MX-5 Owners Club National Rally 2014

2014 is a special year for MX-5 (or Eunos or Miata depending on where you are) owners such as myself.  The car is 25 years old this year, and the MX-5 Owners Club here in the UK is 20 years old.  So I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to go to the Owners Club National Rally at the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon.

Around 2,000 MX-5s from the UK and beyond visited the event, which showcased the best MX-5s around in competitions of various categories.  Parts suppliers such as MX5 Parts and AutoLink where there tempting owners to part with cash, and for those with lots of pennies Mazda UK were there too.

Visitors could also see the many cars on display at the Motor Centre, and watch the team from Mission Motorsport put some cars through their paces.  Mission Motorsport is a charity which aims to aid in the recovery and rehabilitation of those affected by military operations by providing opportunities through Motorsport.

Of course I took my camera to capture some images from the day – the top ten photos are below.

Circus photography with Damian McGillicuddy and Olympus

Last week I went to Giffords Circus for an event organised by Olympus.  Since moving from Canon to Olympus I’ve been impressed with how they market their products, and this is a great example… 

Olympus arranged for one hundred photographers to go to the circus where we could try out pretty much any camera body of lens from their OMD range with a few circus acts making for great photographic subjects.  The event was brand agnostic, there were many folk with Canon, Nikon, and other camera’s.  And this wasn’t even a sales pitch!

Damian McGillicuddy, Olympus UK’s principle photographer, was there to talk, give some hints, and show how us how he’d do a model photo shoot.  I’ve never specialised in any area of photography and was simply in awe of Damian’s knowledge, gained through years of experience in producing award winning images.  Damian was also a great presenter and thoroughly nice chap.

After the event we were all treated to tea and cake, and even got a goody bag to take home.

I hope to get to go to similar events in the future, a great way to learn some new tricks, meet some nice people, and practice photography in a fun environment.

Berkshire Show 2014

This weekend is the annual Berkshire Show, at the Newbury Showground, not too far from where I live.  The Show is mainly agricultural, but there’s a wide range of other things to see and do… so much so that I spent seven-and-a-half hours walking around!

As you’ll see from the photos, the weather was pretty dull which doesn’t make for bright photos.  But I did try a technique that Damian McGillicuddy had suggested on the previous day at an Olympus event I’d attended (blog post on that coming soon!).  Damien suggested that, for some shots, using a slow shutter speed would catch a bit of movement to help tell the story of the photo.  I tried this in a few photos below.

Magnificent Men and Their (Tiny!) Flying Machines

Last weekend I was invited to a local model aircraft flying club.  I drove out to rural Oxfordshire, down a dirt track, past a couple of farms, and was greeted with a great variety of model aircraft and their owners.

They’d set themselves up in a field for a family day, and beyond the BBQ and bouncy castle, was some neatly cut grass which made their runway.  Some of the time was dedicated to general flying, some to competitions of flying and landing accuracy, some for none-flyers to try their hand at flying.

I took my camera along to get some photos, and due to the great weather and good light managed to get some good photos.  I’m aiming to see the aircraft flying again soon, so you may find another blog post in a few weeks!