Researchers have discovered music lessons boost young people's brain power
Find out more about my guitar and ukulele lessons here http://paulclews888.weebly.com/guitar--ukulele-lessons.html
|Paul Clews Enterprises Tel: 07866 650015||
Researchers have discovered music lessons boost young people's brain power
Find out more about my guitar and ukulele lessons here http://paulclews888.weebly.com/guitar--ukulele-lessons.html
Thinking I would know exactly what to write I volunteered rather enthusiastically to ‘guest blog’ on Paul’s blog, without really considering what that entailed and what would appeal to his audience… however, here I am ready to impart a bit of knowledge on photographing weddings.
My name is Christina Dithmar and I am NOT a wedding photographer… I do however photograph the weddingsand I very much love doing so. Wedding Photographers spend their whole lives photographing weddings and some of them are utterly amazing at it. I spend my photographylife photographing families, children, adults, pets, horses and some product and commercial photography too. I have a project entitled The Essence of Woman, which I am really passionate about, as it seeks to empower women through the medium of photography, to feel great about themselves.I am NOT a wedding photographer, but if I ever get asked, I jump at the chance!
Photographing weddings is at once fabulous, fun, exciting, exhilarating, ridiculously stressful and a huge responsibility. What is there not to love? It is one day; the mostimportant day in someone’s life and you absolutely have to get it right. There is no going back and reshooting. So why is it such fun and what do photographers do to make sure that everything goes to plan? Personally, I plan and then Iplan some more. There will always be something you can’t plan for and that you have to respond to instead, but if you are careful and you plan for all eventualities, you will feel much more relaxed and at ease, so if something does come and bite you on the proverbial bottom, you will be ready!
Here is my list of 10 tips to ensure the wedding photography goes off without a bang…(in no particular order):
1. Communicate with the bride and groom! Listen, find out their hopes and dreams, pay attention to the details of the wedding, the preparations and the dress! Knowledge is power and the more you know about them and the day, the more prepared you will be. Always do an engagement shoot! It gets them used to you and you to them! Find out what they like and don’t like about themselves (noses, teeth, eyes, legs etc).
2. Remember your CANDID SHOTS are really important! Make sure that all guests are covered, bridesmaids, grannies, young children, old friends. Don’t miss anyone out. You often get the best shots when people don’t know you are there, so start with a long lens, stay inconspicuous and out of the way, and let the party unfold as you record the memories.
3. Alongside the couple, prepare a FORMALfamily/friends/bridesmaids/best man shot list. Prepare it well and in order of shooting so that the posed shots that you will be doing, will be quick and easy, so as not to keep the guests too long. Ensure you know who the people are in relation to the couple and call them by the right and appropriate names (MR/MRS rather than ‘um, excuse me - you there…). Make sure you have one person responsible for collecting the people for the formal family shots as you can’t be running in and out trying to find them. It is always good to ensure that this person is your responsible person all day, the person that makes sure you get to the first dance or the cutting of the cake. Sometimes the times change on the day so it is essential that there is always someone there that is in charge of making sure you are in the right place at the right time.
4. Visit the venue(s) in advance if you can or get there early. CHECK YOUR LIGHTING! Make sure you check the venues with the lighting on and if in a church, make sure that you check it with the heaters on or you could be in for an interesting surprise! Make notes and sketches of where you can do your shots, where to stand, where you can get creative!
5. One week before the wedding prepare your ALL DAY SHOT LIST. Write down EVERY shot you want to get from the time you arrive to the time you leave, at the right times. Break down the day according to what the couple have told you is going to happen, and slot the shot list in. (You can find a sample shot list here…) Prepare, Prepare, Prepare!
6. The CREATIVE COUPLE Shoot. Sketch the shots you would like, write a list. Be prepared for all eventualities. You think the shots are going to be outside? Think again… the weather plays tricks! Be prepared to have to change the outside to the inside and know where you are going to shoot. Bring umbrellas!
7. Keep MEMORY CARDS safe - back pockets are NOT safe. Take lots, change them regularly (before they run out). Back up half way through if you can and have time. Don’t delete the images off your cards until you have backed up twice at home too! Batteries - have lots and make sure they are charged!
8. Get INSURANCE! Never, ever, ever do a wedding without insurance! Have personal indemnity insurance, public liability and contents cover - you never know! Insure your car for business. You will feel much happier making sure you are covered.
