Archive of ‘photos’ category

Photo an Hour #32 ~ March 2016

It’s time to jump back aboard the blog train; I’ve been having some major connection issues just lately, but I hope they are all sorted now, so I’m hoping to get back to something resembling a bit more of a schedule. I was hoping to join in with Blog Every Day in May again, and I still might, even though I’ve missed the first week!

But now, it’s time to catch up with my Photo an Hour posts – I have two to post, because I’m so behind! This is from March, from Easter Sunday (which feels so long ago now!), when I went out to London with Hannah for her birthday.

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9am ~ Awake to some sunshine (which didn’t last long), streaming in through the windows that still don’t have curtains. I really must get that sorted!

10am ~ Breakfast of champions. Also the breakfast of someone who a) doesn’t mind spending the odd 99p on one bowl of cereal, and b) isn’t (but probably should be) overly concerned about their sugar intake.

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11pm ~ Creating a Spotify playlist for the car journey. Nothing too cool on there, but all stuff I love.

12pm ~ In the car, on the way to the tube station that we drive to, and the rain started. And it had looked so promising first thing!

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1pm ~ As we made our way over Millennium  Bridge, the heavens really opened, but it was one of those weird showers that only hits you from one side. So the entire left side of my body was drenched, but the right side was dry!

2pm ~ Into the BFI Southbank for the film…

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4pm ~ …meaning I missed an hour. But when we came out, the sun was shining again, allowing me to snap another photo across the river.

5pm ~ We went into Zizzi’s for something to eat, as Hannah was keen to try the vegan pizza – they are actually doing a cheesy pizza that is suitable for vegans! This photo is my pizza, not vegan, nor vegetarian, but very tasty all the same (and Hannah loved her vegan pizza).

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6pm ~ We walked a little way up to Westminster, to walk off some pizza, and jump on the tube. I couldn’t resist, because I never can, snapping a photo of Big Ben.

7pm ~ Back in the car at the tube station, and looking a bit bedraggled after a day of wind and rain!

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8pm ~ On the way home, and guess what? More rain!

9pm ~ Finally home, in front of the fire, and we started watching The Night Manager. I think this was the day that the final episode aired, so we were about six weeks behind! We’ve finished watching it now though, and, as predicted, I thought it was amazing.

Even though I’m a bit late in rounding things up for March, I still wanted to give a shout out to everyone who joined in, and there were lots of us again!

♥ Rebecca from Sullen Hearts joined in on Instagram
♥ Susie from Second Hand Susie joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Vikki joined in on Instagram
♥ Rachael from MI Avenues joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Laura joined in on Instagram
♥ Rebecca joined in on Instagram
♥ Louisa from Duck in a Dress joined in on Instagram
♥ Amy joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Karen from Tiny Bird Heart joined in on Instagram
♥ Charlotte from Discovering Charlotte joined in on Instagram
♥ Sharon from Sunshine and Celandines joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Rebecca from Halfway Home joined in on Instagram
♥ Amey from Teacups and Button Drops joined in on Instagram
♥ Liz from Distract Me Now Please joined in on Instagram
♥ Sarah from Sarah Rooftops joined in on Instagram
♥ Kerri from Life as Unusuals joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Martina joined in on Instagram

I still have my April post to write, but in the meantime, if you’d like to join in with May’s Photo an Hour, it will be on 21st May (when I will be working all day, but I will try to join in!). I always send out a reminder by email a couple of days beforehand, if you would like to receive this, just leave your details here, and I’ll add you to the list.

Photo an Hour #31 ~ February 2016

Taking just a week to post February’s Photo an Hour is such a vast improvement on last month, I feel proud of myself!

My day was pretty uneventful, though Hannah and I did go to see a flat/bungalow/cottage that we thought might be suitable to move into, and now, a week later, we’re pretty much all set to move in! Until things are completely finalised I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed, but in the meantime, I absolutely should be packing rather than writing this blog post…

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9am | In bed, watching videos. I get quickly sucked into pages like Proper Tasty! I’m planning on making these Sweet and Salty Pretzel Cakes at some point.

