The Curse of the Dirty Sensor

It really does my head in. Sensor dust. Some cameras seem to be more prone than others; I have owned “dust magnets” and also those which last months and months between cleans.

In case you’re wondering what on earth I’m whining about: camera sensors are operated by electricity, and the charge can attract dust, like “static”.

In the old days of “film”, it advanced every frame and remained pretty clean. Now, dirt sticking to your sensor is visible for ever and ever, unless you clean it off. No brillo pads allowed of course. And some shooting styles make it more obvious.
My “number 2 camera” is a Nikon D5500, and hasn’t needed cleaning for ages. It was my friend. Or so I thought. I changed lenses to a 70-200 telephoto to get some shots in the sea fog recently, and subsequently realised that most shots were unusable with an awful lot of work. They’d got chicken pox. I’ve put some rings around the obvious spots on here:


Bit of a disaster, as I had a “doggy portrait” coming up that I had planned for this camera/ lens combination. I tried cleaning it, but realised it would be less stressful to send it to a professional. So Bryn the puppy was postponed.


Then we had a nice walk with Richard and Molly, and she sat in a pile of heather with a great view behind. I got a few shots with my other camera, a Sony A7iii, and they looked great.

Lightbulb came on. If I don’t “do the puppy” soon, he’ll be grown up, so I re-thought the choreography, chatted it through with Bryn, and we went ahead. I never got to do “plan A”, but it didn’t matter; he scrubbed up OK.

Also Bandit the horse, and a chicken of unknown identity:

On a bit of a roll now, Anji (Bryn’s “mum”) volunteered to rummage through her wardrobe for a themed shoot nearby. We’d previously done one down at Clava Cairns, which turned out very well indeed, so I was very keen.

We had a bit of windy, overcast weather, so I’m thinking moody skies and rough seas. All change on the day; the wind dropped, the sun came out, and the sea was quite calm, for goodness sake.

But we struggled through.

The book cover is a spoof. Yes, really. I just made it up.

I’m hoping to get the Nikon back soon, and I hope it gets a fat lip when it realises what its missed.

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