Last Friday, (Good Friday), Ian and I had the bright idea of treating it like a normal working day. We would catch up on work, be oh so smug, and then enjoy the rest of our weekend. It didn’t really turn out that way though, and in hindsight it was silly to try and treat it like “another working day”.
It’s difficult when you work for yourself, everyday seems to blend into the next and bank holidays become just a continuation of the week. You feel like you should always be doing “something”; a break almost feels like a luxury. Something I feel like I have to “deserve” almost, but after lunch we were both brain dead and I was just sat staring out of the window into the glorious sunshine outside.
Ian and I stumbled upon our current house about 6 1/2 years ago, it was a new housing estate and back then, our house was just a plot! It was exciting to see it getting built from scratch, but we only ever thought about it as a stop gap. Buy it, move in, stay for a couple of years and then move somewhere else. We didn’t particularly “love” the area, but at the time, we just needed a step onto the housing ladder.
As we saw the area this way, we’ve never bothered to get to know it. Yes we know where the local take-aways are, and where Tesco is, but anything else? Nah! So last week we decided to check out the local park. I’d always had my reservations about it, but agreed with Ian that it was about time we checked it out. As it happened, we realised we really weren’t missing anything, the atmosphere wasn’t the friendliest; and we decided we weren’t particularly bothered about sticking around for very long…..!
Having said that, I managed to get some photos of some flowers, which seem to be my favourite things to photograph at the moment.
When I was younger, my Dad used to tell me that fairies lived in the bluebells (thanks Dad!), and when the wind blew we used to listen intently to try and hear them; so to this day, I have a fondness of them….
From now on though, until we manage to move house, instead of exploring, I think we’ll just stick to the local take-away instead…..Filed under: Personal | Comments Off
Day 50: The Clematis have finally opened…..they look really pretty!
Day 51: While I was out shooting a wedding on Saturday, Ian was shopping at Ikea buying new office furniture. While he was there he bought 4 strawberry plants…..this gave him serious brownie points. Although, any plant we buy that’s edible, always dies. I’m really hoping the strawberries and the blueberry bush make it. I’ll keep you posted…..
Day 52: I was at my parents this morning and when I walked into the garden to seek out the pussy cats, the lawn was covered in daisies. I was instantly transported back to my childhood, with memories of the hours I would spend in the garden making daisy chains…..
Day 53: I don’t always make a good passenger. It’s not uncommon for me to take an “activity bag” to keep myself occupied on journey’s! Even though I was only a passenger for a short journey tonight, I couldn’t resist messing around with my camera and polarising filter…….
Day 54: This is Smudgie, one of my parents cats, I adore him. When I see him, he gets no peace! I think he always looks grumpy and quite mean. He’s a bit of a bruiser but has the most girly meow ever……
Day 55: I see a pattern forming here – maybe I should have called this project “28 days of flowers”! I love it now all the flowers are in bloom; Ian and I went for a walk earlier on and all the flowers were looking bright and pretty in the afternoon sun. I saw these on the way back home and couldn’t resist taking a photo of them……
Day 56: At Biddulph Grange Garden today there were some very cute little duckies – I could have watched them all day!Filed under: 28 Days Later, Personal, Photo A Day | Comments Off
When we landed in Queenstown I was shocked at how cold it was; we had just left Sydney where the temperature was around 34° and I had been able to walk around in shorts and flip flops at 10pm! As we sat and waited for the shuttle bus, I opened my case and pulled out as many long sleeved tops as I could find. I missed the sunshine of Australia…….
When we arrived at our apartment, I knew we had made the right decision to treat ourselves to a little luxury on this part of the trip. It was stunning. We had windows all along one side of living room that gave us the most amazing view of Lake Wakatipu; the first night we were there I wrapped up warm and spent hours out on the balcony.
We were greeted with the most amazing sunset; it looked like the sky was on fire. I felt so overwhelmed by such a beautiful sight.
I completely fell in love with Queenstown; it felt like us. Like our kind of place. It’s the adrenaline capital of the world and we had both been looking forward to this part of the trip so much. We went skydiving, bungy jumping and rock climbing; I could have so easily stayed there.
