July 2022 Entries

Sunday, 31st July, 2022

Was browsing /r/M43 and thinking (again) that a MFT camera might actually be what I want. Of course the great photos on there are 99% the person and 1% the camera. So therefore I’m good getting one? 😅

I did think that for birds in flight it makes a good setup. My dad has mentioned he’s sort of interested in bird photography, so I think MFT would suit him. If my siblings are up for it, maybe we could get a setup for Christmas.

I just really like the tiny size but flexibility of interchangeable lenses. It complements a M10 well 😀

I started migrating my old blog posts from around the place - wordpress, old static site, etc. - to my new tiddlywiki home page. UGH. Images are so much easier in Wordpress…it’s depressing. I also think images make a blog post, and without it they’re “boring”. 🤷‍♂️

Saturday, 30th July, 2022

I removed all my old habits and tasks from habitica and started adding a few new ones. It reminded me of my want to “lose a bit of weight, and generally tone up / do some bloody exercise” ambition. Rightly or wrongly it lead to ordering the Concept2 rowing machine. In my defence, it was a returned one, so 5% off, and starting Sept 1st, the price is going up another £130. So it seemed like a now or never. It’ll also make me organise the garage.

I can see habitica being a fun thing to do with the kids - for their chores and homework etc. I think the self-hosted one offers more options (and less pay for items) which would probably be better. Would be nice to just switch accounts vs. Logging in and out of everyone’s. We’re doing the usual things like it already, e.g. everyone clear their dishes after meals and next week we’ll go to the cinema. Probably we don’t need a computer based version of it but maybe when everyone is older it might be some other motivation, at least for a period of time. There’s the element of “going on a computer” as well which they’ll like as that’s a rationed item! Or maybe I’m missing the point altogether.

As we’re spending all this money, I thought that maybe I should just get the M10 too 😂 It might mean I stop wasting hours and hours of evenings looking at videos and forums and rubbish going round and round in circles. However, I could just be wanting it as “it’s a Leica” and in fact I hate it…I probably won’t hate it as I like the M2 but that’s also film. So I’m still in a quandary. In about a month I will go to the Leica store and play with some cameras, so perhaps I should still wait for that.

Wow, there are whole communities and all sorts on habitica. I’m not surprised but I’ve never looked into it. According to my account, I registered in 2013, and I probably used it then for a bit, then maybe 2015?, but don’t think I’ve used it since around then until now…not that I’ve used it yet, but getting back into it. Might watch a YouTube video on some of the features as I’m not clear the purpose of them.

Come September my work schedule will change from 9 day fortnight (i.e every other Friday off) to one flexible day off a month. This does mean that I should work about 30 minutes less each day than I do now. I originally thought it would mean I’d finish 30 minutes earlier, but I’m now thinking I should start 30 minutes later. This would give 30 minutes more in the morning at home. Think I’d be more productive with that time in the morning vs. After work where I’d most likely just sit around and do nothing or go on the computer etc. I also don’t tend to go on the computer in the morning before work, so that also helps being more productive. Finally, it also means I do the thing for me first, whereas leaving work on time can sometimes be hard and 15 minutes easily slips by and now this extra time has disappeared and I’m worse off. Probably I think my morning row might be the thing.

There’s no race in life. It’s a choose your own adventure.

This looks fun. Although I’ve noticed how hard it is to find postcards now. Always used to be the thing when you went on holiday or visited some place.

Friday, 29th July, 2022

We ordered a new kitchen today. We don’t pay the full amount just now but spending all that money makes me feel like just spending more on other things 😅📷

Finally used my Cinestill 50 film today. It expires next month, which shows you how long I’ve had it sat around. ISO 50 is just so low that I daren’t use it unless it’s the most brilliant sunshine. Today was lovely blue skies so went for it. I’ve not finished it yet, and as typical of my M2, I didn’t set the counter so I have no idea how many are left.

Thursday, 28th July, 2022

I went to the dentist yesterday for the first time in an embarrassingly long time. Mostly due to moving then COVID then the waitlist to get a NHS dentist. He took some horrible photos and emailed to me. I then bought an electric toothbrush like he suggested. NHS dentistry seems to have changed since I last came to one. Unsurprisingly it’s worse. Basically turning into a bare minimum dental cover, and unless you’re in pain they ain’t doing nought.

Installed Habitica app on my phone. Logged in and saw all my old tasks. They’ve added so many things to the app since I last used it. Feel like I need to reset it and start again. HAbit tracking in a book just doesn’t work for me. Hoping an app will…guess the first task is to set the habits!

The back catalogue of the Leica society is hours and hours of lovely Leica reading. Looking forward to getting the hard copies. They also have some film M camera disassembly guides - including the instructions that once accompanied a US Army training course! However, after looking at them I’m not going to be trying it anytime soon!

Wednesday, 27th July, 2022

Ugh I feel sorry for my sister. She graduated Uni and then went to work in China in January 2019…🦠🦠🦠 She’s just returned because their zero covid policy actions are even worse than the original outbreak. So her family haven’t seen her for years and she’s back two weeks staying at home and already the “I’m very disappointed in you” speeches have come out. It’s literally the meme of boomer parents and Gen Z.

