‘Tis The Season to be Jolly

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Yes, ‘Tis the season to be jolly once again! (Maybe that should be the mantra for all year round really).

It’s not always easy to be “jolly” this time of year is it, with so much extra stuff to be done, but we usually get there in the end!

So, once there’s time to breathe …. chill … and start winding down a bit, you might begin to feel a little nostalgic about Christmases past, as I always do this time of year. Aha, cue for last year’s blog post https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2015/12/ Must be that old cine clip that does it 😉

Also, maybe a time to reflect a little on the year gone by. I hope it’s been a good one for you.

It seems like only 5 minutes ago that we were just coming into 2016 and the approaching ten year anniversary of Romsey Fotografix, back in January. I really enjoyed putting together the Then and Now montages from some of your shoots, delving into the archives and looking back at all your photo sessions over the years.

Speaking of which, here’s a young lady who’s been in every year on her actual birthday in December since she was 2 years old (bar one year when lots of snow stopped play!). Lovely to see her again, looking all grown up, for her 11th birthday shoot last weekend, this time along with some friends – and her gorgeous dog Alfie!

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Giggles galore!!!

For us, both socially and workwise, there’s been lots going on, which I guess has made it feel like the year’s gone by even quicker. Particular highlights of course, my weekend of surprises https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2016/04/26/surprise-after-surprise-after-surprise/ and the beautiful day we renewed our wedding vows https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2016/08/18/renewing-our-wedding-vows-30-years-on/

If any of you have kept up or started a 365 day photo project, it’d be great to hear how it’s going. I’m still doing mine, and am glad as it’s pretty cool having a daily picture diary to look back on, although it’s time consuming and ‘twould be fair to say I’m not quite so enthusiastic about it as I was when I first started!! More about this year’s in another post, here’s last year’s https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2016/01/06/on-the-blog-today-update-on-my-365-photo-project-for-2015-365photo-365project/

I would love to take this opportunity to say a massive THANK YOU to each and everyone of you who’ve entrusted me with taking your photos, whether in the studio or for your “big days” – and in some cases both! It’s always such a privilege to share and photograph the special times in your lives; it really means such a lot to me to be asked. And it’s been brilliant to see so many familiar faces again this year, as well as lots of new ones too!

So many amazing, memorable moments 🙂  As I’ve said many a time, you make this job of mine so joyful, it just doesn’t feel like work!

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

And have yourselves a very Merry Christmas and a healthy, happy and peaceful New Year.

Every Chair tells a Story

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So I’d earmarked the last couple of days in my diary to knuckle down and get my annual accounts done, dusted and ready for my accountant. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take a lot to sway me from this arduous task.  Accounts and me, we just don’t gel well at all …

So when those lovely folk at Design Cuts came up with this remarkable value bundle  https://www.designcuts.com/product/the-gigantic-mockup-templates-bundle/ I simply couldn’t resist!

So many goodies at such a bargain price.  If you’re into design at all you could find this lot very handy indeed!!

As soon as I saw some of the chairs in the bundle, I could just visualise them working well with certain of my studio shots, as a series of portraits. So putting the accounts aside for an hour (or two!) I started creating.

Hence my “Chair Project” was born, the idea being that, by incorporating into the picture a chair or two and maybe another prop, might add a touch of storytelling to the scene.

Such as ….

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OK, I know it doesn’t help get my accounts done, but projects like this and my 365 Photo-a-Day are vital to keep the old creative juices flowing, which in turn helps to keep my work fresh and the ideas coming when editing your portfolios too.

I’ll be adding these pics to my Instagram feed as and when, as well as any others I may add to the collection.  You can find me here https://www.instagram.com/fotografixgal/ and search for the hashtag #FotografixgalChairProject

Big thanks to Design Cuts for this incredible deal which I’m sure is going to inspire lots of other ideas too, and also to Studio Magic  https://www.layercakeelements.com/studio-magic which helps make creating these types of combis easier than it might otherwise be!

