Well I know it's not the big day yet, at least here in England, but as this is read world wide I thought I would post this today just to catch everyone. So Happy Christmas and also have a great New Year I hope it brings all you are looking for.
Now playing: No Doubt - Sunday Morning
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Well I know it's not the big day yet, at least here in England, but as this is read world wide I thought I would post this today just to catch everyone. So Happy Christmas and also have a great New Year I hope it brings all you are looking for.
Monday, December 19, 2011
Here is a cautionary tail for all bloggers.
I was checking my sites stats when I notice that a lot of people had been referred from a web site that I did not known. Out of curiosity I clicked on the link only to find that the only thing on the page was a video. As I tried to leave the page my virus alarm went off and pop ups started to appear asking for permission to change things on my computer. Before I knew it my computer and my website were both infected and it has taken nearly 2 weeks to sort the mess out. I'm still not sure if it is all totally fixed, only time will tell. Please check your virus protection is up to date, mine was not (it is now!)and don't click on links in your stats unless you are sure they are safe.
Now playing: Fugees - The Score
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
I'm writing face using voice recognition software, just to see what happens z I will not make any corrections seawall has eight decides to tight.
As you can see the faces not going very well, boat with meat being dyslexic it could be the solution to some of my problems, both maybe not just yet.
Now playing: Lily Allen - Ldn
Friday, November 4, 2011
The Staffordshire Moorlands calendar has been going for about 20 year and this year all the images are mine. This is a wonderful showcase for my work and also looks to be an on going commitment with 2013 already being discussed. See here for more details.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
An X Factor post, not had one of these for quite some time, so what have that evil bunch been up to now. According to numerous site across the web Mr Cowell and his merry men have been trying to bully a children's charity into changing its name so as not to conflict with a girl group who are on the show.
The charity is called Rhythmix, and have helped over 40,000 children since being formed in 1999 by identifying young people in challenging circumstances, and enables those young people to shape and develop projects that respond to their needs. Working with a team of over 50 professional community musicians, Rhythmix is continually developing innovative and exciting new programmes that challenge young people to express their creativity.
More on the story can be found on the BBC, The Mirror and Lucy Cousins blog
In another twist to the story, this has come to my attention.
"After the AWESOME chart victory for Rage Against The Machine lots of us felt that there'd be no need to do another campaign again. Yet this year they have decided to effectively bully a children's charity called RHYTHMIX by refusing to change the name of the tepid girl band and suggesting the charity "get a lawyer"
Well f**k you X Factor...we're not impressed
We're going to download the Nirvana ...classic 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' to stick the proverbial finger up at you..."
Here's a link to the face book page
Now playing: Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit
Thursday, October 6, 2011
Monday, September 26, 2011
It's been that time of year again I've taken a week off to walk in the Lake District and eat and drink in some of my favourite pubs and restaurants. Now I'm back and coping with a weeks backlog of emails and messages, so if you messaged me or mailed me I will get back to you ASAP.
Picture is of Caz enjoying the view from Rossett Pike, which we did not see the last time we were there due to low cloud.
Now playing: Green Day - Wake Me Up When Semptember Ends
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
I love this time of year, the cold mornings that, with a bit of luck, turn it to warm sunlit days. September has always been a special month for me, a lot of life defining moments have happened to me at this time of year and the feel of a September morning brings them all back. It's strange how you can feel a change in the air and be linked back over time to events that until then were a distant memory. Still I've lots to do and getting all nostalgic won't pay the bills. Photo today is a HDR of a Tractor taken a few weeks ago.
Now playing: Tears For Fears - Head Over Heels
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
A very busy few weeks, but now when I get a few spare moments I feel at a loss what to do. The Sunday before last I photographed a wedding so last week was taken up with processing the images, a few days of long hours at the computer. Then this week I design a Christmas card, which has just been delivered and looks great, so again lots of time sent on the computer. Now I have a couple of free days and here I am sat at the computer!
Being self employed is not like I thought it would be, the hard work and long hours I was expecting, but the being unsure what to do next is disconcerting. Its fine when I'm working as that drives me on, but when I'm between jobs I find that there is so much that could be done I don't know where to start. Still writing this has focused my mind and I am now off to get something done.
