Epic Fail

A solar eclipse happens once in a blue moon, if you pardon the sun pun. Tuesday was one such occasion. A partial solar eclipse was forecast between sunrise at 8:40 am and 9:30 am. The last solar eclipse I was present at was a complete one in summer 1999, unfortunately hidden behind a blanket of mist in smoggy Würzburg, Germany. I was hoping for a better view the day before yesterday, especially considering that morning skies in Ireland tend to be clear (rain clouds usually only appear from 10.30 am…) Well, I was not in luck. There was a clear sky over Dublin Bay (which is where the sun rises to the East of my house) but this being the winter, the sun was too low in the sky to look over the rooftops of the surrounding houses. I caught the watercolour sky, though, and it was a worth-while photo-op.

And now to the nitty-gritty. One of my photography friends quickly pointed out to me, that I need to clean my sensor as the same spots keep showing up in my photos. *umph* Yes, too true. And I do know that, had actually noticed it big time in my submission for the post “Greetings from the Plains“. Two really dark spots, more slightly lighter ones. Dirty girl, I am. 
Well, to tell you the truth, I have always had a rather relaxed attitude towards my hardware. Photographic hardware, that is. You’ll be disgusted when you hear how I treat my camera. (And don’t tell my lecturers in college – they will strip me off my Diploma, immediately, for “disrespectful conduct towards the tools of the trade”.) I regularly forget to put the lens cap back onto the lens after taking a picture. I used to carry the camera around in my handbag together with usual female paraphernalia like sharp keys, pen knife, cookie crumbs, cap-less lipsticks. For a long time, I had unprotected lenses, i.e. did not put on a UV filter which would also protect the glass of the lens from scratches. (Jeeez, I really am a terribly careless bitch person.) The camera is at this stage three and a half years old and has never once had its sensor cleaned. (My God, poor thing, I have tears in my eyes. How bad have I treated you, my sweet little Canon?) Epic fail!!!
And I can tell you exactly where the spots on the sensor come from. I actually remember the day perfectly well. And I even knew at the time, that sitting on a sanddune in the middle of the Namib desert with strong Atlantic winds blowing the sand all over the place was not the right time to change lenses… Alas, it had to be done. The circumstances demanded it. And myself and the little plastic bag in which I blindly changed the lenses for sand protection did our very best…
Well, I maintain to this day that the photographic outcome was well worth a few negligible spots on the sensor. (I’ll show you another time.)  But I recognise that it may be time to get a bit more serious about camera care. Let’s blame it on the fact that I have still not been able to purchase the equipment of my dreams. Everything will change once I have my 5d mark ii. Promise!

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