Monday, August 29, 2011

windrose roundabout

Today, while checking out the schools, we walked to the roundabout that is completely covered with Claudine's wind flowers. It looks somewhat odd with volcano and malpais in the backdrop, but I liked it a lot. She keeps fixing it - in the strong winds of Fuerteventura plastic flowers keep propelling away. It lacks scale and permanency of Cesar Manrique's creations for Lanzarote, but I think it's part of the deal - make something ever-changing with recyclable material, rather than something permanent with metal and stone

Sunday, August 28, 2011

unlimited supply of blue sky

Picture above is taken from the top of small artificial hill in botanic gardens of Corralejo. I'd say to call them "botanic gardens" is a bit of overstatement, but that's what they are according to a little plaque next to one of the gate. Basically, there are cacti, palms, olive trees, some other low-growing plans with no nameplates yet, water feature, playground, little skatepark (below) and that's pretty much it at the moment. What is remarkable about it is that it's almost brand new - opened in march this year. It was a wasteland before. They keep doing small adjustments to it - adding tables, planting more stuff, but I never managed to catch the work in progress, although we pass it every day.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

bright day

Another bright and sunny day today. Timur's relaxing after a swim - once he is in the ocean, it is very difficult to extract him from there.

Friday, August 26, 2011

moving water

Long exposure shot of some stones on nearest beach. I must say that I miss having a "normal" lens at my disposal. It's been a while since my broken lens was sent (I hope) for repair, so, fingers crossed, maybe our reunion is getting closer. Also, our container should be getting closer, too, and there are some lenses in there.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

blue pearl

I didn't use Apophysis for a goodish while, and a new version became available meanwhile. And today I suddenly discovered the I can make flowers with it. Something to do with variation called "blob" of all things - check it out

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

green-haired man

I don't like small fiddly things. Timur, on the other hand, loves them. When we were in local art and craft shop, he spotted those little white men and later oh-so-casually mentioned them to me ("... and, by the way, they are only one euro ninety five..."). So of course we bought one. I am pretty sure the coiffure should ideally be thicker, but Timur's happy, and so am I. Tomorrow we will give little white man a haircut with manicure scissors

Monday, August 22, 2011

Ghost crowd and fishy sandstorm

Yesterday we went to the belltower again, bit there's really just one road junction worth recording visible from it, so we went for light smudges this time.
This one looks like a crowd of ghosts, or maybe hattifatteners again

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Hattifatteners and shrimps


If you aren't a fan of Moomin Books, here's what wikipedia has to say about Hattifatteners
The Hattifatteners are tall, thin, ghost-like creatures.... They are constantly, silently and purposefully on the move. I am pretty sure there was a picture in one of the Moomin Books where Hattifatteners were casting long shadows, heading into the sunset. Seeing those thin euphorbia shoots in the dunes made me think of them.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

view from belltower - by night and by day

Yesterday Timur got really impressed with car trails photo on a cigarette vending machine (of all things). I've shown him the star trails photo but he didn't look particularly convinced. So we climbed the only accessible high point close to us - belltower in Campanario shopping center - and took a few photos of the only good road junction that is visible from there. That involved placing my camera on the edge of the window outside metal railings, as my tripod is still in transit. All in all, we did well.

Friday, August 19, 2011

orange kite delivers

I don't understand much about kitesurfing, but my best quess is that the point is not so much going to and fro very fast (as in the last picture), but to do tricks. We observed a big bunch of wind- and kite-surfers yesterday on the Flag beach. It took me a while to figure out that one of them was doing something other than just turning and heading back into the deep almost every approach - a guy with lot of bright orange in both his kite and underside of the board.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

sand angels and patterns

Although most of the sand surfaces are disturbed, there were a couple of perfect mini-dunes a little bit away from beaten track - razor-sharp crest and everything.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

walk to the dunes

Although natural park starts across the road from us, "proper" sandy dunes are some way away, and today we measured how far - 45 minutes walking reasonably fast by the roadside. There might be a shortcut through the park, that we'll try next time we go.

Right now it's a lot of tourists coming to visit the dunes during the day - we saw some arriving by busload, plus there's not much wind, so the surface of the sand is disturbed in many places. I know when to come for good organic sand patterns though - in winter, when there's very few people and wind is blowing. Admittedly, when wind blows really hard, sand dunes might be just about the last place you want to hang around.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fuerteventura looks and lens that is no more with us

Today we went to Puerto del Rosario and I've parted with my faulty lens and some money. It will be sent to Barcelona and they'll call us and tell if it's reparable, and if yes, how much it'll be. The guy we spoke to in canon center didn't speak a word of english, but funnily enough, I understood what he said, without catching any particular keywords in his speech - probably because it was of a highly predictable content. It will be "un mes, mas or menos". I am feeling sort of post-lens depressed, me.

Meanwhile while we were planning the move and making the move, Timur definitely turned from a being of unbearable cuteness to a being of unspeakable coolness. At least in his own eyes.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Flag beach

 We've spent happy couple of hours on Flag beach. It's just to the south of Corralejo.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

blue and yellow

 Looking at today's lot of pics, I realised that they fall into blue and yellow color scheme, so let's have a blue and yellow post. Well, mostly blue actually.