Here's a resent picture of Ziggy, hasn't he grown!
Now playing: Primal Scream - Movin' On Up
Thursday, August 25, 2011
Friday, August 19, 2011
In what I think is a bit of a first for Leek I'm converting a room at the local leisure centre in Brough park in to a photo studio for the day on the 10th of September. Photographic session run for 1/2 an hour starting at 9.00am till 4.00pm. The cost is just £40 including a free 10" x 8" print. The session can be for family groups, couples, kids, bands, or even just one person. The maximum number that can be accommodated at one time is 7, but if you have more just call and I will see what can be done (size does matter).
This is a great opportunity to get family photographs while the tan is still showing and have them ready for gifts at Christmas.
The shots below will give you an indication of the type of portraits available, all these were done in the home, some under less than ideal conditions.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
This could have the sub title of "The exciting life of a professional photographer". What a start to a month, lots of work coming in and a number of great photo shoot, then I go and do my neck in!
Wednesday last week saw me being unable to move for most of the day and at points almost passing out with the pain. Just the right moment to take a call from a new customer and discuss an up coming job, how I managed the call I will never know, probably 13 years of call centre training coming in to play (time not wasted then).
Lucky for me I have a great Osteopath and by Friday was almost fit for work and after a rest full week end, watching Caz cut the lawn, I started my latest job yesterday.
The job in question is photographing items for a web site, something I've done loads of, but as with each job it posies new challenges, the biggest with this one matching the previous photographers style and technique so the site keeps its overall great look. The items in question are all to do with your dog or cat, so dog toys, leads, collars and poop bags, and for the cat in your life a great little item the Plague rat.
When people think of the life of a professional photographer it probably seems like a collection of photo shoot of beautiful women and fast cars, but for me the challenge of photographing everyday items to a set standard and repeating that over and over again is great, I spent the whole day totally engrossed in my passion, pushing myself to my limits, I feel very lucky that I now get to do that on a daily basis.
Now playing: U2 - Dancing Queen (Live Abba Cover) (1)
Thursday, August 11, 2011
A few days spent on holiday at home and the end result is a stiff neck from doing the hedge. Still Scott my Osteopath has worked his magic and I will be fit and well in a few days, light duties till then.
The picture is the river in Borrowdale.
Now playing: Jem - Finally Woken
Saturday, August 6, 2011
Messing about on photoshop after a hard day processing the shots from a shoot on Wednesday. The plane picture was pulled off the net and had the original nose art removed and I added Jade from Wednesdays shoot and the writing, Lillian is her middle name. I'm most proud of the rivets on her bum.
Saturday, July 30, 2011
After months of work and even long taking to decide on the design my new web site is now finish (for now).
I've taken a completely new direction on the style going a way from the black photo gallery feel to a brighter white look. There's a lot more space for information and loads of links always to hand what ever page your on.
As it is a complete change feed back would be welcome.
Now playing: Seal - Future Love Paradise [Album Version]/Album Version
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
First the terrible news from Norway and then the news about Amy Winehouse. Both involving needless deaths, both with only one person to blame. Amy brought joy to millions and will be long remembered, Breivik brought terror to a peaceful country and will probably be remembered even longer. While Amy's death was no real surprise, the events in Norway were and while I'm sad for Amy's family I can not help thinking that Norway's loss is as much a tragedy for us as the loss of one of our own, no matter how talented she was.
Now playing: Valerie - Amy Winehouse [Cover]
Now playing: The Beatles - Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown)
Thursday, July 21, 2011
The birds have all gone, we started off with 4 then in the morning there were just 3. we were worried that something bad had happened until I saw the mother taking food to the bottom of the hedge. The top shot shows the 3 remaining birds trying to get some bread of the mother, moments before they were all sat quietly and looking really sweet.
The next 2 shots were taken 10 seconds apart, the chick on the right just jumped out of the nest without any warning! The remaining chick looked so sad.
Now playing: Kate Nash - Birds
Monday, July 18, 2011
So why so long between post, well I now have lots to fill my time, where as when I started this I only had a part time job and bits of photography to do, in all about 7 hours work a day. Now I have a full time business, 3 blogs, a Twitter a/c, a Facebook page, a Linked in page and still try to do some personal photography on the side, in all about 18 hours a day (on a bad day).
