B353 – A NEW VERSION OF FAST FOOD?

So yesterday night I decided that it could be a pretty fun thing if I just came home with a bunch of random vegetables and some chicken, then just see what Amy and I can come up with. The kind of veg that I had was like spring onion, leaks, ginger, aubergine, fennel, onion, Sweet potato. I did have other stuff but I cant really remember, i did have a few beers before so everything was a bit hazy. we ended up making something that was actually pretty good, we added some jerk chicken sauce, chucked everything in a pain and just gave it a good stir. We then decided to make some sweet potato fries and boom dinner is complete. Ive found that the trick with sweat potato fries is to add a little paprika to the mix and just give it that extra something, trust me it makes them so much better than if they are just plain. Give it a go. its like a new way version of fast food, I genuinely don’t think Deliveroo could of got the food to me quicker or made / found a healthier choice.

After all that I decided that instead of sitting on the sofa and writing this post, I would take the evening off and just chill out on the sofa instead, watch some tv and just not think about anything other than what to watch next. Some times its good to spend an evening off not taking photos, writing posts or going out and not getting home till like 10-11ish. so yesterday was the the perfect opportunity to get some good old sofa session time.

It then became an idea to wake up early today and head to the gym for an early morning work out, I know that a lot of people think that sounds crazy but I swear if you work out in the morning, then your instantly in a better mood for the day and as it is Friday, why wouldn’t you want to be in the best possible mood? So thats why my photos don’t really follow each other today, Ive got two photos from dinner last night and the other photo is of Amy hopping to the gym this morning.

Hope everyone has a good Friday and some good plans for the weekend!

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– Amy loves an early start and especially when its time for the gym… –
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– my choice of vegetables –
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– it was actually surprisingly good, maybe its good way to eat dinner from now on, it might not look amazing, but trust me we were both pleasantly surprised –

 

 

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B265 – WHAT A YEAR

Merry Christmas everyone and a happy new year! its literally the perfect day, as well as it being christmas its also my last 100 days of posting. I’ve made it to the final stretch. as its also the end of the year and also my last 100 days I thought I would show you some photos that Ive taken these past 265 days.

Its probably been one of the best years Ive had, not only have I been working pretty much non stop but Ive also been to some places that I never thought I would go to, I’ve spent 2 months in America and now have a working visa of the states, which i’ve wanted for ages, Ive also been to Canada, china and a few places in Europe. so its been pretty exciting. Amy also asked me out at the beginning of the year, and next year she should be moving into my flat, well thats the plan anyway. who would have thought I would been living with a girlfriend. its crazy and I suppose when you do that your kind of becoming an adult and having responsibilities, which in away is quite cool.

this blog has to be one of the best things Ive done, its literally taught me how to write and in given me confidence to try new things and just work harder to get what I want, and also when I write emails now theres a lot less spelling mistakes, its never good when you write emails and its grammatically incorrect or just doesn’t make any sense but because of the sheer amount of writing I do now I learnt a lot of new words and can spell so much better, I think anyway.

I think this blog has been good because a lot of the time its easy to think up ideas and then even easier to think up excuses why you cant do them and this has really made me just forget the excuses and just go with my gut and try to get the job done. thats why next year ive got a few plans lined up for this blog and also things that I want to try and do work wise. im planning on getting a second job i think just to help pay for all the things I need todo and the adventures / holidays im going on. Its time to up my game and smash 2018 out of the park!

Thank you 2017 its been a pleasure!

oh and sorry my blog didn’t have any photos on it yesterday, i literally have no idea how that happened. WordPress was just having a bad day I think.

 

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– amy and me exploring the town of Ratio on the Amalfi coast –
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– I also went to my first american high school football game right, this was like 10 minutes away from Harvard University –
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– Flying out of Newark Airport in New York. That is definitly a place Ill be going back to soon! I love New York –
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– a picture of Soho in London, I quite like this photo. Might have to get it made into a print –
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– the shot from the Barbican last week, im just happy with this photo and really like the way the man is –
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– this guy was definitely a highlight –

B214 – IM GOING HOME!!

