Comments on this summers music including a feature on French Dance artists and my current playlist.
Its getting to the end of the summer season for music now and there have been some really good songs this summer.
In particular there has been some good French music coming through. I really like Martin Solveig and his songs Everybody and Jealousy have been especially good, his essential mix for Radio 1 at the end of July was one of the best of the year in my opinion.
Les Rythmes Digitales
Here are some of my best HDR photos from my travels. HDR is a technique of taking a photo over multiple exposures (or extracting them from a RAW file) then recombining them in a program such as Photomatix. By doing this you can bring out the detail from the multiple exposures creating a powerful image.
My first is of St Chads Church in Shrewsbury.
I really like how the HDR technique has brough out the detail in the stone work.
This next one was taken in Betws Y Coed last summer.
I like the brightness in the trees in comparison to the building and water in this one.
This one is of the B&B we stayed at in Betws Y Coed.
Again I love how the stone work is really brought out against the trees.
I took this next one in Egypt last summer.
The rich blue in the sea and sky really shines through in this picture.
This one was taken in the Cotswolds on my Birthday last year.
The contrast in the sky especially with the sun setting is very striking in this picture.
This is another of St Chads Church in Shrewsbury.
The way the cloud almost circles around the spire is especially apparent in this picture as it almost implies the power the building or church has over people.
This train track near Betws Y Coed almost has a rain forest feel about it with the luscious green.
This next one again is from Betws Y Coed.
All of my HDR photos can be found on Flickr.
It's been over a year since my last trip abroad to Hong Kong and this time we decided to fly West to America! I was at school when I last went to the USA with my family and I was keen to go back to where we started that holiday - Los Angeles. I would love to say that it was the glitz and glamor that attracted me back however it was simply cheap flights and accommodation.
The flight over was rough. Only joking - this is a set from War of the World at Universal Studios.
After a good night sleep and recovering from the flight we headed to pick up the car. We didn't know what car to expect and joked about getting something smug such as a Toyota Prius - this is what we were given. I hadn't driven an automatic car before let alone on the other side of the road however it was easy to pick up and begs the question as to why we don't all have automatic cars in the UK!
We headed straight to Hollywood, a 40min drive from LAX along roads twice as wide as what we are used to in the UK.
The Hollywood sign!
The Griffith Observatory is a great museum dedicated to space. I loved how you could weigh yourself on each planet however everything was in Imperial measurements which drove me crazy!
Amazing views over LA - I'm not sure if the haze is the weather or just smog (perhaps smug from all the hybrids).
We headed back into Hollywood to see the Kodak Theater and walk of the stars.
On the second day we decided to visit one of LA's many theme parks, we were too old for Disney so visited Universal Studios.(When I say we are too old for Disney I mean it was a rip off to get in).
The park wasn't too busy so we managed to ride Jurassic Park about five times - I love water rides.
The studio tour took us down Wysteria Lane from Desperate Housewives - was well worth doing.
On the third day we drove to Santa Monica to go shopping.
There is not a great deal to Photograph in Santa Monica - so here is a sign with a red light and a taxi.
We went to see the new Star Trek film whilst here - it was awesome. Its a shame that in the UK people don't scream, cheer and clap to films, makes the whole experience more exciting.
We loved Universal Studios so much that we decided to go back again. Its clear from Universal Studios that everyone in the film industry loves everyone else, the directors love the cast, the cast love the crew who love the props people who love the wardrobe people. I'm glad we spent the second day here but it was enough ass licking for one holiday.
We sat in the 'soak' zone for the water world show thinking we would just get splashed - we were wrong. It was one of the best live shows I had seen.
I lost count how many times we rode Jurassic Park on the second day.
If Universal Studios is for film lovers, Disney for kids then Six Flags is for crazy people who love big rides. Some of the rides such as X2 were insane, fortunately there were plenty of water rides and almost no queues.
Count the Rollercoasters!
Day 6, 7, 8
Last time I came to the US I was too young to drink or gamble (I might have been able to buy a gun however) so we took a trip to Las Vegas. The five hour drive from LA went smoothly, especially with the cruise control set along the straight highways.
We stayed in the same hotel that I did when I came last time - Circus Circus, mainly because the rooms were only £16 per night!
Since I'd been driving so much for the rest of the holiday I'd not had a drink since the plane. You have to be 21 to drink in most parts of the US - it would suck to be a student there!
Only in Vegas would they build the Eiffel Tower!
Vegas is such as great place for photography - and erm gambling!
The lake in front of the Bellagio
The Bellagio hotel/casino.
The water show in front of the Bellagio is quite impressive.
The ninth day consisted of two long flights home.
It was the next day before we landed back in Manchester.
I really enjoyed my stay in America and can't wait to go back again. Really want to visit the East coast or San Francisco.