 track ‘Popoela’, which has been uploaded to so many places around the internet that it would be impossible for me to report the infringement of copyright to them all.

You can see the image on this page on Facebook.  I contacted Facebook and they have since removed the image.

Popoela Copyright Infringement

However, I then found the image on a band page, which is proving a little more difficult to have the image removed from as it’s part of an app, and Facebook need the actual URL of the image.

Der E Kreisel Band Page

Vimeo removed the image and the track immediately when I emailed them.

Popoela Copyright Infringement

This is just the tip of the iceberg though.  The image has been uploaded to countless websites, including:


Popoela Soundcloud image Copyright infringement


Popoela image copyright infringement


popoela iTunes


I’ve emailed a few of the website administrators and they look for a letter rather than an email, and, like I said, there are so many of them!

I emailed Der E-Kreisel about the Facebook App and told him I would be seeking advice from my solicitor, and he sent me a reply in which he laid the blame on his ‘agent’.  I would think that I should send Der E-Kreisel and invoice and he can deal with his own agent.  I don’t see why I should be chasing people’s agents, but I’ll seek further advice.

At this stage I am sick of looking at the dog’s flipping picture, but because I think it’s rude, underhanded and unethical to take the image without seeking permission, and particularly because of the fact that the image belongs to my daughter, I am determined to take the matter further.

And from now on, ALL my images will have a disgustingly obvious watermark stretched across them, and people can think what they like!

Watermark your work, and don’t let others profit from what you’ve created!

A Photo a Day


Thanks to Val, I joined a new group on Facebook aimed at getting people to post a photo a day.

It’s quite difficult to do, especially as, when I get home after a day of work and college, it’s dark and I don’t feel the least bit inspired to pick up my camera.

I took a photo of the top shelf of the bookcase in my bedroom yesterday.



Two years ago the top shelf (and the one beneath it) held a copy of every book that Stephen King had ever written, or at least any I knew of.  I was his Number 1 fan. (….you’d have to BE a fan…)

I still have them – the books.  They’ve been relegated to the bottom two shelves for the foreseeable future, and my collection is lacking in anything he’s written during the two years.

So yesterday’s photo symbolised the direction my life is taking at the moment – trying to get a grip on Year 3 of the Creative Multimedia course in LIT (previously Tipperary Institute).

I’m not sure what today’s photo represents but this beast is sitting in our back garden looking very sorry for itself.


Massey Ferguson

John Keane, based in Balla, Co. Mayo, and who the tractor was purchased from originally, can be found online at www.keanesfarmmachinery.ie

Wexford Strawberries – Boro Valley Fruit Farm



Ally and I got the opportunity to see the inner workings of a real Wexford Strawberry farm at the weekend, thanks to Photowalk.ie and Boro Valley Fruit Farm.

On Saturday several members of Photowalk.ie met up at Boro Valley Fruit Farm where we were made feel at home by Murt Murphy before being taken on our ‘fruitful’ journey.

Strawberry Photowalk

An amazing journey it was too!

There were more strawberries than I’ve ever seen.

Strawberry Plants

Huge polytunnels, and a state of the art greenhouse with a computer controlled heating and ventilating system, housed long rows of strawberries.

These well looked after berries are grown in long containers suspended at chest height.

Pikcing Strawberries

Rows and rows of ’em!

Rows of Strawberry plants

Murt gave us a complete rundown of the lifecycle of the strawberry, from planting to picking.  I never realised there was so much involved in looking after strawberries, and I pity the five strawberry plants growing in a container in my back garden with only me to care for them.

I haven’t tasted my own homegrown strawberries yet as they’re still green, but I did get to sample some of the Boro Valley Farm crop on Saturday and they were gorgeous!! Even Ally, who is not a fruit eater, declared them to be ‘delicious’ and said ‘It’s no wonder Murt was eating so many of them!’. (I ‘lolled’ out loud at that because it was very true.) 🙂

I think Ally had a job to stop herself from eating them too though.


We spent a couple of hours taking photographs of the strawberries (photographers delight really), and then had fun taking photos of this lot!

