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First Use of the Lee Filters system

First Use of the Lee Filters system

Over the past 7 or 8 years I have experimented with using filters. I started off using very cheap ones I got online for under £10. Those were real rubbish but I could see the potential.

I then upgraded to brand name filters, I won’t name the company as those filters resulted in soft photos and a colour cast on some occasions. They worked to an extend but you could not reply on them.

After doing some research on Twitter (basically asking photographers which filters they used), I found that the Lee Filters system was the one to go for. While I was in London recently I decided to take the plunge. I got the adapter ring for my 24-105 L series lens, the foundation kit holder for the Lee filters and the Lee Filters Big Stopper. The Big Stopper is a whopping 10 stops of a filter, so a 1 second exposure becomes a 16 minute exposure using the Big Stopper.

In the past 24 hours I have tried out the filters and they work really well as you can see yourself below. I hope to post more photos using these filters on my photo website at www.shanemcdonald.me and on my Instagram account www.instagram.com/shanesphoto

Sample Photo using Lee Filters

Photo of Waterford using Lee Filters
Review – Aroi Asian Street Food, Kilkenny

Review – Aroi Asian Street Food, Kilkenny

Having walked from Bennettsbridge to Kilkenny along the Nore we were looking for something hearty and tasty to eat. I had been to Aroi with a work function and decided to go there.

Aroi Asian Street Food is located on Friary Street Kilkenny and has plenty of space inside, while being bright, airy and a tad funky in decor. The service is very good and on a Sunday there is an option to enjoy a main course and Gelato for only 10 euros which is wonderful value.

I chose to push the boat out and have a starter, main and ice cream. The fish cakes were the starter, one of the nicer thai fish cakes I have tried, with a little kick of chilli present. For the main course I had the Yellow Fish Curry served with brown rice. This curry was full of flavour and full of fish – salmon, cod, smoked cod, mussels, crab, and calamari – as well as being jam packed with veg.

The meal was thoroughly enjoyable and was rounded off with some very refreshing ice cream. The whole meal for 2 came to under 35 euros and its a spot I will be returning to.

Aroi Asian Street Food, Kilkenny

Aroi Asian Street Food, Kilkenny

Aroi Kilkenny
Carraig Hotel, Carrick-On-Suir, Review – Carraig Hotel

Carraig Hotel, Carrick-On-Suir, Review – Carraig Hotel

In the past I have found that in Ireland, especially hotels in smaller towns can sometimes be a bit basic. This is not always the case but  more often than not the finer touches are missed. Either the food is not to write home about or the ambiance is non-existant…

I visit the Carraig Hotel in Carrock-on-suir every 2 weeks as part of a photography group. As a result, I often end up having food, drinks and have also attended functions in this location. The Carraig Hotel is a modern hotel which has been recently renovated. It has great food, a very bright and lively bar with extra touches like free WiFi and Sky Sports & piped music through-out the bar area. There is always a good buzz, some lively chat or nice music.

I have eaten here a good few times now and every time it it is very good quality. Over the past few months I have tried everything from a mini-grill, curry or chicken maryland to traditional cod & chips, burgers and wraps. My favourite is the duck spring rolls – delicious. The food is very good value too.The food is not fussy or pretentious, it is good honest food which tastes good. I’m not looking for Michelin quality or AA rosettes but when I order food, I want to enjoy it and have enough food for my needs. Also, if I feel that I could cook what I got at home then I would consider this as not being worth my money – at no point does the Carriage fall under these categories. Good food, good portions and a very tasty menu.

The Carraig is also great as a venue for functions, with plenty of room for all.

Great food at the Carraig Hotel , Carrick On Suir, Co, Tipperary, Ireland
Great food at the Carraig Hotel

 

Carraig Hotel : Location

Carraig Hotel, Carrick On Suir

50 Shades of Grey – The Irish Version

I don’t know what all the hype is about with this 50 shades of grey book but I got an email with the 50 Shades of Grey book Irish Style, which is basically a parody of the 50 Shades of Gray book – pretty crude but very funny.

I don’t know where the source is for this but well done to who ever created these…

FIFTY SHADES OF GREY, IRISH STYLE……..

… “Give it to me, give it to me”, he roared aggressively. Some days Mary hated working at Ulster Bank.

He slipped his hand under the red silk.. “You’re so beautiful in that dress.” he said — “Fuck off, it was only a euro in Penneys!” she replied

Bernies knees were sore and her throat was raw …. This was the longest Novena sheíd ever attended.

“You’re so tight”, he said, I’m from Cavan she replied.

Slowly he ran his finger down the middle, parting the pink softness, feeling the moist sticky centre. He loved a Mikado.

“She Quivered as I stroked her thighs. Take me in the shower Sean!” – I whispered to her “Wait til I turn on the immersion”.

Her underwear was wet as he pulled the rope. There’s great drying out today she thought as the clothes line hoisted

‘Its so long! Never seen the likes of it!’ exclaimed Mary, as she joined the dole queue

She widened her mouth, trying to fit it all in!! The Juices ran down her face. Mary did love a kebab after coppers

Sharon was panting as she let out one final scream of pure pleasure. There was nothing like beating Kilkenny in the hurling

She took a deep breath as the shivers rolled down her hot body… Jaysus, she thought. The Vicks is kicking in now!

Come on! Pump it hard.. Real hard! But it was no use the tyre was definitely punctured!

He asked if she could handle more than one finger. She said “No, I prefer a Hob Nob or a purple Snack with me tea!!”

Bad driving in Ireland still exist despite penalty points

Bad driving in Ireland is still a problem, despite penalty points being increased and the number of offences being also added to on a yearly basis.

In the past week I have observed numerous instances of stupid driving behaviour which, if there was a police presence in the area, would have been allocated penalty points.

Speeding

I see this every day, mostly it’s just 10-15 MPH above the limit, nobody seems to bat a eyelid. Even when you are going the correct speed, those behind you seem to think that the 60mph limit does not apply to them and therefore proceed to flash lights to get you to move in. Lack of enforcement is the issue here and although the speed vans are around, this I feel is not as much of a deterrent as the UK model – i.e. hundreds of static speed cameras plus police enforcement.

Only last week I saw a guy pass me doing about 160 kmh on the M9 and luckily for those on the road the Garda car spotted him at Mullinavat and eventually stopped him when he reached the M9 junction at Waterford.

Seat Belts

I can’t believe how often I have seen this during the week, people driving down the road and then deciding to put-on seat belts while the car is moving. If you look out for this you will be alarmed at how often people are doing this.

Mobile Phone Usage while Driving

Again another one which should be enforced better, I see this all the time, commercial vehicles, taxis, and private car owners, driving and using a mobile phone. I even saw a guy at the M9 Knocktopher junction driving at 120 kmh using an iPad on the steering wheel. Should there be an offense for using a tablet (not technically a mobile phone) while driving?

Anyway, this madness continues despite Operation Slow Down which started on Friday – during which I saw no police enforcement during a 100km drive on Friday, maybe they were elsewhere.

Until Irish drivers get some cop-on our detail toll on the roads will continue to be in the news.