Right now its 14:44 on Friday, Im sat a Bradley international airport in Massachusetts about to board a plane to Boston, Ive got an hour till we take off and from Boston I have a flight that will take me to London Heathrow. its now the complete end of my time in America and after two months on the road going from Hotel to Hotel its time to head home and finally do some washing and get on my DIY skills on, I’ve got a hall way to paint and some more blinds to put up! so get ready for some DIY posts, they will be coming thick and fast.

right now though Im scrolling through the photos Ive taken on my phone and think its only right to post some photos that I have taken on my phone before they disappear into the hard drive of my computer forever.

If I had to choose one city that has left a mark on me it has to be New York, that place is probably one of my favourite cities Ive visited in a long time, it just doesn’t sleep and every corner has something happening and thats what I like. Nothing stops in New York, its just on the move constantly. I will 100 percent be coming back to New York in the near future.

On the other hand, the state that surprised me the most and rank up there of cool places is New England. thats the area Im in now, apparently its were the english first landed when they discovered America, thats where it gets its name from. If I could get hold of a mountain bike and had a few days off I would loved to of just cycle round the forests and explored this area, it just looks like a cool place to have an adventure. that sounds like a pretty cool idea now Ive just said that. Amy? Can you cycle?

Ive really enjoyed this trip and feel like Ive managed to see a fair bit of america is a short period of time. but now I just need to come back and really get to know it when Im working. Heres list of the places Ive been in the last few months. New York, New Jersey, Massachussets, Flordia, Illinois, North Carolina, St.louis, Toronto and Vancover. Looking at that im really suprised that I haven’t missed a day of this blog yet and not really sure where Ive found the hour or so it takes to write these each day.

Tomorrow I land back in the UK and have to  rush home for a hair cut, pack a bag and get ready for a few days get away in Paris. Amy and Me are going there because theres some fashion show that she wants to check out and I owe her a birthday present. so get ready for me to put my best Zoolander outfit on and explore the city of Paris!

Heres  some of  the photos from my phone of these past few months.

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– New York at 6am –
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– Ive never seen an exhaust like this, is it legal in the UK? –
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– a view from New England –

 

B182 – LETS DO SOMETHING COOL

three hundred words that all I have to write each day, I love taking photos, but the writing is the hardest thing on this blog. I’m sorry for the lack of energy on these posts these past few days, Im just fighting through the Jet lag and trying to crazy amount of work, to get out the other side. but today has been a really good day, Ive started making plans for a really cool project. something I can properly sink my teeth into, Ive got a plan and all I have todo now is stick to it and make sure I can put everything in place before I go away next week. So not a lot todo at all.

what I like about doing this blogging thing is my plan that Im just going todo what ever I like with it. thats basically my plan, not think too much into it and just see where I end up. I really want to start upping my content and put out some cool photos that aren’t just everyday stuff. like jumping a car or shooting fireworks over a lake, something incredible and completely not the normal, thats my kind of project. If I can just get through the next month and stay dedicated to making stuff happen theres no reason why those projects wont come to life. Obviously those arent my project idea’s but they follow the same line, something which has an element of risk but with a massive reward. I started this blog to improve my photography skills and its about time I started to test my self and see what I can do with a camera.

again im sorry for the lack of content but unless I stay awake 24 hours a day, I don’t have enough time. but I will I promise you.

In other news I picked up my new blinds tonight, went to put them up and found out I don’t own a drill. so if anyone lives in bethnal green and has a drill that would be really helpful.

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– this is a photo I took this morning, god I love my coconut tree –
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– one of my favourite places in the past months, Historic Downtown St. Charles –
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– Missori, America, everyone should go and see St.louis its a really cool city –

B174 – AIR CANADA LOST OUR CAMERA GEAR

I’m sat on the plane from Chicago to Vancouver, the TV’s don’t work and that’s something I hadn’t planed for, so now I’m trying to think of cool ideas instead of just looking at the head in front of me and listening to the only album I have on my phone.
One idea I came up with for today post, is to create an instagram story @joshfspear of some cool photos of my journey from Chicago airport to my hotel in Victoria, British Columbia. As today is literally just a travel day and nothing else, its hard to find cool stories and develop a meaning or idea behind the post, so I thought I would take you on the travel day with me and show you some of the cool things Ive seen along the way.

