Sunday, 26 August 2012


This weekend I was invited to the outdoor wedding of two of my friends. They may have been unlucky with the weather but everything else worked out perfectly with their festival themed wedding. Here are some of my favourite photos from the day...

Friday, 10 August 2012

Old, new, newer.

This week, Kieran and I took the dogs for a walk down to the old railway and quarry. I brought my camera along in the hope of getting some good photos. It was really strange seeing the old railway all overgrown and I enjoyed capturing the mix of nature and industry.

The sun was just about setting and so the light was really nice. Unfortunately, I couldn’t quite capture the sunset as the new railway blocked it out and I was too short to get a picture over the top of it.

There was a lot of graffiti and I thought this added an extra layer to the scene; from nature, to industry to modernisation to destruction.

Here are some of the photos I got on the Nikon and I am also hoping a couple I took on my Diana F+ will turn out well too.

I think what I realised through these photos is I like capturing run down places and making them look nicer – a bit like with the iron bridge photos from Manchester. I like to try and see the beauty in things that aren’t conventionally beautiful. It might look like a decaying railway or a dirty old tunnel but it’s a part of history and people would have worked hard to create those things.

Thursday, 9 August 2012


As you know, I have been looking forward to going to Brighton to try out my camera in a more exciting setting. I was really lucky as it was a sunny day and I managed to get lots of photos with a bright blue sky in the background.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Practising with the Nikon D3200.

I have had an early birthday present of a Nikon D3200. I read lots of reviews on entry level DSLRs and found that this one had a consistently good write up - good image quality combined with ease of use. I am a complete novice to photography other than compact digital camera snap shots and the odd instagram so was pleased to find this camera comes with on screen guides to advise you on aperture, focal length and such things.

I was hoping to get a few good practice shots in before taking it to Brighton tomorrow but with the bad weather I have been constricted to my own house and garden. The good thing about digital cameras (as opposed to analogue) is that you can take several photos and then just get rid of the rubbish shots.

Here are a couple of what I think are my best from today...

This is a shot of little Beau. I've been trying to experiment with depth of field and get the blurred background with the sharp focussed foreground. It came out pretty good in this photo but I'm still very hit and miss with it.

This picture of Lola was just taken on the Auto setting. I have played with the editing by upping the contrast and trying to make the green more vibrant. I only have free basic photo software at the moment so should probably invest in something more specialist.

Here I was just experimenting with black and white in the editing process. I've used quite a high contrast which I think works well with black and white, especially as the subject here was so light against a dark background anyway.

One of the reasons I wanted to get into photography was to take pictures of my family. I love how my nephew covered up his face which makes the picture seem less forced and much more like a natural moment (which it was!)

So, there are a few for now. I still have loads to learn and lots more settings to explore and get used to. I'm looking forward to getting out and about and taking some photos of some more exciting things.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Places where I want to go and take photos.

After our amazing honeymoon where we were lucky enough to visit San Francisco, Hawaii (Oahu) and Vegas, I thought I was pretty much done with travelling. I'm not really that into visiting places as I don't like the hassle of airports and would rather spend my money on buying stuff.

I've visited some cool places like Rome, Prague, New York and New Orleans and didn't really have anything else on my list. But now I find I want to go back to all the places I've already seen with my new cameras and take a load of cool photos! Plus, visit a whole load of new places!

1. Cuba

I imagine Cuba in a 60's timewarp with old fashioned cars and light coloured buildings in soft sunlight with old men sitting around laughing and smoking cigars. This may not be wholly accurate but I should at least visit to find out. I would love to take photos with my Diana as I feel Cuba would lend itself nicely to some dreamy analogue shots.

2. Amsterdam

I have always been put off holidays to Amsterdam as I thought the only people who visited there were students and stags. After seeing a cool photo of a bicycle (the kind Audrey Hepburn would ride) with tulips in the basket, I realised I wanted to go there and take photos of bikes and tulips, as well as windmills, mice and cheese.

3. Tokyo

I have always wanted to go to Japan (mainly to visit the Hello Kitty theme park with Kitty boats and all of Kitty's friends) but I also think it would be just a generally cool place. I see it as somewhere with so much tradition yet it seems super modern and I think there would be so many contrasting images to capture. I am imagining Harajuku girls overlayed with tradition temples.

4. Sydney

It seems unlikely I will visit Australia as I don't think I can be bothered going that far but I am very tempted for a couple of reasons - koalas, Home and Away and the Sydney Opera House. I love Koalas and I really want to cuddle one. Home and Away was my fave ever soap (lost track since Alf and Sally left) and I really want to go to the Home and Away beach. I love the design of the opera house and think it would be great to get a cool night time picture on my new Nikon with the bridge and stuff.

5. Cornwall

I went to Cornwall a few times as a child and remember the sea being so clean and clear (clean and clear enough to see little fish which freaked me out a bit). I would really like to find an old seaside town with pastel painted buildings and fishermen to take photos of.

So, they're my top 5 for now but I would also like to go back to San Francisco as it's one of the coolest places ever. I'm also looking forward to taking photos in Brighton this weekend and Vegas in November. In the meantime, I shall be practicing with the 'sights' of my hometown.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Lomography Love.

I had first heard about Lomography through a feature on Rock My Wedding. I really loved the vintage, dreamy look of the photos and the fact that the imperfections made the photos so much more interesting. My favourite ones were the overlayed photos where one image appeared over another, or the ones with the black edging creeping in (vignetting).

With the wedding all over and suddenly finding myself with so much spare time, I decided I needed a hobby. I wanted to keep up something creative as that's what I enjoyed most about planning the wedding and it's totally different from my day job. Photography was always something I was interested in but through the wedding planning, I learnt so much more about it as I researched various photographers.

At the weekend, I was lucky enough to visit a store dedicated to Lomography in Manchester. Whilst there, I purchased the Diana F+ in pink (Mr. Pink).

I've never had a real film camera (I don't think disposables count) but I remember my Dad having one when I was younger.

The Diana F+ comes with a really easy to follow instruction manual which takes you through everything from how to load the film to getting different effects from your camera. You can add various filters to the flash (seen here with pink of course) and choose whether you have 16 smaller photos or 12 larger ones. It's up to you when you wind it on so I'm looking forward to seeing how some of the overlay effect pictures I've taken turn out.

The great thing about this type of camera is you really don't know what you're going to get. I'm really hoping not all of my photos are rubbish but even if there are just a couple of gems on there I will be pleased. I think there is something so romantic about film cameras that you can't achieve simply by Instagramming a photo (although I do love Instgram).

We're off to Brighton at the weekend and I can't think of a place better suited to the 1960's, vintage, unique photos that I hope to achieve with my new camera.

I'll be sure to share the results when the film is developed.