Archive for September, 2010


HDR Photography

Monday September 27, 2010

I’ve just started dabbling in HDR photography, that’s High Dynamic Range Photography.

High dynamic range imaging (HDRI or just HDR) is a set of techniques that allow a greater dynamic range of luminance between the lightest and darkest areas of an image than standard digital imaging techniques or photographic methods. This wider dynamic range allows HDR images to more accurately represent the wide range of intensity levels found in real scenes, ranging from direct sunlight to faint starlight. [Wikipedia]

My basic explanation of the method is: take three photos, one at the correct exposure, one x stops lower and one x stops higher.  Then the computer software merges the three images into one and ‘tone-mapping’ adjusts the output to better display on your screen.  Check the Wikipedia pages for more detailed/accurate explanation of the process.  😉

The photograph below shows an unaltered, correctly exposed image of Rochester Cathedral.  The photograph below that shows a HDR image which was made with the first one and two additional photos, one at -2 stops and one at +2 stops (the three constituent photos showed beneath the HDR image).

In the software, you can alter tone-mapping to suit your taste or what you’re trying to achieve with the photograph.  The HDR image below was processed with Dynamic Photo HDR using the ‘High Contrast’ tone-mapping preset option.

You can view the HDR image over on Flickr.


Rochester – Gigapan Photos

Friday September 24, 2010

Went out on Wednesday with my camera and my Gigapan to take some panoramic photos from the top of Rochester Castle.

The two images came out quite well.  The shot of the Castle gardens is the result of 80 individual photos and the shot overlooking the Cathedral resulted from 98 photos – all merged and blended by the Gigapan Stitch software (the gardens image taking over 1hr 30mins to complete).

The resultant Gigapan images can be explored by zooming in and out and panning around them.  Follow these links to view them:

Overlooking the Cathedral ( Gigapan link)
Castle Gardens (Gigapan link)

From Rochester Castle (Gigapan)

Rochester Castle Gardens (Gigapan)


London Walk

Tuesday September 21, 2010

Went into London yesterday for a quiet walk around.  The sun was out and the city was busy.

There was no reason to head into the city, I just fancied a walk and a day out.  I took my camera and some money and just walked aimlessly.  My GPS receiver kept me from getting lost and also kept a track of where I’d been.  I ended up walking over 12 miles during the day and managed to get the 1657  train back out to Rochester.

Luckily I managed to get myself a seat on the train as it was packed with commuters heading home after a hard day of work.

I, on the other hand, had spent a relaxing day in the sun and enjoyed a fine meal at ‘Fuel‘ in Covent Garden.

Saw the new Barclays Cycle Hire scheme – quite a few hire stations and I actually saw the bikes in use, they seemed quite popular (although somebody may not agree).

Photos over on Flickr.

My walk - GPS logged

Barclays Cycle Hire (3/3)


ICE Information – ID Inside

Sunday September 19, 2010

MedicalTags imageI recently found these ICE tags online on the website of Medical Tags UK.

Designed for any type of helmet, from cycling to canoeing, they contain information which may be of use to paramedics in the event of an emergency.

The replaceable insert details your emergency contact information and medical info.  The tag is waterproof and the container durable – just stick it to the side of your helmet and your ICE* information will be with you and accessible at all times.

£15 each over on the Medical Tags UK website (free UK shipping).

[* In Case of Emergency]


Online DVD Rental

Thursday September 16, 2010

Stuck in and unable to get out on the bike?  Try renting from LoveFilm.

I’ve been renting DVDs from LoveFilm for a number of years and its very easy and hassle-free.  Just select what you want to watch from their massive online catalogue and add them to your ‘list’.  LoveFilm will then send you DVDs from that list in line with your membership quota.  For example, I pay £5.99 per month and that entitles me to 3 DVDs each month, one disc at home at any one time.

The great thing is that you don’t need to drive to the ‘video shop’ to get a film, they simply arrive in the post.  When you’ve finished watching, just stick it back in its envelope and post it in the nearest post box.  If you have any credits left in that month, then LoveFilm will simply send another film from your list.  Simple.

You can prioritise DVDs (high, medium or low) and that will affect which films are sent to your from your list.

A great service which keeps things simple and efficient.  Try LoveFilm today! – take a free trial.


Cycling To CityLink

Tuesday September 14, 2010

Since my epic ride to Pembrokeshire in April, I haven’t really been out on the bikes and I haven’t been running either.  I’ve had a few gentle rides into town and a leisurely ride or two when on holiday in Norfolk, but no ‘real’ rides.

Thought I’d get out on the Trek today.  I had a parcel to collect from the CityLink depot in Aylesford so I thought I’d get some exercise and some fresh air.  The parcel was only a book from Amazon so it would easily fit on the Trek’s rear rack.

It was slightly over 7 miles each way so a total journey of 14.8 miles was a pretty respectable ride after such a long break from long(er) distance cycling.  It was nice to feel the burning in my legs as I struggled up the hills and it was good to feel the rain on my face.

I’ve missed cycling…


Problems on the Road

Tuesday September 7, 2010

Local traffic disruptions as reported on my iPod Touch yesterday, ‘Bull on Road’ – I’m glad I wasn’t out cycling!:

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