Tuesday, 26th July, 2022

Went on a boat out at sea today. Took some sea sickness tablets before we left. You never know if they work or not, but I wasn’t sick so that’s always good. I do have a splitting headache now and my colleague, who also took them, said he does too. Least it’s not my profession. Took my camera with us. Everyone else went on about it and why not use my phone. I told them I like to do things properly. We all laughed and it was fine. Used the 18mm lens too, could’ve done with wider actually.

I really want this game.

I keep getting all these notifications from mpb.com for various used cameras that come in stock. I don’t want one.

I found a book on the shelves that I’d asked for Christmas which I’ve not read (there’s actually many of those but this one is fiction so different from the rest). I said I wish I had it on kindle to read in bed at night when my wife is asleep. You know what, maybe I should sit in a chair during the day and read it as my activity. I have a trip at the end of August across country on planes and trains. I should take it then and read it versus dicking about on my phone/iPad/laptop.

Is having a personal blog worth it for you?. Ask Hacker News. Found in that post, montaigne. Montaigne is a simple tool that allows you to publish any type of website from Apple Notes. 🤔

Monday, 25th July, 2022

I still got sucked into looking at random cameras. The most random was the Pentax Q. Has an absolutely tiny sensor, but does have an interesting range of equally tiny lenses. The whole thing is tiny, which is partially why I was looking at it. However, why do I need this? A camera I take everywhere to do what? Take pictures of randoms I don’t care about?

I then managed to remember I’m supposed to be trying to get into amateur radio, so started reading about it. The foundation licence seems fairly easy to get. I’ll need to do some studying, and I signed up to a free online course - which is not classroom based but is scheduled at specific times, not sure I understand why - but the time element should help me focus on it. Although it doesn’t start until 7th August.

Before the holidays I was all set on ordering a Concept 2 rowing machine. However, the delivery timing was too close when we were leaving so I put it off. Now that I’m back I’m hesitant about doing it. I worry it’ll be another one of my “this purchase will solve my issue” and then I do nothing. There’s a gym at work which I can use for free…so why not use it? I miss working at home.

Maybe I should revalitalise my Flickr account…

Sunday, 24th July, 2022

The apps on my phone feel like a mess. When I had to reset my iPad I chose not to restore anything, and just added apps back one at a time when I needed them. Keep thinking about doing the same on my phone.

I’m starting to think the M10 looks nicer than the M10-P. I don’t like that big screw in the front. Although I still like the script text on top and I probably prefer no red dot 🔴. I’ve been considering it as it’s about £700 cheaper - and the only thing I care about that’s different is the quieter shutter. However, I don’t think the M10’s is particularly loud.

I (still) want to spend less time on the computer and do something else. It’s not going to happen unless something changes. Not sure what that is or should be though… 🤔

Saturday, 23rd July, 2022

Watched the finale of Stranger Things last night. Even though it doesn’t matter, I still think it would’ve been better as two episodes vs one big long one. Although not sure where you’d have split it. It was pretty good, the new characters always seem more special than the core group. It setup for the best and final season, in however long that’ll be before it comes out.

This has felt a weird week. Going back to work midweek. Plus generally tired that has carried over for the long trip home.

Friday, 22nd July, 2022

I’ve been taking my Hobonichi back and forth to work, but I’ve yet to write anything in it. I keep thinking about writing things in it but then never do. My half year one is entirely Japanese and whilst I thought it was okay, it’s a bit annoying for day names when I’m looking in the future. I’ll keep bringing it and maybe eventually I’ll write in it.

Spent a while looking at the Lumix S5 last night. It’s a nice full frame camera, but being full frame means the lenses are still huge, even when they’re small. I don’t need it.

Feel like I need to write a lot tonight. Lots of things buzzing about in my head. Also the office has become a tip whilst I’ve not been looking, so that doesn’t help. Needs tidying and stuff is laying around because “I’m going to do xyz with it”.

I actually want to watch the final episode of Strange Things. I watched the other episodes in part 2 of this season but the finale is 2+ hours long. That’s basically the evening.

Work has rolled out a new development planning module thing in the performance management tool. Started filling it in…I feel like it’s going to tell me I don’t want to work there any more! 😅 It’s good but not easy to answer the questions…I don’t know what I want to do when I grow up.

I sent a letter to a family member a while back with a photo and a sticker I had made. They wrote a letter back. That was nice. I should write some more. I want to write them on the typewriter but it’s a bit loud and slow, so probably will still be pen. Problem is, this is then another todo which adds to the enormous list already….remember those projects from…Monday this week!…I can feel them slipping away already. That also reminds me of the habits I’d started before holiday which were going to be “easy to continue on holiday because I’m not doing anything”. Well this is me just remembering their existence now…and obviously I did nothing. The rowing machine I was going to buy when we came back is on hold as the garage has also exploded. I don’t really know what it all is, but I can barely find space for my bike now. Ugh. Maybe can sort all this out this weekend and feel content again.

Thursday, 21st July, 2022

But numerous events can be commemorated with a single picture. It just has to be a good one, and to tell enough of the story. How many pictures should the family aim to end up with? Consider the possibility that a reasonable number is eight. Why so few? Because life is full, and pictures accrue.