Take today, my plan was to spend all day (8 till 5) on sorting out my web site and the emails that have built up while I was away last week. Instead I have had to re-source wedding albums as my old supplier has gone bump (8 till 11). Ordered flyers that I designed for Caz, after checking all the small print on the companies web site as its the first time I have used them (12.30 till 2). Searched the web for an Artists news letter that offers free public liability insurance after a friend email me for the details (3 till 3.30). Finally got to my old emails and sorted them (3.30 till 5)
There are 2 gaps in all that, 11 till 12 I was sorting out my mums lap top which had the blue screen of death, I then had 1/2 an hours lunch and 2 till 3 I was taking pictures of some baby Black birds just by our window, see below.
In amongst all that I've taken the dog out, answer loads of phone calls, washed up and written this post, a fairly normal day and really I would not change it for the world.
Now playing: Jimi Hendrix - Little Wing
Saturday, July 9, 2011
A very busy few weeks for me so the blogging has taken a bit of a back seat. Work keeps rolling in (up dates on the business blog here) so personal photography has had to wait, still loads of images taken on holiday in Devon to work on. The image below is one of the few I've managed to finish and is really just a bit of fun.
Friday, June 24, 2011
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Another shot from our week down in South Devon, this is Brixham a great sea side town. We had walked in to the town along the coast path and just beat the rain storm you can see in to town. This town is your typical coastal town, steeped in history with loads of old buildings and lots to photograph.
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Just got back from a fantastic week in Torquay in Devon, the weather was great and we spent the whole week walking and site seeing. This picture sums up the best day of the week for me. We caught a steam train from Paignton to Kingswear and then crossed on the ferry to Dartmouth, the picture shows the ferry going back to Kingwear. Once in Dartmouth we took a boat trip on the river Dart, before exploring the town. Then it was back on the ferry and steam train to Paignton. Blue sky and sunshine all the way.
Now playing: Ocean Colour Scene - The Day We Caught The Train
Friday, June 3, 2011
Very busy at the moment so had no time to blog, which is a bit of a shame as I do enjoy it.
The big project at the moment is the complete reworking of my web site, a task that will take some weeks. The site was originally designed about 3 years ago, well before I went professional and was aimed at showcasing my work and to promote sales of my landscapes. Three years on and my focus has changed, so to reflect this the site needs a total make over, starting with a new home page and new navigation structure. I'm looking forward to the challenge as over the past few years I have designed a number of web sites for other people and am eager to use my new found skills on my own site.
The picture is the latest shot of Ziggy out on one of his regular walk in the local country park. He is getting to be quite big with only a little more growing to do as he is now 6 months old.
Now playing: House Of Pain - Jump Around
Thursday, May 19, 2011
Time flies, so they say, and looking at this picture I can well believe it.
This picture was taken 20 years ago at Alton Towers and shows most of the Costume Character's from the Entertainment department, or to give them their more usual name The Bears.
The setting is behind the scenes of the theme park just out side of the shed that housed the parade floats, the time is just before we started to get ready for the parade. In a matter of minutes this bunch of reprobates will be dressed as brightly coloured bears, pirates, and fluffy dogs, ready to entertain the visiting public. I'm stood on the left having just given my camera to someone and dashed to get in the picture, at this time I was just starting to learn to take pictures and my camera went every where with me and 20 years on I have re-found the pictures.
My first thought was how young we all were, I was one of the oldest at 24, in fact I felt so old that for a time I just did not fit in. The rest were aged around 17 to 20 and were mostly at collage or university, all were very bright, energetic and talented, the atmosphere was chaotic and mad in equal parts.
I fell in to the job by accident, even now I can not imagine what I was thinking when I took it, it just was not me. The job really called for someone who was out going and with an ability to interact well with people especially kids, the sort of people that get up to dance first at a party (some of this lot would dance before the music started). I, at the time, was shy, bookish and a bit dull, and found it hard to cope with all the big personalities that were there.
I can well remember trying to be like them and getting no where, a real low point in my life. Then one day I gave up trying to impress them, stopped trying to be like them and sat down with my book and started being me. All of a sudden I started to be included, people took an interest in me and asked my opinion on things. Looking back I think the one thing that the group as a whole hated was fakers, be what you are and be truthful about it, and they'd accept you, but try to hide behind a front and they just won't trust you.
