People watching in Florida

I love people watching, especially with my camera, but need to be careful and use my ninja-skills when shooting them. I’ve been clocked, totally caught red-handed, a few times but luckily no-one has asked me to stop. Anyway here are some people shots from my holidays. People are great aren’t they?

Miami street 3 lowres
Contemplating the sunset
Miami street 2 lowres
Miami fashion
Miami street 1 lowres
Too much….?!?
Miami street 4 lowres
Searching for treasure
Miami street 5 lowres
Love’s young dream
Miami street 6 lowres
It’s a hard life for some
Miami street 7 lowres
Beach, bar, music…. does life get any better than this?
Miami street 10 lowres
Strolling the boardwalk in Miami
Miami street 9 lowres
Beach Volleyball
Miami street 8 lowres
YMCA anyone?

Miami’s Dual Personalities

First night in Miami we booked to stay in a hotel near the port for the cruise ship. Bad mistake. Downtown Miami was an eyeopener to put it mildly. I mean the hotel was lovely (apart from the glass wall in the bathroom…. nobody wants to see their other half use the toilet, no matter how many years they’ve been together. Or is that just the prudish Britishness in me coming out again?) So after pressing everything that was pressable in the bathroom incase it was one of those glass walls that fog up when you shut the door (it wasn’t) we walked out of our hotel to find a restaurant, a nice cold wine and a Walgreens for emergency snacks and bottles of water. Restaurant found, $19 for a burger and $12 for a glass of wine (whit!) then following my phone directions to find the Walgreens, looking amazingly like a couple of tourists. Especially since I couldn’t stop gawking at everything I passed. Like the drug deal stopping the traffic in the middle of the street. Like the prostitutes running away when the undercover cop car pulls up and puts on it’s flashing lights. Like the guy in a wheelchair puking into a carrier bag in the middle of Walgreens (which we found eventually. Who knows what way is North anyway Siri?!?) Like the elderly woman (105 years old I’d guess) naked under a flimsy see-through dress (again at Walgreens) I guess Walgreens is THE place to be in Miami…

Miami panorama

So after the cruise we were meeting up with my sister and her husband for a couple of days in a hotel at South Beach. What a difference! From the beautiful art-deco hotels, the amazing art-district with all the fabulous graffiti (photos to come) to the gorgeous boardwalk and beach. I loved Miami second time around. I was still people-watching but this time round I wasn’t scared and I even took some street-shots of people. Would I go back? Yes, but not to the downtown area. More Miami stories and cruise-ship stories and pics coming up later peeps.


Photo 101: Nature and leading lines

It’s a Shell – that’s as far as the identification goes I’m afraid!

Thought a lot about this one and how I could incorporate leading lines in a land that’s as flat as Illinois. I went and stared at some trees for a while (yep, I am that nutter) then looked around at the bare earth and uninspiring outdoors and was stumped. Eventually I had an idea and went round to mum’s house and stole a couple of her shells. She’s not in town at the moment so she won’t miss them…. unfortunately she’s not getting them back either as the dog thought they’d make a tasty snack and ran off with them!!! Bl**dy dog!

So this is my nature shot with leading lines. Take me to the beach now please….

Photo 101: Bliss

Ahhh, what sounds blissful right about now…. how about a hammock, a good book, a cool drink and a beach? Well much as I’d love to fly off to a beachey somewhere, all for the sake of keeping it authentic for Photo 101….. unfortunately it’s just not possible.

So next best thing, I pulled up a photograph of a beach on my PC, placed a chocolate Bounty bar in front of the monitor and started snapping….. didn’t really work out too well. You can’t tell it’s a beach, even when I adjusted the F-stop higher it still wasn’t working like I though it would. Oh well, at least I got to blissfully eat the Bounty….

Blissful Bounty Bar


The Beach
The Beach

Now that I have half an empty nest it’s time to do more stuff with my other half (husband, not nest) so we’re off to Florida on Thursday for an extended long weekend at my sisters. The big decision is do I take my full camera kit or just my compact? I love it when that’s the hardest decision I have to make – eldest kid is still living at home so she will take care of the house & dog. Ahh, the beach is calling my name…

Just hope I don’t have an encounter with someone in the Beach-shop like the last time I was down there, which went along the lines of…

Him: Excuse me, can I ask you something?

Me: Sure.

Him: I’m trying to buy a T-shirt for my sister-in-law and she’s about your size. Would you say you were a Large, Extra Large or a 2XL?

Me (Flabbergasted and not sure if he’s winding me up or not): Emm, well…

Him: I’ve been trying for ages to figure it out and I don’t have a clue. Please, what do you think?

Me: Well maybe you’d better just get large incase YOU OFFEND HER BY BUYING A 2XL!!!

Him: Thanks so much, you’ve been a great help.

Me: “Speechless” then laughing.

I attract nutters wherever I go….

Photography 101: Solitude

Mairi beach2 lowres

Perfect Solitude – an empty beach on a lovely summer’s day.

What would make it even more perfect is a hammock, a good book, a cockytail and a Cabana Boy.  (What is a Cabana Boy anyway? I’m not sure, but I think I want one!)

Posing guide 101 for photography newbies

I thought I’d share my knowledge of posing models on a photography shoot in a new Posing guide 101 blog.

Step 1 – act natural

Act natural
Act natural

Step 2 – smile nicely for the camera (like a wide-mouthed frog is good!)

Say cheese (or frog - whatever works for you)
Say cheese (or frog – whatever works for you)

Step 3 – share the camera equally with your co-model

Don't hog the camera
Don’t hog the camera

Step 4 – act out your favourite scene from a movie

I could have been in movies ye ken!
I could have been in movies ye ken!