Today I spotted this beautiful morning glory flowers on one of the walls. I saw only pale lilac variety before, which is nice, but nowhere as nice as blue, at least in my book. I must remember to look for seeds next time I am in the shops.

a builder was a-building

Nothing much happened today except I got on a bicycle first time in years. It's a fancy one - gears and handlebar brakes. Not at all like bikes of my childhood, where you needed to pedal backwards to brake. It will take some time before I attempt a big ride, but it'll happen one day.

Builders are doing something to the roof of a local shopping center. I just like the geometry of this view.

Bonus track is a very short movie of Timur, taken both above and below the water surface. I must say Kirill's little camera handles this switch pretty well.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

and the name is...

Looks like Corralejo is even smaller than I thought. Couple of days ago I wrote that I can't find the name of the lady who makes wind toys. Today we went to salsa lesson (which proved to be bachata, but never mind), and who turns up in the middle of it in bright yellow dress? So now I know her name - Claudine Macquart. By another coincidence, piles of magazine where the article about her was published and that I threw away were both in the bar where the lesson happened and in the little photo shop where we dropped in after lesson to have a passport-size photo done.

We stopped for drinks in a little bar that only opened a couple of days ago. I am pretty sure that rattan table is supposed to have glass top. Well, it didn't :) But I like the way lensbaby treated its pattern.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

watery day

what a lovely splash

wind toys

Now we have a few of those recycled-art wind toys, bought from a charming lady at the artisan market in Corralejo. Since I first saw those rotors at the market, I keep seeing them everywhere - there are trees made of them in some gardens, and a whole plantation on one of the roundabouts.

She is one dedicated lady. I saw a small article about her in one of the many free local magazines, but, in spirit of keeping clatter to minimum, I threw it into a recycling container and, of course, immediately forgot her name. I will ask next week.

Both still photo and the video taken with Lensbaby.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

dunas y playas otra vez

 One of the things that we wanted to do yesterday at the dunes was to make a new "fuerte-zumba" userpic for Kirill's profile at We weren't particularly successful, picture above approaches the desired effect, but we'll have to come back and do it again some day

Sunday, August 07, 2011

energetic sunday - dunes

 Today we finally went to the "big beaches" (playas grandes), about three kilometers from the edge of Corralejo. Ocean was a bit choppy and red flags were on, but we didn't really go there for the ocean. Those beaches are backed by white sand dunes, where our kids (and not only they) like to jump, roll and run downhill
Which is precisely what they (and Kirill) did for a while.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

market at Puerto del Rosario and plants

Today we finally went to the "La Biosfera" market at Puerto del Rosario. It's on Saturdays, an the first floor of their enormous bus station. I don't know what was the original plan for the station, but normally it feels very empty and causes you to think about whether humankind is lonely in the universe and things of that nature. On Saturdays it's somewhat busier, but only somewhat. Truth to be told, we overslept, and came there by almost midday. Maybe the market was a lot busier before, but not at that point. There were vegetables, cheese and ham, bread, and one stall with plants. Guess what I bought then :)
Plants were surprisingly cheap, I paid just a euro for this little crassula plant. We also were looking at a cactus with absolutely huge thorns, but decided against it, as our intention was to shop some more. The stall holder handed us the plant, said "mil de euro" and giggled at his own joke. I tried to ask in a very shaky spanish if he's there every saturday (we really set our hearts on that cactus), to which he cheerfully replied at machine-gun type of speed. Hm, thought I, I take it as a yes.

Friday, August 05, 2011

morning coffee (and yet another lens report)

Pictures are just to demonstrate our morning coffee progress and test an explanation that I found yesterday for the my lens problem. In this helpful page Martin Pot from Australia describes what he's going to do about his old lens with the same problem. While I am not brave enough to go inside an L-series lens with a screwdriver (which is what he ultimatly did), an advice that I extracted from his post was that the lens would still work if the aperture was open. So I tried and it does work, as you can see in those picture. 4 is not the best aperture for this lens, at least for my copy of it (veeery soft and a lot of color leaking), but it is a great relief to see that something still can be done with this lens before I either break it completely with my own fixing effort of decide to go for an expensive option and fix it at official Canon place.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

new shoes and lensbaby

following the sad demise (or at least temporary incapacitation) of my 24-105 lens which I was using more or less permanently, I am now left with two choices lens-wise. One is my old sigma (not full-frame lens, ok for isolations but not good for scenery, street photos, portraits, etc) and Lensbaby. My new shoes were taken with the later. The aperture I inserted sadly lacks marking, but it is between 8 and 16, perhaps 12. It is a fairly small opening anyway, but you can see that lens still produces a very distinct sweet spot and obvious out-of-focus area. I think it is especially visible on the second pic - focus on the upper shoe, spherical aberrations on the lower one. As for me, this is a nice effect, but I strongly suspect stocks won't take it. I will try though.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Puerto del Rosario - colors

Pictures from Puerto del Rosario - this time with more color in them. The shoes I bought yesterday I tried today at salsa class, btw - they are a bit stiff in a way new shoes tend to be, but work fine, good balance.

I find this yellow of postman (and postwoman) scooters very touching

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Puerto del Rosario - white hot

We went to Puerto del Rosario today, to get more bits of paperwork done. We haven't done what we intended, but got forms, a list of docs to bring over next time and an assurance that we are not needed there all four of us, just one representative will do. So we considered it a success.

When we started from home, it was a bit overcast. It started to heat up when we walked to a bit - in the direction of the shopping center (Las Rotondas), because I needed some dancing shoes. Inside the center it was cool and on the darkish side, and easy to forget how hot it is outside. Which it was