The world’s greatest blogger?

Alas I am not. A lot has been going on since I last posted and things are beginning to take shape for the year ahead. After settling in to business I have found Facebook to be an easier platform to post my recent work and musings so if you are keen, head over there and stay updated. I hope to get back to the blogging soon.

Here is the Land and Sky Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/landandskymedia
and my Vimeo page – https://vimeo.com/landandskymedia

I will leave you with the finished Edgeland project of which I am very proud, it was a real joy.

Edgeland from Land and Sky Media on Vimeo.

School of Adventure – Alpkit Big Shakeout

Last year I was lucky enough to be part of The Big Shakeout at Thornbridge Outdoor Centre in the Peak district. I was there to document the event for the team at Alpkit, and to enjoy the film, music, outdoor activities and friendly banter on offer. I even ended up in a late night rock jumping competition with Johnny Dawes! I went with my 6 year old, Leo and my partner Hel, and we all had an amazing weekend, with activities tailored for everyone. The events and activities for kids were especially good. The highlight for me was standing round a roaring fire with a bottle of fine ale listening to this man, Rick Warren singing the blues - 

There is no way we would miss The Big Shakeout this year and I’m very happy to say I will be running one half of an Adventure film and photography school with Alex Ekins, a talented and well respected climbing photographer.

The course will be tailored for keen amateurs who hope to take their skills up a notch or two. Together we will capture the many activities that will be ongoing thoughout the weekend. As well as many ‘on the go’ topics that come up, we will look at:

~ What kit?

~ Using and protecting your kit in harsh environments.

~ Basic capture settings and frame speed.

~ Composition.

~ Dynamic shooting – movement and style.

~ Engaging your viewers! Subjects and stories.

~ Behind the edit. What the viewers don’t see!

Participants will be expected to bring their own equipment along, preferably a DSLR or high end compact and lightweight tripod. As we all know though, it isn’t the technology, its the person using it. So if you don’t have a spangly camera, just bring something that records video and plenty of creativity and adaptability.

Here is an example of my work - 

My Own Hands from Land and Sky Media on Vimeo.

You can see a list of available courses at this years Big Shakeout here -http://www.alpkit.com/bigshakeout/schoolofadventure

And here is the video I made  from 2011, hope to see you there this year!

The Alpkit Big Shakeout 2011 from Land and Sky Media on Vimeo.

Charity climb of Sharp Edge with Eden Sight Support.

On the 1st May I will be filming a very special ascent of Blencathra’s Sharp Edge.

Please see details below. You can make a small donation in support of the event

by contacting me directly – landandskymedia@googlemail.com

         BLIND CHAIRMAN OF EDEN SIGHT SUPPORT

                         TO CLIMB SHARP EDGE

Henry Miller, the blind Chairman of Eden Sight Support, will attempt

a sponsored climb of Sharp Edge on 1st. May, 2012.

 

Henry will be accompanied by professional climbers Guy Lee & Dave Ridley.

 

Henry lost his sight at the age of 16, the result of a road accident when 7, and

   simultaneously his hearing began to deteriorate.

 

“Today, I am totally blind and use two hearing aids, but

      there is nothing wrong with my sense of humour”

 

“As Chairman of ESS I would like to combine my ambition to climb Sharp Edge,

as I approach 65, with my wish to raise awareness and much needed funds for

                              EDEN SIGHT SUPPORT”.

                       http://www.evsb.org.uk/index.php

 

 

My Own Hands

I climb as often as I can now that I am an adult, I still feel that child like urge to explore what’s above me and look down on the world. When I was a kid I think the urge to ascend was primal, and having had a child of my own I have seen that in him too. Perhaps it is our genetic connection with Apes that compels some of us to be up high, for me, I feel a very special clarity when I climb up through the melee and metaphorical fog of complicated life. I have spent many an hour perched on a chimney or gable end, able to observe but not having to interact with the world below. Just for a little while at least.

I’ve wanted to make a film about trees for a long time, mainly because this is where my first experiences of climbing took place, but also because trees are beautiful, symbolic and important to our world. This film cropped up out of nowhere really, inspired by Ben and his vision. I feel it has parts of both of us in it, and I am so pleased with the end result. I’m also very pleased to say that it won third place out of 24 entries in the SHAFF Shorts film competition. Me and Ben are keen to get this film seen by as many people as possible, so share it with others.

