Pre-dawn awakening to the sounds of baby Sam, our attic bedroom muted grey from the snow-covered skylights. From the panoramic kitchen windows downstairs, we enjoyed the views of virginal roads and footpaths. It was another hour before another soul stirred outside and spoiled the pristine effect. Another hour before the sun rose.

Went sledding with H-girl, Mr B and Jools, the latter preferring to drag the sled behind her rather than sit and be pulled. There are of course few slopes, let alone hills, in the Netherlands, so the best we could do was to slide down the steep riverbank and drive our heels in the snow to avoid shooting into the frozen reeds by the water’s edge.

New year, new look. I was never happy with the previous blog theme; this one is more minimalistic, as its name implies, but it needs some tweaking, especially to correct the photo resizing. A WiP.

Other plans, or maybe resolutions, given the season: get rid of verruca (small but extremely painful), being less pigheaded (suggested by Mr B, “I’ve run you a bath.”), make more time to cook better food (“The water’s getting cold.”), and print more photos to hang in our new house.

It’s a start.

(“Next time run it yourself!”)

Photos in motion

Here are a couple of examples of a very neat little program called Sqirlz, which makes water-related animations out of photos. In the first example, of Villa Sonsbeek in Arnhem, I tried to capture the slow swell of a breeze-blown lake. I’d give it 5/10.

In the second example, more appropriate for this time of year, I tried out the “snow” option, which is based on the “rain” option. I mention this because it is quite hard to generate a realistic impression of falling snow. In the program “Help” file, it states that speeds of under 1.0 will be jerky in the movie loop. The problem is that any speed over 0.6 is like a blizzard. As a compromise, I set the speed to 0.5, then when I saved the file as a Flash file, I set the frame rate to 10/sec, rather than the default 15, thereby slowing the movement.

What do you think? I’d give it 7.5/10.

For the eagle-eyed among you, this is the same tree-lined path that I photographed in autumn: Grimm Times and A walk in the woods.