9. Shooting INDOORS. Most weddings happen indoors and outdoors - often switching between the two quickly - so the most important thing is to know your camera, know your lenses. Understand the camera settings you need when indoors, and use a monopod or a tripod to help reduce noise in your images. If you are really struggling with the lights, you can use a flash, personally I prefer not to. If you are still struggling and you just cannot get the effect you want or need, pop your camera on automatic. There is no shame in this - lighting can change quickly and rather than getting stressed and frustrated, just pop it on auto until you have calmed down and you are able to think clearly again. If your camera has an automatic ISO setting I recommend using that when spending a lot of time inside and out, so that you don’t have to worry about changing it all the time.
10. Remember, it is an immense honour for someone to ask you to photograph their wedding, so treat it as such and ENJOY IT! Be in control, because if you are not in control it will show. Stick to your timekeeping and be a little bit bossy if you have to, or you won’t get the shots that the bride and groom have entrusted you to get. Remember also that you are their eyes for the whole day, so don’t forget to shoot all the little important things like table decorations, the favours, jewellery, the bouquetsand never forget the cake!
Never ever stay for a drink afterwards. One drink can lead to two can lead to… and the last thing you want to do is lose your images, lose a card, have your camera stolen etc.
This one is something I have to do for my own sake so as not to be over critical… Whatever you do, don’t ever look at the images until at least 2 days later. Go home, back your images up, but don’t look at them. You need a break, so sleep and do something away from the computer the next day so you are not tempted. It is very easy to be over critical when you are still so close to the event and too easy to delete them all!
Win a free half hour guitar or ukulele lesson by Skype, FaceTime or google hangouts. During #DevonHour on twitter, this week only (21/82013), 10 questions about me will appear under the hash tag #SoYouThinkYouKnowMe. Simply tweet the answers back to me. All the answers are in my twitter time line and blogs.
The winner will be announced shortly after Saturday 6 pm (24/8/2013) when the competition closes, here and on Twitter. In the event of a tie, I will draw a winner from the most correct answers. Anyone is eligible to play, except me. Good luck!
You must be able to get your hands on a guitar or ukulele.
No cash alternatives.
My decision is final.
As many of you know, I'm not a fan of open mic nights. You don't need to get ripped off to get your first gigs. http://paulclews888.weebly.com/1/post/2013/03/open-mic-nights-why-you-should-not-play-them.htm You could play at family and friends parties for instance. These kind of events will offer you a supportive audience, and introduce you to other party guests who may never have heard of your band, or if they have, may not know what you sound like. This could lead to another gig.
Another simple way to get a gig is to book yourself. Hire a pub or hotel room, or even a village hall or similar and sell tickets. In the old days in Ilfracombe, all the bands used to hire the Vaults Bar. Advertise your gig with posters in local shop windows. Many shop owners are happy to do this for free. These days it is much easier to make your own posters and tickets with computers and printers. They were just not available to me. Advertise your gig on gig web sites and of course on social media. Twitter being the best way to get your word out because of its size and the fact you can reach many people with no followers what so ever, with clever use of hash tags. Always include the name of the town or city where you are going to play, and including the surrounding towns is a good idea too. Facebook is important but difficult, in comparison. You need to actively collect 'likes' on you page, which for an unknown band is not easy. But you can advertise in local and other type specific groups. It is also well worth having a Google+ page to promote your gigs, because it is searchable on Google.
Gigs can also be promoted, often for free in local news papers, and on local radio. Just be creative.
Sell as many tickets as you can, and don't forget you can charge on the door too. It's a good idea to charge a little more on the door to encourage ticket sales. Get all your family and friends to buy tickets too, and you will make a profit from your gig.
What if you don't have enough songs? Well set up the gig as a double or triple bill with other local bands in a similar position to you. Split the overheads, split the profits. More bands promoting, means more advertising, bigger audiences, and more exposure for your band.
A word of warning before you start gigging. It's a little boring, and not very rock 'n' roll, but you need to get public liability insurance to protect yourself, your audience, and the venue you are playing at. The best way to get this in my opinion is to join the Musicians Union.
Good luck and get gigging.
Well, Paul can't get much further North in Devon and We can't get much further South. Paul asked on Twitter during DevonHour, a weekly spot where Devonian Twits get together and tweet the bejasus out of a #hashtag (don't ask, either you know or you don't) if anyone would like to write a guest post for his blog. I volunteered.
I'm involved with tourism. I thought I'd nail my colours to my mast at once, but the mast is stainless steel. No, really, it is. I run a tourist based business in Dartmouth with a lovely charter boat. Paul and I chatted about the topic, and I suggested tourism and Dartmouth rather before I realised what I was suggesting! Do I do a catalogue of all the tourist attractions in Dartmouth?
Pretty obviously no, I do not. We have an excellent Tourist Information Centre for that. I'm not going to bang my own trumpet nor blow my own drum much, either. After all, you'll visit my web site and make your own decision about whether to come out on Alucia or not. I'd like you to, of course I would, but that's up to you.
