Monday, August 24, 2015

The Greatest Camera Ever Made

Ha! knew that would get you reading!!
The sound of false-teeth smashing against phones and tablets and monitors is really incredibly loud . . . you've just spilled coffee all over your nice new slacks . . . there's toast crumbs splattered all over the front of the Guardian . . .
Why Sheephouse?
Why are you doing this to us? We're all comfortable and stuff! We don't have to think about anything any more!!
Why? you ask.
Well, because I have declared something which, though contentious (and obviously one man's meat is another man's septic boil, so YUMV as they say in modern parlance) I believe to be true.
Maybe I should call this, The Greatest 35mm Ever Made instead, because of my fondness for the Rolleiflex T (and coincidentally my good chum Bruce's fondness for the Rolleiflex in general [he's got 3] - no collusion, honest missus - he was supposed to synchonise this post with mine [a double-whammy as it were] so if the link doesn't take you to his page about Rolleis, blame him) . . . however that title doesn't nearly grab you by the doo-dads as much, so . . . Camera it is!


Regular F'ers will know that I am in the midst of a love affair with the Leica M2 - and why not - he's a lovely old man who has had a hard working life and is enjoying his retirement with some excellent day trips and TLC, cup-cakes, tea, and a nice comfy armchair in the evening. He's even sent you a postcard or two y'know, unless the pooch has eaten them again! 
There's nothing at all like the handling of the M2 - it is quick, intuitive and simple; no high-fangled gizmos or unecessary dangly bits; no meter, just a film advance and shutter speed dial, frame preview and self-timer. Marry up a lens and you have focus and f-stop too, and that's it. 
It's as easy as anything to take photographs with, and as near to as close to being an extension of your brain, eye and fingers (and thumb) as you could wish.
Like I said he's a lovely old man and still very nimble for his age.
However, recently, feeling guilty (because I hadn't used them for a while) I hauled out my wee collection of Nikons: the Nikon F, the Nikon F2 and the Nikon F3 (I also have an original Nikomat FTn, but he's excluded from this . . though he's still working very well) and had a wee marvel at them.
I am very lucky to own these - the F and F2 (and the Nikomat, though that was from an Uncle) were gifts to me from my friend Canadian Bob, and had belonged to his Parents-In-Law, Len & Joyce Holmes, who had bought them new and had used them extensively in wildlife and plant photography right up till they went digital - so that tallied approximately 35 years of good service
They gifted them to me in the knowledge that I would continue to use them, and in my hands I have - a lot, and only put them aside after buying the Leica, because as great as the Nikons are, they are a trifle heavy to lug around all day whilst on holiday . . .
(The F3 I bought myself from Ffordes because I intended running colour film through it and I felt the meter would be more accurate (which it is) . . it was cheap, and serviced and is also a superb camera.)
But anyway, back to the Canadian connection - in the same box as the F's, was an extensive collection of pre-Ai Nikkors too! here comes the list:
35mm f2
50mm f1.4
105mm f2.5
300mm f4.5
500mm f8
80-200mm zoom
You have no idea of the weight of that box, but it was really heavy and vastly exciting to open - the ghosts of the olde photogs who haunt Chateau Sheephouse were gathered thickly around the table as I cleared away all the polystyrene and air-bags . . .

The Canadian Box Of Joy.
Left To Right: F2 With 50mm f1.4, 500mm f8, 105mm f2.5, 80-200mm Zoom, 300mm f4.5, F with 35mm f2.
Can You Imagine Getting A Box With This Lot in?

The lenses were all in lovely condition with no problems with the glass, and in the case of the 500mm, I would say almost unused.
Over the years I have tried all of them out, and for my purposes, the ones I am most warmly attached to are the 50mm f1.4 S.C and the 35mm f2 'O'.
People talk about Leitz bokeh and detail, and then others will chime in with certain Pentax lenses and the odd Zuiko, but let me say here and now, the olde pre-Ai Nikkors really have something, and although the prices are starting to creep up (gone are the days a few years back when you could pick a pre-Ai up for as cheap as £30) they are still, for such high quality lenses, almost as cheap as chimps these days (not that chimps are cheap . . you try dealing with their food requirements, entertainment and potty training . . )
In short, these redoubtable, bomb-proof, pieces of Brass, Aluminium, Black Lacquer and solidity are really wonderful lenses.
Marry the 50mm f1.4 up with the nice and bright viewfinder of the original F and you have a standard lens dream-team. The 1.4 is lovely and soft where it needs to be and hellish sharp in the central region - in other words it does what it needs to do - concentrates the eye on the subject matter and gives things a thoroughly natural look, and that's as technical as a Sheephouse lens test is going to get! To put it bluntly, it makes photographs - ones you can be proud of.
Here's a few (not great, but I like them) pics I made with it



Alec Turnips

See what I mean about the lovely out of focus bits? I think the lens gives things a wonderfully naturalistic look.