– Vancover to Victoria –

Air Canada have also lost some of our camera gear so its now looking like im going to be staying awake until it arrives sometime tonight. Apart from that, today has been a pretty good day and ended with us taking a small plane across the sailors sea from Vancouver to Sidney at golden hour which was unbelievable. I was speaking to a guy on the plane and he was talking about the food and wild life in this part of town so now im pretty excited to see what this place has to offer. that plane journey was one of those where I will look back in 10 years time and think how cool it was, from see where salt water meets fresh water to the barges pulling logs along the rivers to paper factories. it was all just like another world.

– the best flight I’ve been on in a long time –

We are only here for a few days but I will make those few days worth it. But we are now off to a flying start with a beer and pancakes from Dennys.

– I like this part of Canada already –

If you’ve got some time go and check out @joshfspear on instagram and have a look at my story of the trip, its got some pretty cool photos. I think I’m going to do more stuff like this and now I’ve done one the ideas are coming to me.

Im not sure if any of this makes any sense, Ive been awake for way to long and all over the place, but I hope you get the gist. I’ve been writing this as the days gone on.

B171 – COOL UNKNOWN AMERICA – I THINK IVE LEARNT SOMETHING – PT.5

Today is the last day of me doing my first mini photo project, Cool Unknown American. Im not really sure how much is unknown or how much everyone knows, but my plan was just to show the inner workings on America on a whistle stop tour of America these past few days. Im about to have a really busy few days, so I think its probably best is I go for a five part project.

I’m currently sat in someone’s garage as the temperature hits 95 degrees, its pretty hot and there’s no air con but that will no break me.

With these posts its always tough to figure out what to write about and with photos, Ive always wanted to let my photos do the talking and just let people read each image and take away from it what they please. That’s not really the case, if you can take a good photo that seems to be about 60% of it, the other 40% is your writing. How well you can capture and write about that photo. That’s what I’ve learnt about this project, my photos are only doing a percentage of the work, I need to explain the reason behind the photos and what I think. Maybe its time for a new shake up of this blog, change the layout and my angle. I’m coming up to the 6 month mark in 11 days and the past 171 days have taught me a lot.

Two of the photos you see below are from previous days, one is of this incredible sunset we saw over the Illinois river on the drive from St.louis to Chicago. It was like a 6 hour drive, on the same straight road of like 200 miles, we got bored half way through and turned off on to the old route 66, this photo was taken just after we joined back on the highway across over the river and then were met by this crazy sunset. I love taking photos of sunsets, they never get boring. my favourite part about this photo is the reflection off the river in the back ground, it makes it feel like mid west america to me.

The other photo is from the VW car meet, this guy was standing up on the flat bed trying to sell things I think. I dont know why, I just thought it was a good photo opportunity so i took it. that car meet was one of those moments that will stand out for me on this trip. I just happened to look out of my hotel window and saw all this craziness happening across the road, so grabbed my camera and just started taking photos. nothing was planned, it just all seemed to fall into place.

anyway I’ve just eaten way to much Chicago deep pan pizza to keep me full or the next week, so heres my three photos.  enjoy.

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– this is my view of the amazing weather outside –
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– sunset on highway 55, Illinois river –
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– this guy knew how to sell –

 

B170 – UNKNOWN COOL AMERICA – A QUITE DAY MADE FUN- PT.4

Yep train tracks, thats what I took photos of today and I learnt something. I really dont like taking photos of train tracks, but where I am in Chicago, there is basically nothing apart from some massive car parks, and fast food joints. So train tracks will have todo.