Seems very apt given I’ve just got a heap of photos to sort through. Also reinforces why I like film - I have 24/36 exposures, it’s a bit pricey, so I think more before using one up. Except when the event or day is done and I want to just finish the roll to process it!

My brother in law will be 40 soon, and his family are gathering photos for the party. I found out his mum has an album with a label each year and it includes a photo of her children’s birthday that year. It’s lovely.

I hadn’t visited my site in several days and only just noticed it wasn’t building… 😣

Wednesday, 20th July, 2022

Back home and back at work. So many errands to do this evening, no time for fun stuff. Only briefly looked at my photos from the holiday. I had three colour presets I’d setup on the X100V: a lighter, fairly flat, semi-portra style one, a more contrasty paler one, and then a yellow/green softer one. I liked them all. I didn’t take many with the contrasty one as it looked too washed out in camera but the ones I did take look good on the computer. The yellow/green is something that I would’ve said I hated if someone described it to me, however, I really like it in bright sunlight. I should post some pictures or something to show the difference but later… I did try out the grain settings in the camera. Can’t decide if I like it or not, but probably lean towards no grain.

All this reminds me that it’s probably the ideal camera for me, and not some 4X Leica. I have decided that I should use more film, even if it is expensive. I’ve ended up with a lot of random films that I can never use as too slow or just random ones that I have no idea how anything will turn out.

Tuesday, 19th July, 2022

“Your bag is too heavy.” Proceeds to watch customer take stuff out of bag, put into another bag. All bags go on the plane.

Airline logic. 🤦‍♂️

Monday, 18th July, 2022

Our holiday is drawing to a close. I have managed not to buy any domains, so that’s a plus on previous years! I spent a silly amount of time reading and thinking about new cameras, I haven’t made any decisions, I have a shortlist of potentials but we also started getting quotes for some house work and probably I’m better waiting until that’s all done as no doubt everything will end up being more expensive than planned.

I’ve been using the X100V for about 2 weeks and, as expected, it’s a great holiday camera. Feels small and light strung across my body, I’ve taken it everywhere, not really wanted for a different focal length. Had fun tinkering with the jpeg colours, used the 4 stop ND filter, battery life has been great. Never use the OVF, and that always seems like a waste. With my 100F I did very occasionally use it when I wanted to conserve battery if I’d forgotten to charge it before going out. 🪫 Like I’ve said before - maybe I would’ve been better off getting it when I sold my F vs the X-T2, and now I don’t know if it’s really a good compliment. Anyway I won’t relive it all again.

Projects that I’m supposedly going to start:

  • Get my HAM radio licence
  • Script to compute best price for Lego sets from individual parts
  • Explore the MOC (my own creation) tools and designs out there.
  • Build a Lego town with the kids. (A cousin is coming to stay for a week. Might be a good thing with him, need to find a good place to set it up)

So I don’t think those are too excessive and unrealistic. Maybe all this time thinking about cameras has paid off in other ways! 😅

Sunday, 17th July, 2022

I ordered a few little sets for the boys. I really wanted the Creator Ferris Wheel, but it’s expensive and still in being sold so there aren’t any used sets. Notice it was I want 😂.

It’s not surprising, but I hadn’t quite realised, just how extensive the custom Lego building “world” is. There are so many sites dedicated to custom builds, called MOCs (haven’t figured out what that stands for something original construction?), and so many programs to help you build, share and use other people’s creations. I’m curious to do something…

My friend and I have a common complaint that today’s Lego sets you buy have so many “custom” (they’re not strictly custom but they’re just so specific) pieces that it’s hard to do anything else with the set once you’ve build it. They go in for hyper realism and the whole set is 1/3 height tiny pieces put together. Back in our day 👴, there were still sets but the total number of discrete parts was much less and so you could rebuild more things a lot easier. I did have the classic pirate ship, which did have the custom boat pieces, but the cabin and other parts were just with normal pieces. My daughter likes the Harry Potter Lego, but they’re all just build once and sit on a shelf. Shop fronts or scenes from the movies. They’re not the best toys in my opinion. Maybe she does play with them when I’m not looking. But compared to the Lego Town or even Star Wars stuff, where it’s vehicles, planes, shops, etc. there’s more to do once they’re built. Of course, the building is the best part so what can I expect. Perhaps that’s why there’s so much custom creation online as people want to build more, and maybe all these hyper specific pieces makes the custom scene so much better.

I tried using on the github python scripts I found to compute the price of parts for the Ferris Wheel if you bought them separately. Unfortunately, most scripts I found (I didn’t look that hard) were quite old and various websites had changed their API or layout such that they didn’t work. I tried fixing them but doing it on an iPad, whilst SSH into my server, with split screen for terminal and the browser was not an enjoyable experience, so I stopped. I’m still interested though, and could be a fun project.

Looking at all this Lego makes me want to build my own “town” or scene across a table - like the Lego Movie! Get all the sets we have and build them and put them together. We just don’t have anywhere to keep it that the two year old won’t get to it. She’ll want to play with it but it’ll quickly get broken - and maybe that’s fine but the others would get upset.