(And yes, I know I've (mostly) chopped the top of their heads off, so stop moaning about it . . it was a deliberate bit of artistic artifice OK? In the spirit of the greatest drinking toast ever "Take The Lid Off Your Id!" I thought I would signify that whilst you might be posing for a photograph, it is always better to let your ego and super-ego go elsewhere, allowing the id to have its day in the sun, OK? 
Everyone (do they really Sheephouse?) knose that  the ego and super-ego are what let you down when they get involved in photographs . . that half-shut eye, the gawky mouth, the snotty nose, the dribbles . . the egos, whilst trying to make sure that you look conformed for your pose, will often result in conflict, so you end up with a shit picture of yourself . . oh the pressures of conformity
My tip for a good portrait, if you are a victim and you haven't had a drink (everyone knose that a drink frees the inner you) - briefly close your eyes, centre your person comfortably in your head, feel the world under your feet, relax, open your eyes and look straight at the camera (or failing that, just PShop the fecker).
These portraits are (I think) lovely and natural . . the real nature of my victims is on display, they are free of controlling nature, hence my chopping of their heads . . 
Of course, this could all be total bollocks - it is up to you to decide.)

But back to the lenses - here's a couple more now - these were made with the venerable 35mm f2 'O' - it's a lens that has a cult following and actually it isn't hard to see why - I've had an enormous amount of pleasure using this lens - and it too has a very natural look to it.

Circus Poster In A Window

June 23rd

See what I mean - it's a great lens and not only that, can focus to just under 1 foot (0.3 meters).
But anyway, I am deviating again - it's easy to see that the pre-Ai's are fantastic and after all, a camera system is really ONLY AS GOOD AS ITS LENSES, so where does that leave us?
Ah yes, The F! 
It's a weighty camera if you aren't used to such things, solid like a brick or a tool should be, but its weight belies its finesse, because, unsurprisingly it's a picture-making machine that's as easy and as natural to use as the Leica M.
OK, well, that one over there, go on, pick him up - he won't mind - now, whilst you've got this heavy old beast up to your eye, ponder a minute. 
Yes that is 100% of what will appear on the film that you're looking at. 
Let me repeat that:
Not 94%, or 97% but a full-on 100%.
I have no idea why so few SLR manufacturers ever managed to produce a 100% viewfinder, but Nikon got it right from the start - OK, strike One, the F wins.
Now turn that wonderfully awkward shutter dial back to 1 second and gently squeeze the shutter release. That lovely, deep, throaty whirr, is a sound to quicken the pulse isn't it.
I don't think Len ever had this (his original F) serviced, but at 1 second it is still accurate after 40 years of use.
The mirror moves up with a solid, but non-jarring thwok, and comes down again with the same movement. There is little vibration, unlike some SLRs I've used that go clackety-clack-THWAK!
OK, I will admit it isn't quite like using a Leica, whose buttery-smooth film advance is un-matched; on the F it is a bit 'harsher', but not harsh. There is obviously more movement from it because it has a mirror, so it requires concentration when you get down to lower speeds, though lock the mirror up (the worst operational aspect of the F) and the actual shutter is equally as quiet as the M2.
The shutter release has a deeper action to it than the M2, in that it requires a bit more effort to depress it, but glue it to your eye (or get a Nikon soft release) and get in the thick of the action and I am damn sure you'd never even notice.
The weight of the camera, isn't anyway near as sylph-like as a Leica M - if you were a swordsman, it would be like comparing a sabre to an épée, in that whilst they are both heavy duty, workmanlike items, the épée is more easily wielded. 
I know all this sounds like total shite, but I have fenced, and it is just my weighing of things.


