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Snow pictures and diffused light #photography

I have been taking pictures of snowy scenes like many other people and at times I’ve had nice diffused light and at other times the sun has come out and the light has been quite cold and harsh. The snow does reflect a lot of light and so even when it was very cloudy I still had quite a lot of light. Snow pictures can be a little bit boring and so I tried to shoot with a narrow aperture and get lots of depth to the pictures.

For snow pictures like this use a narrow aperture

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Dreading a white Christmas? #ramble

So it is Sunday morning again, it soon rolls around. What’s on my mind this week? In a word… Snow! Yes, it is snowing and getting quite deep. I think there must be four inches of snow on the top of my car and it’s still coming down. The problem is, it will probably freeze hard tonight and then clearing paths and clearing my car will be so much harder. When it stops for a while I’ll wrap up and try to clear some of it away. I think we might have a white Christmas…

SNOW AT NIGHT - white Christmas?

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Planning for 2018 #finance

Planning for 2018 will be difficult because there is so much uncertainty caused by Brexit. I will hope for the best and expect the worst! Another financial crash could wipe 30% off the value of the stock market. I’m too exposed to AIM companies so I would be hit worse, perhaps losing half my portfolio. I can survive that.

planning for 2018

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Preparing for Christmas #thrifty

Christmas is less than 3 weeks away and so like most people, I’m preparing for Christmas! I have been buying Christmas gifts for over a month and only have one left to buy. Gift vouchers can be an easy option and I buy one every year from the supermarket I know the recipient uses all the time. It is a good idea to avoid buying gift vouchers from stores that might go out of business before the voucher can be used.

preparing for Christmas

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Taking photos like a pro #photography

I photographed the Christmas lights switch-on last Friday. It is a difficult event to photograph and I was alongside professional photographers with full frame cameras. I still got reasonable pictures and shot some decent video. So today, I’ll try to give you some tips so you can take pictures like a pro too.

XMAS LIGHTS - shooting like a pro

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On my mind #ramble

It is Sunday morning and so once again I share a few thoughts with you. What’s on my mind this week? Too much! I was having weird dreams last night, I had so much whirring through my mind. I’ve had a lot of criticism this year and most of it has been politically motivated. I get caught between the loony left and the loony right. I just try to contribute to the community. I do that by taking writing, taking photos and managing social media. On Friday I was photographing the Christmas lights switch-on. Yes, I photographed politicians but that doesn’t mean I support all their policies. In fact I support some right-wing policies such as Donald Trump’s corporation tax cuts. That doesn’t make me an American Republican. If they implement austerity to pay for those tax cuts, I will condemn them.

Things on my mind

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Stress test, can you pass it? #finance

The Bank of England has set a stress test for Britain’s banks and advised that capital requirements should be sufficient to meet a crisis such as the one outlined. We too should ask if we can survive such a crisis or would we become bankrupt, lose our home or be unable to meet our obligations. How bad could things get?

stress test

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Thrifty shopping for Christmas #thrifty

Yes, I have started my Christmas shopping and already have most of my Christmas presents. It is thrifty shopping as usual and I will be buying some alcoholic drinks in for Christmas. Aldi is great for wine and spirits and my local Asian supermarket does 24 cans of the beer that I will drink through the Christmas period for just 19.99. Thrifty shopping means shopping around!

Thrifty shopping

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Buying a camera #photography

This morning I had a look to see how much the cheapest camera was on Amazon and found this one for just 31.99.  It is an 18-megapixel camera and has all these scene modes:

Auto/Night Portrait/Night Scenery/Portrait/Scenery/Beach/High sensitivity.

There is a note in the blurb that says to take photos in good conditions. That is the problem with cheap cameras, you need good conditions which means good light. However, you can take family photos and snaps at parties because you simply use the flash. This camera won’t be so good for landscape photography but for occasional snaps, it would be fine. My DSLR is more controllable and it has a much larger sensor and so is much better in poor light. If you’re buying a camera you have the cheap ones for taking snaps at one end of the market and full-frame DSLRs at the other end that are phenomenally expensive when you have bought the lenses and filters and all the gear a professional photographer uses.

Buying a camera

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Content is king #ramble

It’s Sunday morning and so once again I allow you into the dustier part of the labyrinth of neurons that is my mind and share my thoughts with you. We had the first sprinkling of snow this week and so obviously I have the weather on my mind. I also have photography on my mind and I have to give that some serious thought as I plan to invest even more money in it as I develop my art project. ‘Content is king’ is the mantra of social media specialists and that is on my mind too.

AUTUMN LEAVES (2)

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Pundits and brokers #finance #investments

There are lots of pundits and brokers who will tell you to invest in all sorts of things. Everything from the FTSE 100 to Bitcoin. Should you listen to them? I think Bitcoin is a bubble that will eventually burst and many investment opportunities are scams. Anyone who calls you up offering an amazing opportunity is probably in a boiler room and is either offering something that is illegal or is on the borderline.

 investments - pundits and brokers

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Deals on big items #Black-Friday #thrifty

There are lots of deals on big items around this week. The more expensive the item, the bigger the reduction in many cases. The online Black Friday deals appear to be the more attractive ones with popular online retailers Amazon who tend to lead the race to take your money.

Black Friday deals on big items

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