So, as I mentioned, I went away on our familymoon and totally forgot to take a charger for my dslr and thus was stuck with a useless bunch of extra weight for our holiday! I did however pack my film camera about which I was incredibly happy about. In retrospect it is a very interesting exercise to be limited by a film camera to practise photography, particularly the composition aspect.

I thought I would share some analysis of a few of the photos I took. If you are interested in working on your own composition you can pick up a point and shoot disposable camera for a few pounds and developing can be done at Snappy Snaps.

Image One

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This is just basically all off. The point of focus I was aiming for is the family group on the bench. The framing doesn’t really draw your attention to them at all, however, and the background is distracting. Plus there are lots of elements on the edges that clutter the picture.

I could potentially have moved around and had them straight on with the less distracting and more atmospheric church, but street photography with a non-automatic focusing camera has some difficulties. Alternatively moving a bit closer might have helped (my camera has a prime lens so moving rather than zooming is the option).

Image Two

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Looking back on the images in retrospect I sometimes wonder what I was ‘thinking’ in taking the image. I think in this image I was trying to photograph the bicycle with flowers balanced with the old man smoking. However, the bike on the edge and the person with the shopping totally limit the viewers ability to focus on this balance.

Getting lower might have helped to get rid of the sign above the gentleman’s head too. And maybe a few steps to the left would have helped get the right ‘balance’.

Image Three

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Can you see a pattern emerging here in where I go wrong? Cropping in camera is a handy skill. If I had ‘zoomed’ in and just got the lady and the dog I would have been happy with the picture. Half chopped off bodies are distracting!

Also, I am terrible at getting straight photos!

Okay so now I need to go out and practise some more…

Did you find this useful? Would you like to see some more ‘dissection’ posts?

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So I totally forgot about my own photo project collaboration until the day was half way through. But then I had a good excuse. I was on our familymoon (Tim’s family had come all the way from South Africa so we were spending time with them post wedding). We were in Florence on the selected day and I have no idea of the hour of these photos so I have just put together a random selection.

Also, I failed to take a charged DSLR battery with me so I only have a mixture of iphone pictures and film pictures from our week and a half away!

Anyway here we go, not quite 12 but there you go. (Excuse the quality of the film photos as the scans aren’t that high quality).

breakfast

1. A healthy breakfast with the family. (iphone)

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2. Tim and I went to have some coffee by ourselves and did a lot of people watching. (film)

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3. The family joined us and then we headed for more coffee. I loved how this guy was reading the newspaper too. (film)

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4. The family stood in line at the Duomo while we wondered around the outside, visited Eataly (which is coming to Trieste in the new year apparently) and did some more people watching. (film)

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5. Wondering the streets. (iphone)

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6. Lunch time. We finally settled on this sandwich place which had a massive queue but was totally worth it. (iphone)

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7. Past the Santa Croce Piazza. (both – like the ‘messed up’ film one which is a combination of a man at a table doing something and Tim on a bench).

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8 (at top) & 9. Headed back to the flat and came across an old style photobooth!

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10. It was hot and we didn’t have the energy to head out again. We ended up having some drinks on the balcony of the airbnb where we stayed and used some birthday candles to extend the light a bit.

Don’t forget if you took part in July to link up with your post.

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Our wedding day was one of the most awesome days ever! Obviously marrying the love of my life was amazing but on top of that the support and love of some very special people made the day one that just felt like a party all about love. In all honesty, however, I mostly hated the whole wedding process and I wanted to talk about that here because I don’t feel like it is something I have seen shared or discussed very much (at least on the blogs that I read).

For months in the run up to the wedding my anxiety levels had been higher than I ever remember them being. I was sleeping badly. I was feeling unmotivated. I wasn’t looking forward to my wedding. Of course I couldn’t wait to pledge the rest of my life to a man that I deeply love but I only seemed to get a pit in my stomach when thinking about our wedding day rather than a bubbling over with excitement reaction.

I found this confusing and frustrating. This was not what I had imagined and it was certainly not what the internet had suggested I would feel about my wedding day!

I’ve been pondering why I have felt this way and thought that I would share. Maybe I am not the only one.

>>> Perhaps most importantly, our wedding day changed drastically from its original conception. When Tim proposed out of the blue we both decided we were not keen on a big wedding and decided that we would “kind of elope”. We started planning a very small wedding with parents and siblings in Rome. I was incredibly excited about this because it felt really intimate and … hello Rome! Anyway that turned out not to be feasible and with us moving to Italy shortly afterwards anyway it seemed to make sense to have the wedding where we could celebrate with more of our friends. We kept the ceremony smallish but now we also had to plan a party. I guess the same might happen if your family feel they have a strong say in what is happening with your wedding.