Another Sheephouse aside:
My sister had a long-term relationship (and two daughters) with the rock photographer David Warner Ellis (just Google Image him . . you'll find a lot of stuff coming up under Redferns and Getty Images . . that's him). You've maybe never heard of him,  but, if you like music (especially from the 1970's) you will have seen a lot of his photographs, that is a certainty.
David was a fine photographer and owned one camera for his professional work . . . through his heyday of the 1970's and onwards to his death in the early 2000's - an F Photomic FTN.
Photography was his life and his livelihood, and the camera served beyond the call of duty. And the thing is it still works, and though it could do with a bit of TLC and some new mirror foam, other than that it was fine last time I met it. I don't think it was ever serviced either, just used, hard, and relied on as a professional tool
I find that remarkable - how many cameras can you say that about?


Well that was the question I asked myself, and, thinking about it a lot, what with David's use and Len's use and the countless professionals and amateurs who used them and still use them, and you know what? the more I thought about it, the more I inspected my own FTN.
I weighed it in my hands, felt its chunky solidity; I disassembled it and put it back together again; I loaded it with TMX 400 and shot real, live photographs with it;  I hefted it, carried it, balanced it, and felt that what I had in my hands (like a Leica M) transcended just mere mechanics - it had that zen feel you get from remarkable tools.
I thought about it and researched it and read about it (looking at Vietnam veterans tales of it being dropped from helicopters, shot at, blown up, soaked and burned, whilst becoming the stuff of legend).
I looked at old newsreel footage where every press photographer seems to be using an F.
I realised that sometimes things become invisible, simply because they are commonplace and with the F that was the case . . . and for a reason.

Don McCullin's F.
Build Quality Entirely Evident.

Was there anyone back in the day that hadn't  used one?
Was there anything this camera hadn't photographed?
I looked at the accessories.
I looked at the most complete lens system ever devised for a camera system (from the start of manufacturing!) and I discovered that the lenses had the reputation of having some of the best coatings ever coated; that the machining on them was superlative, that they used (the then new) synthetic lubricants and adhesives, and that compared to Leitz lenses of the same period, were more likely to be in fine nick (and a good deal more reasonable to buy). 
And from all this I came to a conclusion:
(Roll the drums, bring on the parade) 

The Nikon F is the greatest camera ever made. 

I know.
It does sound like I am being disloyal to my Leica, but I am not really.
What can you say about a Leica that hasn't been said? It's an icon, and I still feel there is nothing like one . . . 
However, in terms of sheer bombproofness and ultimate reliability, I genuinely feel that the Nikon F has the edge.

This is my F


But what about the F2 Sheepy? I hear you ask.
Well, there is a place for that too, and many regard that as the ultimate SLR, however, owning both (and initially only using the F2 because of the crutch that it had of a working and reliable meter [more of the meter on the F in a minute]) and after replacing the few seals I had to replace on both and taking both out for dawdles and wanders, I came to the conclusion that the F is the better balanced and better handling camera (strangely Len agreed with me on this too).
Obviously this will vary with user, but to my hands, I like the blockier body of the F.
I like the fact that it isn't so easy to lock the mirror up (best not to even go there) and you have to turn a collar to get the thing to rewind.
I like the lower centre of gravity you get from the FTN head compared to the AS head I have on the F2 - it's almost intangible, but it does affect the way the camera handles.
I like the completely removable camera back and the (supposed) awkwardness of loading (till you get used to it).
I love that I get 100%
And I love the feel of its rugged mechanics.
In short I love its character
And unusually for an SLR, it has that in spades.
It's weird isn't it - most SLR's are fairly characterless don't you think?
I once owned a Pentax MX and it was lovely, yet totally anonymous - my OM 10 was a bit like that too, though I loved it.
On the other hand, the F is an aging Japanese gentleman, who is wirey, opinionated and a bit curmudgeonly, but despite his gnarly appearance is still fit and nimble. 
Compare that to the bloated grandchildren from numerous manufacturers that clog ebay selling for a mere handful of money compared to their once over-priced selves.
What you get with the F is build build build
To me, it is an iconoclastic camera - a genuine, hands-down, brilliant piece of engineering.
Even with the achilles heel of its meter (which, with a lot of them no longer operating, is still easy to deal with if you use the likes of a Northern European Sunny 11, and yes I know you can still get the plain prisms, but I see no reason to pay the massively over-priced prices that are being demanded for them - this being said I'd love to try one, but are they really worth the £200+ premium?) I still think a non-working meter FTN would be the way to go and let's put it this way, it's exactly the same as using a non-metered Leica . . simple - let the films latitude deal with things. 
Do a Gibson!
Sunny weather, Tri-X at EI 320, 1/125th at f16 in Northern Europe - piece of cake. 
Of course you can do this with any camera, and especially a Leica, however, the cost of a nice F is nowhere near the cost of a Leica and it may well be a lot more non-reliant on regular servicing
I also feel that you would be likely to feel less precious about it, given that what you are holding will still probably be around when all that is left is ashes and dust, scorpions and radiation.
Ivor Mantale did an excellent article on the F years back, and in it, he said he had asked a dealer whether the F was a collectable camera, or just an old camera . . . well it is both, AND it is also a reliable tool for the modern photographer. Get one serviced by the likes of Sover Wong and you have something that will outlast your eyes.
And so my rant and rave comes to an end friends - I know you're aghast and are saying "What about?", but have pity on an old man - sometimes you just have to speak out.
There is so much shite spouted about cameras on the net, most of it by people who like the idea of photography and immerse themselves fanboy-like in it, buying the most expensive things they can, without actually making any photographs.
With so few film cameras still being made younger photographers wishing to sample the delights with which we older photographers were brought up (and came to take for granted) couldn't really do any better than investing in a nice clean old F, even with a non-working meter . . .
Really - trust me.
Feel the heft. 
Feel the quality. 
Feel the legend (and it is one).
Feel the all-round essence of something that is as close to mechanical perfection as you can get, and then go out and make photographs. 
Lots and lots and lots of them.