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And the best bit?

We got to EAT everything afterwards! 🙂

Thanks to Murt, the Murphy family, and everyone at Boro Valley Fruit Farm for an enjoyable day. They’re lovely people and I wish them continued success.  And thanks to the members of Photowalk.ie who were great fun and who even lent us some of their gear to try out. (We loved this fish eye lens)

Fish Eye Lens

Ally and I are both looking forward to the next photowalk already!

Oops! I almost forgot to mention.  Pop over to Brian’s Blog for more photos from Saturday.

Time to grab the camera….



….and shoot everything that moves!

This being the first weekend that I’ve had off in what seems like FOREVER, I’m going to dust the camera off and bring it on a roadtrip!

I started by giving it a practise run in the back garden this evening. Poor starlings….

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I didn’t spend too long annoying them as they seemed to be quite anxious and reluctant to return to the nest while I was around.

I’ll give them a break for a while and take photos of this little guy instead. He arrived in the post for me today, all the way from Japan! 🙂



Us 2 Today FM Book


Us2 Book

I finally managed to get hold of an US2 book, thanks to the Book Centre in Clonmel who had two copies of it in stock this morning.  I thought I’d have to wait another couple of weeks to get one as everywhere seemed to be sold out of it yesterday.

For anyone reading who doesn’t know what the US2 book is, it’s the follow up to the US book that was published in 2005, when listeners of TodayFM were invited to submit snapshots of Ireland taken on the 1st of October.

US TodayFM Book

This year’s date was the 2nd of October and, as far as I’m aware, there were over 20,000 photos received from the public.

All proceeds of the book go to Barnardos and it’s an amazing book to have, full of normal, everyday snapshots from all over the country.  It’s lovely to look through it and see who you recognise.

A friend had posted a message on Facebook yesterday to tell me that one of my photographs was in it.  Needless to say, I couldn’t wait to see which one it was.  (I’d sent in a few).

I was fairly sure it would be the one below of our much loved Roxy:-


But, I couldn’t stop laughing when I saw the photo that had actually made it into the book.

Suction Cup Us2

Suction Cup

I laughed so hard I thought I was going to do serious injury to myself. Even now, sitting here, with Ally trying very hard to look annoyed and not quite managing (because she thinks it’s funny but still wants to be cross with me), I can’t stop laughing.

When I took the above photo I told Ally it was just for ‘practise’.  Then I emailed it off not really expecting to see it again except on my laptop. I knew when I saw it that I was in for it.


I picked Bláthny up from school earlier and showed it to her and she was a bit miffed that she wasn’t in it.  She took great consolation from the fact, however, that Ally looked perfectly ‘ridiculous’ and that I was ‘dead meat’.  I told her not to say a WORD when we got home and that we’d just leave the book open somewhere while I went to work.  She agreed that this was a good idea.

Until we got home and she emitted the most evil of laughs and ran into the sitting room yelling ‘ALLY, YOU BETTER TAKE A LOOK AT THAT BOOK THAT MAM HAS!!’

I got an earful despite the fact that I was struggling to breathe with the laughter.

‘Ah mam…why did you do that…I don’t believe it…that’s not funny…ah no…I hope you didn’t show that to anyone….’

‘No, not at all’, I said, ‘I never brought it into college at all today’.

‘Ah MAM!!!’

Then Bláthny who’d gone looking at the book again suddenly held it aloft, pointing at the cover and shouting ‘Hey, what’s this???’

And, there, on the back cover of the book, for everyone to see….


Queue convulsions of laughter from both myself and Bláthny! I honestly thought I was going to have to ring my mother and ask to borrow her nebuliser.

Roll on US3! I know I’m going to have to watch myself now that Ally has her own camera! She has me warned!

The Spider and the Fly


Spider and fly, originally uploaded by QueenOfPots.

Once upon a time, late one morning (*this* morning, to be precise), I was sitting at the table in the kitchen, still in my dressing gown and slippers, my hair askew (because I’d been up late the night before), with no idea that I was about to type what could possibly be the longest sentence in the world (with the most parenthesis), when I happened to throw my eyes (not literally) in the direction of the back door, and spied a fly crashlanding into a web and struggling to get back out again.

