The author (Dunstan Orchard)

Dunstan in a cafe

The photos

The photos on this site are almost all taken using a Canon EOS 10D digital SLR, with a Canon EF 28-135/3.5-5.6 image stabilized USM lens, and a 1GB CF card.

Portability and stability come courtesy of my fabulous Kinesis bag and belt system, and a Manfrotto 441 Carbon One tripod.

All the original artwork here is for sale in some form; either as prints, or as licensed images. If you're interested then bung me an email and we can talk about what you want.

The panorama

The image displayed across the top of the site (for those using CSS compliant browsers) is a 1600 pixel-wide panoramic view from the top of my parents’ house, in Dorset. The scene was originally captured as a series of photographs, before being manually traced in Xara X and Photoshop 7 to produce the cartoony version you (hopefully) see here.

A section of the original photographs and finished scene, side by side

There are ninety versions of this panorama, each depicting the same scene under a different weather condition, time of day, and (at night) phase of the moon.

Thanks to an XML feed from, and some PHP jiggery pokery, the end result is a fairly accurate representation of what my parents see when they look out of their upstairs windows.

The more you know…

  1. The position and distribution of the sheep are copied exactly from the photographs: some face left, some right, some forwards, some away, some are standing up, and some are lying down.
  2. The sheep alternate their positions every other day, and also respond to their environment, sheltering when necessary, and huddling together at night to sleep.
  3. The textures on the tiled roof, and on the dutch barn are taken from the photographs and superimposed onto the cartoons.
  4. The fog and darkness are built up using ten semi-transparent layers, depth-positioned for realism.
  5. The stars are positioned in various signs of the Zodiac, I can’t recall which ones, but Leo (mine) is in there somewhere.


This idea had long been at the back of my mind, but I was never sure how to present the images. It wasn’t until I saw the much praised 6 Weather site (produced by Adrian Holovaty and Dan Cox) that I considered a cartoony approach. Many thanks to both of Adrian and Dan for the idea.

The blogging scripts

I get an awful lot of very kind emails asking if the scripts that run this site are available to the public. I’m sorry to say that they’re not.

No, not even if you pay me. I’m very sorry.

If you need a good blogging solution then take a look at Word Press, or Movable Type, both of which offer a myriad of features, excellent support, and great development communities.

Coding help

Mark Wubben, Stuart Langridge, Simon Willison and Matt Mullenweg have helped me out of more coding holes than I can mention. They’re very nice guys.

Copyright and accessibility

The text and code contained within this blog are published under a Creative Commons license. All images are copyright © Dunstan Orchard and do not come under the CC license (however, they are for sale). If you’ve nothing else to do, you can read the copyright and accessibility statements.