My Camera History

I saw some Instagram posts relating to this and really wanted to share my own camera history. This is basically an overview of the cameras I’ve used for photography. Now, I’ve been using cameras since I was little as I’ve always enjoyed taking photos, but it wasn’t until around 2013 or 2014 (aged either 15 or 16) that I took it more seriously and wanted to develop my photography into what it is today, and improve beyond that hopefully!

This is going to be a very short post as I don’t remember my first camera, but I remember my last 3 (that includes my current one) & I may even delve into phones that I used for photography, although that’s less interesting.

Cameras:

The earliest camera I can remember properly is a little digital camera and I still have it and am thinking of getting a new cable for it, just to see what it’s like. Anyway, this camera is the Samsung ES70! It’s a little 12.2 megapixel digital camera and I remember I used to try so hard to get nice photos off of it. It may actually be an interesting little challenge to try to take photos on it that are close to my standard quality wise. I actually had a look on eBay too and people have actually been buying this recently too! It is a good little camera, even though this came out around 9 years ago.

 

The next camera I had for a few years and did really enjoy it. I bought it and 4 lenses from a friend and it served me well for about 4 years before I upgraded to my current camera. This is the Panasonic Lumix G1, a 12 megapixel camera that came out around 10 years ago. It did do well but I upgraded as it was really getting slow due to age and use. I was using it not only for my own personal photography, but also for the first few sections of my first photography degree unit. I even took photos at my local airshow with it and was happy with the results. This camera did well for me while I had it, and it was my first DSLR.

 

Now we get onto the camera I’ve had for nearly a year, the Nikon D3400. It’s a 24.2 megapixel camera and I have the 18-55mm and the 55-300mm lenses for it. It is perfect for me. It’s labelled as a beginners DSLR camera but it does everything I need it to. It’s allowed me to take photos for my own use, my shop & university work and I’ve been so happy with it. I’ve taken photos at a medieval festival, band photos and loads more with it already. A combination of this better better and learning more through my degree has really helped me improve my photography. I can’t wait to see what this year brings with my photography.

As a late addition to the family, I recently got the Canon Powershot SX620 HS. It’s a little point-and-shoot type camera with 20.2 megapixels, 25x optical zoom and can shoot videos in 1080p. I got this camera fairly recently, and although I haven’t had much of a chance to fully use it (as I have only taken photos in the low-light mode which meant the quality wasn’t as good), I do really like it. I wanted this camera because I thought it would be nice to take on small adventures out where I don’t want to take my DSLR, but I also hope to use it for photos for blog posts/instagram posts, as well as filming a few things to do with my photography, such as flip throughs of my photo-books. This camera is one I may consider doing a review on in the future, simply because I haven’t used it to its full capabilities yet, so I can’t fully make my judgements here, but so far so good!

 

I don’t want to go into phones too much, but what I use for photos if I don’t have my camera with me is my iPhone 8 Plus. I love the portrait mode on the camera, which is around 12 megapixels and it captures photos so well! If you’re into photography, what camera do you use? I’d love to know!

Laura

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Book Review – Marrying Mr Valentine by Laura Barnard

Name: Marrying Mr Valentine

Author: Laura Barnard

Publication Date: 22nd January 2018

Format: eBook (Sent by the author)

Goodreads Link: Here

Review: I received this book for free from the author, but all thoughts are my own. This book is about a wedding planner named Nadine, and she meets with this couple to help them plan their wedding with one month to go! Yet, she is drawn to the groom, Mr Valentine and she has to decide between staying professional and ignoring her feelings, or risking everything she’s worked so hard for. This is from the first person perspective of Nadine, and actually before I go into much more about this, I want to warn you all, if you’re uncomfortable with sexual scenes or bad language, you won’t like this. I’m fine with swearing but sometimes I find reading sexual scenes slightly uncomfortable for some reason, but I kind of ignored that because other than that I did really enjoy this book. Nadine is an interesting character, she’s hardworking, very caring and rarely does things for her, she is ALWAYS putting others before herself. She’s a strong character due to what she has gone through in her life, yet she is so supportive of her own friends and family and even people who are pretty much strangers to her. So when she finally decides to do something for herself, it doesn’t always go to plan. I felt so bad for her at so many points in this book, and as I don’t want to give spoilers, I won’t go into it but wow I couldn’t imagine going through what she has. I did really enjoy this book, I thought Nadine was quite funny at times and I did enjoy reading from her perspective. I enjoyed the plot, a mixture of emotional, sweet and funny. I am kind of ignoring the sex scenes in this as I am not used to reading that sort of thing, and my main focuses are the plot and writing style. This book is PERFECT for Valentines day and if you like romance books, I recommend this, and it is a quick read! If I had been able to just read for one full day I think I would have finished this a lot quicker, but I had university work to do. I am over the moon though that I managed to finish this before Valentine’s Day, as this book was finished February 1st! If you’ve read this, please let me know your thoughts, and a huge thank you to Laura for sending me this for review!

