Have nothing that isn't beautiful or useful...

I have always admired my good friend Carolyn Carter's sense of style as well as her creativity.  We first met a few years ago, just after she had moved from Greece to around the corner from me in Birmingham, where she lives with her husband and two girls.  Carolyn is a woman of many talents - she designs, knits and crochets products for sale on her website www.carolyncarter.co.uk; she's a wonderful photographer; and she also designs websites.  Her style is simple yet striking,  which is underpinned by her strong sense that today's" cut-price consumerism" is unnecessary and unattractive.

Carolyn is inspired by one of the most influential figures in 19th century England, writer, designer, and environmentalist William Morris who said “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful”.  I love that Carolyn applies this rule to her own home so successfully!  I enjoy  making profile pieces of interesting people so I asked Carolyn if I could make a short film about her work and general philosophy behind it.    

I have recently invested in a new camera - a Sony A7sii and wanted to put it's amazing low light capabilities to the test.  The film below was shot in Carolyn's house with no additional lighting.  Hope you enjoy it! 

Music by Tate Peterson. Label: Needle Drop co from the freemusicarchive.org

Day on the Canal

"Birmingham has more miles of canal than Venice" is an often quoted fact.... there are just over 100 miles of waterway in and around Birmingham and the Black Country, compared to Venice's 26 miles.  I've had the pleasure of cycling many different sections of the canal network, and never tire of the ever-changing landscape that the canals provide... from the picturesque countryside on the Stratford Canal;  the spectacular flights of locks at Tardebigge on the Birmingham & Worcester Canal, and at Hatton on the Grand Union Canal; to the concrete and barren stretches which lie underneath Spaghetti Junction.  

I thought I'd marry my two passions of cycling the canals and filming, so I headed onto the Birmingham & Worcester Canal at Kings Norton.  I've got a new compact camera that fits nicely in a backpack.... no tripods and bulky equipment necessary!  I spent a couple of hours capturing the images that struck me and the result is the short film below.   I love the mix of edgy urbanises, pretty countryside and peaceful canal life.  Hope you enjoy it... and if it encourages anyone onto the canals, so much the better!