Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

That was the first Forge Comic Con – so I’m told since I wasn’t there

If anybody noticed my advance alert of the Comic Con event (made a few weeks ago) to be held in Parkhead Forge, and maybe expected a pic or two from my visit…

Don’t hold your breath.

This was one of the plans doomed to the failure the moment I mentioned it.

Forgetting that I was, in part, too busy with other rubbish I had to do, and probably would either have forgotten to go for a look, or just not been able to go, technology managed to defeat even the attempt to go.

While admission was free, you may recall entry still required a ticket, which you were supposed to print out and bring after registering online.

That printing part finally defeated me this time.

I seldom need to print, although I have quite a lot of printers accumulated over the years.

The total was once more than 12, but the two oldest lasers (including a postscript printer) were scrapped as they just wore out, and even repairing them became pointless.

Four more impact printers are just pointless (and the ribbons dried up years ago).

Two original inkjet printers plus four newer types also suffered from drying up. The two originals died when the ink feed tubes became blocked, and the later cartridge types began to demand silly money for their rare cartridges, rendering them too expensive to use.

The last laser just didn’t get enough use, and the drum/rollers became useless, causing marks on the paper, and these could not be eliminated.

Then they ALL suffered one common problem due to their age – ‘modern’ computers don’t have printer ports!

Connection is now via USB – the original parallel printer port is just too big to fit anything made nowadays.

Plus, if there’s no Windows driver (and there often isn’t for old printers), then you can’t even connect or print to it anyway.

I did use a USB to parallel converter for a while, but that became pointless once the rollers started turning from round to square as the aged, and all the inkjets became blocked by dried up ink.

It’s true that some ‘machinery’ just dies if it’s not used, or becomes so expensive to run that you really are cheaper to buy something new rather than keep it limping along.

And that kiddies, is how I came NOT to go to the Forge Comic Con.

NO DAMNED TICKET! since I couldn’t make ANY of those printers respond to the print job being sent from my computer.

They’re all sitting in a pile by the door now – waiting for their fate to be decided.

Forge Comic Con

Forge Comic Con

24/07/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Free Comic Com event at Parkhead Forge shopping centre 20 July 2019

Not sure how, but I seem to have noticed an event taking place BEFORE it is over and done 😉

Date:  20th & 21st July 2019 (Weekend, Saturday and Sunday)
Time: 10am – 5pm
Venue:  The Forge Shopping Centre, 1221 Gallowgate, G31 4EB

Free tickets!

NOTE: You will receive an e-mail confirmation of your purchase which will act as your e-ticket for the event.

Maximum of 4 per person. Tickets are valid either day.

Glasgow 2019 – BGCP Comic Con

Glasgow 2019 – BGCP Comic Con

Glasgow 2019 – BGCP Comic Con

As always, it’s important to check events before making a journey (these posts are written in advance of the day, and events can be cancelled or changed at a moment’s notice).

20/06/2019 Posted by | Civilian | , , , | Leave a comment

Christmas in The Forge

Just a quick shot of Christmas as seen in the Forge Shopping Centre in Parkhead.

It’s really weird, I seem to be in such a hurry to get places this year I almost miss these things.

Then again, maybe it’s the lack of true frosty days we’ve had in past years, which means that my brain is not clicking fully into ‘Christmas Mode’.

And there are still no thronging crowds in the city centre. Busy, yes, but not the ‘sardine packing’ I’ve become used to.

Has online shopping now arrived for real?

It’s strange weather-wise – there have only been a few nights with light frost, clearing quickly, and I have seen days hit 11-15°C in the past week. While it is by no means warm, it’s nearly as cold as recent years at this time.

Even the high wind warning we have in place for today is being thwarted.

As I write as we head towards noon, the Sun is shining in a blue sky with clouds.

But an hour or so ago it was dull, there was a shower, and the wind was so strong it ripped a branch of a spruce tree, and it landed almost at my feet, complete with five cones still attached!

Christmas Forge

Christmas Forge

07/12/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

Shiny heffalump spotted at The Forge

While I’m a bit of a stickler for adhering to the few laws and restrictions we have on photography in this country – especially because some sheriffs seem to think they can (and do) get away with inventing their own to suit themselves – if there’s a way around them, or someone has invented their own (probably enforced not by legal means, but by threats), then that something of an invitation.

While it’s perfectly legitimate, I was a little surprised to see ‘NO PHOTOGRAPHY’ signs distributed amongst some goods on sale in the Forge Market (as distinct from the nearby Forge shopping centre).

I suppose I should have, but since my cameras might have been spotted I felt it was safer not to ask why stalls selling sparkly mirrored ornaments were deemed out of bound by the stallholders – seems like free advertising to me.

But maybe the curse of the mobile phone and its ever-present inbuilt camera meant more people wanted a selfie or pic taken with the flashy tat as a background, and were making a nuisance of themselves.

Still, I’d be curious to know where someone who puts up such a sign draws the line if, for example, someone takes a pic and their stall is in the background, or caught in a corner.

I happened to be passing through The Forge, where there are shops selling the same stuff, so when I spotted a handy heffalump sitting in one of their windows, and was looking for suitable subjects to test a lens, I managed a handy test shot, AND circumvented the ‘ban’.

Nice lens, easily knocked the background out of focus as intended.

Shiny Heffalump

Shiny Heffalump

03/02/2018 Posted by | photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Sculpture at The Forge

I’d forgotten about this pic, taken originally as a test when evaluating a new lens.

Having had it drummed into my head that fixed lenses are so much better than zooms, the idea was to audition a 35 mm standard lens to see the difference compared to my usual zooms.

Frankly, at least for handheld working outside a studio… fixed lenses are a disaster. Something I can state after a few days of misery after trying to live with such things.

All of a sudden everywhere shrinks, and you can’t stand far enough back from anything to get it fitted into the frame.

By the same token, anything in the distance is suddenly too far away to reach.

Possibly the most irritating thing revealed by this is that the arrival of well-developed zoom designs in recent years, sensors that exceed the resolution of most lenses, and signal processing and editing that makes ‘wet’ darkroom processing look archaic, means that going fixed is really just masochism.

While there’s nothing wrong with this sculpture pic, I couldn’t get it all in frame, or would have odd geometry and distortion from tilting the lens.

With my usual zoom, I could quickly have stood at the right distance to avoid tilting the camera and introducing unnecessary distortion.

And I haven’t even touched on the lack of vibration reduction or anti-shake with many fixed lenses.

Memory fade has set in already, but I think there is an explanation of the story behind this sculpture nearby, but I haven’t been nearby since that day, so haven’t managed any reminders to help my memory along.

Forge Sculpture

Forge Sculpture

Bonus test pic

This was another pic that sealed the fate of the fixed lens.

I tried taking a pic of a single windowed shop front, and below you can see as much as could capture with a ‘standard’ lens, with my back against a car parked next to the kerb.

Not even close, I’d have to go stand in traffic to capture something that I regularly photograph either from the pavement in front, or more usually by zooming in from the opposite side of the road – all in perfect safety.

Shop Window

Shop Window (almost)

I found another downside – the fast lens means it tends to work at wide aperture in low light, which means narrow depth of field, unless care is taken to control that before taking the shot. And there’s more. Without vibration reduction, stopping down the aperture leads to camera shake risk.

Often cited as a disadvantage by ‘armchair experts’, the smaller maximum aperture of most zooms means these problems can usually be forgotten, and take care of themselves.

01/02/2018 Posted by | photography | , , | Leave a comment


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