In Dartmouth we depend on tourism. That's fine, because we're a great town to visit. We have some of the best eateries, drinkeries and shops in South Hams. We're a destination town with a great quayside to catch crabs from, river boats of all shapes and sizes for river trips, glorious floral displays, a food festival, a wonderful , the views of Kingswear across the river, ice cream fish and chips, the lot. We have broad vistas, sea air, easy access to the wilderness of Dartmoor, and wonderful places to stay.
The part that saddens me is that many of our tourists arrive by coach and, because they are not always in the first flush of mobility, don't find our beautiful places in the town. Often they leave the coach and manage only to reach the town pontoon before boarding an excellent river boat and being given a lovely tour up the river Dart to Totnes before being met by their driver and whisked away. They bypass our fleshpots entirely. How do we attract them to spend time with us? Don't they know that much of The Onedin Line was filmed here?
Do they know that the huge area around Slapton Sands was evacuated in the second World War to provide a training ground for our US allies, or anything about the enormous training disasterExercise Tiger, some of which happened on the beach at Slapton, some of which in Lyme Bay, and which was the single largest disaster in loss of life of the war, a mixture of bureaucratic incompetence, friendly fire and enemy action?
Do they know that the French 'General with the Big 'Ooter' ('Allo 'Allo, do keep up) de Gaulle, was stationed here with the Free French Forces, and that we can show them the house, or that HMS Cicala couldn't be sunk because it's the Royal Dart Hotel?
Honestly, we'd love to tell them that and have them explore. There are folk who are pretty much the last generation directly affected by that war, and they need more stories to pass on to their kids and grandkids.
We also would dearly love more younger folk. It's term time still and the 'happily child free' are with us at present, but this really is a town for the kids, too. It isn't a bucket and spade holiday town, it's a town to do stuff, visit castles. We have, well, at least three! We even have a Palmerston Fort. Dartmouth was invaded by the Brittany French, but we repulsed them. Find that in your history books. They were sent packing at Blackpool Sands.
There's stuff to find out about pirates. Politely we call them 'privateers', but we had 'em. The tugs for the Lower Ferry are named after one of them. We were also involved in the Triangular Trade, but not the one with slaves. Hmm, where to find out about that. Ah yes, the museum! And how about those Pilgrim Fathers, the Mayflower and Speedwell lot? Left from Plymouth, did they? Have a look in Bayards Cove and see how correct that is. Come to that they didn;t arrive in Plymouth on the other side either. They anchored of Provincetown on Cape Cod. The wonderful irony is that Provincetown is now a major gay resort!. As my US friends say, “Go figure!” I keep apologising for the Mayflower lot. I keep explaining that the boat was meant to sink, but that's a whole other story!
How was Dartmouth defended from invasion from the sea over the years? It wasn't the big guns of the Brownstone Battery, they had a different job. What to know what? Easy, take a walk on the South West Coast Path, and visit it and find out. Chat toCoastwatch volunteers there, at Inner Froward Point. I volunteer for them can can spin quite a yarn if I'm there when you drop in.
Did you know that Dartmouth was on the Front Line in WW2? Have you ever knowingly been to a front line town? Looking at the peace and quiet today you;d never realise the vast invasion forces assembled here. It was bombed, too. The bombing almost ruined the unique plaster ceiling of the Tree of Jesse, something you can see by appointment with the museum, but it was recovered, all bit one bit.
You see it ain't just the stuff you expect. Dartmouth isn't just one of the most beautiful little towns on the face of the earth. It has a military history, a social history and a whole industrial history I haven't even touched on! Have I even scratched the surface? Seriously, I have no idea. I know there were slums, social deprivation, a jail whose last tenant was a friend's grandfather, stocks, shambles (meat market), a mill, limekilns, one of which claimed the life of a young lad who fell asleep at the top and rolled in to be incinerated, poor kid. There's a powerful river that claims two lives a year, and we have the Navy training baby officers in and around the harbour.
And that's without even thinking of listing eateries, drinkeries, our wonderful local theatre and social centre, glorious and quirky shops, the best cream teas in Devon and so much else.
I bet you just thought we were good for crabbing on the quayside!
We are. But we're a whole lot more, too.
So tell me, did anything catch your eye?
Tim Trent runs a private skippered charter boat, Alucia, in Dartmouth, Devon, and wishes he'd been born and raised in Dartmouth, but has to confess that he is an incomer who adores the place.
