Apple Pencil Review (non-artist)

For Christmas, I received an Apple Pencil, and as someone who is not an artist, I wanted to give it a little review. For those who don’t know, the Apple Pencil is basically a special stylus used only with the iPad Pro and can help digital artists and is also useful for other things.


Personally, I use it for editing my photos (as I do a lot of photography and therefore do a lot of photo editing) and for writing and I have to say that this is way better than a standard stylus you can buy for a low amount of money on somewhere online. It works with apps such as Notability to recognise the pencil (as it connects via Bluetooth) and to use it as if it were a pen on paper. It really does feel like you’re writing on paper with this which is fantastic for taking handwritten notes or annotating things and highlighting things. This means the Apple Pencil is fantastic for students who use an iPad Pro as their computer and for notetaking.

People may ask why you’d use the Apple Pencil with the iPad Pro over a notebook, and to that, I say because you have much more access to different things, you could screenshot something from a textbook or the internet and annotate it, highlight it and write notes alongside it. It makes notetaking better and you have every single thing for all your subjects in one place.


The Apple Pencil itself kind of has this sort of palm recognition thing with the iPad so once the iPad recognises that you’re using the pencil, it won’t mess up if it feels your palm on the screen (especially great if you’re left-handed like me) and it’s great for notes, photo editing and for artists. A variety of people can use it for different reasons. I do however think the way to charge it is very odd and potentially dangerous as you take off the pen cap and plug it into the lightning port on the iPad. Or you can use the adapter for it so you can charge it with a cable instead of using your iPads battery to charge it. I find that plugging it into your iPad could be potentially dangerous as if someone or something knocks it, you could break your Pencil.

Overall, I do enjoy the Apple Pencil as it has a wide variety of uses, but it is very expensive, at £99, it is definitely an item you want to make sure you’re getting plenty of use out of to make it worth the money, but if you’re an artist, photographer who edits on the iPad Pro or a student who wants to use their iPad for notes for school, then I highly recommend it, but if you don’t think you’d use it much or you don’t have a specific use for it, I’d give it a pass.


Possible blog changes

So during my time on this blog I have attempted and tried to post at least once a week and for the most part I’ve been quite successful with that, but with the new year there may be some changes.

I’ll hopefully be doing open uni for photography soon (if I haven’t started already, as I’m writing this in late December) so I’m gonna be spending a lot of time on that and not every book I read will be something I want to review. I was trying to review every book I read but sometimes that just isn’t possible. I don’t particularly like reviewing non-fiction or classics, so I won’t be doing that and sometimes I just won’t be able to read that much anyway.

What I do want to do however is still try to post once a week, but it may not always be possible but I will try to post as close to once a week as I can. I have a few reviews of tech stuff I want to do soon, and I will most likely try to do some book hauls or bookish related tags or things along those lines and maybe even branch out to posting things that aren’t just tech or books. It’ll just take time for me to think of things and write and post but I guess that’ll be okay. I want to enjoy the content I’m posting and I probably won’t enjoy it as much if I’m forcing myself to come out with certain things just to try to stick to a particular schedule. It’s a place to write my thoughts and feelings on things and share experiences of things I enjoy.

I hope you guys will stick around though and I look forward to posting new content soon (I already have some more posts scheduled ready).


Photography Inspiration

In my opinion, for photography it is important to be inspired and find the things that inspire you. I tend to take a lot of pictures of nature and animals because those are things that I find wonderful and beautiful and unique so I like having the opportunity to take photos out there. I love living near forests and beaches and even a main city because there is so much out there.


iPhone Photo Editing Apps

As someone who both loves photography and loves her iPhone, I frequently try to edit photos for my photography Instagram @laurakcald_photography. For that Instagram account I use 2 apps, 1 for editing and 1 for the watermark. The editing app is called ‘Snapseed’ and the watermark app is called ‘Watermark Maker’. I absolutely love these two apps and they do the job I want them to do perfectly.

So, Snapseed has quite a few different editing options which is nice and it has the basics on there which is all I tend to use, as well as a couple of filters. It’s made by Google and can link up to the camera roll on your phone. With saving your images, you have 3 options, you can either save it (which means the edited version overrides the original), save it as a copy or export it (which I don’t use so have no idea what that does). The app gives me this ability to edit my images to make them exactly how I wanted them to look straight from my phone and the best part of the app is that it’s free. I got recommended this app by a friend and it’s all I ever use for photography now.

With Watermark Maker, it’s pretty simple. You can either take a photo or open one from your phone and you have 5 options. With Text, it’s the simplest watermark, you just put in text in whatever font you like from their choices, change the colour and transparency of it and place it on your image. The image option, you can place a square box of another image and place it onto your photo. The watermark option involves templates, and I tend to never use them as they’re not subtle watermarks at all. The QR code option I have also never used but assume means you can place an image of a QR code onto your photo and lastly is the sticker option. It’s similar to photo but with mainly ‘Sale’ type stickers. I only ever use the text option as I have it made perfectly for what I need it to do.

