Blog Archive

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Photography for sufferers of Parkinson's Disease

I am in May scheduled to spend some time with a Photography Group that is run by Parkinson's South Australia.
This is for people who suffer from Parkinson's disease.
The group has been running now for some time under the co-ordination of Anne Heard.
I have put together some thought starters for ideas that people might like to pursue in photography,not withstanding the limitations of Parkinson's Disease.


Here are some suggestions re techniques and projects that should not be hindered by an unsteady hand or movement.

1.     A bit obvious: use a tripod as much as possible .
2.     Choose subjects that really need you to use a tripod.
3.     Use your flash creatively to freeze action and thereby overcome camera shake.Indoors at night or outside in daylight with high speed flash and high speed flash synchronization.
4.     Use a remote control device.
5.     Extend your photography to video capture.Video is best done utilizing a tripod.
6.     Utilise anti shake lenses and/or anti shake camera bodies.
7.     Choose shutter speeds and lenses that will minimize shake.
8.     Experiment with time lapse photography.A tripod is needed.
9.     Use your disability creatively.Take deliberately blurred photography.There are many examples where this is pleasing to the eye.

10. Create picture books on a mac or at Harvey Norman etc.
11. Create a blog to share you photos and/or sell them.
12. Start your own youtube channel. Share short films and your story to encourage others.
13. Some cameras have focus trapping. Learn how to use it.
14. Investigate wildlife photography with radio triggering cameras.
15. Learn how to use a scanner to resurrect old slides and prints.
16. Prepare slide shows so you can visit places like elderly citizens nursing homes to entertain and inform.
17. Join various online photography groups or start your own.
18. Learn how to paint with light at night using a hand held flash. 
19. Have a small wheat bag or bean bag with you on photography excursions that can be rested on a post or car door to steady your camera.
20. Use the piece of string or rope trick. Attach the string to the bottom of your camera via the tripod socket with a suitable screw(maybe the leather looped grip from an old camera). With string all the way to ground with large washer or piece of wood attached, pull upward on the camera and string to steady your camera.   A "tripod" that fits in your pocket.  
21. Purchase a "gorilla" pod that can wrap around posts etc.

From the Wayside Chapel by Graham Long

Dear Inner Circle,

Walking in our front door and heading in for choir practice, a young woman struck up a conversation with a homeless person. It was an interesting, easy flowing exchange that ended when the man said, “I’m not really homeless, I’m just outdoorsy”.

At the door this morning a young fellow stopped me to announce that he had a new girlfriend. “I’m happy for you” I said. He told me that his secret was that he’d told the young woman that he was me! He said she was chuffed to be keeping company with Rev Graham Long, Pastor and CEO of The Wayside Chapel. “Gosh” I said, “So you’re not planning for this to be a long term relationship then?” This poor young bloke is very unwell and didn’t understand how I could foresee a problem. “Well” I said, “She might find out you’re lying to her and I doubt that she’ll take it well, or, she might meet me and see that you’re impersonating a poor old burnt-out has been.” I went on to ask the fellow why he wasn’t happy or content to be himself and claim to be only himself when meeting a young woman. Unfortunately the man is unwell and he slipped into gobbledygook.

Last night the building was buzzing with a large AA group meeting, hand massage and nails going on with the Twilight Team and the Honeybees choir filling the building with their beautiful sounds. The special thing about last night for me is that my dear daughter is a Twilight volunteer and she was doing some of the hand massaging and nail painting. I’m so proud of her I could burst. When I walked out of the building the Honeybees were singing with full blown angelic power, “Hallelujah”. Perfect!

I’m staying light this week to balance the heaviness and often intemperate commentary that’s everywhere in the air today. My word to the sad is that there are times when the only gift possible for humanity is to carry a heavy heart. Your hope for a dignified and fair world has been offended. In times of such grief its common to strike out with angry words and quick judgements. We need to not shield ourselves from the full sadness that comes from the haunting thought of bullets ripping through the flesh of those executed yesterday but we also need to know that our grief is just that, grief. It is not the time for us to find new ways of offending Indonesia. Let the grief blow us where it will but let the healing begin soon. Indonesia’s position on the death penalty will not move while we are waving our fingers and beating our chests. Both countries are sickened by the work of drug pushers and both countries could work together to form policies and practices that are humane and constructive. Australia is not superior; we’re not even more humane. If there was a referendum calling for the death penalty for peadophiles in this country, I promise you it would be successful. There is a dark side in both our countries and it requires people of good will in both countries to look for the best in the other and work for the best of both.

