Thursday, 31 January 2013

The end of January

Well here we are the final day of January and we have had quite a month,  snow, rain a bit more snow - lots more rain and ooh about 3 days of "nice" weather! I haven't had much chance to get out and about with the camera as there always seems to be something else that needs to be done or the weather is against me!

Still we have had a good month on the whole, our youngest had a concert in which she performed one of my favourite songs "With or Without You" she has normally sung this as a solo but this time 2 of her friends added to it with their vocals, it's always a pleasure watching talented youngsters!

 Ma Smith had her birthday celebrations (a day late) with us and we enjoyed a lovely meal and very nice Hairy Dieters Skinny lemon cupcakes with drizzly icing as a birthday cake which I can safely say went down an absolute storm!
The cakes........ah yes and Birthday Girl!

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Happy Birthday - saying it with Cupcakes

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Skinny Birthday Cup Cakes

I think in a previous blog I mentioned that I have yet another hugely talented friend who makes the most beautiful pottery - I asked her if it would be possible to commission a couple of her pieces for MiL and although she went through freezing conditions in her studio, had kiln troubles (enforced powercut!) she made it through, the plate and jug were noticed at the Christmas market with Holly leaves - I sense more presents with this collection ;) Thank you to Linda!
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Commissioned Jug and Dipping Plate from Les Céramiques de Linda

I haven't been blogging very long but I had a lovely surprise last week, I had been mentioned in another blog - that of French Village Diaries who honoured me with the "Versatile Blogger Award" needless to say I am thrilled by this and will make a concerted effort to pass it on.....Thank you JB :)

And now for more exciting news on the work front.....I have 3 bookings all taken this week, one is next Monday a commercial shoot of Hair Care products which I have to say I am really looking forward to as there is nothing quite like the client saying I can pretty much do what I want to do with the set up that will be something really to get my teeth into (and lens of course!).

I have a lovely family who want a portrait session coming up in the Half Term Holidays which again I cannot wait to do as there is one very precious baby included!

And yesterday whilst leaving a collection of Unique PhotoCards at a new shop opening near us Chez Tante Mabel run by Bev and Paul - (doors open on Monday 4th February) whilst there they asked if I would be their Photographer at their Wedding Blessing in August - totally - will I? I love a wedding - I am now looking forward to sharing a cuppa with Bev and talking weddings, flowers and photos!

Tuesday we also had an enforced power cut - which meant I had to do housework the old fashioned way, sweeping with a broom and mopping and it is not fun when it's dark and cold I can tell you! We had hoped it would be just the morning but no they needed another 3 hours in the afternoon as well - so we decided to do that much needed recycling and maybe see what the sales had to offer - well the former was done no problem even Scooby came out with us to help with said task -
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Car? Now? Yes??

and he does love the car, being as it was dark and radioless, he came along for the ride - could you resist that face? Although he does stay in the car whilst we are in the shops - we always have a giggle when you see little dogs in the Supermarkets (only en France) but we noticed that Leclerc now do not allow dogs at all except guide dogs! Laws a changing then!?

Well we are off to another Concert tonight this time held at Poitiers in conjunction with the FAC Musico and 3 Lycée's including youngest daughter's class - she will have spent the day with her elder sister - which is great for them as they are pretty passionate about music...tonight we have snuck in (standing room only) so camera is charging!

Hopefully the weather will now brighten up a bit as we have a weekend off and it would be lovely to get out for a day or even both days! Daughters are spending more time together and we are redundant - so it's a swim and probably the boring jobs that we don't like doing but need to be done!

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

First Snow of the Year 16th January '13

Well it's here the snow they have been promising it started about 6am and continued through most of the morning with a good covering on the trees and ground!

Great thinks I, camera charged and ready to go we can go out this afternoon - but no the lovely white crispy snow is now more like slush and the temperatures are dropping (in some areas tonight -10!) so I will be happy with the few photos that the garden gave me this morning.

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Snow capped

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Chinese Lantern 

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Garden in White

The dog is always bemused by snow and I am not sure that it is really right to sit down in it and just start cleaning or am I missing something?

We have more snow threatened for Friday and lots of it apparently, it is pretty and I do love it - when there is nothing that needs doing or when a daughter doesn't want to come home for the weekend, or youngest not wanting to go and look at the Universities.