Rating: 4/5

Book Haul – January 2019

I’m not usually one for book hauls, as I don’t tend to buy books very often anymore, but in January I just couldn’t resist. I saw 2 series I have wanted for ages for sale at some incredible deals and I HAD to get them! This meant I bought 9 books this month, and I also received 2 ebooks for review, one from Netgalley and one from the author.

Physical books:

The two series I bought last month were ‘The Mortal Instruments’ by Cassandra Clare and ‘The Grisha Trilogy’ by Leigh Bardugo. I got them for £10.99 and £8.79, both through The Book People (the second being as a third party seller through Amazon) and I thought those were incredible deals. Those are two series that I always hear people talking about and I have wanted to own and read them for quite a while, so when I saw those deals I pressed buy so quickly. I’m so excited to get to them, but I know I need to read some of my older books first. The problems of being a bibliophile!

eBooks:

I received 2 ebooks this month. The one I received through Netgalley is ‘The Truth About Keeping Secrets’ by Savannah Brown, which comes out on March 7th, so it’s one I definitely need to read this month to get it ready for review. It’s a Young Adult Mystery book about a girl who has just experienced the death of her father and she’s confused as to why a very popular girl is at her fathers funeral. As the girls grow closer and try to understand the accident more that killed her father, they realise that the town aren’t happy with the girls friendship, and is the girls new friend hiding something? I’ve probably explained that very badly but it sounds incredible, I am honestly very excited to read it and I’m over the moon that I got accepted on Netgalley to read it.

The second book I received is ‘Marrying Mr Valentine’ by Laura Barnard, who very kindly sent me the book. It came out about a year ago, but since it is a romance book with Valentine in the title, it’s a perfect Valentine’s day read. It’s about a woman who plans weddings, and one wedding she has planned has been unexpectedly cancelled, so she schedules another couple in who have been on the waiting list, but she finds herself drawn to Mr Valentine, and it’s a question of does she remain professional or does she risk ruining everything because she likes him so much. I’m very usually very picky with romance type books, but I do want to read more. I finished this on Friday & a review is due soon so keep an eye out for that!

 

I’d love to know if you have gotten any books last month and what they are. If you’ve posted a book haul blog post or YouTube video feel free to leave a link!

Laura

Reading Wrap-Up – January 2019

January has finally finished and to me it honestly felt like it lasted forever, but it was a great reading month for me, as I ended up reading 5 books! I did a rough calculation too and it ended up at 1,319 pages read according to Goodreads. Now to get on with telling you what I read and what I rated it, alongside a small summary of what I thought. The books here that I have reviewed I will also provide links to!

1. Norse Mythology – Neil Gaiman (5/5)

As someone who enjoys reading about mythology and who loves Thor and Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I thought it was a good idea to educate myself about the characters outside of the MCU, the ‘real’ Thor and Loki. This is a bunch of short stories that I got through fairly quickly, and I felt like I was actually learning something about all these characters from Norse mythology. I have done a full review and that is linked here.

 

 

2. Catherine the Great: A life from beginning to end – Hourly History (3/5)

I recently became aware of Hourly History, a collection of short books that can be read in, as you would guess, an hour. They’re summaries of whatever you wish to learn about, and a lot of them are actually free on Kindle, so I ended up downloading a bunch. I have previously read one of Hourly History’s books on George VI, and one on Greek Mythology, both of which I found educational. Although this book was also educational, I felt as if it didn’t contain as much information as the previous books did, so I don’t feel as if I’ve learnt much about Catherine the Great. I think these books will be a hit or miss, depending on the subject matter.

 

3. On the Other Side – Carrie Hope Fletcher (4/5)

I knew of Carrie Fletcher from YouTube, and became excited when I learnt that she had become an author. I had previously read her book ‘All I Know Now’ and enjoyed it, but it was a non-fiction book. So when I saw them all cheaper on amazon, I ended up buying all of her fiction books (except the latest one) and decided to read them in order of publication. I found the writing and storyline a bit strange at first but did really enjoy it in the end. A link to the full review is here.

 

4. Harley Quinn Volume 4: A Call to Arms – Amanda Conner (4/5)

I love comic books and have slowly been making my way through this series of Harley Quinn comics on my iPad. I really enjoy them! I love Harley Quinn and these comics capture her personality perfectly, and in this series she’s away from the Joker so we do see the real Harley.

