Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Coldplay - look no hands!

Aleisha and I went to the Coldplay concert on Monday night and well to be honest it was average at best. After queuing for almost 2hrs (in the rain for some of it) we were finally allowed in and managed to get a great spot with only one person between the stage and us. The warm-up band, Youth Group was pretty boring but the screaming 13 yr old girls seemed to love them. As an aside people really need to understand mosh pit ethics, either be tall, arrive early or be prepared to fight for your place in the pit. The 2 foot tall midget school girls were not too happy about having to see over me, I felt so sorry for them! Anyway after Youth Group finished we waited for ~ an hour before Coldplay started. Chris Martin managed to screw his voice on the first song, but it did improve during the evening. He must have had a rough day as he forgot the lyrics to a number of songs and had to improvise with "Oh S#%T". The most disturbing part of the night was when Chris was on the piano but when took his hands off, it kept on playing! I knew Chris Martin was a musical genius but to be able to play a piano with no hands puts him up with other musical greats such as Ashlee Simpson who can sing without opening her mouth.

Then there was the fact that Aleisha nearly fainted (it must have been the effect of seeing god playing the piano) and I had to take her out of the most pit, much to the satisfaction of the 2 foot tall midget school girls. Aleisha recovered and we joined the concert again but from the back of the standing area. So all and all an interesting night and summing it all up, I like Coldplay but they suck live!

Saturday, June 24, 2006

The long awaited purchase has finally occurred... no Simon did not get yet another lens! I have finally enriched my wardrobe with a long sleeve icebreaker top (Coronet, greyplum). My wallet will never be the same but a trip to Africa would not have been right had I not taken this poor little finely woven, delicately designed, piece of New Zealand merino.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Getting in some practice

Well before I try my luck photographing African critters I decided I should get in some practice. The botanical gardens were full of critters and gave me a good chance to try getting birds in flight, with limited success. All photos were taken with my new Canon 70-300 IS lens.

Buff-banded Rail

Sulphur-crestered Cockatoo

White Ibis (not the 6 legged type)

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Real Beautiful Game

While the Australian media was focused on grossly overstating Australias chances against Brazil they completely forgot about the truly epic game being played right here in Sydney, I am talking about the Australian Netball Idles vs. F11 in the USYD indoor netball comp. It was a game of two halves and Netball was the winner at the end of the day (in other words we lost 24 - 12).

Our star striker Scott

Mark outstanding in defence

There wasnt much Mark and Christine could do against the "Monolith"

Jarrod putting his body on the line

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Im not trying to compensate, honest!

Well the arsenal has finally been completed as my Canon 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 IS USM lens arrived yesterday. This completes my camera lens kit so all I need to do now is to figure out how everything works before we head off to Africa. I havent had much of a chance to try it out as of yet but hopefully this weekend I can spot some critters. One downside of such a long focal length is the lens size but as it is built like a brick I can also use it as a club to beat off any baboons that give me any jip.

When the lens is fully extended it becomes quite large.

Monday, June 12, 2006

New Lens - Sigma 17-70mm f2.8-4.5 DC Macro

Today I picked up my Sigma 17-70 lens which will replace the kit lens that came with my camera. I took a few photos around Uni to try it out and I must say I am very impressed. It is slightly wider (17 vs 18mm), significantly longer (70 vs 55mm), almost a stop faster (f2.8 vs f3.5) and a hell of a lot sharper than the kit lens. It also has a very nice macro function which will allow me to get some nice critter shots in Africa. So the kit lens will now go to where all useless thing go, to eBay.

Trying out the macro mode

A random, pointless and abstract B&W image

Sydney Uni

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Poliomyelitis in Namibia

Just a day after wondering if it was really necessary to get vaccinated against the various diseases found in Africa I discovered that there is a serious outbreak of Polio in Namibia. Luckily Polio was one of the diseases that we are now vaccinated against. Let’s hope this keeps the tourist numbers down in Namibia.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Protected against everything but Ebola

Well today Aleisha and I went to the Travel Doctor to see what vaccinations and drugs we needed before venturing off to Africa. So we are now vaccinated against Typhoid, Hep A, Diphtheria, Tetanus and Polio. We also have a few months worth of anti-malarial drugs, some broad spectrum antibiotics and various other drugs to help with stomach "problems".

Unfortunately there was no vaccination against Ebola, I guess will just have to take that chance.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Another Flogging at Netball 22 - 0

Last nights game was a complete flogging but for once we were not on the receiving end,we actually beat a team 22 to 0. Hopefully this form will carry on and we can finish in the top half of the competition this season.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Canon EF 50mm f1.8

Well I picked up this lens a few weeks ago but havent had much of a chance to play with it yet. At f1.8 it is very fast and gives a very shallow depth of field, something that was never possible with my FZ10.

Here is an example of the shallow depth of field at f1.8.