Feeding the Birds, in 1974!

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Nikkormat FTn – Ilford FP3

Yes, 1974 or thereabouts, I can’t remember the exact date. Taken on a trip to London, I think on my old Nikkormat FTn camera, probably with a Nikkor 105mm f2.5 lens and FP3 film. The negative perished years ago but I found a very damaged and torn 10×8 print a couple of years ago, scanned it, and spent hours restoring it.

One of our friends back in the 1970s was Chief Photographer at the local newspaper (the Wolverhampton Express & Star), and managed to get the photo published for me. I got a series of calls from other newspapers, and it eventually made it into the Daily Telegraph and a couple of other UK dailies via a picture agency.

One day I received a call from the London ‘stringer’ for the Florida-based National Enquirer who was interested in publishing the photo in the US. (Interestingly, his name was Fred Pye, and at the time married to the singer Kathy Kirby…)  I think I got paid $50 (a lot of money then!) for them to use the photo  – its the only photo I’ve ever been paid for… lol

Take a walk…

My dear wife spotted a FREE photo walk at the Dudmaston National Trust property in Shropshire (UK) and encouraged me to try it. I am so glad I did!

Accompanied by a volunteer photographer at the estate, a bunch of around 12 of us walked around the site for a couple of hours while he pointed out things of interest and good viewpoints. All this was at a leisurely pace, so even though I was the only one using a tripod, it didn’t seem rushed.  It wasn’t the best weather/light – around midday in September, cloudless sky and slightly hazy, but this was fine for the woodland shots, and needed a bit of post-processing to bring out contrast in the wider more open views.

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Taking it easy…

I really enjoyed using the Fuji 18-135mm lens – its a fair bit heavier than my ‘old’ 18-55mm, but I only switched lenses once during the day (and that was to a wider angle lens).  There’s been talk about this new lens not being as sharp as the 18-55mm, but so far it works for me.

All in all a great session – well lead by volunteer Matthew, a good venue, and minimal cost, just the standard £6.60 entrance fee to the property.  Definitely worth looking for other similar events – there are several over the next few months in the Shropshire/Cheshire area.

Boathouse - Dudmaston NT

The  boathouse at Dudmaston

Dudmaston is situated on the A442, approx 3 miles south of Bridgnorth, and is run by The National Trust.