Ive had one of those days where I just feel completely nackered and just looking forward to getting some good food inside me. my conclusion is that mid west america dont know how todo breakfast, they either have fruit loops or waffles and maybe some turkey sausages and some eggs. thats good every now and again, but not everyday. get some fresh fruit in and some yoghurt, trust me america it will change your life. or even try some fresh food, its a real game changer.

but enough of the moaning, At Lunch time today, i thought what should I do If I have nothing todo, so I decided to stop off at a gun shop to get that culture shock and wake my day up.  I ended up shooting my first ever gun a military grade AR-15 semi automatic machine gun. The nice guys in the gun shop gave me a little tour of the place first, I only I walked into the store to have a look at what guns they sell and maybe get my hands on the clint Eastwood smith and western gun that he has in those movies, but after speaking to Gunny Mike and this cool guy Marc, they ended up letting me shoot some rounds of the AR-15. It was a pretty sick time actually and scared the crap out of me. but after the first 10 rounds I was like a young rambo. They even gave me a cool T-shirt for me to remember the first time I shot an AR-15. I was like a 10 year old boy, who just discovered this whole new world. I dont think i would ever own a gun or something but it was definitely a good bit of fun. my shoulder is in a bit of pain now though, that guns got a bit of a kick to it.

After that I decided to go on a bit of a drive and take some pictures of something that has no baring on my day, but of something that is everywhere in the states and thats how I ended up taking photos of the exciting world of the American Railway tracks. enjoy these photos.

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– cheers Gunny Mike and Marc for setting this up. as you can see Im a natural, the hole closest to the red was Gunny Mike, I was going to claim it as mine but it was all him that one.  –
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– rail road crossing number one –
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– this was a rail road crossing, I just made it look like I was standing in between the tracks. I promise –

B168 – COOL UNKNOWN AMERICA – CLASSIC VW MEET. PT.3

A Few years ago I brought a 1967 VW Beach Buggy for my dad and me to drive, it was a sick little car when it worked and we would always need new parts or an MOT. The last time I took it for a spin, the accelerator peddle would get stuck on and the car would stop. which made of an interesting drive. when I brought that car at the age of 16, I could get insured and didnt even have a license, when I passed my test the insurance was so expensive it was really worth it.

Today my love for beach buggys has been re-lite. across the road from our hotel today was this VW car meet, with people selling parts and showing off their cars. The beach buggies were pretty impressive but thats not the main reason I decided to go, I love looking at those cars and seeing people impression but I wanted to photograph the people who import all this, it cant be easy finding classic VW parts in Silver Lake Chicago, it must take a network of people to find all the small parts like a 60’s Beetle speedometer or a carb and its these people that I want to photograph.

I was speaking to a few people about what its like selling old VW car parts and the life style it brings and the whole thing is pretty interesting, every purchase has to be calculated and thought about. can they use it on there projects or can it be cleaned restored and sold on. its definitely something which has to be a hobby first and then maybe possible make a living from it down the line maybe.

What my favourite thing about these classic cars is the fact that none of them are standard, everyones added their own personality to them, like the crazy Mexican’s who have built a massive table football  on the back of there VW camper and then all just play football and laugh, its their two favourite things football and VWs coming together in a way that you wouldnt find in the back of a toyota Prius. classic VW’s just seem to have a personality that no other car has.

anyway enough of hearing my views, heres my snaps. By the way these were all shot on a 20mm 2.8 canon lens. I think its my new favourite lens.

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– VW camper, table football edition –
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– these guys were selling old VW manuals and magazines, just happy to be there –
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– he was happy really –
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– this photo just made me smile –

 

B167 – COOL UNKOWN AMERICA – ST LOUIS TO CHICAGO PT.2

today we drove from St.louis to our next destination Chicago for the fourth location on this little filming trip. its fair to say this country is absolutely bonkers but in a good way, from the size of the food portions to the crazy ideas that people seem to have and then make them work. like the city museum in downtown St.louis, where they have a 10 story side and have decided to park a school bus and a plane on top of the building, it was the sort of place were kids and grown ups can just run around and explore climbing weird structures and old planes high above the city sky line! I thought it was amazing but i wanted to explore the city and decided to go and check out downtown, I got about 5 blocks from the museum when a bunch of motorbikes started racing down the road pulling wheels and stuff just like in the movie creed it was nuts. my camera was on completely the wrong settings, so the photos were just over exposed. thats why I need the Leica M.