Got picked up by Paul from my house at about 8:15am and we drove to Filleigh school. It took about 45 minuets to get there because of the traffic, which was terrible. There Paul taught some students how to change chords whilst strumming. After that we headed to Chittlehampton school where Paul taught someone how to read tab for the ukulele. Once that was over we went back to Paul's home, I had some lunch and then I helped Paul print & laminate some posters. Then we went back to my house so Paul could teach my brother. Just before the lesson I learned a couple of chords on the ukulele and then watched Paul teach my brother some grade 5 rockschool on guitar. Then we drove back to Paul's house.
Me at Filleigh School trying out one of Paul's Kala ukes.
Paul tuning up for a ukulele lesson at Filleigh School.
After spending a couple of hours at Paul's house, we headed to Larkstone cafe for ukulele club. It lasted for 2 hours during which we played songs by artists like The Clash The Beatles and Buddy Holly.
Me at Ilfracombe Ukulele Club held at Larkstone Cafe.
Outside Lakstone cafe with my ukulele.
Me and Paul with Larkstone Cafe in the Background.
Me and Paul just before Ilfracombe Ukulele Club started inside Larkstone Cafe.
By Jake Cole
I got picked up at about 10 o'clock.
Helped Paul sign in on four square (Four Square ID 34843477) at different places as we headed to Chumleigh Primary School. We went in at about 12 o'clock and came out at about 4 o'clock after doing quite a few lessons during which Paul mainly taught different students bass runs on the guitar. After that we went to South Molton to get some fish n chips.
Once that was over we headed to a house about 10 minutes drive out of South Molton. There for an hour Paul taught someone some grade 5 rockschool and then we headed home.
Above is a picture of the farm just outside South Molton.
By Jake Cole
Last week I wrote this blog on how to use #DevonHour http://paulclews888.weebly.com/1/post/2013/05/devon-hour.html
Now, does Devon Hour work? Amazingly, I still get people ask me if Twitter works. If you have a business and you're not on twitter, where have you been the last four years? You're losing lots of business.
Last week during Devon hour, somebody responded to one of my guitar lesson tweets. They asked me if I could teach 'reading music'. I of course, responded 'yes'. The person who responded to this tweet was not interested in lessons for themselves. They were asking on behalf of a family member. The family member lives only a couple of miles away from me. With a couple of DMs, a couple of emails and a phone call, a lesson was set up.
The first lesson happened yesterday. The guy I was teaching, I seem to get on with really well. He'd had two guitar teachers before me. At the end of the lesson the new student said to me 'I've learned more in this hour than I've ever learned from all my previous lessons put together'. I know I left him satisfied, he booked a weekly lesson.
That means I have just received a £100 a month pay rise. Does Devon Hour work? Is it worth doing that twitter thing? Twitter is just for twits isn't it? I know who the real twits are! Lol!
If you would like to book one of my guitar lessons either in your North Devon home or by Skype click on this link below for more information http://paulclews888.weebly.com/guitar--ukulele-lessons.html
Last Tuesday I met @NaomiChapmanSMM at @stationcafebarn to review my use of social media. Now there are few people I rub up the wrong way on Twitter, even managed to get a minor troll, but since I’m more successful than any of them on that platform, and many people complement on my promotion of North Devon, it’s businesses and organisations, and particularly my home town of Ilfracombe, I will not be taking advice from them.
Those of you that know me will know, twitter is by far my favourite social network. I know it inside out, all it’s apps, everything. I joined myspace when it started years ago. Still have a couple of accounts, post almost everyday, but don’t really do that much with them anymore. I joined Facebook just less than a year back. Still don’t really like or understand it. It feels slow, complicated when it doesn’t have to be, and just doesn’t work that well. This week I’ve being promoting my pages on there with little success. Is Facebook a dead duck, or a dying duck anyway?
We had a look at LinkedIn. Naomi advised me to finish filling in my profile. I did this. She also advised me not to use twitter Hashtags on LinkedIn and Facebook. Well I continue to use the Hashtags, because I post to all three networks at the same time via Hootsuite, on my iPhone. I don’t have time to do it separately, that’s why I use Hootsuite. It is a great app for posting, and Twitter always takes priority over other networks. Simply because I find it works best.
Finally we looked at google+. I have had an account for some time now, but not done loads with it. Just poked it with a stick really. When I joined it there was nothing on it. It could be argued there still isn’t. But, it is up and coming, and feels nice to use. It looks a Facebook, but it actually lets you connect with people, unlike Facebook, but like Twitter. Which is useful for a social network to do I think. Following my meeting with Naomi, I took her advice, and built three new Google+ pages. They seem to be doing well.
Thank you for your time Naomi, it’s been really useful. Get in touch with Naomi and get your social media moving. http://www.naomichapmansmm.co.uk