TTFN. This month is pink pill month - just remember to tell your carer that.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Sheephouse Sells Out

Look . . . I KNOW . . . OK? 
Can we call an end to this stupid attitude and let me just get on with writing this? 
Can we? Really? 
You've bugged the bahookie off me since it happened. 
I know. 
I lapsed. 
But things might work out all right. 
You never know - you just have to keep hoping and trying, and realise that we are now in line with 98% of the modern world. 
'Scuse me a minute. 
There's someone knocking. 
Hold on, be back in a tick . . .



Oh, it's you - come on in.

Here the reader is presented with two different scenarios.

Yer Sheephouse is standing, dishevelled, in his old GAP hoody, combats, felt slippers and a bemused look on his face wondering who the hell you are and why daylight has appeared.

Yer Sheephouse is standing, dishevelled, in his old GAP hoody, combats, felt slippers and a bemused look on his face holding a Digital Camera and muttering to himself.

Sadly folks, it's the latter. SHEEPY HAS GONE DIGITAL!

I know - you read the convo at the start of this and it is still continuing, because I realise I have bought into something which produces only prints and electronical images and that, to me, is anathema - what you 'capture' doesn't physically exist until it is printed (I know you can say the same about undeveloped film, but at least you have a coated piece of plastic sitting, waiting, laced with potential)
Yep, after all this time banging on about craft skills and permanence and quality, I go and slip and buy into prosumer land.
I sell out to 'The Man'!
Well, not quite - I still have 14 film cameras and a fridge full of film, so my intent is clear and film still rules for me . . but all the same - a 'sell-out' - Jeez, I couldn't have seen that one coming.
No one is more surprised than me, seriously.
I've actually given myself a bad time about this, because it is so uncharacteristic, but it was done for a reason (promise) - however all the same, I can't help feeling that the massed ghosts of photographers from times past that haunt Ye Olde Sheephouse Study have given me a mighty, ethereal "Hurumph!" and moved off quietly to haunt another passionate photographer.
It feels that bad.


Worry not though film fans - I'm sure normal service will be resumed as soon as possible, however in the meantime, want to talk about my new toy? Eh? Eh??