After this little de tour, we hit the road heading for Chicago, driving north on the 55, around an hour into the drive we went past this crazy vintage car dealer, it literally had every car you could imagine from pre 1970, including rolls royce’s, ford pops and the car that malcoms parents drive in Malcom in the middle. unfortunatly it shut like 10 mintues before me got there, which basically meant we could only look at it from the fench. I still managed to get some photos of a burnt out car they must of brought to resort. I have no idea what car it is, but I properly like the picture.

Im now at the hotel in Chicago in the area of Lake on The Hill, not sure if im near a lake but it sounds like I am. the lady at the reception told us to go and try the famous restaurant Portillo’s across the road, its fair to say that is was a good shout. that place is amazing and as its somewhere that I quite like, so heres some info on it.

Portillos was founded in 1963 by a man names dick portillo, After he was honourably discharge from the marine corpe decided to open up a hot dog stand and invested $1,100 in a 6 x 12ft trailer and parked it on North Avenue in Villa Park, Chicago. he called it “The Dog House”. the van didnt have any running water so he would have to run 250m to a local bar every now and again to give his stand a top up.

4 years later he had turned it into a successfull business and decided it was time for a revamp and opened “Portillos” , it basically took off and he went on to open more and more locations. then in 1983, the first drive though opened in Downers Grove (Chicago) and instantly became know for its quick service and good hot dogs.

this place is quickly developing a name for its self all over the US and has now opened up in southern California, Florida, Wisconsin and Minnesota. If you ever pass one of these places, trust me and stop off for a hotdog. they’re crazy enough ship anywhere in the USA!

I also drove along route 66, which i didnt get todo last time as my mates didn’t think I was a good enough driver to drive the RV. well this time I did and it was pretty cool. Im also not sure if this post fits in my project, Cool Unknown America. But I feel like this is cool america off the beaten track so it should be allow and its my project so I can say its allow, so it is. I suppose this post is more of a dairy kind of think which I quite like.

heres my snaps from today, let me know what you think! Im also not sure if this 20mm prime lens is working properly, so tomorrow im going to put it through its paces and see what happens. so if tomorrow photos are crap I apologies in advance.

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– route 66, just off the north 55 –
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– st. louis city museum –
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– the vintage car dealer on route 66, is burnt out car was waiting out the front –
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– Portillos, chicago. Hot dog and fries. Well worth it –

 

B166 – COOL SIDE OF AMERICA – NIGHT TIME. MID WEST. P2

this is the first day of my mini project Cool side of Unknown America inside of the 3 photos a day project. the plan is to show the of the tourist trail america, just the suburbs and where locals go and what day to day life is like. for my first day I wanted to show night time in St. charles. this historic town dates back to 1796 and if your ever round here you have to try the toasted ravioli on main street. I think I mentioned it yesterday, but this stuff is worth checking out.

On the way back to the hotel from location today, there was a sign that apparently ready “Cool stuff, cheap”. well as my first photo project is called cool side of unknown america, it was only right I waited for it to get dark and  then go take some snaps of it to open this project up properly! thank you Libby for pointing that sign out!

I wanted my first shoot to be a night time one, I think photography at night is not the easiest thing, but when the light hits a certain focual point it really opens the photo up, it creates some sort of mystery to the rest of the image and tells a story in its self. when you take away all the light and only have a small outline of a object or person in the for ground and then something lite up at the back of the shot. for me it adds a whole new dimension. that was my thinking tonight, give you guys something to look at a few times and notice something else, maybe something that I havent even seen. a lot of the time, I just take a photo by accident and the somehow that turns out to be one of my favourite. for these photos Ive got the ISO pretty high, because I need it for light but I also like the grainy look it gives these photos especially because they are black and white.

I would love to hear what people think of these photos, I might just be a bit delirious after work and none of this make sense and for that I’m sorry!

Heres my snaps, enjoy.

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– its the perfect picture to get this project started –
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– I know its weird but ive always wanted to come to one of these –
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– photographing motor bikes is just fun –