And in the end…

Not Floyd. Heaven forfend.  But is it the Beatles? Or is it David Bowie? Or is there a correct answer?

Truth is, this is going to be the last post to the blog. After nearly three years I have around 40 followers, and manage about 10 views on a really good day. Not that it matters a lot, but I am also running out of free storage space and to progress I need to put in a lot more effort and start to spend money. Neither of which appeals.

So thank you to those who do read my blog, and I think I will continue to post on Instagram as @dbsilverfox, and turn my Facebook account into a more photo-oriented page without being silly about it and setting up David Baker Photography or something. If you are tempted to follow that, I am on as David L Baker.

So I will leave you with the first photo that ever broke 100 likes on Instagram, from a visit to the seals at Donna Nook last week.

So bye – and thanks for your support

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Kicking around on a piece of ground in your home town

In the search for subjects it is all too easy to overlook what is nearby, and I am guilty of sometimes believing I am going to have to drive into the Peak District to get an image.  Fortunately my wife does the thinking for me, and told me there was a nice tree over at Strelley Hall that I should photograph, due to its perfect shape and autumn colours. So, being the obedient person-that-just- presses- the-button that I am, off I trotted – a whole mile away.

_B060005

The image seemed to suit a 16×9 crop, and is indeed a really nice tree. Ideally a bit more foliage on the trees behind to help it stand out, but I am happy with it. If you look closely you can see the root bole (is that the right phrase?) sticking out on the left, where the tree has fallen over. The right hand side is crushed and gone, but the left hand side has developed into a very attractive shape.  Since I had traveled all that way, in the car, it seemed a waste to just turn round and come home, so I wandered a little.

Next to Strelley Hall is the parish church, locked up to prevent vandalism.  There is a small graveyard in the church grounds, and a larger one across the road. As you can tell from the sky, the weather was not improving.

_B060012

The church, and its enclosing wall, are made of sandstone which weathers beautifully over the years as the rain and the wind erode the stone blocks.

_B060014

However, whilst sandstone may be acceptable for building walls and churches, just, is is fairly useless for gravestones.  Hopefully there is a record of who this poor soul was.

_B060024

Until next time, and maybe waterfalls?  Definitely not those deer!

You’ll get the chance to put the knife in

Well Floyd survived another post. Based on previous posts I would guess the expectation, if anyone had an expectation, was either excitable and excited stags or autumnal waterfalls for this post.  It is hardly a surprise to you, because I know you already looked, that it is neither.

There are some statues or sculptures that have the power to move you, well me. I love the Angel of the North, and the sight of those 100 men from Another Place staring out longingly to the west. Now there is another that has joined them in provoking an emotional response. The Knife Angel, created by Alfie Bradley, is made up of 100,000 knives that have been used in knife crime up and down the UK.  It is stunning in the day, and the night adds another dimension.

KnifeAngel_A220053

KnifeAngel_A220041

In the evening, as darkness closes in, the monument is illuminated with a series of colours, cycling through to give varying effects.  Having driven out to Derby to see it, I found out that it will be in Nottingham next August, so could have saved a trip.  If you get a chance to see it as it tours around the UK it is definitely worth it.  Will it help reduce knife crime? I don’t know. Maybe it will help raise awareness – we can only hope.

KnifeAngel_A220087

KnifeAngel_A220080

KnifeAngel_A220082

It’s not easy banging your head against some mad bugger’s wall

A bit tenuous I agree, but the Hall has walls. Otherwise the roof would fall in wouldn’t it?  I really feel I am beginning to reach the end of the road with Pink Floyd lyrics, so may be changing the format soon.

To say I am getting frustrated with these red deer is an understatement. There is a small herd camped out on the golf course, and maybe one or two wanderers, but that is it. They are hiding somewhere but I cannot find them. Luckily the hall itself is quite an attraction, having been Wayne Manor in the Batman films, so a few views of the hall is what you are getting. Fingers crossed for the deer rut, but I am feeling waterfalls might be more likely…

Wollaton Hall_A150016

Wollaton Hall_A150020

Wollaton Hall_A150019

Wollaton Hall_A150012

And if I go insane, and they lock me away, will you still let me join in the game?

Well…. I really wanted to use the lyric about if I was a swan I’d be gone, but I have used that one before, and I have photographed swans again. Anyway, I like the sentiment so there it is, and there it will remain.

We – well not me specifically, more the deer – are nearly in the rutting season, days or weeks away, so I have been going to the local deer park and even getting up early. This backfired a little when I turned up at 6:50 am to a gate into the park that is “normally” open around 7 but which did not actually open till 8:30! Apparently they had some problems with trees falling down overnight.  This did not affect me as I was not planning to climb any trees.  However, by this time people were queuing to get in and the deer were probably hiding from the dog walkers.  All but one that is, who followed me around the lake for a while before overtaking and sticking his tongue out at me on the way past.

_A100057

You may be able to tell from the shooting position that I am not a total idiot and I had moved over to the side to let him (and more importantly his antlers) pass.

Other than that the deer were a washout, so I took advantage of a swan that happened to be preening itself on the shore.  When I say took advantage I mean I took photographs, obviously…

_A100066

_A100096

_A100081

Fingers crossed the deer will get more excitable next week, and no more trees will fall down, so I can get on the park nice and early.  Until then – remember to click on an image to see it bigger in Flickr.

How I wish, how I wish you were here.

Well it’s too late. Goose Fair finished yesterday. It was, possibly still is, the largest travelling fair in Europe.  Well versed in the art of extracting money with impossible shooting ranges, where you fire corks that spin off in all directions – other than the one direction that might win you a prize.  Every type of food stall, including the Goose Fair classics of mushy peas with mint sauce and a cock on a stick.  Not to be eaten together, that would be really gross.  As the fair goes on from Wednesday to Sunday the prices on the rides inch higher – a £3 ride on Wednesday evening when I went alone was a £4 ride on Saturday afternoon when I went with the family.

But if you go with nearly empty pockets, and an eye for the photo opportunities it is really quite good fun when the sun sets and the lights and noise, and smoke machines, bombard the senses. Especially when you can use your bus pass for a free ride on the tram that stops right outside the fairground site.  Yes, if you look back in my archives you will find I did the same last year, but hopefully these images stand alone. All handheld – a tripod would not survive the crowds…

Goose Fair--_1

The promise of things to come as the sun sets.

Goose Fair--_7

Goose Fair--_17

Goose Fair--_16

Goose Fair--_22

So Goose Fair is over for another year, so now I have my fingers crossed that is stops raining long enough to fulfill (auto-corrected – I thought fulfil only had one l at the end?) two more autumn imperatives – the deer rut and maybe some woodland/waterfalls with the non-green leaves.

Until then…

One of these days I’m going to cut you into little pieces

Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Yesterday I went for a walk in the grounds of Wayne Manor with my long lens. I was hoping for heron (the lake has an island heronry) or deer. Whatever the photographic equivalent is of a brain fart, I was having one. Lack of focus, not thinking of the background, whatever schoolboy errors there are I was making them.

It did not help that all the heron had gone on their holidays, or a tea break, because there was not one to be seen. So I was left with the deer.

When I looked at them on the computer it is fair to say I was a trifle disappointed. In fact I deleted them all and went away to sulk. An hour later I persuaded myself I could not possibly have a 100% failure rate. I am not perfect after all. The images were still on the memory card so I uploaded again.

I found one. Just one. Normally I would not post a single image, but the Pink Floyd venison reference was irresistible