Tag Archives: Photography

Thunder and Lightning

Yesterday there was a real thunderstorm here. The biggest one I’ve ever seen, I think. Sometimes you could see something like 10 flashes within 5 seconds, and hear some really loud cracks just a kilometer away or so.

Anyway, me and M went out to the balcony to watch, and after a while I got out my tripod and camera and started shooting in hope to get some good photos. Most of the time the clouds were so thick that you couldn’t see the actual flashes, but rather that all the clouds got immensely lit up.

What surprised me was that most of the actual lightnings that we could see went sideways instead of up and down. Is that normal?

No image manipulation at all was involved in these pictures, I just had the shutter open for a few seconds at a time.

Top right corner shows some of the lightning. The sky is lit up almost as in the daytime, even though it is around midnight.
Top right corner shows some of the lightning. The sky is lit up almost as in the daytime, even though it is around midnight.

The clouds were nicely lit up, and sometimes they even looked like Aurora Borealis.
The clouds were nicely lit up, and sometimes they even looked like Aurora Borealis.

Lucky shot of a lightning that goes almost completely sideways.
Lucky shot of a lightning that goes almost completely sideways.

Wishful thinking: Canon EOS 550D

Me and Marianne has applied for testing my current dream camera, Canon EOS 550D. We have been talking for quite some time now to buy a new one, preferably one with more manual settings and better at taking pictures in low-light situations without using flash, and the EOS series has always been my favorite. This camera has an incredible 12’800 ISO, and it would be very interesting to see how dark you can go without having too much noise. Hopefully this would mean more night photography! Back in school when I studied photography, we used the Canon EOS 500 (analog), and it would be fun to see how much of the functionality that has remained or improved since then.

Other highlights from the spec that I find myself smiling for when I read:

  • Sensor: CMOS, 18 Megapixel (APS-C)
  • File format: JPG, RAW
  • Movie:  1080p

Judging from how much you get from the camera the prize of around 7000 SEK is not that high, but unfortunately that is more that I can afford right now. Smartson does however have the possibility for four test teams to evaluate the camera for a month, and where you then get to keep it afterwards. The chances of being selected are quite slim, but here’s to hoping! Sign up here if you are also interested in applying. 🙂

Sliced finger

Yesterday my brother and his fiancee were over at our place for dinner with wine. Afterwards we were going out and thought that we should take the empty bottles with us since we were passing the recycling cabin anyway. While there my brother threw a bottle hard into the glass bin to make it crash. Unfortunately, part of the bottle ricocheted back up and came straight for me. Instinctive I put up my hand to protect my body from the whirring glass, and it hit my right ring finger.

And there were blood – lots of it. In fact, I even had an arch of blood across my face, going all the way into my right ear. The floor in the recycling cabin had blood splattered on an area about two meters wide.

We rushed back into the apartment, pressing the finger together, putting three compresses and a makeshift tourniquet made of tape while M called for a taxi.

After arriving at the emergency room at the hospital, I only had to wait for about 5 minutes before getting my hand looked at. After removing the bloody compresses and cleaning the wound with salt water they cut off the blood flow with a rubber tube and a peang. Prodding the finger with what looked like toothpicks, the conclusion was that I had lost feeling in about half my finger. After two anesthesia shots in the finger (that really hurt), I soon didn’t feel anything at all.

Despite the nerve damage they had to close the finger to stop the bleeding, so they started to sew. It was a really odd sensation to see them doing it and not feel any pain. After 10 stitches they released the peang to let the blood through the finger, but immediately had to put another two stitches due to leakage.

The people who closed up my finger were really nice, and we even had a few laughs together.

After getting my stitches it was time to  x-ray the finger to look for skeletal damage (since the cut was so deep). For some reason this was considered a really high prio case, I got to go before people who had been waiting for several hours. Anyway, the x-ray turned out fine and the glass hadn’t damaged the bone.

A quick bandage and a tetanus shot later and I was on my way home again. Total time in the hospital was just above three hours, which was probably a new record for me.

Today the finger hurts quite a bit, and I will soon go the pharmacy to get the pain killers and antibiotics that I got prescriptions for.

Tomorrow I will have to go to another hospital, where a specialist in hand surgery will assess the damage and possibly open the finger up again to try to repair the damaged nerve(s).

Now, time for some (quite gory) pictures:

Pumpkin Carving

Today me and Marianne are having a pre-halloween evening, pumpkin carving and stuff. Tomorrow we will have a horror movie marathon, eating sandwich layer cake and other goodies, some of which needs preparing.