 

 

5. Desert Oath: The Official Prequel to Assassin’s Creed Origins – Oliver Bowden (5/5)

I am terrible at the Assassin’s Creed games, so if I want a dose of the AC world, I tend to just read the books. This is the prequel, about a boy named Bayek learning to become a Medjay and it is set in 70BCE, whereas I think the actual game linked to this book is set in around 40BCE, so Bayek is a fair bit older. I’ve read one other Assassin’s Creed book and also really loved it. I like the writing, I’m fine with the violence & I think the plot is so action-packed! A full review is linked here.

Book Review – Assassin’s Creed Origins: Desert Oath by Oliver Bowden

Name: Assassin’s Creed Origins: Desert Oath

Author: Oliver Bowden

Publication Date: 2nd November 2017

Format: Paperback

Goodreads Link: Here

Review: Set in 70BCE in Egypt, a killer stalks the land in order to eradicate the last members and the bloodline of an ancient order called the Medjay. But in peaceful Siwa, the town’s protector leaves suddenly and his teenage son Bayek soon discovers his purpose and goes out to discover more about it and about the Medjay and his own destiny. This book is based around the Assassin’s Creed Origins game, and although I have never played it, I do enjoy the concept and books of Assassin’s Creed. I have read Renaissance before, and this is in theory the prequel to it, so I decided to start with this before attempting to complete the series (including rereading Renaissance). This book switches points of view a fair bit, one minute it is first person and we are reading it from the view of Bayek, the next it is in the third person and we’re somewhere else. I think this would annoy some people but I actually enjoyed it. I think that for this book it is very important to have the sections involving Bayek to be from his perspective as it enhances the story if we know what he’s going through and his thoughts and feelings on the entire thing. Yet, we wouldn’t understand the book and the story as well if it was only from his perspective. Having this third-person viewpoint when discussing the other characters in chapters where Bayek is not present helped us gather more understanding of why certain events occurred, we gathered more information about certain characters, and we knew about things that we wouldn’t have known about if the entire novel had been from Bayek’s perspective. I thought this book was really well-written, the plot was action-packed and just overall it was an enjoyable read, especially if you are a fan of the Assassin’s Creed series. One friend even told me that after he read Renaissance, he felt as if he understood the plot of the first game way better than he did through actually playing the game, and I think that says a lot about Oliver Bowden’s writing and how closely he would have worked with Ubisoft to produce these books. I am awful at Assassin’s Creed type games, so I tend to stick with the books and I am really glad they exist for each game, as I feel like I’m not missing out. I have no idea if this book in particular is actually relevant to the plot of Assassin’s Creed Origins, but either way it’s an interesting story to read maybe alongside the game, but it’s also an action-packed book to read even if you don’t play the games but are interested in the concepts. I will warn you that there is a lot of violence in these books, but I think that is to be expected. Overall, I loved this book, it kept my interest, I think it was well-written, it felt educational even though it’s based off of a video game and it was just a great book. Like I said before, if you are a fan of the Assassin’s Creed series of games then you’ll definitely be interested in giving these books a go, and I’d definitely recommend this one!

Rating: 5/5

Book Review – Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

39339994Name: Norse Mythology

Author: Neil Gaiman

Publication Date: 6th March 2018 (7th Feb 2017 originally)

Format: Paperback

Goodreads Link: Here

Review: I was first introduced to the world of Norse Mythology when I became a Marvel fan. Thor and Loki have been two of my favourite characters in the MCU for years, but I realised I didn’t know too much about the original characters, not the Marvel versions. I knew a few bits and pieces because of the internet, but when I saw that Neil Gaiman (an author I had heard so many good things about) had come out with a book to do with these characters and others, I knew I had to read it. I was kindly given the paperback edition of this book by my wonderful boyfriend for Christmas, and decided it had to be my first read of 2019. I started this on new years day and finished it on the 6th. I found this book to be interesting & informative. It begins with Neil Gaiman himself talking about how he came to know the characters, and then begins mini stories (which I guess could be classed as chapters as they seem to be in a chronological order). Each one taught me more about Norse mythology, I learnt about Gods I had never heard of before, and I learnt more about the personalities of Odin, Thor & Loki outside of the MCU, and they’re a lot darker. The stories are all well written, both informative and entertaining, and I think this is the sort of book you could get through quite quickly, or even choose to dip in and out of because the chapters to me are basically short stories. If you are at all interested in Norse Mythology, or are a fan of Thor, Loki, Odin etc that you’ve seen in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) then I’d definitely check out this book to learn more about the Gods outside of that.

Rating: 5/5