I haven’t been able to get along to a Chelmsford Photowalk since May, but this month we decided we would visit Mangapps Railway Museum near Southminster. Anything to do with steam trains and I’m there, so I was glad to go along.
As well as the usual steam and deisel running, there was also a model railway exhibition on in one of the sheds, which provided some entertainment during the heavy showers which peppered the afternoon. The sun came out too, providing some great light against dark moody clouds, so it wasn’t all bad!
Alistair and I spent the rest of the week visiting various places with our cameras, and doing some geocaching. This included the Quayside, Tynemouth, the Wylam Valley, South Shields, Penshaw and a photowalk with the NPW folks.
I enjoyed using my new wide angle lens – and was very glad of it towards the end of the trip when my work-horse 24-105mm lens started playing up. I think it will need a trip to the menders now – which could prove costly, since it’s over 3 years old and out of warranty.
Here are my best pictures from the trip.
The rest of the time was spent doing a little bit of work (boo!) and visiting York a couple of times, to see the National Railway Museum, walk the walls, find nice teashops and do some geocaching.
The weather wasn’t always kind to me, but I did have a good trip. Then it was off to Newcastle for the next stage in my Northern Odyssey.
It’s been over 3 years since I bought my Canon 24-105mm EF f/4 L IS USM lens. In that time, I’ve still kept hold of the 17-85mm EF-S f/3.5-4.5 USM it replaced, but I haven’t used the wider lens very much compared to the 24-105, which is my everyday lens and gives better image quality.
However, recently I’ve been craving a wider angle of view so had done some investigation on the options for wide/ultra-wide on the EOS 7D cropped sensor body. The wise money said Sigma 10-20 EF f/4-5.6 (which is cheaper but slower) or Canon’s own 10-22mm EF-S f/3.5-4.5 USM [right].
I vowed a while back not to buy any 3rd-party lenses (after a disappointing flirt with a Sigma 135-400mm f/4.5-5.6 lens about 5 years ago). But I also vowed not to buy any EF-S lenses if I could help it – for future-proofing if I ever do get a full frame DSLR. What to do?
In the end, I figured that it will be some time (if ever) that I get the opportunity of a full frame body, so the Canon EF-S won out. Having read reviews and borrowed a friend’s lens for a few days to play with, I was convinced this was the right option. It arrived this morning! So I was eager to get out and about to give it a proper test run. I started off at Paper Mill Lock and then headed to Maldon for some early evening shots as the sun was setting, but I got there just in time to make a few shots.
From this brief outing, I’m pretty impressed with the lens. The trick is to get some interesting foreground to act as a lead-in for the rest of the picture, otherwise everything just looks too far away. But it’s equally at home shooting distance or close ups. My favourite from the shoot made it as Day #1310.