Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas to all my friends and visitors, I hope the holiday brings you all that you want.

Now playing: The Ramones - Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)
via FoxyTunes

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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

365 photo blogs, some help.

"41 today and to mark the occasion I have started this blog. The idea is to post a picture a day up to my 42nd birthday. "

So started this blog, my first blog and my first attempt at a daily photo blog.

When I started I had no idea that there was such a thing as a 365 photo blog, I had seen a few photo blogs but thought that my idea was quite unique, the reason I had not seen many 365 blogs was that I had started blogging in February, by which time the bulk of the latest crop of 365 blogs, started in January, had died.

Ignorance is bliss

So boldly off I went, starting off on the road that so many start but few finish, for me the result was life changing and to help others on the way here are a few tips.

1. Set your rules.

It's your blog so you are in control, for me I posted pictures taken in that year, but did state that if the weather stopped play I would use old shots rather than miss a day. I used this get out only twice, but saved my self a lot of heart ache by already being prepared.

2. Manage your time

For me this took over my life, it is so easy to focus too much on it, give yourself a break. Blogger allows post dated posting, so find time to pre do your weekend post and take that time off.

3. Holidays

I found that pre posting holidays were easier if I linked the pictures together, so a set on local building for example. I also posted a few days extra after the holiday to cover for a late return or other problems.

4. Content

Try to plan what you are going to post, have a number of different ideas and if possible shoot a back up number of images, that you can post if disaster strikes, I photographed the same tree once a month from the same spot, that's 12 picture I did not need to think about.

5. Celebrate

Mark your mile stones, 1 month, 100 posts, 50 followers, what ever it is shout about it, you deserve to make a fuss, not many get very far.

6. Mutual support

Visit other new blogs and support them, they will visit you and support you (well some will).

7. New ideas

365 samey pictures will depress you nearly as fast as they will depress your readers, try to shoot different things, lots of photo blogs have daily themes, like a letter or word, join in and explore photography.

8. Does it matter

If you miss a day does it really matter? Only to you, so it is up to you how you handle it, post 2 the next day or extend the run by a day, as in rule 1 you make the rules.

9. Miracles

Do not happen, do not expect loads of followers and comments on day 1, it took weeks for my first proper comment (i.e. not from a friend or family member) so don't get down hearted, they will come.

10. Don't quit

Don't give up, that is the easy way out and nothing good comes easy. If you work at it you will get rewarded. If you lose heart read other peoples 365 from the start and watch them grow, you too can do it.

I said that it is life changing, for me it was in a very real sense, the confidence it gave me and the skills I picked up along the way have lead to photography becoming my career. It is hard, 365 photos that you are happy for the world to see (and comment on) do not just appear you have to go and get them, but I would always tell some one to do it rather than not.

Todays photo frost on a wall.

Now playing: The Boomtown Rats - I Don't Like Mondays
via FoxyTunes

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Books you have read.

I had seen this on a couple of blogs ( this one being the most resent Dreaming of open seas) and found it fun to do, posting this for my mum who always encouraged me to read, thanks mum.

Have you read more than 6 of these books? The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here.


Bold those books you’ve read in their entirety.

Italicize the ones you started but didn’t finish or read only an excerpt."

1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

2. Lord of the Rings – JR Tolkien

3. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

4. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling

5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

6. The Bible

7. Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

8. Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell

9. His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman

10. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

11. Little Women – Louisa M Alcott

12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy

13. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller

14. Complete Works of Shakespeare

15. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier

16. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien

17. Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks

18. Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger

19. The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

20. Middlemarch – George Eliot

21. Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell

22. The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald

23. Bleak House – Charles Dickens

24. War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy

25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams

26. Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh (maybe 12 - 14 times..)

27. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

28. Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck

29. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll

30. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

31. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

32. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens

33. Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis

34. Emma – Jane Austen

35. Persuasion – Jane Austen

36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis

37. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini

38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres

39. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden

40. Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne

41. Animal Farm – George Orwell

42. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown

43. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving

45. The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins

46. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery

47. Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy

48. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

49. Lord of the Flies – William Golding

50. Atonement – Ian McEwan

51. Life of Pi – Yann Martel

52. Dune – Frank Herbert

53. Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons

54. Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen

55. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth

56. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon

57. A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens

58. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley

59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon

60. Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck

62. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov

63. The Secret History – Donna Tartt

64. The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold

65. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas

66. On The Road – Jack Kerouac

67. Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy

68. Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding (blushes....)

69. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie

70. Moby Dick – Herman Melville

71. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens

72. Dracula – Bram Stoker

73. The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett

74. Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson

75. Ulysses – James Joyce

76. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath

77. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome

78. Germinal – Emile Zola (yes, really - but only 'cos I had to, at University)

79. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray

80. Possession – AS Byatt

81. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

82. Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell

83. The Color Purple – Alice Walker

84. The Remains of the Day – Kazu Ishiguro

85. Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert

86. A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry

87. Charlotte’s Web – EB White

88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom

89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

90. The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton

91. Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad

92. The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery

93. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks

94. Watership Down – Richard Adams

95. A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole

96. A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute

97. The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas

98. Hamlet – William Shakespeare

99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

100. Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

Now playing: Kate Nash - Pumpkin Soup
via FoxyTunes

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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Jack frost

A benefit of being my own boss, being able to go out and capture sights like this, wind blown frost on a grass stalk.

Now playing: Bat for Lashes - Siren Song
via FoxyTunes

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Monday, December 6, 2010

Monday blues

My new office on a Monday morning, life can be so hard at times.

Now playing: Pearl Jam - Alive
via FoxyTunes

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Friday, December 3, 2010


I'm free, just completed my last day as a paid employee, from now on the only customers to shout at me will be my own.

A picture taken on Wednesday of light at the end of a tunnel!

Now playing: The Buzzcocks - Running Free

Now playing: The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Stone Free [*] - The Jimi Hendrix Experience

Now playing: Ultra Naté - Free

Now playing: The Soup Dragons - I'm Free (featuring Junior Reid)

Now playing: Jimi Hendrix - Freedom (Live)

Now playing: Erasure - Freedom
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Wednesday, December 1, 2010


D Day looms, only a few more days of paid employment left and then I'm on my own! Spent last week using up the remainder of my holidays, time well spent attending business start up workshops and working on my web site, Brett

My next task is how to get the word out to the people of Leek and Staffordshire that there is a new professional photographer in the area. Brett Trafford .com is a first step, and adding my name to on line directories another, but after doing the work shop I have a better idea of what I am doing and once my plans are finalised I will let you all know first on here.

Now a photo hot off the PC, taken only an hour ago!

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