I’m in a Q2 vs M10 circle at the moment. Although sometimes I step away from it and think they’re both hideously expensive and I should get neither.

Saturday, 16th July, 2022

Thinking of joining the Leica Society. I’ve wasted more than £30 in other ways before.

I joined. Looking forward to reading all the back catalogue magazines.

Been looking at used Lego sets for the boys as an entertainment option in the summer holidays. To bring out in case of emergency. There’s lots of good deals on bricklink.com. It’s not the easiest to find a seller that has multiple, decent and cheap sets though. There are several apps or scripts on GitHub which interface with Bricklink’s API to search and find stuff. One of which can help you find all the parts to a set. This is not something I’d considered but makes sense. You can often buy 95%+ of the parts for a set for pennies each and then just a few expensive parts. If you don’t care about mini figures then it’s perfect…we’ll potentially. Some may still be cheaper as the set.

I’d like to play about with the API. Find the sets which have the best £/piece ratio for instance.

Friday, 15th July, 2022

I knew the Q2 could crop with its bucket loads of pixels such that you can get 35mm 50 mm etc. but until I read this I didn’t quite realise how big those buckets where:

The four digital zoom modes are:

  • 28mm 8368 x 5584 47mp
  • 35mm 6704 x 4472 30mp
  • 50mm 4688 x 3128 14.6mp
  • 75mm 3136 x 2096 6.6mp

It’s insane 🤩 It makes 35 and 50 mm very useable though.

It’s been insanely hot here. Up to 40°C (104°F) 🥵 This morning there’s a nice breeze which is a relief. Wonder how long it’ll last.

I should add more photos to DayOne. They will, eventually, all get printed. It’s about the only way that my iPhone photos end up anywhere permanent. They do get shared on a shared photos album on iCloud.

Think I went a bit nuts on camera analysis. I have perfectly good cameras that take great pictures already. I am interested in MFT though. I hadn’t really thought about the 4:3 ratio but I was messing about with crops on a picture and tried the 4:3 ratio and it does give a bit more room on portrait orientation images. Of course, moving back physically or wider lenses will achieve the same. It’s pretty cheap, least the body is, so I may just get it to have a play with. I do think to myself it would be nice to give one of the kids a camera when we go somewhere to let them take photos of things they like, and I do only have one digital camera. 👈 look at that! What a great justification to myself 😅

I would like a nice collection of M glass, as I think it’s both great quality, and a sort of investment for the future. Not really one for making money per say, but retaining historic value. It will be a camera system that I’ll have forever, film certainly, and at some stage digital. Going on random digital goose chases is just wasting money that could go into the forever system. I keep wishing I’d wanted to and been able to buy it 10-20 years ago - and so as they say, the next best time to plant a tree 🌳 is now 📅 (Well July 17th by this emoji, which is just two days away!)

Been re-reading The Lord of the Rings. I’d forgotten Tolkein’s writing style, and I was reminded of how much I enjoy it. I also like the sound of a Hobbit’s lifestyle! The importance of meals, and writing books of events and history. Reminds me that I’ve left my Hobonichi at home and not written in it. Although I still feel like I prefer iPad and keyboard vs. Pen and paper at home. Pen and paper works well at work when I’m moving between meeting rooms and it’s not like a daily journal but more just tasks and workings.

Started looking at training materials for the foundation exam for amateur radio. Mostly seems straight forward at this level. Some stuff I may need to actively revise, like call sign syntax and other terms. The physics and maths are very basic and I’m already familiar with so that’s good for me. I suspect the latter stages are more involved with more things I’ve not been exposed to, so will take more learning. This has made me wonder about anki and even Soren’s zettle tiddlywiki arrangement. So that I can make my own notes and use the anki app to learn it.

Thursday, 14th July, 2022

I’m conflicted between “one lens; one camera” and “the right tool for the job”.

But I also know I like researching and buying cameras and lenses, particularly when I think I’m “solving the problem”. I keep saying I should write what I want down - kind of like a project: frame the problem, define success, list alternatives, score them, pick the best. Do it and shut up. 🤐 But I keep procrastinating on it. I’ve started a new page on this site…somewhere 🤫

I’d previously dismissed micro 4/3 sensors and cameras but this was educational reading for me. The pixel density, the faster lens options, and many have IBIS which all counter any theoretical loss of performance due to the sensor size. High ISO is worse but with faster lenses and IBIS means you can keep the ISO lower and therefore there isn’t an issue(?).

I’ve dug out my GoPro Hero4 for the holiday. Taking videos of the kids swimming and messing about in the pool. Haven’t used it elsewhere even though I could. I enjoy having the videos as you get to hear everyone and get that extra dimension over photography. It’s just a massive post processing hassle. iPhone videography has come a long way since I bought the GoPro about 6-8 years ago. The kids like using it and I should let them take videos. Although they still prefer iPads and iPhones as you get to see the video so much better afterwards.

Maybe I should back to looking at 50mm lenses for the M2! Just spend all the digital cameras cost combined on a single Leica lens 😅 The summicron isn’t that bad but I may have been looking at the lenses too long and normalised to insane prices. Reading old forum posts seems like I missed out on the “cheap” era of used Leica gear. Stuff costing half or even less than what it does today. I probably wasn’t mentally or financially (even at half the price) prepared for Leica back then. I think spending £90 on my Nikon 35mm f/1.8 DX was a big decision back then.