10am | I had picked up some library books on the day before, and I cracked open Disclaimer by Renee Knight. I’ve since finished it, and I enjoyed it a lot.

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11am | Only the most interesting photos for you, Photo an Hour followers! It’s a washing up photo, and not even a particularly good one.

12pm | Taking photos in the care nearly always end up with me taking a photo of myself in the wing mirror. Not this time! I added in my watch for some added interest.

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1pm | My December Photo an Hour included a coffee with Hannah and her Nanna, and the February one did too! I had cream on my hot chocolate, which I absolutely did not need.

2pm | One of two Morrisons that we visited, primarily looking for boxes we could use for packing (their banana boxes are perfect), but we also checked out the meat-free range for Hannah while we were there.

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3pm | Hannah’s car has a delighted face built into the dashboard.

4pm | Another highly interesting photo! Some time at the laundrette, as our tumble drier is malfunctioning, and drying clothes inside is my least favourite thing.

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5pm | This turned into a three-supermarket day, as I had to pick up some bits in Sainsbury’s.

6pm | Finally home, under a duvet, watching Pride. I was so happy with life at this point.

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7pm | Still under the duvet, still watching Pride, but now drinking tea.

8pm | I made this my final photo, because otherwise it just would have become me under a duvet watching telly for the next few hours! Jaws was a good choice, but I have to fast forward the bit where Quint drags his fingers down the blackboard.

So as you can see, not a very exciting day! But I like Saturdays where I don’t do much, especially if I’ve had a few in a row where I’ve been especially busy.

Louisa will be rounding up the February Photo an Hour, so head over to Duck in a Dress to check that out. If you’d like to be added to the reminder list, I send out an email a couple of days before each month’s specified day, so sign up here to receive it.

Photo an Hour #30 ~ January 2016

I have to start this post with an apology; it’s taken me far too long to get this post written! I’ve had a few people ask when February’s Photo an Hour will be, so I’ll tell you up front that it will be Saturday 20th February.

January’s Photo an Hour was quite some time back, and it fell on the day I flew to Iceland (that blog post is also somewhat delayed), which meant that I faltered somewhat as the day went on! Not all of them ended up being uploaded to Instagram, and I stopped taking photos at four o’clock.

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9am ~ Starting the day with some breakfast for a change.

10am ~ Packing my winter warmers.

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11am ~ En route to the airport. Ludicrously early, of course, but Hannah and I are naturally early for everything, and then Hannah’s granddad, our lift to the airport, also turned up early!

12pm ~ Almost there!

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1pm ~ With time to kill, a spot of lunch in Garfunkels was just the thing, complete with strawberry milkshake.

2pm ~ Still waiting!

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3pm ~ Almost ready to board.

4pm ~ Up in the air.


5pm ~ Still on the plane, and entertaining myself the best way I know how. With Wittertainment.

As you can see, poor planning means that I took an odd number of photos, which is just hideous! Deplaning and the like then took priority, and I didn’t take any more photos that were actually part of Photo an Hour, though of course I did take lots of photos in general, that I will share at some point!

It’s been a while, but of course, there were plenty of joiners-in as ever.

♥ Annie from Halfway Here joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Susie from Second Hand Susie joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Janet from Words That Can Only Be Your Own joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Elise from Elise and Life joined in on her blog
♥ Laura joined in on Instagram
♥ Rachael from MI Avenues joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Liz from Distract Me Now Please joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Rebecca from Halfway Home joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Louisa from Duck in a Dress joined in on Instagram
♥ Amy from Fluffy Owl’s Adventures joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Rebecca from Sullen Hearts joined in on Instagram
♥ Lizzie from Home Make Be joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Sharon from Sunshines and Celandines joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Kerri from Life as Unusuals joined in on Instagram and on her blog
♥ Rachel from Things That Make Me Go Aagghh joined in on her blog
♥ Emma from Oh Gosh Em joined in on Instagram
♥ Sarah from Sarah Rooftops joined in on Instagram

Thanks to everyone for joining in; it’s always a lot of fun to see other people’s days! If I have missed anyone out, please let me know, and I’ll add you in!