I enjoyed the snow last year for about 2 days and then after that it was just annoying - I had taken the photos I wanted luckily as the roads around became treacherous and after a lovely 2 and half hour walk to our town and back in the biting wind and freezing conditions a hot chocolate and Brandy was thoroughly welcomed - well it would have been had we Brandy in the house!

Now I await the freeze and maybe then the sun will come back to us and cheer everyone up! Here's some colourful images for you in the meantime :)

Rosehips in the snow... I have been told look like "Peppermint Mash" although I don't know what that looks like but imagine very red and white!
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Red Rose hips in White

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Snowy Peg

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Snow, snow and more snow!

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Ice Drop

How have you spent your day? Are you having to snuggle up in a blanket and watch all that daytime TV or have you been on mammoth walk? I certainly thought about it after lunch but then remember La Chasse was out today - not a good idea when Scooby doesn't really like guns banging! Have a good day/evening and stay warm and safe if you are in the snowy areas!

You can also see more photos on my Facebook Page and my "Life through the Lens"  PamelaJayne Photography you don't have to like the page but just drop by and say "hello" but if you do want to like me then that's fab!

Thursday, 10 January 2013

10th January 2nd blog looking back to the highlights of 2012

OK so now I promised myself I would not blog everyday! But when I went to bed last night, I started thinking I should have really started this blog last year! Well I am sure in this world of Blogging there is nothing to stop me back tracking and bringing everything up to date!? Is there a protocol on this? Well either way I am doing it!

I had such a lovely year last year -I enjoyed the Summer Markets but especially in Aigré a lovely little town just on the borders of the Deux-Sevrès and the Charente. It is only once a month but each month just got better and better, when you are selling to the French you know you have got something right, the game that is played the most with the photo-cards and Photographic Prints is "where is this" a great barrier breaker! We have enjoyed summer under our lovely pop up gazebo and I have made some really good friends by spending the weekend with them side by side. The photos were taken in July possibly the funniest morning we have had, not only did the singing Troubadour regale us with his ditties all morning but we met soon to be Groom on a day out with his friends - collecting money and gifts from us and ending up in the fountain!

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The Troubadour's ride

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Soon to be Groom (in the middle!)

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I love thee oh Godess of the Fountain!

Friendships are found in many forms but by spending time with some families whilst "working" has been one of the highlights! 45 degrees heat and 7 youngsters aux lacs, they were lucky as they spent most of their time in the water but we had a such a great day it was hard to believe it was work! And the fact that they were in their Christmas outfits singing jingle bells did get us a few stares!

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Hey! it's Christmas (in August!!)

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I am an Angel not Santa!!

We were also lucky enough to play a huge part in our French Friends wedding - we have been friends with them since they bought our horse 4 years ago, and when they said they would like me to take the photos I was thrilled, this then led to music played for them by Rob and Chloe, and babysitting until the wee small hours by Chloe and Naomi! The day was perfect for them - and all topped off with a ride in a Horse and Carriage which was arranged for them as a surprise by their friends!

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Just Married
 on the Balcony of the Mairie
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To a New Life!
The Horse and Carriage ride as Mr and Mrs!
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French Wedding Style

Enjoying the company after a long, hot but memorable day! (little did I know I was going to blend with the colour theme!)

We were out every weekend during the Summer months and I then had a  few weeks off in preparation of Christmas, again last year was my first time out to more than just 2 markets that I have been at previously! We have stood in some cold places including the weekend I had laryngitis and bronchitis no it wasn't "man flu" it was definitely "bird flu" but boy did I find a great combo for getting me through that weekend and it included "Vin Chaud" and a couple of paracetamols!

l'Abbaye Nanteuil-en-Vallée for the weekend and right opposite the door! but had the great fortune to be with a lovely couple Maude and Nico - Maude is a young and very talented Florist, she has a lovely shop in Verteuil L'Atelier Vert during the weekend we had a great time with them and now also have my "collections des fleures" photo-cards in her shop!
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Christmas at Nanteuil-en-Vallée
 This pottery is made by another good friend who is so talented! Her first Christmas Market but I am sure not her last!
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Les Céramiques de Linda

Making Calendars was the top of the list for Christmas with orders coming in far and wide - from personalised images of the summer photo shoots to personalised Poitou Charentes images, the best of both worlds as my customers chose the images they loved and had them mounted on their calendar and then could send out to friends and family! It was a challenge that I embraced....
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Calendars for 2013

just wish I could have shaken of the bloomin' bird flu though! I was at this time 4 weeks in to fluffy head and zonked on meds!