Wednesday, 13th July, 2022

I’m building a shopping list of Leica lenses that I want. Not sure why as I doubt I’ll want to spend that much. I’m just curious about how people can expresss so much love of a certain lens.

Tuesday, 12th July, 2022

We visited Carcassonne. There’s so much potential for street photography. The lovely architecture, and busyness of the city, the French people, narrow streets, oh so much. I had forgotten my camera so had nothing and wasn’t going to bother with my phone taking pictures. Did make me wish for my film camera though. However, I don’t really want street photography photos. At most it would be a picture of the waiter who served us to remember him as part of our day. Probably I mean I only want a couple of scenery photos - and even then I’d rather it be with us or people I know in it, or maybe a cat sleeping somewhere amusing. Even if it (somehow) was a technically very good shot, or the “perfect” capture of light in some amusing or clever way, I’m not really that interested in it. Maybe if I had some social media or a public gallery I might post on to it? I’m not really that bothered or have time for that.

I used the search on this site this morning to find (surprise surprise) a camera model I’d been thinking of. I wanted to share it with someone else as they were looking for a small camera with 28-35mm lens that wasn’t that expensive. I suggested the LUMIX GX80 with the 15mm f/1.7 Leica lens. Anyway, the search worked well for me so squashes my nagging feeling that I need to have this content in tiddlywiki or somewhere with more search functionality.

Monday, 11th July, 2022

Finished my book series: The three body problem - by Cixin Liu. Was pretty good sci-if series. Reminds me I’ve not moved my read book list from wherever I last left it - possibly on a site not even online anymore! Now I’m not sure what I’m reading next. Looking through my kindle library there isn’t anything appealing.

Trying to not think about camera stuff for a while. Can’t do anything about it at the moment so I shouldn’t waste my head with it. Although I frequently get sucked into forums, subreddits, blogs, etc. about it, so not sure I’m doing a good job. I

As a distraction, started looking at Ham radio resources. There’s a big gear side of it…hmm…🧐📻

Feel like re-reading an old favourite that I’ve not looked at in years. Like Lord of the Rings. Just as it’s easy and I’ve probably forgotten a lot. Must be nearly 20 years since I last read it.

Sunday, 10th July, 2022

We met a lady in a wheelchair coming along a cycling/walking path. She started telling me about how the council had cut the verges last month and destroyed the wild flowers and the habitats of wild butterflies. She was mad about it and shared the story of her directing that rage at the council. They did apologise at least but they obviously can’t uncut it. She knew a lot about butterflies, at least could name a lot of varieties. She said she takes photos of all the wildlife along the track. The track is the old railway line that’s been made into a path for people to walk and cycle along. I briefly got a glimpse of the camera she uses. A lumix compact model with fixed lens. It was on a small tripod, maybe for her to hold with one hand whilst manoeuvring her chair. I did wonder if she set it on surfaces to take pictures but not sure how that would work, unless she waited a long time for butterflies and insects to land back on flowers again. Supposedly there’s a rare breed of moth that visits this area and the cutting down incident has been detrimental to its numbers. The council said they cut the verges “because of the cyclists”. Maybe they were really overgrown onto the path? The lady didn’t understand how that was a reason, when cyclists “aren’t looking to the sides but where they are going”. I’d also think that it would be nice to cycle along with flowers at the sides. My wife caught us up and the lady told the story again to her. I wonder where she keeps the photos. Does she print them out into a journal and write information about them. Surely there’s more to record than just a picture. Maybe she has a website. My guess is no, but only because she’s “of retirement age” and the probability is low - even if that is ageist. She might use some software on the computer to put the information together. She reminded me of the individuals I saw in the Tinderbox weekly calls. Majority were 50s+ and all doing some sort of project on the computer which they used Tinderbox for. They knew what they were up to but some had never seen HTML code.

To have a passion and purpose where the content is more important than the process, and to not have a feeling of embarrassment over doing it - in fact having the passion to actively complain to authorities. To do it for the reason that it’s the right thing to do, and probably that no-one else would do it.

Saturday, 9th July, 2022

An unnamed individual brought to light the Nikon F100. Not sure if I’ve looked at that exact model in the past, but I’ve looked at multiple Nikon film SLRs. It made me think that a Voigtlander 50mm (which is the bargain M mount compared to the Leica lenses) could pay for a F100 plus a handful of excellent Nikon lenses, including the 50mm f/1.4. Plus I get the benefit of autofocus, matrix metering and a whole host of convenience with the Nikon vs. the M2. The money saved could be invested into so many rolls of film instead. It’s probably not quite as small, although weight-wise is likely no more given the heft of the M2. Plus with Nikon F mount lenses there’s 1000s and they all work on the most modern DSLRs - and even the new Z mount with the adapter - although not sure how great that actually is - I assume makes it seamless?

So why don’t I get it? This is the question I’m asking myself. I like the look of film, the colour, the grain, the surprise. Do I like it because I’ve had to meter the light myself, and I’ve had to choose all the settings, and I’ve had to focus it? It certainly makes good shots more rewarding, but would I just enjoy everything anyway and have all the shots nicely focused and exposed 90+% of the time by the camera?