In a couple of hours we will go out with Fredde, Ester and possibly Moa to a Japanese-Korean-Monglian restaurant, so I have time to post a few pics from the evening so far:

Ferry to Riga

Me, Marianne and Sanna took a ferry to Latvia this tuesday and just got back.

Riga is not quite as depressing as Tallin, but not so far off either. It’s ok to visit, but nothing that I will long to visit again.

Glenn Miller Café

Yesterday my old friend Dossen came to visit. After strolling through town, visiting comic book shops and having lunch, we later went to Glen Miller Café together with Marianne.

The food was great (as always), the music (Sara Hedman Kvartett) was classy and temperature was high. We all had a good time, and later went back to my place and was joined by Fredde.

The photos below are from both mine and Dossens cameras (his is way better), and I just had to do a photoshop version of something I have wanted to to for years: put a lightsaber in the hand Karl XIV Johan’s statue at Slussen, Stockholm.

A weekend in Strängnäs

Last week me and Marianne were in Strängnäs, just checking out the place. Later the first day we met up with Jens and Linda, who had taken their boat there the same day.

Good times!

Cameras, cameras, cameras… and a projector

Last weekend I was at my parents place, and on saturday we went to a big second-hand house. On this particular day, they had 50% off on everything, so I made a few bargains.

I like optics, I have a big photography and movie interest and I love old technological stuff. This was perfect.

First off, I found a west german camera from 1970: A Praktica LTL with a really fat lens (Panagor Auto Tele 200mm). The lens seem to have taken som minor hits, but the camera housing was in surprisingly good condition. Auto timer and everything seems to work fine. Cost: 60SEK.

Second, I found two old Super8 cameras, still functioning.
The first one was an Elmo Super 306 from 1976. Fantastic optics! This one still has film in it, although I’m not sure how to get it out. I didn’t have any fresh batteries, and when I inserted some with about 30% left, a red E was shown in the viewfinder. Cost including carrying case: 20SEK.

The second Super8 camera I found was a Chinon 753 from 1979. This one doesn’t have quite as good optics, but it works better on the bad batteries – Both the film spinning drive and the motorized zoom works as a charm! Plus, it is really easy to handle since it only has very few buttons and knobs to worry about. Cost including carrying case: 25SEK.

When I was basically done in the store, I found on the top shelf  a dirty case that looked “antique and German”. And I was right. Having some problems getting it down, I fell in love as soon as I managed to get the case open. Inside was an old Leitz diapositive projector.

I am having trouble locating the model number as I have not seen it printed anywhere, but it might be a version of the  Leitz Prado from the late 1950’s or early 1960’s.
It is in near-mint condition and works like a charm. I have now placed it on the shelf next to my other projector, 45-50 years newer. And I only paid 30SEK for it!

Now, what to do with all this stuff?

My Cogwheel Heart Tattoo

Today I once again went to Nille at Salvation Tattoo to get some ink done.

I have always been fascinated by mechanics, robotics and mechatronics, and for the last few years I have been thinking about how to incorporate that into a tattoo. Early sketches covered basically the whole back, incorporating the biohazard sign I already have on my back into the design. Though I like biomechanical tattoos to a certain degree I now think an entire backpiece would be too much for this type of design (ask me again in five years though). The particular idea with a cogwheel using a heart as the hub first crossed my mind about a year ago, and shortly after I did the first design.

I have doodled on this design and changed quite a bit during the last year. The main problem lately has been that I have done too much details and thin lines. Since human skin is a living material it is extremely hard to make small details by pushing down ink between the skin layers (which is basically what you do). Even if you do, chances are that the details will be lost. Ink is a liquid, and liquids float and spreads out, making everything a bit fuzzy at close range. This is considerably more noticable on older tattoos, where it can be hard (or even impossible) to make out text that was clearly readable when the tattoo was first made. I have still kept a certain degree of details, mostly for thin light lines and shadows. We’ll see how they look like a few weeks from now. Also, it is quite a bit darker now (especially the lines) than it will be when healed.

I put in some symbolism in it as well, but will not go into details (let’s just say I’ve been hurt enough times). Also, can you find the Douglas Adams reference? 🙂

Tattooing your chest is a strange thing. It really hurts, but you don’t always feel the pain where you should. When Nille first started on the top right side, I felt it in the shoulder. Moving down, all of the sudden it felt like someone put a soldering iron to my nipple. This was not quite as bad as doing the elbow, but not far from it. Good thing I had my phone with me; Playing Solitaire and FreeCell partly took my mind from the pain – It helps to concentrate on something else.

So, what do you think?