Well, you might be asking:
"Whatcha got Sheepy?
A BG 56778872, with a 12-947mm f1.2-f22 Mega-Zhhoooom?
A Super-Toast 960D Mk 15 with a Triple Mega Macro and 675 Million Effective Megapixels?
A Yamotomato FX-PK 2 Mk 1 with 1080p and a built-in tea trolley?
Ah no, don't tell me . . a Mull Pixel-Magic 2.1, with free Satellite Phone Capability?
Well, well?"
Er . . cough . . no.
It's a Canon EOS 50D with a 40mm EF f2.8 Prime.
And that's it.
It's a conservative choice, but that is just me, and I spent a vast amount of time looking into it, so, from my own experience I hereby set out my table and offer up to you:


1./ Don't Buy A New Camera Unless You Really Really Have To.
Why? well, the whole photographic world is in a state of flux. Gone are the days when you could proudly buy an M2 and expect it to be handed down to your children. These days, Digicams are marketed for bacteria, or so it seems, with enough model upgrades to render two years ago's marvel a total brick (in the eyes of the salesmen). And yet, as I found, new, isn't always necessarily better. There's a TON of nearly old models out there that will do the job quite nicely, and they don't have to enter the stratospheric price bracket either.

2./ Be Prepared To Compromise.
I wanted a full-frame, I really did, after all, all this fecking about with fecking focal length conversion factors is just so totally bloody stupid. However, I also realised that (coming from my film background whereby 40 year old Nikons and a 55 year old Leica are in regular use) for my purposes, effectively, ALL digital cameras are disposable. Therefore I went for the Canon's cropped sensor, because it was cheaper and newer than the EOS 1D's I was looking at.
If I find I like the process, maybe later on, I'll go full frame and take the lens with me . . watch this space.

3./  The Real Value Is In The Glass
Try and get a great deal on a great optic and if you can, spend at least as much or more than you would on the camera.
Sadly I didn't follow my own advice, however it was with reason - the Canon 40mm is a very good optic at a bargain price (£95 NEW with Canon Cashback . . you could buy nearly 2 pairs of Posh British-Made Boxer Shorts for that you know, or 30 pairs of Tesco's ones) - it will also cover full-frame if need be.
At the moment on the stupid cropped sensor it is equivalent to a 62mm, so a little on the long side, however I'll do an Ernst Haas - "Two steps back and look for the 'ah-ha!'"

4./  Zooooooom = Dooooooom!
As per film days - avoid zooms. Basically at the end of the day, no matter their perceived usefulness, every zoom I have ever used has been a huge and ugly nuisance, and roughly (I say roughly - there are some superb optics out there at a price) to a man and especially with 'kit' zooms, the quality of image made with them is a huge compromise. So do yourself a favour, as per film days, buy prime lenses. They're not cheap, but they'll hold their value better - from film days, the pre-Ai Nikkor 80-200mm zoom - actually an excellent lens, is worth exactly peanuts, whereas a 50mm 1.4 Nikkor keeps rising in value, because it is an uncompromised lens and provides incredible image quality.
So, primes it is - you know it makes sense.

5./  Know Your Onions.
How easy is it to research things these days? About as easy as stuffing that piece of toast into yer gob. As with anything, you have to do some homework - there is no shortage of information out there, so you should be able to narrow things down quite easily, with a bit of judiscious scroobling around.

6./ If You Can - Avoid Auctions.
Yes, I know, they are tempting and there's some seemingly good/great bargains out there, but unless you are very careful you could be being sold a pup.If you're buying new on t'Bay, there's a ton of Grey market products which aren't covered by UK Distributor warranties (though obviously there are scrupulous UK dealers on there, but they tend to price inline with normal pricing).
If you're buying secondhand, you only have the word of the vendor that the item is in good condition - can you afford the time, disappointment, postage and hassle of returning an item (assuming they are prepared to have it back)?
I've bought eBay items described as mint, and they weren't, not by a long shot. so, my choice would be to buy from a reputable dealer with a good grading system and a decent returns policy and guarantee (as per film days). You can even get a years guarantee from certain places on secondhand items, which is OUTSTANDING for a piece of disposable electronic equipment.
Why do I recommend specialised photographic dealers? Well, as I have found, most of them are quite willing to let you know how many actuations your shutter has had. [Gone are the days of a shutter lasting for huge amounts of time, oh no, these days shutter life-spans are measured in actuations and some of the 'bargains' out there are quite possibly on their last legs if you find out their life expectancy. My Canon is a mid-range 'prosumer' model and as such is rated for 100,000 actuations. Mine had around 5,000 - so not too bad in the scheme of things. Presumably the lack of longevity is down to the machinegun-like properties of spray and pray photography.]
Allied to this a dealers reputation rests on their customer service - happy customers are more likely to return - therefore it is important to provide sterling service. When I bought the EOS that is exactly what I received - a years' guarantee, a very conservative grading (it was virtually mint), fast shipping, and the piece of mind that comes from buying from somewhere reputable, so thank you WEX.