My second thought was where are they now. It's been nearly 20 years since I have seen the majority of these people, the odd one I have met walking around town but the rest have vanished in to history, until this week.
The girl trying to choke me is called Annette and she sent me a friend request on Facebook, she, unlike me, has kept in touch with some of the others and through her and them I have now managed to catch up a bit with a few of the others. 20 years on and for me looking at this picture it seems like yesterday, we were not all best mates, we hated parts of the job and the money was crap, but for 2 seasons I felt proud to work with them and treasures the memories this picture brings back.
Steve Howe on the decks!
Now playing: Livin' Joy - Dreamer
Now playing: Ce Ce Peniston - Finally
Now playing: Robin S. - Show Me Love
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
I've not been blogging much as work is taking up so much of my time, not that I'm complaining, it's great to be so busy. I spent the whole week end at Art in the Park, a collection of events in Brough park in Leek all to do with the Arts Festival. I was there running a stall in the craft tent and spent 2 days talking to people about my pictures and even selling a few.
The picture today is an old one of Kep in the snow last winter, I found it in the file I reserve for blog pictures, so I must have put it in there while he was still with us. It's not a great picture but I do so miss him and when I looked at it it made me smile.
Now playing: Bob Marley & The Wailers - Coming In From The Cold
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
I've been a bad blogger and not blogged much over the past few week and here is the reason, my new exhibitions Hidden Views.
The exhibition starts on Saturday 30th April at the Coffee Clique in Getliffe's Yard in Leek. I've not blogged much because most of my free time has been taken up with shoots for the exhibition and sorting out the advertising and getting the pictures framed, work that is still on going!!!! Because of that I not only had no time to blog but also no fresh pictures to post as all my photos were of subjects for the exhibition.
So what is it all about, Hidden Views is about the need to see places you are not normally allowed to see, the idea arrived in the second week in March and at first I nearly did not use it as the time was so short. Not only was there the matter of getting 30+ good images (hard enough on its own) but these had to be taken in places you would not normally get to or even see.
Problem 1, Where was interesting enough to photograph, as these views are normally hidden, how would I known there was a view worth seeing?
Problem 2, Getting access, who do you contact, how do you get in and having taken all that time and effort then back to problem 1.
The out come surprised me, access was no problem once the right people were contacted, in fact the best part of the process was meeting loads of great and very helpful people. The images that I finally selected are better than I could have wished for given the condition in which most of them were taken as hidden views are normally hidden for a reason, bad light, cramped conditions, or poor access.
So the exhibition starts this Saturday and runs for the month of May, I will be there Saturday morning and would love to see you all.
The picture is as good an example of the exhibition as you could get, it is taken in side the Monument, Leeks most iconic building, looking at the clock workings and showing the back of the clock faces, faces whose fronts have been seen by everyone in the town, but the backs by only a select few, a truly hidden view.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
I'm very easily distracted, if I'm looking for something on the internet I normally find 2 hours have gone by and I'm looking at something totally unrelated to what I was after. The same goes for pictures, I was sorting images for the exhibition and ended up finding this picture. It was taken late last year and was just sitting in the file un-worked on. So an hour later and lots of processing and here it is. Now back to sorting images for the exhibition.
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
Been a bit busy of late and let my blogging slip a bit, so a bit of an update for you.
Ziggy fine, getting bigger by the day and yesterday sat for his second official portrait. He has also made it down the pub twice this weekend and visited both our mums on Sunday, he has had quite a busy weekend.
The business is going to plan with an exhibition in the final stages of preparation, just the advertising to write and the final prints to be selected. More news on that later this week. I have also secured a stand at a local craft fair in May, so for the first time I will have 2 events running at the same time, luckily I don't need to be at both at the same time. I have also added new pages to my web site Brett Trafford.com, to advertise my wedding photography and portrait work.
As you can see between Ziggy and work there is very little me time at the moment, the only problem with this is that time is flying by so fast, I've already missed winter and if I don't stop and look around spring will be gone as well, there is just not enough hours in the day.
