Posts Tagged ‘sony bloggie’

Time is of the essence —- there’s no time to stop, just point and shoot, to catch the fleeting colours of mixed lighting at dawn —- All shots taken with my Sony Bloggie MHS-PM5. The motion blurs give the pictures a sense of fleeting life that I find hard to achieve any other way. Detail becomes relatively unimportant in this scenario as the motions of bike and subject merge —- one needs time for the sky to lighten, yet time is the spoiler — as the sun rises into brightness the magic of blur solidifies and the motion effects are lost to the hard light and fast shutters of daytime.

passage - there is 24 hour low light here

my shadow

a lonely glebe road

king street tanker

honeysuckle drive



Ironically for photographers, the low-tech and low-spec cameras can often do this much better … slow lenses, no flash, no image stabilising —- and I like to push the bloggie to its limits in low light to see what happens.




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Some images of passing cyclists, mainly from around the Swansea and Blacksmiths areas of Lake Macquarie with the emphasis on local people cycling for transport and / or exercise.

swansea bridge

They are shot from the saddle with my Sony Bloggie – and although it’s supposed to be a video camera I prefer to use it for stills because the moving video artefacts on most cycling footage make me motion sick! —- Truly.

swansea bike = rusty bike !

a beautiful smile

The reason I like this camera for bikespotting is not so much for its lens resolution which is fairly ordinary, but simply the ease of holding it in the palm of a hand or of storing it flat in a leg pocket and then having it turn on automatically upon opening out the swivelling lens.

the old model bloggie

The 270 degree lens rotation on this model is great, as it allows candids from waist or handlebar level by looking down on the screen from above. It’s a versatile “snapshot” camera

As well as normal “mobile phone” type shots it swivels back 180 degrees for easy self-portraits “on the go”, or even over-the-shoulder rearward shots for the adventurous!

The downside is trying to anticipate when the shutter will fire as it sometimes takes a few seconds depending on available light and camera motion. This can lead to interesting framing – or, at worst, no subject in the frame!  Also the still and video buttons are so close together that it’s easy to press the wrong one when on the move. There is also a tendency toward overexposed highlights on stills, and it’s no good for close-ups either, with a minimum focus somewhere near the metre mark…


blacksmiths-swansea- the electric tricycle rider was flying...

You can easily lay this camera flat on the ground or on a flat topped post, swing the lens as needed, and use the 10 second self timer. There is now a new model that has two fixed lenses (for front and back) – but for my use this would be a big step backwards.

I never ride without it!


swansea flats

workmanlike - marks point

the monday club social cyclists at blacksmiths lights

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I had been thinking for a while to do a night ride and photo essay to Newcastle Harbour foreshore and back via Fernleigh Track. So, last Sunday night I put some water and basic tools in the Gazelle basket and set off.

I took my Sony bloggie pocket camera planning to take some low-light shots on the move – my favourite kind !  The track is not lit at all, except at road crossings and the tunnel, and that limited the images to mostly these areas and Newcastle itself. I had to rely on the hub dynamo and B&M Lumotec headlight to see anything – they work well for riding, though not casting enough light for photo images. I passed only 4 or 5 other riders, having set off at around 8pm and arriving back home at 11.15 pm, for a return trip of vaguely 50 km. Fruit bats, frogs and feral rabbits were the main animal life I saw or heard on the track.

I have edited the journey down to 16 impressions :



at dusk

parallel road

tunnel floor

toward darkness

adamstown heights

at wickham

carrington bridge

bulk loader

capacitor discharge

neon birds

gazelle abstract

park light

light trails

broadmeadow rail

look back

factory lights

Good night …

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Here are some simple pictures I took while getting about on the little Dahon folder this morning between Swansea and Belmont :


bird's eye view

shared path, Blacksmiths-Swansea

shoes in motion

ducks in a cul-de-sac, Belmont South

Black Ned's Bay, Swansea

3-D graffiti, Swansea

Shot with Sony Bloggie MHS-PM5 pocket camera.

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I had some errands to run today, so I took the Fernleigh Track from Belmont to Burwood Road at Kahibah, then Kahibah road to Charlestown and to Kotara via the pleasant Raspberry Gully and Kullaiba Reserves, returning via the Track. There wasn’t much time for photos as the day was becoming unpleasantly hot, but I did click off a “lo-lite” sequence in the tunnel to see how the restored Malvern Star would look :

Perhaps a little indulgent, but fun to do ! The Sony Bloggie is the older model with the swivelling lens.

I am rediscovering the magic of single speed riding and though I do love my gears,  I only had to push up a few hills today and didn’t think the ride was any slower than on my geared bikes. There is a certain joy in responding to undulating terrain with varying cadence and effort. Fernleigh Track in particular is gradual, and doesn’t really need low gears at all to be enjoyed.

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I like bicycling and photography, especially when I can do them both together !   In the Fernleigh Tunnel on the cycle track near Adamstown there is a long row (c. 250metres) of sodium lights that casts a yellow-orange glow to the eye.

This magically shifts toward red on a long exposure in my Sony “bloggie” camera. To make use of this effect I use a moving subject that is travelling approximately the same speed as  the camera ( my bike, usually, or a cyclist in front of me )

This gives a distorted but recognisable image, compared with the near tunnel walls or ground that are blurred by the long exposure – usually 1-5 seconds as the camera tries to gather enough light to make the exposure. In the middle of the tunnel the redness is strongest, while near each end it is mixed with the daylight.

The process should work with any digital camera with “flash off”, and any bike with a bit of shine –  my favourite bike for this is my Gazelle because it has lots of shiny bits and a distinctively shaped front end :

This technique works well with self portraits too if you have a camera with lens and display on the same side, such as the “bloggie”. The strip “header” image of this blog was also made in the tunnel.

Here is a more abstract view of my old speedwell, to finish – I will add that I am careful to see that there is nothing coming in the opposite direction when doing “bloggie lo-lite” photography ! :

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