I’m not going to get rid of the M2, but maybe I should keep it as my 35mm favourite and everything else is the Nikon? Ugh…I still don’t want more cameras with more mounts to buy lenses for…although considerably cheaper.

Back when I used to have Nikon…My first decent (aka real DSLR) was a D40, which I paired with a 35 mm f/1.8 DX lens and probably used that for 2 years straight without getting another lens. I pined over the (optically terrible but mighty convenient) 18-200mm super zoom. My uncle had one and I would sometimes borrow it when I visited, however, it was far too big and heavy for the D40. When I upgraded to the D7000 I did end up getting the 18-200mm and used it a lot. Have a lot of favourite photos from that lens. I loved taking headshots at 200mm with it! At some stage I got a D7200, but when I moved to mirrorless with the X100F - chosen as we were travelling a lot due to living abroad and I didn’t want to carry a huge DSLR and lenses - I sold the Nikon. For a while I was fine with it but then 18 months later I had a hankering for some zoom lens action. So I bought another D7200. I then realised that I didn’t really want it, but I just missed the old times I had with it. Before getting rid of it I did acquire (or maybe never sold the first time, I don’t remember) a 50 mm f/1.4 D, a 135mm f/? Macro? (I forget) and I think the 85 mm f/1.8. The 50 mm was my favourite lens physically. I was mesmerised by the amount of glass and size of aperture in a tiny lens. I kept the lenses even after selling the Nikon body, but did finally sell the lenses about 2 years ago.

A bit later I started looking into film bodies, and then regretted selling the Nikon 50mm as it would’ve paired nicely with a Nikon SLR. I liked the idea of sharing lenses between film and digital bodies and did consider getting back into Nikon. However, at the time I felt it was silly to buy a lens I’d just sold and these were “expensive” lenses (HA! What did I know 😅). Eventually I ended up with a M2 and I love it. But I’ve had the same thought a couple of times since - wouldn’t it be great to share lenses. More recently that’s via the M10. But the final hurdle with that is, the price. The age old reasoning of, for the same price I could get …x, y, z, and 0-9 of something else.

Which also brings me to the X100V. I’ve been using this camera all week and I’m reminded of the joy I once knew owning the X100F of that of a fixed lens camera. It’s not just the fixed lens part, but what that means as a whole - the size, weight, ergonomics, I enjoy the Fuji controls, the custom functions, the ND filter is great on holiday in sunny climates to use f/2 during the day. It’s leaf shutter and flash were always great when I did finally succumb to flash. People like Leica for the minimal time you’re in the menus and I find that’s exactly the case with the Fuji. I like the images I get from it and I take it everywhere. It’s all the things I like so surely I should get one. But how does it fit in with everything else?

It probably goes with everything but then it just becomes another choice. So maybe take the parts I like and upgrade to the X-T4? I just don’t like the spinny screen…maybe that is better and then I don’t need to do an entire overhaul of everything and I’m still limiting myself to the choice of digital vs. Film. Not digital camera 1-3 or film camera xyz and lenses abc with everything.

This is all silly. 🫠

I found out there’s an amateur radio group in town and not too far from me, plus they meet in the evenings so I could make that. Maybe I’ll visit and see what it’s like. If I want to do anything I have to pass an exam, not looked at the training materials but I suspect the entry one isn’t that hard. The advanced one will probably be quite technical but let’s see if I still have interest after the first….or if I even get to the first. I may well be another bottomless pit for money…on radio stuff that I’m too shy to use.

Friday, 8th July, 2022

The kids love playing with SnapChat for all the funny faces it does. If there was an app that could do that without any of the social media stuff I’d install it. I’ve not looked but I doubt it exists. Some of them are hilarious though. There was a crying face one which no-one could stop laughing at. You still look like you’re crying whilst laughing so it just perpetuated. 😹

Got some film scans back today from the Kodak ColorPlus I’d used the past couple of weekends. They were reasonable pictures, some weren’t that exciting or of anyone looking or doing anything in particular. Sometimes having a fixed set of exposures means I just want to finish the roll in line with whatever event or thing I’m taking photos of. I suppose I don’t need to, but when it’s ISO 200 it’s not always practical to use it later on when I really need higher ISO. I had quite a few poorly focused shots with the 90mm, I was being lax with focusing whilst using it. It needs considerably more accuracy than the 35mm which you can go “close enough” a lot of the time. The 90mm also flares and so I should get a hood. I can’t remember if mine copy came with a hood, but if it did, it was the collapsible rubber one which looks like shit. There’s two metal ones I can get, the IUFOO cone-ish shaped one, or a more regular Leica metal hood. They’re both quite expensive for what they are. The IUFOO seems the cheapest, although turns out there’s two versions: one that’s all black, and one with a silver ring. The all black one is more expensive. I’ll keep my eye on ebay and see what pops up. I think the other one is usable on more lenses so might be worthwhile getting instead. All this makes me think a 50 mm would be a good compromise for when I’m out and looking for something a little longer. That is a massive research project - picking a 50 mm. Unless I just go all in for the 50 mm Summilux. Saves me a lot of time reading about lenses, just also costs a lot more! I do remember a big review article someone did comparing about 10 50mm M mount lenses. Various Voigtlander, Zeiss, and Leica ones. Maybe I’ll go re-read it. Although that will tell me to get the Voigtlander 50 f/2 ultron or whatever it’s called. As it’ll be 95% the Leica and about 10% the price.