Picture shot a few weeks ago in Buxton, the building is call the crescent and is in the process of being converted in to a top flight hotel and spa. The shot was taken on my 10mm - 20mm and was 5 shots joined together.
Now playing: Arctic Monkeys - I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
The view from High crag looking toward Great Gable and Green Gable in the Lake District. This is one of my favourite walking areas with so many high mountains and lots of different routes to chose from. We have been in this area in the summer and not seen a thing due to low cloud, so to get a view like this in January was great.
Now playing: Guns 'n' Roses - Stairway to Heaven (Live)
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Not had a rant for a while but here is one for you.
First of all it has to be the big news story of the day, that day being the 23/02.
The "Cornish pasty" has been given protected status by European lawmakers, called a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI).It means that pasties made anywhere other than Cornwall can no longer be called "Cornish". It gives the meat and potato snack the same standing as champagne, parmesan cheese and Jersey Royal potatoes. Now this in its self is great and I think it makes sense, but in the same news article pasty makers in Devon say it's "a black day".
Funny but I had heard that same term applied to the day only a few hours earlier by Mayor Bob Parker of Christchurch, describing the devastation and loss of life his city had suffered. I think that some people need to get a bit of perspective in their lives, it's only a pasty.
Another news item that got me worked up is the calls for a no fly zone over Libya. The reasoning behind sending foreign jets is to stop the government from bombing its own people, where were all these people when Israel were bombing Gaza only days ago?
And finally on the news in the same bulletin, first police in England to face pay cuts and solders serving on the front line to lose jobs, while the UK government is sending planes to help Egyptian workers to get home from Tunisia. Why not spend the money looking after our safety first, what have we got to do with their trip home when in our own country lack of money is putting lives at risk.
Now playing: Pearl Jam - You've Got to Hide Your Love Away (Beatles Cover)
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Not been posting much over the last week, lots to do and Ziggy around to make things take twice as long. He has just had his second jab and will be let lose on the world on Sunday, but i don't think it will be a trip down the pub just yet.
Now playing: Sultans Of Ping FC - Where's Me Jumper
Monday, February 14, 2011
Well the blog is 3 years old today and I am 44! It seems such a short time ago that I sat here and wrote my first post and posted my first picture, now I feel like I'm on the edge of a whole new world, it's strange to feel so old and young at the same time.
What's also strange is that at a time when work is just starting to come in and I normally have a bit of free time, today, when I should take it easy, I'm rushed off my feet and will probably do a 13 hour day. Not that I'm complaining (much) being my own boss does have it's benefits, being able to blog at work is one of them and getting all my personal emails is another.
On the subject of personal emails, thank you all for the happy birthday messages, via here or facebook or sent direct, working on my own all day it makes me feel part of the human race again.
My gift to you all is this shot from our week in the lakes, it is from Causey Pike and shows the view over looking Keswick, click on the image for a better view. This spot became an instant favourite when we climbed it on our last day, i would love to sit you all there with a big box of cakes and just take in the view.
Now playing: Fun Lovin' Criminals - Scooby Snacks
Thursday, February 10, 2011
After only 4 days here i thought it time we had a proper photo. So i set up the lights and back drop, arranged the camera on a tripod and fetched Ziggy. I put the puppy on the table and turned to press the shutter and turned back to see puppy had vanished, this went on for some time, till i got the shots need.
Now playing: Manic Street Preachers - Damn Dog
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
A short post to introduce the newest member of the Trafford family, Ziggy. Ziggy is an Australian Red Border Collie and a very small bundle of trouble, who at the moment is whining down stairs for my attention so i will have to go.
Now playing: David Bowie - Ziggy Stardust
Saturday, February 5, 2011
Quite a busy week so just a short post to keep you going.
Got my P45 in the post yesterday, it means I am really free at last!
Spent the week working on the photos from the holiday, the new Nikon D7000 works wonderfully I can not fault it in any area.
This shot is from the top of High Crag and is of Pillar.
Now playing: The Teardrop Explodes - Reward
Monday, January 31, 2011
Friday, January 21, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
At last I've managed to sort out the bulk of my images and up loaded some to an on-line gallery, see it here, The picture below was one I found while sorting the photos, it is Caz and Kep in a snow storm in 2009.
Now playing: Natalie Imbruglia - That Day