The skydive was sensational. 45 seconds of freefall followed by a peaceful descent spent taking in the clear blue skies and breath taking scenery. As we floated down over Queenstown, I couldn’t quite believe what I was doing. It was surreal. Amazing. As soon as I landed, I jumped up, clapped my hands together and shouted “again, again”!
The next day, the bungy jumping wasn’t quite as enjoyable, and as soon as I reached the edge of the platform I froze and went into freak out mode. Luckily Ian and I were doing a tandem jump because we feared this situation might arise! The idea was, if one of us bottled it, the other one would just jump, dragging the other down with them. I was given a pep talk by my “hero” Jase, about how the feeling of walking away would be far worse than the actual jump, and how no-one was stopping me from doing this……apart from me. This is where “standing on the bridge” came from. Whenever Ian and I are about to embark on something a bit scary, something unknown, we refer to it as standing on the bridge. We can jump and see what happens, or stay on the bridge and never know. I wrapped my arms around Ian and hung on for dear life – my jump wasn’t brilliant, but at least I did it, and that’s what counts. As I opened my eyes at the bottom I realised it wasn’t actually that bad…..!
After the bungy jump we spent the afternoon down by the lake rock climbing; it was the perfect end to the day.
The following day we wandered down to the harbour; the sun was shining and it was so peaceful.
As we sat and drank our Starbucks, a girl surrounded by her friends, picked up her guitar and started singing; along with everybody else we sat and listened to her soothing voice. It was the perfect end to an unforgettable part of our trip.
Hand in hand we headed back to our apartment ready to pack everything up. The next day we were driving over to see the bright blue waters of Lake Tekapo……Filed under: Personal, Travels |
A day later than usual as I was busy yesterday……I’m still going strong and I’m still loving it! Here is the latest from my personal project of “28 days later”……
Day 43: I love looking around the garden at all the plants getting ready to flower. I’m really looking forward to the Clematis coming into full bloom – hopefully it will be at some point this week……
Day 44: Yay! The lilies that Ian bought me a week ago are open and looking fab! I love the smell of them….and they look so pretty too!
Day 45: I’m so loving my new Converse trainers. Been after them for a while, so on Saturday I treated myself.
Day 46: A photo taken from the Jessica Claire course I went on at Aspire. I was blown away by her attitude to everything and her shooting style. Amazing.
Day 47: My new ring to match my new dress that I bought today. I thought I would treat myself to a new outfit for a wedding I’m shooting on Saturday…..well, I have to look my best!
Day 48: I’m loving all the garden coming into bloom. Everyday when I look out of the window, the plants are getting bigger and prettier…..
Day 49: I shot a wedding yesterday at Warterton Park Hotel in Wakefield. Kath and Dave were an amazing couple and planned the day really well. It was the most organised wedding I’ve ever been to, everything ran according to plan apart from the first dance which they delayed by 15 minutes. It was a very tiring but amazing day and I feel honoured to have photographed their wedding.Filed under: 28 Days Later, Personal | Comments Off
Wow. Yesterday I was lucky enough to attend a course at Aspire, led by the fantastic wedding photographer Jessica Claire. Jessica is someone I have admired for quite some time. I love her work, and yesterday it was truly inspirational to not only get an insight into how she runs her business, but to see her in action as well.
She made it look so effortless. Not only did I get to see how Jessica interacts with her couples, but she also got everyone on the course involved in what she was doing as well.
Each person got 90 seconds with the couple, and then we had to pose them and create a look of how we thought our wedding photography should look. It was pretty nerve wracking doing that in front of everybody else, but a very worthwhile exercise.
I don’t normally share this many images on my blog, but I can’t help myself!
I loved every second of yesterday, it was so refreshing listening to Jessica talk, she was so open and honest about everything and very direct with her approach to running a business. I found myself hanging onto every word she said and came away from the day very inspired, with many new ideas to think about for my business!Filed under: Personal, Weddings |
Model Janina Maibaum contacted me about a month ago; she was looking to update her portfolio and needed some lingerie shots. I suggested that we do something a bit different and head outside into some woodland; as it was the middle of March I had no idea if she would go for it.
