Helios Lens on the old Nikon

Slapped the old Helios 44-4 lens on the Nikon the other day, didn’t fire too many shots but the couple I did show a pretty sharp piece of glass.

Helios Lens on the old Nikon

I had to modify the lens slightly so that the aperture blades worked on all settings, a pretty straightforward little hack sorts out this problem and is easy to find in Google might even have been a Youtube tutorial I used.

I did finish off a roll of 120 and have a couple in the bag still to be developed, hopefully I’ll get around to doing that this week sometime.

Oor Wullie Bucket Trail

The Oor Wullie bucket trail is sadly nearly over. Amazing that a load of statues of the little scamp have become so popular, possibly the most popular thing that has happened in Dundee.

Oor Wullie Bucket Trail

This one sits at HMS Unicorn and will soon be auctioned off along with his clones. I think the plan is to have them all in one place, like an Auchenshoogle army to rival the terracotta one for a final farewell from the people.

Oor Wullie Bucket Trail

A couple of poems can be read on Wullie’s site with one about his special seat. LINK

A little review time for the Saal Digital photobook. At the start of every year I like to get my best images from the previous year and have them printed in a book. I personally think that it’s a better way to look at photographs compared to looking at them on a screen. So it’s good to try out a product from a company I hadn’t previously used or even heard about until I saw an advert on¬†Facebook. Having just returned from Spain I was looking forward to trying this new opportunity out.

If you’re thinking of doing this and using Saal then the first thing you have to do is download the software. This is the usual easy task, quick download and quick installation.


On opening the software you get the options screen which is what you see above and off screen is options for photo gifts, business products and sample and test print. Also a money off code has kicked in on my version.



The photobooks section gives you the different size options for your chosen book. I’ve went for the A4 landscape version.




Next screen gives you the different options for your covering, your paper type, gift boxes and the amount of pages. I have went for the smallest amount of 26 and will add pages if I need to.


The fun begins and it’s time to throw some photographs at the software but first I need a book cover. There’s a few different options you can have different photos on the front and back I’ve decided to go for one stretched across the whole book.


Adding the images to your book is easy, you simply drag from your folder on the bottom left to the box where you want to place your image. All the boxes can be moved around and stretched to fit however you want. On the right you have your design layout with a few options to choose from, I’ve went for simple as we’ve not recently had a baby crocodile!
You can have from 1 image on your page/pages to 21! So you could fit a fair amount over the standard 26 pages.


In my first draft I had originally put a little gripe here about editing your images in the Saal software. I’ve since discovered that you can soft proof your file in Lightroom so I’ll give that a go over the next couple of days.
Lightroom soft proof has been done, I wish I’d had a proper look at the website now as I would have edited my files this way rather than use the camera JPEGS.


As I type this review I’ve just finished my book around about 21:00 on the 5th of August(a Friday) now I’ve just got to sit back and wait for the finished article to drop through the door. It’s coming via DHL so it will be a workplace delivery.

Whilst waiting I’ve checked out Saal’s Facebook page I noticed when I searched there’s a few different language versions available so they do cater for everyone.


The book was delivered very quickly from Germany on the 10th of August so not bad for a product ordered on a Friday night. The pages are of a high quality and the images look pretty good.


All the images are sharp and vibrant, the layout of each page is just as I had set it in the software. For the quality and speed of service you really can’t complain.


For a book of this size and with the pages I used it costs around about forty quid and postage was a decent £4.50.
Forty bucks might be a bit pricey for some folk but it is a high quality product you get. I have had cheaper prints in the past and some of the images have come back cropped. This might be ok for your holiday snaps but if you’re maybe using this as an option for recording a special event then you know that what you upload is what you will get back just as you want it.


Think about how many photos you’ve lost over the years thrown away on dead hard drives, old phones and dusty old PCs, the Saal software is a quick and easy way to keep them forever.


Superhuman immune system has kept the cuddly crocodile going for 240 million years according to the Telegraph. Making them the closest things we’ll see to dinosaurs unless someone was to find a mosquito in say a big chunk of amber, extract the blood which we’re hoping comes from a dinosaur and then get the DNA and chuck it in the mix with frogs.

Croc Wall

Torremolinos Crocodile park is another stop on the Fuengirola to Malaga train ride worth going to see.

Sleepy Croc

Actually held one of these critters, just a wee one my bad back stops me from lifting the big ones.


The Agfa Isolette III made the journey to Spain with us after my rebuild attempts. The excitement of developing a few rolls when I got back was short lived when I saw how black they came out.
I was thinking that maybe the bright Andalucian sun had spotted a hole in the bellows that the dark skies of sunny Scotland had failed to penetrate. However on Sunday when out shooting with my Ricoh 500 something in my head made me check my light meter which was given the exact same readings for every ISO I entered.
So I’m hoping that the blackness of the negatives was due more to overexposure than a fault in the camera somewhere.


A shot of Europa on top of the cunningly disguised Zeus. A pretty sharp image from the 60 year old camera that until recently couldn’t be focused and the shutters were stuck.


The Plaza De Toros in Fuengirola next door to the Bioparc from previous posts.


Up in the mountains for a trip to Mijas whitewashed and a lot hotter than the easter visit of a few years back.



The Plaza De Toros of Mijas a nice little museum, obviously not everyone’s thing but worth a visit.



Spain 2016

The last two shots were a bit of muck up, appears to be a problem with the camera which may have been the wind on mechanism popping out. Still I’m happy to have rescued some shots from the film. The squares that appear on some of the images were caused by using my laptop screen as a back light.


A couple of shots from the Fuengirola Bioparc of its resident leopard. When this pussy cat came towards the glass you could feel it looking right at you.


Bit of a scorcher when we were there, most of the animal were seeking a bit of shade to chill out in.

Sleepy cat

Leopard facts: They move fast around 36 miles per hour, they can leap over 20 foot and they can jump 10 foot. If it’s after you the chances are it’s gonna get you.

One of the good things about the Costa Del Sol that you can jump on the train anywhere from Malaga down to Fuengirola for less than a tenner. Fuengirola is the last stop and when you come out the station keep walking forward and you’ll come to the finest little zoological experience you can get.


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