Stand out from the crowd

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] Content. How do you create yours?

Sometimes I feel like everyone's is so similar, there seems to be a winning recipe that people tend to follow to gain the likes / followers. My feed used to be full of the same images all by different people. It was boring. So I had a bit of a spring clean and left myself with only the people who I feel are doing something different and producing images I felt inspired by. They were doing something to put themselves on the map in their own way.  Every now and then I will find a gem of a creator who creates the most beautiful imagery which reflects their personality and style and they always get a follow from me! I love people who experiment and have a bit of art to there imagery. I am drawn to both editorial style imagery and candid snapshots. I think being a photographer helps me to know how much work goes in to something which looks more editorial and adds and extra appreciation to the effort that person has put in to their picture.


I’ve been working with a couple of bloggers recently and feel like we are really upping that content game. Pushing it out of the comfort zone and creating imagery which I hope is inspiring others to do the same. So how are we doing it?


  • Mood boarding - as with any shoot, I like to moodboard. To get an idea of the vibe, look and what we are after, this really helps to set a tone. To think outside the box for what you are creating.


  • Don't just stick a filter on it. I always edit each shoot and sometimes each frame in a way that suits it best. Its crate to get a consistent look tonally to your style but does that filter really look good on every picture?


  • Have fun with it and dont get stuck in a routine - experiment with different angles, different locations, different backgrounds. You must just find something that works even better for you.


  • Look in different places for inspiration. Don't just look at your favourite bloggers for inspiration on what pictures get the most likes. Look in magazines, exhibitions, street art. I have recently created a huge list of where to get inspiration from.. You can find that list here.


  • Use different eras - I doesn't take a genius to notice that film grain and to be honest just film in general is back in fashion. Brands are using it, influencers are shooting it, and everyone is jumping on the bandwagon. Look at different eras to inspire you. Maybe try using a flash for some of your pictures, what about a polaroid camera or just a film camera you've picked up from a car boot.


  • BE YOURSELF -  The most important piece of advice I have. do what works for you, what you like, express your personality and how you are different from others. Concentrate on your individuality and express yo self!!!!  

The main image I have taken for this article was inspired by this image I saw on Pinterest.  I really loved it and as soon as I saw it this post title popped in to my head. At the moment I can’t find a link to the photographer whose work it is so if anything know, please let me know.

I took my own version in about 5 minutes and after some very dodgy looking cutting out I kind of liked the rough look it added to the picture.


I hope you find these tips and ideas helpful. Happy creating! [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

1 Night 7 Stories


Last week I was walking through Manchester with Tom when I got handed a flyer. My usual reaction is to put my hand up in a stop like motion, smile and kindly reject the flyer they are trying to hand me. Who needs more rubbish to carry around with them?


This one however I did, I took it, I looked down and thought ooo that looks interesting. I showed Tom who replied with, “You won’t want to go to that will you?” “YES I WIll!” I replied.




Stories of Success. Of hope. Of Triumph through adversity.


Stories of real local character and their extraordinary lives.


Stories that give Manchester its strength


In my mind I pictured the evening being a very simple event. People sat around round tables while someone spoke to us. Maybe they had recused a cat or done something else which was great for the local community neither the less something made me want to hear what they had to say.


A week later and I was sitting on a stool with SamioOnyi and L'Oreal by my side all facing a presentation board with about 60 other people in the room.

I was blown away by the stories that were told that night. Chris Fisher who had lost his sight one day and managing to overcome his developed disability he now carves beautiful wooden objects and is soon going to learn welding! He spoke of how his craft takes him so much longer then a person with sight but how his care when creating the gorgeous bowls and other objects means that he is actually less likely to make silly mistakes like his sighted peers. He now teaches and is sponsored for his work.


Close your eyes. For a couple of minutes. Just imagine what it is like to loose your sight.


Dom McGregor, the CEO of the company Social Chain was there to, expecting a story about growth and young entrepreneurship, he actually spoke of the troubles he had faced with mental health and the effects of drink. It was interesting to hear his struggles as I’m sure everyone is guilty of thinking “ah they have it all - the perfect life!” when really you do not know what is going on in their life at all, I also thought his honesty was incredibly brave.


The highlight for me was a speaker called Haleh Moravej. Her personality, character and energy was infectious. Her hilarious stories related and stuck with me. She was real, up front about her experiences of being rejected by a job she really wanted and how being told that she couldn't do it or wasn't good enough made her even more determined and ready for success. She was up lifting. She was the kind of person who could take the mick out of herself and with that made you laugh along and want to be her best friend.  This is a women who I know will have made an impact on my life and how I think with her 20 minute story.


Whist listening to the speakers I wrote a few key notes which I want to pass on to you.


  • Tell a story.  Telling your story to people to sell your product, your work, to receive respect and start conversations. Let people know what you are about. It is much more relatable. For example if you were going to buy an orange, there are two oranges in front of you, one just had a name, a price and the location it was from. The other one has a picture and a story about the people who own the orange farm, where it has come from and who picked it. You are much more likely to choose the orange which tells you more of a story as to where that orange is from.


  • Find your tribe. People who follow your work and support you ( not just instagram or social following.) People who take an interest in you and what you do, people who encourage and help you to go further, people who you can chat to, ask questions and feel comfortable with)


  • Have one word which is your word. This would should make people think of you. When they hear that word your face should pop in to there mind. So make sure it’s not a bad one.


  • Believe in what you are doing 100% because if you dont they won't


  • Use humour to make your story come alive. Be able to laugh at yourself, share your fails with humour and let people know all about your highs and lows and your own story.


  • Don’t focus on frustration, see the good things in what you do, no matter how small or big you think they are and give yourself some credit for what you are achieving.


  • If you are you are something then you will become it.  This is very much the way or thinking from the book The Secret which I have mentioned in a previous post. The mind is a powerful thing. If you say your an Art Director, you will become an art director!


  • Don’t wait for something bad to happen . A lot of speakers the stories had a tragedy or something shocking happen which then made them make a change or start doing what they wanted to do or who they wanted to be. ALL of them said the same thing. Don’t wait for something to happen, make sure you are doing it anyway!


Hope you enjoyed those little tips I picked up. The next 7 Stories event is on 30th August, I will see you there!


If you would like to buy tickets you can do so here[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]