But when she agreed and said she loved the idea, I then had the task of finding some woodland that was pretty quiet where we wouldn’t be disturbed! Luckily enough the first place I found on my location scouting expedition was perfect
Despite the cold, Janina was extremely professional and was willing to suffer for her art! When we discovered a rope swing, Janina didn’t hesitate in jumping onto it, and with encouragement from boyfriend Chris, she got so carried away, it was difficult to get her off it!
It’s always really good when I meet people on my wavelength and they instantly understand what I’m trying to achieve. Janina was so much fun to work with and we both understood what was wanted and needed from the shoot. It was quite different from my other photoshoots and I enjoyed every minute of it. Thank you for a brilliant shoot Janina, I really hope I get to work with you again in the future.
A big thank you also goes out to Ian for helping out on this shoot, and Jordan Osbaldeston and Lucy Smith for doing hair and make-up, I think the girls were numb from the cold by the time we finished!Filed under: Portfolio |
After being in the rainforest, I thought that Sydney would be slightly cooler, but the first thing that hit me when I got off the plane was the heat! We also figured out pretty soon that driving in Sydney, was worse than driving in London; our taxi driver was going so fast out of the airport that when the bottom of the car hit a speed bump, it actually cut out! As we made our way out into the city, the first thing I noticed was the amount of traffic; it was rammed with cars, ALL of them ignoring traffic lights and queuing across junctions. When we arrived at the hotel, I couldn’t wait to get out of the taxi!
That evening we found ourselves a small vegan café to eat at, and then headed over to the Sydney Harbour Bridge to do the bridge climb. Before I’d even reached the top I was wearing ALL of my layers, including a fleece and a hat – it was freeeeezing!! The view was amazing though; seeing Sydney all lit up in the darkness was a breath taking sight.
The next day we got up bright and early to use the gym before heading off to explore the city. The heat was exhausting. There were Christmas trees and decorations in all of the shop windows and we couldn’t get our head around people celebrating Christmas in the sun! We saw workmen in the street putting up the main Christmas tree and placing a star on top; it just didn’t feel right.
There were so many park areas in Sydney that it didn’t feel like a city, and when we headed into the Botanical Gardens there were cockatoo’s everywhere, rather than the pigeons that we get here in the UK. Leisurely strolling around the gardens, taking in the sun and the landscape I realised that I really liked Australia but couldn’t believe I was actually there! We’d been planning the trip for quite some time, and now the reality had finally set in. When we reached the Sydney Opera House I wasn’t prepared for how magnificent it would look; it was such an awe inspiring building. We spent two nights down on the harbour taking photographs and the exploring the city by night.
On the last night we found a small Italian restaurant not far from the harbour, and as we ate our evening meal, we toasted to the next part of our journey…….we were leaving Australia and heading off to Queenstown, New Zealand………Filed under: Personal, Travels | Comments Off
I woke up yesterday morning and was met with glorious sunshine; I instantly knew that the weekend ahead would be a good one. I headed out for an early morning swim before driving over to the Trafford Centre to meet up with some fellow photographers. A couple of hours later, I left Starbucks feeling energised and inspired and started the next part of my day. I met up with my friend Ste, meandered around a few shops and treated myself to a new pair of Converse trainers; so far the day was good. We had lunch and then took a walk down Worsley canal. The weather was stunning; the sun was shining, the birds were singing and I felt positive about things on the horizon.
When I woke up this morning and was met with the same glorious sunshine pouring through the windows, I couldn’t wait to get started with my day. Ian and I abandoned our “spring cleaning” day and headed out into the sun; we visited a few garden centres and ended up buying a blueberry bush! When we returned home to plant it, I got to thinking about how much more positive I feel when the sun is out; the nights are getting lighter, and hopes and ambitions seem possible rather than just a dream.