Anyway this year started with a l sale on Redbubble Feed Minnie sold as a greetings card, it's always a great joy to sell on sites such as RB or Zazzle ! I am  a fan still of Redbubble and as I am host in 3 groups there is always something to do! Although I admit that my co-hosts are amazingly supportive and I couldn't cope without them! Redbubble is a good place for meeting photographers as well and one of my Cyber Friends Karen Betts is a great co-host but also a friend to me sending us lovely little parcels just out of pure kindness - we always look forward to Christmas! It's always lovely to sit and look through the amazing artwork on RB and being a host the honour of selecting Features in the groups - this has to be my favourite time of the week/month, browsing the many talents! For example today I have featured in 2 of the groups I host The Naturally Black and White Group  and the Compact Group - the latter group was started about 4 years ago when compact camera users were more often than not competing with DSLR's so this group was born! It is time consuming but to see what other camera work is out there and of course to see the latest must try outs is always worthwhile! Although there are still certain types of Photography that I haven't had suitable chance to get my head into HDR being one!

I posted a book on my PamelaJayne Photography Page - sharing it for my friends sister but also because I would like to own it to try out some of the ideas shown, I am now that much nearer to reading it due to the kindness of a friend who bought it for me! It looks great and I can't wait to try it out Photocrafty 75 Creative Camera Projects for you and your digital slr

And one last thing I am trying not to get addicted to is Pinterest again so many things to see and enjoy it's hard not to browse away with a good cup of tea!

Well this weekend sees our 2nd Christmas with my in-laws coming for dinner - so rather than have eat another turkey and all the trimmings we have opted for a lovely Tajine - this is one made on New Years Day - we know how to live!
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Christmas Dinner partie deux

I am really looking forward to sinking my teeth into new project this year - there are quite a few ideas in the pipeline, so hopefully the year will be full of markets, friends and enjoying what I love to do the most - "Life through the Lens".

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It's raining again...

My Images Do Not Belong To The Public Domain. All images are copyright © PamelaJayne Smith. All Rights Reserved. Copying, altering, displaying or redistribution of any of these images without written permission is prohibited. If you are interested in using any image for any of the above uses, please do not hesitate to contact me
Mes images n’appartiennent pas au domaine public. Toutes les images ont un copyright © pamelajayne Smith. Tous les droits sont réservés. Copie, modification, affichage ou la redistribution d'une de ces images sans autorisation écrite est interdite. Si vous voulez  utiliser n'importe quelle image pour l'un des usages ci-dessus, s'il vous plaît n’hésitez pas a me contacter.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

January 2013

Well here we are in January 2013, many people have said that a blog is a great thing to have and that I really should give it a go! So here I am, willing to try and keep up some sort of blog! I think it will be easier this time of year as life quietens down somewhat! 

During the week in the winter months it's more about keeping my website and Facebook page running smoothly and creating new ideas for this years Photo Cards and Prints that I sell at the Summer-Christmas Markets! I suppose if I was that organised this years collection would be on the way to being made!

So I am going in with the attitude that there will be days less busy in Summer where I can update this blog and hopefully not bore the pants off everyone with my daily/weekly musings (of which there can be many!) 

I have quite a few friends that blog and do it very well so I shall probably be calling on one of the more experienced one that is also a friend of mine - I read her blogs with interest and wonder how she fits so much in to life!!

Back to the wonderful world of Photography - well it's a bit dull and grey out today - and unfortunately due to "La Chasse" getting out for walks are few and far between, which means I get cabin fever! We do get some lovely winter days here though and everyone at this time is talking of the imminent arrival of snow!! Yes it's great and pretty for photos - but not so nice when it's slushy and icy - brrrrr sends shivers down my spine! I like a good frost it's pretty but doesn't last quite as long and you still get some extremely pretty photos! 

15th January 2011 around the garden at chez nous
Icy Lantern

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Winter Chinese Lanterns

I do love taking photos of flowers and plants in all seasons but what I really love is going out with camera and just capturing moments that will be forever remembered! Maybe a bird in flight, or one of our daughters laughing or both being silly (that is often) or the lovely Rob pulling one of his faces all of these memories are there now!

Last summer I had a fabulous day out with 3 lovely ladies with their children capturing moments that now hang on their walls or those of their family!

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You want me to pose?
I am passionate about photography and love sharing - so I hope you enjoy what you see either on my blog or indeed my Facebook Page and Website.