7./ If You Have Friends, Speak To Them.
You can't beat personal recommendation and possibly being able to get your hands on something equivalent. My friend Steve embraced digital photography years and years ago - he's bought about a billion tons of gear, so he knows his stuff. He recommended I should either go for the Canon EOS 50D or the Nikon D90. I missed out on a very low usage D90, so plumped for the EOS. His recommendation was that being a mid-range model, the build was considerably better than the 'Rebel' range (EOS 100D/1200D et al) - I trusted him and he was right.
The 50D is a very solid little camera indeed, and without a massive zoom pointing out the front [like an accident with your Y-Fronts] it is very neat and tidy.

8./ Simple Is Better.
You'll not achieve this.
Every single digicam out there has more options than you will ever need to take a simple photograph. It does my wig in. I don't know how these design departments work, but I guarantee I could design a better camera and I am not a designer!
In your research, try and find a camera where the things you need most are easily accessible from a simple button push/knob turn. When you have to start accessing menus and all that shite, time gets wasted.
Lets put it this way, my Leica involves exactly 5 things to use it:
Wind On The film.
Set Shutter Speed.
Set Aperture.
Take Picture.

9./ You Don't Need A Machine Gun.
As far as I can tell - every camera seems to be marketed at frame-rats © - you know, the people that love the amount you can ah-ah-ah-ah-ah-ah at a subject. Like an Uzi-toting Arnie striding into a room and spraying bullets everywhere, so it seems you can't avoid the idea that being able to chop light into tiny, co-joined, increments in the hope of getting an image is the way to be a better photographer.
To this I will say one thing:
The Decisive Moment.
You're probably not a sports photographer, or a bird-specialist photographer, so don't waste your time going for a camera that can stuff those little digital pieces up the buffer pipe at a rate of knots.
As with film days:
Quality, Not Quantity.

10./ But It's Only 15 Megapixels.
This is a thorny one as 'technology' is improving all the time, however, the general concensus seems to be that around 12 Megapixels is pretty much all you need. More MPs means larger file sizes, means greater storage, means better processing power from your PC and Camera, and at the end of the day, you're probably only going to be taking your memory card to a local print house (or doing it yourself) to an average size of (sic.) 8x10". You don't need a huge file to get pleasing results. A lot of fine images were made with the old Canon EOS 1Ds and that only had 11 MPs . .
If you're like me, you won't be printing posters, so don't sweat the thoughts of lack of MPs - it matters less than you think.
Your biggest robbers of image quality will be noise-reduction, high ISO speeds and sharpening.
Oh and shite images.

11./ Read The Manual.
Ok - I know I said 10 parts, but really, as with anything in life - READ THE MANUAL! It's confusing as feck, but has to be done, because when you are done, you can cheerfully forget all the useless bits of tossy software and menus you won't be using anyway, and use it to light that campfire and have a nice brew.


So there - that's fairly friendly isn't it. If it doesn't meet any of your criteria or I have left anything hanging, it's only because this is my own thinking about things. I know it's not as in-depth or as 'user-friendly' as the likes of Thom Hogan and Ken Rockwell and all those other guys doing sterling work posting every single feature, but then as far as I am concerned there's a VAST amount of superflous fluff involved with digicams - stuff that makes you go "Oooh, it's gotta have a 26K frame rate on a 15 minute charge battery, and be able to print to A0 and beyond, and a built-in triple-sensor brain improver and eye-co-ordinator". Basically stuff that just gets in the way.
Honestly, I could go on, but I won't - there's bound to be loads of shite my addled brain has missed in this that might become important on a longer term basis, but at the end of the day:

What you want with a camera is a light tight (sic) box, with a good lens and intuitive controls that let YOU take control of the picture-making process and not the other way round. Simplicity is the order of the day. 
YOU control the camera, the camera does not control you.


So that's it for now folks. The ambulance is coming 'round soon and I hear they have a rather nice long-sleeved jacket for me and some yummy tablets.
Maybe when I get let out again, my memory cards will have arrived and I'll be able to show you some of the fruits of my colour labours.
Oh yes Technicolor Sheephouse is on the move . . . now where did I put those fruit Spangles?