Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Finding my marbles

click photo to enlarge
In these straitened times few businesses are booming. However, one that is doing well, according to a newspaper article I read recently, is that which provides extra storage for people's belongings. In recent years these places seem to have popped up across the country. Sometimes it's a redundant mill or warehouse that has storage units in it; elsewhere I've seen shipping containers stacked several high with metal stairs and balconies giving access to them. The idea is that people pay a monthly rent for the use of one and can store in them those articles that won't fit in their houses or which are used irregularly and take up too much space.

There seems to be a couple of reasons for such places. Firstly, we burden ourselves with much more "stuff" than ever before, and secondly, there is less movement in the housing market so there are fewer people trading up to larger premises. I was thinking about this one morning when we were trying to reduce the amount of clutter that we have in a spare room. Much of it dates from our sons' childhoods, and we were debating what we (and they) wanted to keep and what could go. As we sorted through the books, toys, games, university notes etc. I came across a container of marbles. They weren't the sort that I remember from my youth - clear glass with a piece of curved colour in the centre - rather they were dark glass with iridescent colours, some resembling the pattern that oil makes on water.

Immediately I saw them I recalled the fascination that these jewel-like objects have for children, and I re-lived it myself again as I carefully polished each one on the carpet. As I looked at the colours, higlights and reflections it occurred to me that they might make an interesting photograph and so I set up the tripod, put the macro lens on the camera and took several shots. In my photograph the marbles look faceted rather than sperical, a result of the reflected straight lines of the tripod and the room.

photograph and text (c) T. Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 100mm macro
F No: f2.8
Shutter Speed: 1/15
ISO: 100
Exposure Compensation:  0 EV
Image Stabilisation: Off