I could get an older 50 mm to match the era of the M2. The f/1.5s often come up. Although they’re not exactly cheap.

A couple of domain names I have are expiring this week. Projects that I dream up whilst on holiday, buy the domain and then never do anything with. One I did do a little on it but never got very far. I’ve renewed them a couple of times but now I’m just letting them go. I should do the project first, then get the domain if it actually turns into something.

I had a moment where I remembered something from my childhood today and stopped to think about it. Things that you never noticed as a child are suddenly really strange when you think back as an adult.

This system is incredible. I’d like to have it but I know it won’t work for me as I never write things down. Not consistently anyway. I try to do it but generally get away without doing it so I don’t do it. I’m also not sure about having a notebook and pen with me the whole time. Seems difficult to manage. Phone on the other hand (or the main hand) is just fine. I’ve thought about carrying the Hobonichi with me to use that but so far have left it on my desk and partially forgotten about it.

I’ve had a few thoughts for blog posts running around in my head but even with the easiness of Tiddlywiki I still don’t write them down. Maybe I should get a cup of tea and start on one now. It doesn’t really matter so just do something. Although I was going to research 50 mm lenses…but probably that can wait…even if it is easier to do than write the post(s).

Think I’m coming up a year on having “this” site. (It’s changed 2-3 times since inception) but the daily posts aspect is still consistent. I keep meaning to bring in the old journal entries into this site for completeness, but it’s still on the todo list. I thought I had a script that could do it but I think it was the other way round - as in static pages to json for tiddlywiki import. I’ve prepared the json input file, just need to get around to processing it and writing out new pages. It’s quite minimal in scope - at least for the first 90%. There might be pictures and certainly links which are in the wrong format. But probably a find and replace in VS Code will be the quickest way to resolve those vs. Messing about with Pandoc or some other conversion tool.

I hope I’m more settled on the design and setup for this site now. I have a nice system on all computers and devices for adding posts with shortcuts for creation and front matter, and I much prefer a static site than anything else. The only slightly nagging thing is that the site is Jekyll and not Hugo. Although the hosting CDN caches builds so is very quick to render new pages because it doesn’t rebuild the rest of the site.

Anyway, all of this is to say I very much enjoy this style of blogging. It’s a pseudo-journal-blog site, and maybe it stops me writing in my own personal journal (as I’ve had enough writing by the time I’m done on here) but equally it means I write something. There’s not much else I want to write down that needs to be private. Maybe my personal grumblings about work or something but that’s usually something I can’t control or do anything about so why bother even thinking about it!

Thursday, 7th July, 2022

One thing I really enjoy on holiday is just sitting outside and reading a book. It’s maybe taken me a month to read half of this book and I’ll probably finish it in a few days. Then the question is what do I read next? I’ve been on a series (Chinese Sci-fi no less! Dark Forest is the middle one, I forget the name of the series or the first book) and so it’s easy to just continue. Can’t remember if I’d put some other books on my kindle.

Wednesday, 6th July, 2022

I’ve been looking at HAM radio licences and what’s needed in the UK for them. It always seems like a fun thing to do, although I feel like I’d never want to say anything. Mostly I think it would just be nice to have the licence. I even thought about private pilot’s licence but that seems a bit much just now.

Been using the Fuji X100V. I didn’t like it at first as it has fewer buttons than the F did (and my XT2) but once I sorted out the function keys to be what I want it was fine. It’s strange not having a dedicated view button - I like to be able to turn the LCD off to preserve battery but also like to turn it on when I want to use the flippy screen for some shot. However, all the functions can be set to buttons. I think I might like it more as it has fewer physical buttons but enough for what I tend to use: View mode, custom colour profile, ND filter and auto ISO settings. There is always the Q menu but I like to keep menus to a minimum where I can. I am enjoying the additional colour settings for jpegs. The additional ones give quite a lot of extra adjustment but the best part is being able to save white balance settings to each profile. On my XT2 I pretty much just have a colour and a B&W preset and the other 5 are mostly unused. Now I can see having multiple ones for different lighting or scenes. Plus the camera as a whole feels small and light, and the lens hardly pertrudes.

The obvious question is, am I going to get one?! Maybe I should’ve gone from F to V as I sort of originally planned but instead went XT2. I’m not sure where it would fit in the camera line up. Would it be my every day camera? If photographing kids sports events becomes more of a thing then it doesn’t really cut it, but otherwise? Maybe it is fine for everything else. I do really like 35mm. It’s a lot cheaper than many other cameras I’ve considered, and I don’t get tempted to buy more lenses! Maybe the wide adapter but that’s about it. Just if I ever got a M10, then what? Seems too much of an overlap. I could see it replacing the XT2 and just keeping that body with a suitable zoom lens for the occasional use. Although if I was serious about the sports photography I might find something else is better suited - it would be driven by the lenses I’d think. Fuji does fast long lenses but maybe there’s something better if that’s what it’s purpose is.