Fancy exploring the canopy and experiencing a different kind of climbing? Ben is keen to hear from others who feel compelled to get up in the trees. Get in touch - absolutetreedom@yahoo.com

So here is the film. Enjoy!

New chapters

In can safely say that I have recovered from the Kendal Mountain Film Festival now, it was a great event and so much fun. I had a number of conversations over the weekend with people that  genuinely loved my film, and it was so nice to hear so thanks guys. My film was pretty niche, and its so cool that it had a big positive effect on people. By monday it will be up on the front page of UKC for the world to see, which is a little scary, but hey…I made it to be watched!

Now that Kendal is behind us, its onward and upward, and time to get new projects underway. I can’t wait!

A quick catch up……

It has been a mental few weeks. Islands is ready to be shown at Kendal and lots of people are excited to see it, which is great. I’m really looking forward to the festival, seeing loads of films and meeting and catching up with lots of people. Anyway….

I had some very exciting news yesterday, which is still only just sinking in…..

I won a really exciting, experimental film commission through Kendal Mountain Film Festival and North West Vision and Media. I will have £6,250 to create a film, which will be finished this time next year. Heres the brief -

‘The Edgeland’ will look at the real and/or the perceived physical, social, economic and cultural barriers that divide the post-industrial and economically depressed urbanised communities located around the fringes of the Lake District National Park from the rurally remote settlements that nestle in the mountainous landscape of the National Park itself.

What I didn’t realise until I sat in front of the panel, was that I would have a selection of mentors, one of which would be Richard Else who create’s outdoor shows for BBC Scotland’s Adventure Show. And another, Keith Partridge, who has worked on amazing projects such as ‘Touching the Void’ and ‘Human Planet’. The clip below is from Human Planet, Keith was the main cameraman..

I can’t tell you how excited I am about this……….mainly because I’m so knackered I can hardly think what to write.

On another note, I wanted to take the time to share this video. It was made by a local guy called Justin, who lives in Shap. I think its a great concept and skillfully made. It is also right up my street as I love exploring places like this. Great vid Justin, thanks for sharing it with me.

Heres some pics from an abandoned Hotel we found on our way up to climb the huge conglomerate towers in Monserrat, Spain. Enjoy..



A little treat.

Inspired by a conversation with Adam Hocking, which drew upon a quote from much loved country legend Dolly Parton, I asked a friend if he could record this. I think it sounds pretty sweet really. It was destined for the end credits of Islands, but after some re-shuffling within the film, it ended up seeming a little obscure (much like this blog post!) so I left it out. Big big thanks to Paddy for singing it though. Enjoy

‘If you want to see a rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain’

Darkness and new light

Its so strange to have shared a space with someone, a physical embrace, a meaningful connection, a smile…..and realise that they are not there anymore. Last night I joined a group of amazing people, inspired, connected people, who see the importance of expression and celebration. Everybody danced, sang, talked rubbish and remembered a lovely bloke. It was so nice to see everybody smiling.

Great to have met you Ru. x

‘What lies behind us and what lies before us are but tiny matters compared to what lies within us.’

Alpkit Big Shakeout

This weekend we were lucky enough to be part of a friendly bunch of outdoory folk who attended The Alpkit Big Shakeout. The event was held in the grounds of the Thornbridge Outdoor Centre near Bakewell in The Peak district, and was designed to get people inspired by the outdoors. It was also a chance for the Alpkit guys to meet some of their customers, have a beer, a bop about and hopefully give something back.

A face that was hard to miss over the weekend!

Having known the Alpkit guys for some time, and been inspired by their approach and ethics in business, it was a pleasure to do my bit and capture some media for them over the weekend.

Masterclasses at Froggat, with the original Stone Monkey, Johnny Dawes

No hands

As the weekend rolled on we had a chance to listen to some great tunes, watch films, win stuff, drink fine ale, talk rubbish and jump on rocks, what more could you ask for?

Caving, open boating, climbing, high and low ropes, nature trails and adventure days for the kids, campsite cooking, mountain biking, demos, famous people and juggling you ask??? Well they had all that as well.

Lucy Ward playing in the bar

Here is a short film I made of the event.

Check out Alpkit’s website >>HERE<< to see what they do, and perhaps we’ll see you at >>The Big Shakeout<< next year?