Saturday, 17 May 2014

Vacation Apr/May 2014: The lakes, Llandudno and cruising the Med

With less than a week to go before I return to ship (and this blog goes very quiet again!) I have a lot of pictures to share with you. And there's many more on my Flickr account.

The first highlight of my vacation was Chatsworth, a stately home near where I live and where I was taken on a family day out! So I grabbed these panoramic views.



Next up, more family trips, we went to Glenridding in the Lake District for the Easter weekend.

This is the view from my aunt's cottage


And this is looking back at the cottage from the water


The highlight of Easter weekend in Glenridding is the (rubber) duck race raising money for the local rescue services.


Next stop, 2 nights in a really lovely hotel in Llandudno, Wales, a seaside peninsula with a national park called the Orme at the furthest point where I took these photos.




I love how kind of 'England's green and pleasant land' these pictures all look but it's nice to come home and enjoy the places on your doorstep.

However the biggest trip of this vacation involved visiting my amazing friend Kirsty who invited me to cruise onboard the Adventure of the Seas from Southampton and I got off in Nice to spend two nights before coming home ready to return to work!

First stop on my mini cruise was Cadiz, Spain so here's me and Kirsty:


And then actually we got to meet up with people on Liberty of the Seas too who were sort of following our route so this next picture is very important to me as Rich, Kirsty and me first met 4 years ago on Navigator of the Seas!


Next stop Barcelona on an unfortunately cold and miserable day! We went up to the Gaudi park for these views.




And then we arrived in Villefranche


A beautiful little fishing village that now frequently hosts cruise ships, Kirsty accompanied me to the station where I took this panoramic which is quickly becoming one of my all time favourites because of the clarity of the sea bed.


Once checked into my hotel in Nice I hit the streets with my guide book and I really fell in love with this city! It has a waterfront 8km long with incredible hotels running along it.


Then a new town area of grand spaces.



This beautiful new park divides the new and the old town


The old town has small winding streets, flower markets, baroque churches...




Once I finished my afternoon explore I was greeted with the largest moon I've seen in a long time and dramatic skies!



Day 2 in nice I had pre booked myself a tour to Monaco however the first place we stopped was a higher view of Villefranche and this time Liberty was anchored meaning I could get this image!


Then we stopped at the cliff top medieval village of Eze


With it's exclusive hotel taking all the best views!


And then infamous Monaco



With Grace Kelly's grave



And the race track currently being built (the box on the left is where the Monaco Royal family view the race)


In the afternoon I took a little train up to Castle Hill to get this view of Nice


I love how you can see the snow capped Alps in the distance


Sorry for the extremely long post! I'm really happy with my pictures though, keeping my photography in practice!! To finish, Nice as view from the plane as I sadly left...


Until next time :)

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Family Photoshoot: Lilly with Sarah, Paul and Bump!

I've photographed my friend's little girl Lilly before but she was only 6 months old, now she's 2 and a half and Mum's pregnant again so this is a catch up photoshoot!

Being only 2 and half Lilly's patience for posing is short so, as I always try to do, I keep changing set ups to keep the interest and get a many different looking photos as possible.

So here we go starting with a chair against a plain wall in the home. I know I'm starting to repeat the look of my images but they work when trying to get a clean and realistic image of children.

Cheeky little face! Onto the beanbag but unfortunately Lilly is a little young to master the girly leaning on hands etc poses!

A bit abstract but I love this next one with her toy duck.

And then bring in Sarah and Paul (and bump but generally I'm not showing Sarah's pregnancy in these pictures)

Moving outside gives me a chance for a little more posing and a change in style before Lilly really won't pose anymore!

I really love the feel of this next image!

And then we let Lilly roam in her garden to get a few more natural shots.

Next time the family will be four and I'm sure I'll get a chance to take some great photos!

My few weeks back in England are almost over, I will be sharing some of the landscapes I've been photographing before I go but then possibly expect a another few blog free months I guess...