Monthly Archives: September 2015

What Is Sconce?

Week 40/52

A sconce is a type of light fixture affixed to a wall in such a way that it uses only the wall for support, and the light is usually directed upwards, but not always. It does not have a base on the ground. For this reason, lighting fixtures will need an electrical box to be installed. The word applies both to traditional forms of torch lighting, but also to modern gas and electric light sources affixed in the same way. The etymology of sconce is from the Latin absconsus, and the French esconce. It is a word of many meanings, mostly signifying a covering or protection, or, by extension, that which is covered or protected. Modern electric light fixture sconces are often used in hallways or corridors to provide both lighting and a point of interest in a long passage. Sconce height in a passageway is generally 3/4 of the distance up the wall as measured from the floor to the ceiling, and the distance between sconces on the wall is generally equal to the distance of the sconces from the floor, often alternating sides of the passageway. Sconces are typically installed in pairs or other multiple units to provide balance. They can be used to frame doorways or line a hallway. Swing arm sconces are often placed next to a bed to provide task lighting for reading.

F/5.6, 1/13 sec, ISO – 100, Photoshop CS6

Project #40


Railway or Permanent Way of The Past

Week 39/52

The permanent way is the elements of railway lines: generally the pairs of rails typically laid on the sleepers (“ties” in American parlance) embedded in ballast, intended to carry the ordinary trains of a railway. It is described as permanent way because in the earlier days of railway construction, contractors often laid a temporary track to transport spoil and materials about the site; when this work was substantially completed, the temporary track was taken up and the permanent way installed. The earliest tracks consisted of wooden rails on transverse wooden sleepers, which helped maintain the spacing of the rails. Various developments followed, with cast iron plates laid on top of the wooden rails and later wrought iron plates or wrought iron angle plates (L-shaped plate rails). Rails were also individually fixed to rows of stone blocks, without any cross ties to maintain correct separation. This system also led to problems, as the blocks could individually move, and it was replaced by the “modern system” of rails and transverse sleepers. Although, Brunel’s 7 ft (2,134 mm) broad gauge system used rails laid on longitudinal sleepers tied to piles. Developments in manufacturing technologies has led to changes to the design, manufacture and installation of rails, sleepers and the means of attachments. Cast iron rails, 4 feet (1.22 m) long, began to be used in the 1790s and by 1820, 15 feet (4.57 m) long wrought iron rails were in use. The first steel rails were made in 1857 and standard rail lengths increased over time from 30 to 60 feet (9.14 to 18.29 m). Rails were typically specified by units of weight per linear length and these also increased. Railway sleepers were traditionally made of Creosote-treated hardwoods and this continued through to modern times. Continuous welded rail was introduced into Britain in the mid-1960s and this was followed by the introduction of concrete sleepers. The earliest use of a railway track seems to have been in connection with mining in Germany in the 12th century. Mine passageways were usually wet and muddy, and moving barrows of ore along them was extremely difficult. Improvements were made by laying timber planks so that wheeled containers could be dragged along by manpower. By the 16th century the difficulty of keeping the wagon running straight had been solved by having a pin going into a gap between the planks. Georg Agricola describes box-shaped carts, called “dogs”, about half as large again as a wheelbarrow, fitted with a blunt vertical pin and wooden rollers running on iron axles. An Elizabethan era example of this has been discovered at Silvergill in Cumbria, England, and they were probably also in use in the nearby Mines Royal of Grasmere, Newlands and Caldbeck. Where space permitted round-section wooden tracks to take trucks with flanged wheels were installed: a painting from 1544 by the Flemish artist Lucas Gassel shows a copper mine with rails of this type emerging from an adit.

F/5.6, 1/60 sec, ISO – 100, Photoshop CS6

Project #39

Tropical Fruit World Farm Trip

Week 38/52

Much of the Australian lifestyle is based around the country areas, with farms and properties accounting for much of the land use in this huge country. Livestock such as cattle and sheep as well as other farming types including growing a huge variety of crops is widespread in non-built-up areas. Visitors to Australia will often only see the cities and coastline, so getting out to some farms is a great way to see the countryside and experience some of the ‘true blue’ Aussie farming culture. Natural attractions also abound in the Gold Coast region. The area was formed about 24 million years ago when two massive volcanos erupted (one of them being Mount Warning), spilling out huge volumes of rock and molten lava previously stored beneath the surface of the earth. Subsequent volcanic activity worked further on the terrain, creating a variety of features and forming the country-side we see today. The area is now blessed with a combination of rainforest covered mountains and lush green flatlands.

F/4, 1/2000 sec, ISO – 100, Photoshop CS6

Project #38

Clem Jones Promenade – Brisbane

Week 37/52

The Clem Jones Promenade is a scenic river walk that spans the length of the South Bank Parklands. Stretching from QPAC to the Maritime Museum, the Promenade is fringed by magnificent fig trees and has unobscured views of the Brisbane River and CBD. It is the perfect location for walking, running or cycling and it also has plenty of seating for those who just want to sit back and enjoy the view. Rainforest Walk. It’s not often that you find a rainforest in the middle of a city, so a stroll along this hidden gem is a must when you’re at South Bank. The rainforest walk is located in the heart of the Parklands and features stunning boardwalk surrounded by lush, local trees and plants. It’s the perfect place some tranquil reflection or a bit of wildlife spotting – the space is home to plenty of colorful lizards, birds and fish. The Arbour. Those with a penchant for color and creativity will love the Arbour, a kilometre-long walkway awning located in the Parklands. The Arbour has won multiple awards for its architecture and is comprised of 443 curling, galvanized steel posts that are each clad with vibrant magenta bougainvillea flowers. It also has a ribbon of yellow steel running along it to provide shade and weather protection for its patrons.

F/4, 1/50 sec, ISO – 200, Photoshop CS6

Project #37

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