Last October I was asked to produce a short promotional video for a client, which involved flying me out to Berlin, Germany. Of course I jumped at the opportunity! Truth is not only had I never had a chance to go to Berlin before, but I also grew up in various places around Germany when my family was posted there (back in the 90's). So I really felt like I should take the chance to go while I could.

With my camera gear on my back, a suitcase with very minimal clothing plus some extra gear, I flew from Stansted airport and arrived in Germany quite late in the evening, which didn't exactly help trying to find the apartment I was staying at. Eventually I found it and my first thought was how exquisite the interior was. I took some time to take in the unique and rather satisfying architecture before I unpacked what I needed then I went to sleep.

My first full day in Berlin was to film at the offices of the client whom I was working for. I literally stayed within the office, got some food from a Chinese restaurant (of all places) with some of the team I was filming. Continued to film some more before going back to the apartment. It wasn't until my second day being there that I got to really explore Berlin. Not nearly enough to discover it's awe inspiring potential but I'd say I saw enough considering I was only there for three and a half days. So on this Saturday I packed the camera gear I needed and braved the cold early morning air. This was around 8, maybe 9am, in mid-late October so it was really starting to get cold everywhere. But soon as I started walking with a couple pounds of gear of my back, including a couple cameras and a tripod, I eventually got a lot warmer. Maybe too warm but I'd stop occasionally so it really wasn't that bad.

I literally walked all over Berlin that day and some of the stops included the Berlin Wall, the TV Tower, Neptunes' Fountain, the Brandenburg Gate as well as some other places I can't really recall the names of. Even though I was filming throughout the day, I did get to take some photos. My favourite has to be from the Berlin Wall.

After spending the day just pretty much getting lost in Berlin I know for a fact I have to go again some time in the future. Just to actually take my time and see more than what I got to before. My primary goal really was only to film and capture what I needed for the video I was producing. I got back the apartment, backed up all the footage I took. Packed everything ready for my flight the next day and slept lots after facetiming my girlfriend. Woke up early again to have a quick coffee (there was no tea!) got dressed, found my way to the train station and manically checked my documents while on the train that I was heading to the right airport! Thankfully I was. Had a safe, chilled flight back to England and I had a new appreciation for how good it was to be back somewhere and could recognise everything.

It was an awesome experience and I hope to go back there one day. If not for the sights then definitely the currywurst!

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So, I'm flying to Italy in just a weeks time! First and foremost it's a trip to spend some time away with my girlfriend and I actually cannot wait. But I'm also excited for all the photo opportunities I'm going to have! And being the passionate 'photographer', 'photo-snapper', 'photo-nerd' (whatever) that I am, I've gotten some cool new photo related trinkets to keep all my gear neatly packed away whilst traveling. It's evident that any photo enthusiast will never be happy with any amount of gear that they have, so we have to accumulate more!

First, I got for my birthday last month the Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack Large. This bag is a tank and can carry a ton of gear. It's impressive to say the least and having it makes me want to travel more with it. It's designed so that you can bring it from your back to your front, unzip the bottom and pull out the camera you've packed inside ready to shoot. I love it! Fits my 15" Macbook Pro nicely and a couple other accessories in the top & side compartments, swish!

Next up, Think Tank DSLR Battery Holder & Think Tank SD Pixel Pocket Rocket. Two neat little pouches that keep my camera batteries and my SD cards together safely. Not the most exciting of gear but something every self confessed 'photo nerd' will want. The battery holder holds up to 4 batteries while the Pixel Pocket Rocket holds up to 9 SD cards. Seeing how small and easy to lose SD cards are it really is a must have!

Another duo; the Think Tank Cable Management 10 V2.0 and the Think Tank Powerhouse Pro. Both are simply for keeping chargers, cables, etc all packed away neatly into these little zip up cases. I like them a lot. They're simple, but also Think Tank always deliver good quality products for securing camera gear, so I know my stuff is safe.

On a quick note I also picked up a Hoya UV filter for my Sigma 70-200 f2.8. Whether you like filters or not, I personally feel better when using filters. I'm not solely using them to protect the front element of the glass but I saw it as a way to experiment with different filters, especially as I'm going somewhere that's meant to be really sunny outdoors. It just felt necessary to me. There's always a debate among photographers about filters on lenses and I don't see any harm in using them if it makes you feel better protecting the glass. But also for different uses when you see what polarising filters or ND filters have to offer.

That's my gear haul from over the last month. My girlfriend and I fly a week tomorrow (monday), so it's really not that long now! I intend on 'Vlogging' the experience (Casey Neistat style!) so that should keep me on my toes with all the gear I'm taking. But it means I have video, as well as photos, to look back on in the future.


Bellissimo!

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I can't say I had ever fathomed creating a blog to go along with my 'work', but something just seemed to call out to me like I should start one. I guess I was inspired to or wanted to be inspired. So here I am and there I am!

from a stroll I took in the woods near my home, camera in hand and a thirst for wonder. You'll find that I do this often. I just like to stroll and take photos of whatever I see. Sure, I do dedicated shoots sometimes and various other things. Yet more often than not I'm always just wondering taking landscape/nature photos cause I find it soothing. Quaint almost.

Creating is just what I like to do. I did the music thing for nearly a decade but after some never ending soul searching I'm having to give that up. Not necessarily for good, but for now it's time to take a break. Oh and 'the music thing', by that I mean playing in bands, recording music, playing gigs here, there and everywhere (mostly here). I may include some kind of flashback posts of my times in the bands that I had been in, seeing as its taken up almost half of my life so far.

For now this is a start. I'm can't promise it'll be interesting, or dare I say good, great or incandescent, enough to grab your cat-like curiosity. But I intend on illustrating my desire for creating more and more ART (you could say), otherwise I might just become bored. Or worse...I stop creating!

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