A lovely man is sitting in our cafe just now who said to me, “There’s a lovely freedom of speech vibe down here. As long as everyone believes the same thing”.

Thanks for being part of our inner circle,


Rev Graham Long
Pastor and CEO
The Wayside Chapel
Kings Cross

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Sunday, April 26, 2015

Canberra April 2015

We have just returned from a week long holiday visiting relatives in Canberra,ACT.

We hired an eight seater van (Kia Carnival) and headed off on our great eastern road trip from South Australia.

It was great to take some of our rellies on tours around Canberra.

We visited the Canberra Zoo which was good but because it was a cold and windy day the animals were mostly keeping out of the cold.

We also visited the Aboretum, Tidbinbilla Space Tracling Staion,Tidbinbilla Wildlife Reserve and a plant nursery and general touring of the suburbs.

We took the long way home staying in Beechworth,Moama and Pinnaroo on consecutive nights.

Here are a few pics from our Canberra holiday.

White Lion Canberra Zoo

Little Penguin Canberra Zoo

Mandarin Duck Canberra Zoo

Tree Kangaroo Canberra Zoo

Canberra Zoo Aquarium

Crimson Rosellas

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

Eastern Spinebill Canberra Botanical Gardens

Eastern Spinebill Canberra Botanical Gardens

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

From Telstra Tower Black Mountain

Urban Kangaroos

Urban Kangaroo

Urban Kangaroo

Plant Nursery

Plant Nursery

Plant Nursery

View on Lake Burley Griffin

Tracking Dish Tidbinbilla

Blue Wren Tidbinbilla

Musk Duck Tidbinbilla

Black Swan Tidbinbilla

Pied Cormorant Tidbinbilla

Rainbow Lorikeets Federation Square Aviary Canberra
Crimson Rosella
Urban Kangaroos
Blue Wren Tidbinbilla
Tidbinbilla Sanctuary
Tidbinbilla Sanctuary
Wallaby Tidbinbilla

Rainbow Lorikeet

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

"Toppy","Spotty", "Watty","Spoggy","Murray","Willy","Blacky","Shiny" and "Noisy"

Being a keen birdwatcher and bird photographer I am always keen to introduce others to this very rewarding pastime.

My grandchildren are high on the list of people  I like to teach about birds and their names etc.

My Dad encouraged me in this and also my late father in law had an extraordinary knowledge of Australian birds.

Over the last few months we have begun feeding the birds in our backyards with bread scraps.

We have  a bird friendly backyard notwithstanding having 3 domestic cats.

We have also four bird baths on our property.

Only one of the cats is a threat to the birds but he is kept under surveillance by us and the birds.

The main predators of our "backyard" aviary are Crows and the Brown Goshawk.

So who are "Toppy","Spotty", "Watty","Spoggy","Murray","Willy","Shiny" and "Noisy".

These are the names I have given to the birds when sitting with my grandchildren and watching them eat the bird scraps.

One of our young grandsons is keen on them having names so these were given to the main species on the lawn.
"Toppy" is the Crested Pigeon.

"Spotty" is the "Spotted Turtle Dove"

"Watty" is the "Red Wattle Bird"

"Spoggy" is the common "House Saprrow"

"Murray" is the "Murray Magpie" or "Australian Mudlark"

"Willy" is the "Willy Wagtail"

"Blacky" is the "European Blackbird"

"Shiny" is the "European Starling"

"Noisy" is the "Noisy Miner"

This giving them names has worked a treat and created great interest.

We took J to a local playground and wetland which is well stocked with birds having named the birds that same day.

On our arrival there he excitedly exclaimed, "Toppy" has followed us all the way here.

I was excited he had accurately identified the species even though they had not actually followed us there.

So here they are "with the exception of "Shiny" who I haven't photographed yet"
Introduced Blackbirds, Starlings and Sparrows have done very well in Australia.




Baby Blacky

"Spotty" and "Spoggys"
"Baby Blacky"

'Toppy 1" and  "Toppy 2"


At the Duckpond
"They followed us here"

Sprouting wings and contemplating flight.

Brown Goshawk




"Noisy"(Noisy Miners are the watchdogs of the bush. They are aptly named.)

"Spotty 1" and "Spotty 2"


"Slow down!"