>>> Weddings are stressful. They cost a lot of money. You have to ‘entertain’ a bunch of people. As someone who wanted people to enjoy themselves on the wedding day (which I don’t think is an unusual request) it creates a lot of pressure. Not being in the country added some stress. Not having a job definitely added more, particularly when costs started to rise.

>>> A lot of special people were not able to make our day. I suppose that will always be the case when you live thousands of miles from the place you were born. I obviously do not hold against them the fact that they weren’t there and everyone who attended is very special to me too but at points I kind of wondered ‘what was the point’.

I am glad to say that in the month leading up to my wedding I started to focus less on all the money we were spending and more on the beautiful day we were going to have. (Although the week before the wedding was also pretty full on and exhausting too).

It kind of started when we sat down and wrote our vows together. This really helped to solidify what the day was all about. We also decided that in the gap between the ceremony and the reception we would take time for ourselves. Although a wedding is a public declaration of your intent to stay together for the rest of your lives it was important for us to also have time alone to celebrate with just the two of us.

I also really started to relax once I had tried on my wedding dress for the first time (less than four weeks from the wedding day). I went one Sunday when I was in London to my friend who was making it and over the course of the day she sewed and I pulled the dress on and off about 100 times. I had never doubted her abilities but was concerned that this dress that we had kind of created from our minds would in the end be awful. And occasionally I would doubt my choice of colour. But when I tried it on for the last time at the fitting I knew I had made the right decisions. Big sigh of relief.

I’ve heard that planning the wedding can be a real test of a relationship and though we did have some arguments (honestly around things that we have argued about before and will probably be the same arguments we have for rest of our lives) I think in the end the experience has brought us closer together. So not too bad in the end.

Have you had the same feelings? Or the opposite? I’d love to hear

[Picture is a screen grab from some video footage taken by a friend. Photos will still be a while.]

happy friday

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It is a kind of strange time of year. Tim is on holiday until the end of August. At which point I also start working. So post wedding there is a ‘new swing’ to get back into to. Which mostly feels like holiday and has me being very unproductive. Again! That said I am enjoying time with my new husband post our familymoon.

It will still be a bit sporadic around here for a while but I had a growing list of links to share. Due to not posting a happy Friday for some weeks now I have a jolly list of links to share with you this week. Some are a bit older but hopefully they are still of interesting

And you will also find I have been popping up on other blogs lately. Byrony included me in her new series on seaside bloggers (such a great idea!) and Catherine had me tell you what I get up to on a weekend.

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While in London the week before the wedding we visited the Tate Modern and wondered into their rooms on ‘Energy and Process’. Cy Twombly is one of my favourite painters and I had some lessons for life reaffirmed while looking at a room of his works including the Bacchus Series.

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>>> Go big or go home. Don’t play small!

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>>> Don’t be afraid to go off the ‘edges’ (not in a crazy way but more colour outside the box sense)

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>>> It is okay to paint over and start again

wedding herbs

So I have now been married for over two weeks which is still a bit weird but also incredibly lovely. Our wedding wasn’t totally traditional (does everyone say that?) so I thought I would share some thoughts:

>>> You don’t need to wear the world’s most expensive dress to feel like a million dollars. In fact you can get a talented friend to make it, have an adventure buying fabric from a lady who only speaks Italian and insists you don’t need more than 2 metres of fabric, not have an actual pattern and spend less than £200.

>>> You don’t need a wedding cake but if your mom decides to make one last minute that works too.

>>> You don’t need to have bridesmaids and groomsmen. All the people who came to our wedding helped out and were awesome. Not having to worry about the extra stress of outfits, presents, activities etc led to a much calmer me and just being able to spend time alone with Tim on our wedding day made me feel super relaxed.

>>> You can leave the house on the morning of your wedding and have your hair and makeup done in a ‘salon’. I went to Blow Ltd and spent a fraction of the price on having my hair and make up done. Even taking into consideration a test visit.

>>> You can arrive at your wedding ceremony in a minicab you booked that morning.

>>> You can see the guests before you walk down the aisle. We got married at a registry office and I loved seeing and greeting people before we walked down the aisle. It took some of the ‘look at me I’m the centre of attention’ stress off.

>>> You and your future spouse can walk down the aisle together.

>>> You can leave the ceremony by train and use the cancelled train and half an hour wait on the platform as a chance to catch up with people.

>>> You don’t have to plan a first dance but can dance to the second song that the band plays because people still kind of expect it.

>>> You don’t have to have speeches.

>>> You can serve vegetarian food from amazing caterers and get a heap of comments even from staunch meat eaters.

>>> Love is the best ingredient for a lovely wedding day. The love you have for each other but also importantly the love of your friends and family in helping set up, clear up, deal with your manias, party hard and so much more.

p.s. I’ve got a few wedding related posts in my mind. It will be a while until I have some wedding photos but will share a few when I get them.