A few days ago it was my birthday and I went on another adventure.
My plan for my birthday (weather permitting) was to go up St Catherine’s Hill and take some photographs. As with my trip to Highcliffe things didn’t go entirely to plan.
Years ago when I had my first SLR, I had taken lots of photographs of flowers and insects one summer when I went there with my children. So I decided it would be a good place to go to spend some time seeing what the camera could do and learning about some of the extra features it had.
Of course I took my crochet and did a little on the bus.
I took the bus to Shawford Down and started to walk along the river.
As usual I wanted to photograph the flowers in the hedgerow as I passed but unfortunately it started to rain, only a light drizzle, and I was sheltered to a certain extent under the trees but I didn’t like to take too many risks with the camera – water is not really good for cameras!
However I did take this picture.
When I got to Compton Lock the water was really gushing through.
I love photographing water.
I saw some sheep and started to see if I could use manual focus on the camera but couldn’t get it to work properly so this is just part of an automatic focus photograph. How I miss the split screen and prism on my original SLR.
I had intended to go straight from the river to St. Catherine’s Hill but by now I was feel thirsty and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go up the hill if the rain was going to continue, so I headed for St. Cross.
The walk to St. Cross is always a bit boring!
But I did find this interesting stone by the side of the path.
Not sure if it is some sort of boundary marker or what.
Not all of the river is accessible.
When I got to St. Cross I was pleased to find this
but first I decided that something else was even more important.
I bought some coffee and a oatey, fruitey slice for £2.70 and sat down.
It was really delicious and such good value.
As you can see from the sky, the weather was a bit unpredictable.
However it seemed to be brightening so I decided that I would go up St. Catherine’s Hill after all.
On the way I photographed some more water.
I do like the way it is possible to capture the glassy transparency of the water.
These days they have replaced the path up to the top of the hill with steps.
Another bit if ‘civilising’ I am not in favour of. I found walking up the path much easier and I wondered if there were other people who agreed with me when I could see patches like this beside the steps.
At the top I got out my camera and settled down to play.
The view from the top towards St. Cross really hasn’t changed since the days that I came here with my children.
As you can see below. Maybe the trees have grown a bit since then. It was one of our favourite places.
And since you had a picture of my younger daughter last time. Maybe I should balance things out so here is a well remembered photo, taken on the same day, of a young archer.
I found out how to take pictures that could be combined later to form a panorama.
I tried out the setting on the camera for photographing sky
and decided that it was good and that I should remember to use it in future.
I realised that I couldn’t experiment with a lot of the extra options because they involved people and I hadn’t brought any people with me.
Unfortunately my plans to take pictures of butterflies were thwarted by the fact that the butterflies didn’t seem inclined to stop at any time. Maybe it is the time of year. It was probably August when I had come with my SLR.
This was one of the pictures taken years ago with the telephoto lens. I didn’t feel I could afford a macro lens but discovered you could almost get a good picture of a butterfly with the telephoto.
After I had eaten a simple picnic lunch, I decided that if I couldn’t photograph butterflies, I could maybe do a bit more crochet but the wind decided to get up so I actually spent as much time trying to get a photograph that captured the way the yarn was flying around, as doing any crochet.
I had tried to use the manual focus on the Hospital of St. Cross (no it’s not what we think of as a hospital today. It is an almshouse. MORE ) but decided the automatic focus was just as good and wasn’t sure that the 135mm equivalent focal length did not give as good a picture as my old telephoto lens but decided to try again with this dead tree.
Not the best lighting situation. Not sure if you can see that it did give an acceptable result.
Why am I so keen on learning to use manual focus? Partly because I am old fashioned and don’t quite trust automatic focus and also because there are times when automatic focus won’t work, like photographing through glass.
I came down the hill and decided to walk to Winchester and visit the craft shop.
I walked along the high path.
then along by the river again and saw some swans and a young cygnet.
I had to take this photograph as I love the effect of reflections of buildings in the water.
When I got to Winchester I remembered to take a photograph of King Alfred this time!
The reason for the visit to the craft shop was because I have not given up on the thought of making a copy of the crochet top my mother made all those years ago and I knew the shop sold DMC yarns.
I had decided that probably the best equivalent to the yarn my mother had used was DMC Perle #3 but as I had only seen it on line I wanted to buy some to compare.
Unfortunately they shop didn’t sell the 100gm balls and only had skeins in a limited number of colours but I decided to buy a skein of white.
And as you can see it does look to be the correct yarn.
It may even be that I can get it in a similar colour.
I hope you enjoyed sharing in my birthday outing. Although there was some rain in the morning and the butterflies wouldn’t stand still, it was still a very enjoyable day.