So those are the apps I love using for editing my photos. If you have any free recommendations for editing apps, please let me know. Thank you for reading


Review – Polaroid ZIP

The Polaroid ZIP is a tiny portable printer that links via Bluetooth to your phone. It prints the image in the perfect wallet size, just like a little Polaroid camera, and requires no ink whatsoever, as the ink is built into the paper itself. It uses this paper called ZINK Photo Paper, which I assume means ‘zero ink’ and can sometimes be a bit expensive depending on where you get the paper from. To print the photos, you load them up in the Polaroid ZIP app, and from there your phone will connect via Bluetooth to the printer and print your image onto the ZINK paper.


I got my Polaroid ZIP in Argos about a year or so ago and it’s something I’ve used on and
off. As someone who loves photography, I have printed a few of my favourite photos onto these little bits of paper before and have them in a photo album made specifically for Polaroid sized images. I do absolutely love the thing and it has become very useful. The paper itself is even a sticker, you just peel off the back and stick it to whatever you want. I have used them as stickers before, back when I used a Filofax for my organisation.

I personally think these little portable printers are better than getting a Polaroid camera, as it means we can take full advantage of the camera quality on our phones, and it means we can record the moment instantly, and worry about printing later. It also means that a single photo can be printed multiple times. For example, with a Polaroid-style camera, if you were with your friends and took a photo together, for everyone to have a copy, you’d have to try to take that same photo multiple times, but with the ZIP, you can just take the photo on your phone as usual and print it multiple times whenever and wherever you want. The actual device itself is a little shorter than the iPhone 6/6S but a lot thicker, so it still is portable.

In all, if you’re someone who likes the size of Polaroid photos, but do not want to get a camera, I fully recommend one of these. You can use this for so many things, like making stickers for your Filofax, printing memories out to keep in an album or even using it to create little bits for a scrapbook. It may seem expensive, as it is currently £119.99 in Argos and varying in price on Amazon, but it is most definitely worth it and a handy little gadget for photography lovers or even just a wide variety of people.


Why I Love Photography

Photography is something that I absolutely adore, in case you couldn’t tell by the title. It’s something I have gotten into properly over the last couple of years, stemming really from GCSE art where I focused on photography for the exam project. However, it has been something that I’ve had a love for ever since I was little.

When I was small, I did own a little camera and it wasn’t great yet I used it as much as possible. I took pictures of my old cat, of my grandparents old dog and of random things around the house and flowers in my grandparents garden. When I got a smartphone for the first time in I think 2011, that was great. Ever since then, I’ve had iPhones and I have loved the cameras on them, and I have taken pictures on them a lot, some of my favourite photos I’ve ever taken have been from my current iPhone (6S) and previous phones. More recently however I got the Panasonic Lumix G1, and although, yes it is an old camera, I absolutely love it. I have taken it on so many days out and taken it to take photos of my cats and other pets in my family.

But why do I love photography so much? Well, that is because it’s just amazing in general. You can record these memories of things, such as with days out or with pets and you have them forever. You can print them and have physical copies (I occasionally print out photos with my polaroid zip) or you can keep them on your phone or computer or memory stick forever. You can look at things such as flowers or the sky and just capture this beautiful moment and capture how beautiful certain things in nature are, or even how beautiful man-made things like architecture are. It’s a way of making the world seem a little bit more beautiful and a way of capturing memories and being able to keep them forever. It’s truly one of the best things.

If you’re into photography, please comment why you love it and thank you guys for reading 🙂


@laurakcald_photography on instagram

An Introduction

Hi everyone,

I thought I’d write a little introduction to this blog, and give you an opportunity to get to know the person behind it, and what sorts of things will be posted on here. I want to use this blog as something that gives me a chance to put down my thoughts on things such as technology, books and photography, and even maybe give some helpful hints into things.

I really really love photography, reading and techy stuff, so these will be the 3 main things that get mentioned on here. I may do reviews on bits of technology that have had an impact on my life, or things that may be useful for other things that I own, which could benefit other people. With books, I will most likely post my thoughts about certain books that have really gotten to me in one way or another and with photography, I’m not sure what I would post but it’ll most definitely get incorporated into this blog.

Anyway, getting to know me. I’ll most likely publish an ‘about’ page on here, but my here’s a few things about me. My name is Laura and I’m 18 and from Kent. I’m a September baby and as of right now, I’m doing 3 A-Levels and an EPQ (extended project qualification). My 3 A-Levels are Religious Studies, English Literature and Film Studies, so as you can tell, I do enjoy writing things, as these are 3 essay subjects. My favourite things are photography, reading, casual games, technology and animals, and more recently I have just loved going outside on walks, and that’s thanks to my boyfriend. I’m not the sort of girl who is really into makeup, as honestly, even though I own some, I never wear any, and the only time I do is on special occasions. I tend to only wear lipstick or tinted lip balms semi-regularly, so that’ll be something that will most likely never appear on here.

Considering that I love writing things, I sometimes do not know what to say or how to end things. So, if anyone is reading this, thank you so much for reading and I look forward to posting more on here in the future 🙂