Such choice – I feel other projects coming on soon!!

In the meantime  … errr …. best get back to those accounts ….

2015: A year in pictures – 365 Project Update!

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I won’t tell a lie and say it hasn’t been challenging. Indeed I would say at times it’s even been a bit of a pain. But that said, I’m so glad I persevered with my 365 day project throughout 2015.

I’ve put a few collages together of some of the highlights, in no particular order.

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OK, call me a glutton for punishment, but I will be carrying it on again this year too 🙂

How’s about you?  I’d love to know if any of you have kept up the challenge, as I remember some of you started one at about the same time as me. Or is anyone considering doing one? If so, will you have some kind of theme, which is a very popular idea, or just a daily photo Ie like a diary of your year, as I do? Well, that’s sort of what I do.

Mine started as the latter in the first year. But I soon discovered I was being way too strict with myself, such as having to post on the very same day, of something that took place actually on that day, and limiting the images purely to personal Iphone photos. It was becoming so tricky that I almost gave it up.

I stuck it out, but I knew realistically if I was to carry it on, I’d have to cut myself some slack. I loved the idea of having a diary in pictures of my year, and for 2014 I produced a photobook at the end of it, as indeed I am in the process of doing for last year’s too. It’s a lovely momento to be able to flick through from time to time. This was my 365 Project post for 2014 complete with pic of the book! https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2015/01/12/a-year-in-a-heartbeat/

With my lifestyle, it was proving impossible to find something original to photograph and include each and every day. This might sound a bit of a peculiar thing for a photographer to say, as I take thousands upon thousands of photos in a year. But of course, the majority of these are work related, so a lot of my time is spent either in the studio, or in my home behind my desk editing, with just the 8 minute drive in between!

So in order to carry on the project, at the beginning of 2015, I was much easier on myself, and started to include some of my studio shots (mostly with a different creative slant added) alongside my personal pics, but without them necessarily having to be taken the same day, unless l had happened to have gone somewhere different. So the end result is a lovely, varied combination of places we’ve been, new objects that mean a lot to me (like gifts I’ve been given), as well as some of my favourite shots from your photoshoots and weddings.

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This means my latest book will be a colourful, and very mixed collection of my favourite pictures I took last year, which I reckon are much more reflective of my life than just trying to find something to photograph every day for the sake of it. Some days I do a small collage of several pictures if I can’t choose a favourite. Sometimes, if I feel like it, I add a bit of text, such as a quote of some kind, often with the help of one of these Apps https://romseyfotografix.wordpress.com/2015/01/17/3-awesome-apps-for-making-words-phrases-look-really-amazing/

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I will continue to do more of the same for my 2016 project. Experimenting with different lighting and angles, hunting out new Apps with even more different effects, and trying out all sorts of things to make each day’s image original and a little out of the ordinary. Dare I say, quirky, even. (Yikes, my youngest son hates when I use that word!) Yep, it’s purely for my benefit, so anything goes. If something doesn’t work so be it, I’ll just try something else. For me, it’s all about trial and error, sometimes things you think will turn out great simply don’t, and other times you try something expecting it not to look good and the result is amazing. It’s all part of the fun. And a very useful creative learning curve.

Ok, it’ll still be a bit of a headache deciding what to post each day. Last year sometimes I’d leave it a week and then upload a whole 7 days at once! But I truly love the picture diary I have to look back on at the end of the year, so I reckon it’s worth keeping it up if only for that smashing keepsake! But actually it is also such a valuable exercise to keep the ol’ creative juices flowing which I personally find hugely beneficial in my day to day work, helping to keep all my ideas for pictures, both for work and play, as fresh and innovative as possible.

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For those of you who don’t know, I use an App called Photo365 to document my daily pictures. You can find out more about it here http://www.photo365app.com I love it as it’s nice and simple to use and you can see each month of pictures at a glance or scroll through them all on a daily basis for a closer look.

I’d love to hear about any of your photography projects too 🙂