I really like the simplicity of the X100V. I also enjoy the colour profiles, and the fact that I probably won’t need to do any post as I can change (and see) the different styles immediately. No post is something I really like. There are other Fuji bodies but they all have trade offs, and nothing is as small as the x100.

Tuesday, 5th July, 2022

I’m on holiday 😎

So either means I write a great deal or nothing whatsoever!

It’s typically a time where I come up with great life changing plans or projects. 📡🔴

Monday, 4th July, 2022

We’re into July and so my half year, “avec” Hobonichi is now live. I’ve written one line in it and I don’t like what I’ve written already. I’ts a really great tool, but I’m not sure how I’m using it. I know I should just write whatever in it whenever but that feels too messy. However, we all know perfect is the enemy of good. Maybe I can track my thoughts of buying (or not) a Leica camera 😅. Then tally them up and see which one wins over the course of the rest of the year!

I didn’t realise the last episode of Stranger Things was 2.5 hours! Not sure when I’m going to watch that.

Posted off four rolls of Kodak ColorPlus 200 this morning. Look forward to seeing those and remembering what I even took photos off in a week or so.

Re-read our youngest’s playgroup “report” just now as tidying things up. Was overcome with a sense of …not nostalgia…but the feeling of time slipping away. Plus some nostalgia for the past year…if you can have that for a time so recent. Another school year done and everyone getting older. It seems like just the other day the boys were at playgroup. I remember thinking it was so good that they moved to nursery for longer hours. Life is so simple for little ones. It’s physically tiring as a parent but problems are small and quick to overcome. Just another parent “they grow up so quick” moment. 🥹

Sunday, 3rd July, 2022

I took a nice photo of my daughter using the Voigtlander 35mm Nokton on the Fuji which lots of people have liked. I can’t decide how much the lens plays a part vs. the moment, the light and the colours. It’s a combination of everything, but I wonder if I could’ve got the same photo with something else. It was at f/1.4 so the isolation is from the lens, but I think the colours make it look good too.

Back on film today. It’s partially sunny and we’re all outside so a good opportunity.

More people in the house ill now. Feel like it’ll be a long day.

Saturday, 2nd July, 2022

I’ve convinced myself that if I get a M10 then it’ll need a 50mm lux to keep it company. Within the endless videos and forums I’ve been reading, I’ve seen a lot of Silver M10s and it’s got me considering it. I was always set on the black one but now I’m not sure…it would match the M2…but plenty of time to decide.

The Leica Store Mayfair is open on Sundays. Looks like I have a stop on my journey later this year 🤩 Although there are many second hand camera stores in London that would be fun to visit. Like Camera City.

Unfortunately, a lot of these places are closed on Sundays and that’s when I’ll be there. Maybe for the best!

Start of the school holidays today! More family visiting this weekend - it’ll be fun but chaotic. I also seem to have a horrible cold.

Time for a bit of Part 2 of Stranger Things before everyone gets back.

Friday, 1st July, 2022

A digital + a film M mount camera makes a lot of sense. I think that is my end goal. Although I’ve never uesd one so I’m still a little nervous about that. I love using the M2 so surely it’s just the same but no longer limited to a roll of film. I could rent one but there’s not many places and they’re quite a lot for a small time. I’ve yet to meet someone with one, let alone someone who’ll let me take a shot or two.

I still think another digital camera is needed to compliment it. However, nothing exception really. It’s more for those scenarios when I want auto everything, or a lower cost kit, or maybe I need a 200mm lens for the football match etc. Given I already have that with the Fuji X-T2 it seems the sensible option would be to just keep it. It’s going to be around a long time, and they offer a good range of lenses should I have some other need. Maybe I could get the X-E4 for a small body or maybe the X100V would be great. They would be, but they don’t really compliment everything else. The X100V could compliment the M bodies but it’s 35mm only, and the M+35mm isn’t that big. The GR3 is another I want, and it’s really small and fast. However, I’m not sure it compliments things either. It’s use case for me can probably be covered by my phone.

I can say that the Q2 doesn’t fit in anywhere, so I can stop thinking about that :)

Of course this is all just an elaborate plan to justify the M10 to myself. Although buying one is challenging. I have or can save the money but that moment of purchasing a camera that’s maybe 4x the price I’ve paid for any other camera ever. eek. That alone needs a plan for me to figure out how I get my head around it.

I love DayOne but I’ve noticed that the sync doesn’t seem to be perfect. There’s a few entries that aren’t in sync across devices. However, I found that the previous versions setting allows me to call up older versions and generally the most up to date one is somewhere in that list. So I can get things back in sync. The only thing is that I might not have noticed older entries, this only matters when I come to print of this year’s entries. I suppose I could remove the app and then re-sync it to make sure?

I’m traveling later in the summer, and will be passing through London, so it’s the perfect opportunity to visit a camera/Leica store and have a go with a M10. It might not help me decide but I feel like it’s a minimum thing to do. It may also be very dangerous as who knows what else they’ll have that I just have a quick look at! 😅

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