Exploring Carlisle

Seeing as I am in a different house this year at university I have started to explore parts I didn’t last year because of the convenience of them being closer and I am not so worried about becoming lost as much as I was. I took out a canon 7D from the AV at university to play with for a week to get a feel for other models rather than using my 500D. So over the weekend I visited the cemetery as after speaking to a local couple a few weeks ago they told me where to find the red squirrels and what else was around wildlife wise in the area. The only graveyard/cemetery I have ever been to are the really small ones next to churches and wow was I stuck when I stepped through the gates. It was beautiful and very well kept and what was nice as well they had conservation areas for wildlife within the cemetery too! After a bit of wandering around a man asked me what wildlife I was looking for and he pointed me in the direction of the red squirrels and a few minutes later he came running to find me to say he’s just seen one and to show me where :). I came across the feeding area just around the corner and saw more reds along with plenty of birds. I explored more and chatted with more people who told me about the wildlife they have seen in the cemetery.

Just before I left going over a bridge I watched a red squirrel scurry about, drink from the stream and then leap over to the other side to forage for food.

As odd as this sounds, but I think I’ll be spending more time in the cemetery!



Riding for the Disabled – 07/03/13

On Thursday 7th March 2013 I visited Blackdyke¬†Farm in Blackford, Cumbria to photograph the Riding for the Disabled (RDA) lesson for a University Media Assignment in which I have to create a magazine article. I’m still in the process on writing the article as well as focusing on other assignments so I will upload after its been given in and I have got feedback. In the meantime I thought I’d write a little blog and upload some sample pictures – well the ones I’ve managed to sort through, I get carried away taking pictures of anything to do with horses so took about 300…opps. Oh and I also played with a Canon 7D for this lesson, its only the second time I’ve used this model and I must say I do rather like it.

On Arrival I was greeted my some RDA volunteers who were in the process of setting up and bringing in the ponies ready for the lesson.¬† Not too long after the parents or guardians arrived with the Children and got their hats and gloves on and walked up the ramp to the mounting block to await their pony so they could get on. Once on I asked the parents to fill in photo release forms¬† just to say it’s okay to take pictures.

Once all the children were on I started to wonder around the school taking pictures. There was various obstacles set out as well for the children to complete, as well as doing some trot work and balancing exercises for a few. The children also have 1 or 2 volunteers by their side to aid them if need be.

The ponies used are incredibly well-behaved and clearly love their job, as do the children love riding and the parents being able to watch them do something that anybody can do. I really enjoyed myself too snapping away and it really did make me smile. Not only does horse riding benefit the children in a number of ways such as building up muscle and balance but they can also learn from watching each other as I spoke to one mum and she said her daughter has cerebral palsy and doesn’t sit up straight, so by riding its building up the muscles and by watching another member of the group who sits straight it helps her to sit straighter. It also gives the parents some time off to relax.

After the first group had finished a second group came along with a school, which I also photographed.

I really enjoyed my afternoon and it was a challenge shooting in the indoor school with low light conditions. It was also lovely to meet all these people who always had a smile on their face.

Enjoy the sample images(apologies¬†for the grainyness¬†had to whack the ISO up :() and watch this space for the article next month ūüôā

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