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Sunday, 30 January 2011


This has been a busy month. New activities have been added to the ongoing pastimes and more work is planned for the house. So we took ourselves off to Whitby and climbed to the top of the hill as many others have done before and let the sea breeze refresh us.There are outbuildings to the side of our house which are going to be refreshed as well. Fortunately the years have been kinder to them than to this old Whitby cottage but it will still be quite major with new roof, floor, walls and door! Then the inside tradesmen will arrive to swap their skills for a large slice of our retirement fund. The finished job will create a warm dry sitting-room to the side with a shower/cloakroom and a new entry with a porch, suitable for taking off muddy boats and hanging wet coats. The washing machine will also be allocated an inside spot and so will no longer freeze solid and be unusable for much of the winter. We washed clothes in the bath for a couple of weeks last month! The brochure for Spring Term courses at Darlington Arts Centre arrived. I have had a go at all the art and painting ones so I thought I'd better try something else. I chose "Art in Photography". It became clear at the first lesson that we were not going to be taught HOW to use a camera but WHAT to point it at. This in itself is OK with me but it does mean that I take a good picture only when my guardian angel is smiling, because I don't have a clue what I'm doing.

We were assigned homework. We had to produce a selection of urban close-ups for a group critique session next lesson. I don't really know how to take close-ups. There is a "macro" button that I employ but it doesn't get as close as I would like and I can depress the flash and keep the colour real BUT although I think I understand the term "depth of field" I've no idea how my camera copes with it.

This purely accidental shot of some wrought iron railings at the new free toilets in the carpark at Whitby was well praised for its composition. I'm still not sure why. I liked the rusty lamppost so much more. Anyway I have been sent back out to explore the chains further and add more fetters and vinculi to vary the presentation. I shall try to read the manual for my camera and learn how to get the blurry bits where I want them.
Apart from that we decided that long walks were not providing us with enough aerobic exercise. Well it was either that or gluttony which was causing our waistlines to expand. So we joined the local gym!!!
Now that I have been four times I can announce this publicly as being more than a nine day wonder. It is an hour a session and involves miles of cycling, rowing, treadmilling etc and you end up still at the gym! I'm trying to go twice a week. I hate swimming so I don't do that bit. People say that I'll be really pleased in a few months time.
Cheers for now, Gillian


chillsider said...

good pics.
I guess you will get praise from them when whatever you are taking the pic of doesn't look like what it is...........thus it is art?

Heide said...

Good luck with the gym membership. Home maintenance is dreadfully expensive, but sometimes it costs more to not do it. I love both pictures.

carol said...

Your pics ahave always been worth looking at but now we can look forward to even more I hope. I like the rusty one - maybe if you'd taken it lying down....