I thought about the month ahead. My plans. My projects. I then thought about the week ahead; opportunities for some very interesting projects, a wedding course at Aspire with the fantastic photographer Jessica Claire, followed by a wedding on Saturday where I can put into practice what I’ve learnt. I’ve also got the “Building your wedding photography business” classes from Creative Live and amazing wedding photographer Jasmine Star to watch.
So many things to plan and look forward to; the power of the sun eh? It’s an amazing thing. Happy weekend everyone!!Filed under: Personal |
I’ve really enjoyed capturing images over the past week, especially the last few days. Just in case you missed them, here they are……
Day 36: Definitely not the best sunset I’ve ever captured! I’m not a landscape photographer by any means, but I love watching the sunrise and sunset, and I do my best at trying to capture them when I get the chance. On the way home from my Mums tonight, the sun was setting, but by the time we’d found somewhere to pull over, there wasn’t much left to capture…..
Day 37: I’ve just got home and as I was admiring the fish, I had the bright idea to take a photo of them. They’re a lot faster than I realised and everytime I went near them they went mental! I could watch them for hours swimming around, I find it really relaxing…..
Day 38: My favourite flowers are lilies. Ian came home with some yesterday “just because”…..I can’t wait until they open in a day or two….
Day 39: Whilst out and about at the Trafford Centre tonight, I saw this Dalek in River Island….Daleks don’t bother me – it’s Cybermen that freak me out!
Day 40: I love flowers and when I saw these flowers last weekend they made me smile. I was feeling a bit blue on Thursday so I went and bought some to cheer me up.
Day 41: This is Jack. He’s very loud and energetic. He always insists on bringing a present to anyone he likes. Yesterday he brought Ian and I a piece of cardboard followed by a fruit pastille!
Day 42: Walking along Worsley canal I saw these flowers. The sun was shining and all the flowers looked beautiful. I took many photos that I will probably turn into a blog at some point in the next week.Filed under: 28 Days Later | Comments Off
I’ve been a busy little bee over the past few days, so this is a little later than expected this week………
We flew from Brisbane to Cairns, and then from Cairns we drove up to Daintree Rainforest. We had been panicking about getting across the Daintree River. What if we missed the ferry? There’s no other way across the river. People we met along the way laughed at us and just told us not to worry as the ferry was regular and there was no way we would miss it. When we reached the ”ferry” we realised why everyone had laughed at us. It was a car ferry. It held about 4 cars, it was on a pulley system, and the journey took about 2 minutes! I was quite grateful really, because the one and only time I’ve been on a ferry from Dover to Calais, I was really sea sick.
As soon as we left the car ferry and entered the rainforest we had no phone signal. When we checked into our Motel and realised there was no internet access either, it was quite clear our rainforest adventure had begun! It was peaceful. We drove around exploring the walks and beaches that the rainforest had to offer. Luckily just before we arrived, there had been constant rain for a few weeks, so the rainforest was just coming to life; before that it had been dry for months. Apparently, it had been one of the worst droughts for a number of years.
We went out snorkelling to the Great Barrier Reef one day. It was beautiful. As the boat made its way through the clear blue water, I suddenly felt so small; so tiny and insignificant. I looked around, and for miles in every direction there was nothing. Just open water. Luckily I didn’t get sea sick on the boat! We got to see two sea turtles which is quite rare; we had been warned beforehand that we might not get to see any, so it was an amazing sight. As we relaxed on the boat and headed back towards the rainforest, we were greeted with the sight of Cape Tribulation. It was another beautiful sight to put an end to a perfect day.
The night before we left Daintree, we headed out onto a nocturnal walk of the rainforest. Murray, our guide, gave us flashlights each and then we headed out under the cover of darkness. It was amazing just listening to the sounds of the rainforest, trying to figure out which animals were making the noises. When we turned off our torches, we were met with the sight of a group of fireflies circling above us in the night sky. Throughout the walk Murray pointed out all the creatures of the rainforest, some of which only came out at night.
The next day we headed out of Daintree and back to civilisation; we drove down into Cairns to continue onto the next part of our journey; we were flying to the vibrant city of Sydney…….Filed under: Travels |