If you’ve seen #PhotoAnHour doing the rounds and wondered what it’s about, it’s simple! Simply join in on the chosen day (Saturday 20th February this month), by taking a photo each and every hour, and either uploading it to Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag, or gathering all the photos together and popping them in a blog post (or do both!). Of course, you don’t have to join in on the day we choose; we didn’t invent, and we don’t own Photo an Hour. But it’s fun to do it as a group! If you’d like a reminder each month a day or two before the chosen date, just sign up here, and I’ll send a regular reminder.

Photo an Hour #29 ~ December 2015

Wow, Christmas really got in the way of this post! It’s almost time for the January Photo an Hour, and I’m only just updating December.

The day that I picked for last month was the last Saturday before Christmas, and turned out to be the day of our Christmas party at work. We went along to a dinner and disco that was 80s themed, and though I didn’t want to go all out 80s, I did end up with big-ish hair, bright-ish eye shadow, lace gloves and legwarmers. As a result of a party, this month’s Photo an Hour has a lot more people in it than usual, as usually I’m just sitting on the sofa working out five different ways to take a photo of a television!


9am ~ A fairly late start, because when it’s going to be a long day of getting ready, the last thing you want to do is leap out of bed at 7am! So I lounged in bed for a while, reading my book.

10am ~ My bedroom is constantly a mess, and Christmas didn’t help, with presents and bags everywhere. So I was attempting to tidy up just slightly.


11am ~ A trip to the Post Office to collect a parcel, which turned out to be my Thrifty Christmas Swap!

12pm ~ Off out in the car.


1pm ~ A festive drink in Costa with Hannah and her Nanna. This was the Fudge Hot Chocolate, if I remember rightly. I seem to remember it being just a little too sickly for my liking, even if it did look pretty.

2pm ~ Back home, and setting things up for that evening. We had most of the office over to ours for a drink before we got cabs to the party.


3pm ~ Doing something/anything with my hair takes quite a lot of work, and at this stage I still didn’t really have any idea what I wanted to do with it!

4pm ~ My friend Laura arrived to get ready, and she brought with her Snowballs, because Hannah and I had never tried them. I can’t say that they are my favourite drinks ever!


5pm ~ This is where the face photos start! We had to leave at about 6.15, so of course, by 5pm, I was ready to leave. I’m nothing if not eternally early.

6pm ~ Me and my friend Lucy. I have just realised that she is pouting in this photo, so I’m obviously going to have to have serious words with her (SAY NO TO POUTING)

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7pm ~ By this time, following a slightly snafu with the taxis, we were at the venue, and dismayed to find that not that many people appeared to be dressed up!

8pm ~ And by this time, the wine had started to flow. I didn’t actually end up drinking that much, by design, because I don’t really like myself drunk that much, and I have been known to go very overboard at such events. I didn’t drink anything other than the wine on the table, and not that much of that.


9pm ~ Tom and I sat next to each other, and he was dressed in an amazing retro cream suit that he’d raided from his dad’s wardrobe.

10pm ~ When it came to my 10 o’clock photo, Tom thought it would be a good idea to simply recreate the nine o’clock photo, and I was just about tipsy enough to go along with it.


11pm ~ Laura was most put out that I used up two hours on Tom, so she muscled in on my 11 o’clock photo.

11pm ~ This is a total cheat, because it’s actually another 11 o’clock photo. Again, I was just about tipsy enough to be all “I don’t want to have to take another photo in an hour to get to an even  number!” So (another) Laura and I did this, so we had a photo of each other.