Knowing that a spider was about to appear from somewhere, I hastily grabbed my camera….which was exactly where it should be…somewhere in the cluttered sitting room…hiding…in a safe place…and within a matter of….several seconds….was outside, lens aimed at web, snapping away.

And everyone lived happily ever after….except for the fly…who was in a pretty sticky situation when I left.

And, except for me….because I felt a bit bad for the fly….and because some of my shots were overexposed and blurry….and it’s not like I can actually ask the spider and the fly to repeat the experience.

Moral of the story: Nature stops for no one – be prepared!

Thanks to Lily (who commented below) for reminding me of the Spider and the Fly poem. 🙂  I looked up the full version and thought I’d add it here.

The Spider and the Fly
Mary Howitt

Will you walk into my parlour?” said the Spider to the Fly,
‘Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I’ve a many curious things to shew when you are there.”
Oh no, no,” said the little Fly, “to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair can ne’er come down again.”

“I’m sure you must be weary, dear, with soaring up so high;
Will you rest upon my little bed?” said the Spider to the Fly.
“There are pretty curtains drawn around; the sheets are fine and thin,
And if you like to rest awhile, I’ll snugly tuck you in!”
Oh no, no,” said the little Fly, “for I’ve often heard it said,
They never, never wake again, who sleep upon your bed!”

Said the cunning Spider to the Fly, ” Dear friend what can I do,
To prove the warm affection I ‘ve always felt for you?
I have within my pantry, good store of all that’s nice;
I’m sure you’re very welcome — will you please to take a slice?”
“Oh no, no,” said the little Fly, “kind Sir, that cannot be,
I’ve heard what’s in your pantry, and I do not wish to see!”

“Sweet creature!” said the Spider, “you’re witty and you’re wise,
How handsome are your gauzy wings, how brilliant are your eyes!
I’ve a little looking-glass upon my parlour shelf,
If you’ll step in one moment, dear, you shall behold yourself.”
“I thank you, gentle sir,” she said, “for what you ‘re pleased to say,
And bidding you good morning now, I’ll call another day.”

The Spider turned him round about, and went into his den,
For well he knew the silly Fly would soon come back again:
So he wove a subtle web, in a little corner sly,
And set his table ready, to dine upon the Fly.
Then he came out to his door again, and merrily did sing,
“Come hither, hither, pretty Fly, with the pearl and silver wing;
Your robes are green and purple — there’s a crest upon your head;
Your eyes are like the diamond bright, but mine are dull as lead!”

Alas, alas! how very soon this silly little Fly,
Hearing his wily, flattering words, came slowly flitting by;
With buzzing wings she hung aloft, then near and nearer drew,
Thinking only of her brilliant eyes, and green and purple hue —
Thinking only of her crested head — poor foolish thing! At last,
Up jumped the cunning Spider, and fiercely held her fast.
He dragged her up his winding stair, into his dismal den,
Within his little parlour — but she ne’er came out again!

And now dear little children, who may this story read,
To idle, silly flattering words, I pray you ne’er give heed:
Unto an evil counsellor, close heart and ear and eye,
And take a lesson from this tale, of the Spider and the Fly.

Today FM US 2 Book


My copy of the US Book

Five years ago TodayFM came up with a lovely idea for a book that they called ‘US’ .  It contained photos that they had asked people to send to them of what they were doing on the 1st of October 2005. Sales of the book raised over €300,000 for Childline.

This year they are looking for photos for US2, the proceeds of which will go to Barnardos.

You have till midnight tonight to take a photo of what you’re doing today, or something that captures the day that is the 2nd of October 2010 and email it to TodayFM at usbook@todayfm.ie.

Full details are on the TodayFM website so,pop over for a look and then get busy snapping!! 🙂

Update:  The Us 2 book should be available in shops from November, according to Barnardo’s website – just in time for Christmas!! 🙂