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Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Cross Stitch and my world.

I love art. Monet and Constable are brill, Turner the best. You can argue but you know I'm right. We can get little works of art in cross stitch form and we can reproduce small versions to hang on our wall and look at with pride. Er... at this point I think 'am I the only bloke who likes cross stitch???' My efforts are tame compared to my wife. She runs the house, she runs her business, and she organises me and the kids. Somehow she still finds time to knit and sew. You can say that its her business and she has to find time to do it, I would say that she loves stitching and bringing home work is a pleasure. I try to tie my business with hers. I get photos from customers which lend themselves to cross stitch (you can see pictures on my site and together we produce bespoke cross stitch kits, these are usually for individuals or ourselves. In the next couple of months we are publishing a line of photos framed and on canvas, but also as cross stitch kits. I am getting a buzz from this but I wonder how many of us chaps are really into cross stitch? Is it a girly thing or something that bridges the sexes. I like to think the latter.
My latest project is a cross stitch kit of an AV8b Harrier. Its a small design and will hang nicely on the wall. After that I want a large (30 X 24 inches) picture of XH558. It will be a kit I make from my own photos. Now that will be good! Looking into the future I will do a kit for my old BMW 2002 and then I will take stock and think... what next.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Why have Nikon dropped the coolscan range?

The Nikon coolscan range are superb scanners. If you want to buy one new you will be lucky to find one, if you look on Ebay you will find them but in used condition. I have owned several of the range and they are reliable and relatively easy to use. The Nikon software is good and alternative software is available for example from SilverFast. So why have Nikon stopped making them?
Epson Perfection 700 and 750 provide good competition for the Nikons. My Epson Perfections can put through more scans than the Nikons but they are fiddly, and when you have sausage sized fingers they are less easy to use. The images from both are remarkably comparable for negatives and 35mm slides. My one major criticism of the flatbed Epsons is that they are less easy to keep dust free and the air blowers tend to just move dust around. I have largely got around this problem by keeping the scanners in a self designed cabinet. Filtered air is blown into the cabinet making a positive pressure keeping dust out, helps to keep the equipment cool too.
Need slides or negatives scanned - click here