A slightly different type of Photo an Hour this month then, which is nice! Louisa has long since rounded up the December offerings from the gang, and set a date for January, which is next weekend! Saturday 16th January will see me flying to Reykjavik, so chances of me being able to upload on the hour are less than good, but I’ll certainly give it a go. And if I can’t, there will be a prompt blog post to follow, for sure!

Don’t forget, if you’d like a timely reminder that Photo an Hour is approaching, you can sign up here, and I’ll send you an email.

Lights Camera Currys: Food Photography with Nikon

As the daughter of a professional photographer, I wish I could say I was a little better with the visual side of blogging. Sadly, I’m not; I snap a quick photo on my phone or on a basic point-and-shoot camera, and move on. But I do want to be better, so when I was invited along to the Nikon School of Photography for a class on food photography, I was thrilled. Even my dad says how difficult food photography can be to get right, and he’s been wielding a camera for over forty years.

I have featured food on Is That You Darling before, but always with the caveat that the photography isn’t great. Getting the chance to learn from some experts (and to play with a nice expensive camera) wasn’t one I was going to let pass, and so I headed to Margaret Street for the evening a couple of weeks ago.

Now, I learnt some great stuff, and I had a lot of fun, but the first thing of note that I simply have to share is this fact: I ate my first ever macaron at this event. I know you’re wondering how I’ve been masquerading as a blogger for all this time without getting one of the most fundamental blogger basics under my belt, but it’s true. And I wasn’t disappointed. I now understand why everyone raves about them. Thanks to Nikon, Currys and Joe Blogs for helping me pop my macaron cherry!


As you may be able to tell; this photo was snapped before we started to learn anything, with my phone, in the low light. Hopefully you’ll be able to notice a difference with the later photos!

We were taken through the basics by a fabulous member of the Nikon team, who thankfully didn’t assume that any of us were experts. I was given the loan of a Nikon D750 to use for the evening, as I don’t have a DLSR to call my own. It’s a very nice camera that felt fabulous in my hands; it’s easy to feel like you know what you’re doing when you’re holding expensive equipment!





Some tips I learnt from the class:

  • Cameras basically just want to let as much light in as possible, so if you are using your camera in automatic mode, that’s what it’s going to do, at the expense of some of the other settings that will actually allow you some control over the way your photos look.
  • Your shutter speed is the amount of time that the shutter is open for; when it comes to food, if not using a tripod, it needs to be at a minimum of 1/60 to avoid that shaky, unwanted blur.
  • Changing your aperture setting will allow you to play with your depth of field. This basically means that you can choose to focus on one specific part of the frame, and leave the rest of the image blurred – this is a shallow depth of field, achieved with a low aperture. This is good for food photography, because you can focus on the one thing you want to show off, and leave the rest blurred.
  • When working with artificial lighting, adjusting your white balance is really important, and will make all the difference with your photography. Our teacher was explaining this to various members of the group, and I eavesdropped enough to just about work out how to do it, but I think if I’d had the nerve to actually ask for advice, I could have taken some much better pictures. My inherent shyness got in the way yet again!

Having been given all of the information, it was time to get down to business, and we were encouraged to wander around the room and take photos of various fruit vegetables set up under some lights.




These two photos are a good example of changing the white balance. While I don’t think the second photo is a great one, by any stretch, changing the white balance really shows, making the white surface actually appear white.




These peppers became an obsession for me; I really wanted to try and get some good photos of them! I think I managed a couple, as shown here. They are definitely better than anything I could have achieved before I went to the class.

There is still much to learn, and until I have saved enough to buy myself a nice DSLR, it will have to be on borrowed cameras. But it’s nice to have a basic knowledge of how these settings work, so at least when I’m changing them, I know why!

Thanks again to Joe Blogs for inviting me along (they really do put on some amazing events), and to Currys and Nikon for arranging such an enlightening lesson (and for providing me with the chance to eat my first macaron). You can read some more about the evening on the Currys blog, and check out #lightscameracurrys on Instagram for more photos from the other bloggers I was too shy to chat to!

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