Skip to main content

Lands End to John O'Groats with our Friends, the Hall McNairs ~ Part II


As I said earlier, we were lucky enough to accompany our friends, the Hall-McNairs at two points during their journey. The first was from Tewksbury to nearly Nantwich which I wrote about in an early blog entry. And the second point was from Wick to John O'Groats.




It was never our intention to be there for the finish, although if my husband could have had his way he would have joined them for their entire journey. Luckily for me it wasn't possible due to other commitments (like paying the mortgage). Not that I didn't want to be there with the Hall-McNairs. Its just that the weekend from Tewksbury to Nantwich was enough for me to see just how much work was actually involved. The 18 days from Land's End to John O'Groats was no holiday.



Andy though, was determined to see the finish. We had discussed it on several occasions but it just didn't seem to make sense. There was too much on for us both and the drive to John O'Groats seemed too long, particularly with kids. But as he kept harping on about it in the end I caved and agreed to make the drive through the night in order for us to be there for the morning of their last leg of the journey. This was clearly something important for Andy. Besides, he said he'd owe me big time for this. I just better make sure I cash in on it before he forgets.


Well we made it in time for Andy to accompany the crew for the last leg of the journey and I took the kids to the finish, although we almost missed it as we sat drinking coffee and eating cake. Luckily someone spotted them from across the car park and ran to tell us so we could get into position. We really only had seconds to spare. In hindsight the coffee could have waited but it is hard to gauge how long it will take to run 17 miles. We're just lucky the finish line was right next to the coffee shop.


It was great to be there for the finish. What an accomplishment it must have felt for all those involved from the start. Niki and her parents did a fantastic job taking care of everyone. The boys, Atticus and Reuben did incredibly well to last the journey with minimal complaints. And of course Rob, Sue and Martin did amazingly well to complete it in 18 days without a days break. I was exhausted just from driving it. I couldn't imagine doing even a quarter of what they did. Congratulations to them all.


Well we really lucked out with the weather. It was blue sky and sunshine for the first 2 days of our trip. It could have been a bit warmer so that the kids could really have enjoyed the seaside but with the weather we've been having lately I really can't complain.


We enjoyed a lovely day at the beach at Dunnet's Bay. The kids were in and out of the water all day, while Andy and I sat cosy and warm watching from a far in peace and quiet.


My daughter, Mackenzie, absolutely loves the beach. Its all she has wanted to do all summer. So we finally gave her a day at the beach. She was in heaven. And she didn't care one bit about how cold the water was. Andy and I found it too cold for our feet yet she was lying in it and thinking it was great.

While up north not only did I get a nice break away from home but I also managed to meet up with a fellow photographer, John Baikie, who was kind enough to drive over from Thurso to meet us at the Seaview Hotel in John O'Groats. It was great catching up and hearing what he has been up to and about some of his plans for the future. Its always nice talking to a fellow photographer and being able to talk shop. Working on my own means I don't often get the chance to speak to people about the business of photography so it was great to get that opportunity face to face rather than just on a forum as usual. I really enjoyed it. And while I was meeting John, Andy arranged to meet with one of his ex-colleagues, Kate who also lives in Thurso. It was a little strange being so far from home yet still meeting up with people we know.

Well this concludes the good weather portion of our trip. I think I will post this as it stands and add one final entry for the remainder of our trip as it includes getting a photograph of Prince Charles. Who would have expected that way up there?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Fine Art Portraits of a Beautiful Young Girl

So this is really becoming my thing lately. I am having so much fun working with children individually where I can direct and interact in ways that bring the best out of my subject. This has certainly become a process now of creating rather than taking photographs. And its what I have always wanted to be, a portrait artist rather than a photographer. I cannot put into words fully just how rewarding this is. For each of these shoots (as with nearly all of my shoots) we begin with a consultation where we discuss what we would like to achieve in the shoot. Here we will consider the type of clothing and any possible props. We will look at both the clients clothes and my ever growing collection so we can pick what will work best. In all circumstances we are heavily guided by what the child in the portraits wants to wear as I see this as vitally important. If he or she is uncomfortable its going to show and the portraits won't work. But most are happy to play dressups and wear a com

Its a Dog's Life

When life gets tough I always look at dogs or my cats and think how lucky they are. I know not all are treated well but those lucky enough to be in a good home, like the ones who come into my studio, have a really great life. They look so happy and its a wonderful thing to see.  I honestly love photographing dogs. They are a joy to work with and its almost impossible to produce a bad portrait of a dog which does of course make my life a little easier. I am someone who really needs to love the work I create. I can't help but love the portraits I've created of all the dogs I've photographed over the years. And this shoot was certainly no exception. I found it a real pleasure using a lighter background this time too. I do often gravitate towards darker looks but seeing as this dog had a light coloured coat I thought I'd produce lighter images. This gave me the chance to use a canvas I painted a couple of years ago but never really used and I absolutely love it

Teen Portraits - Prom Season is Just Around the Corner

If your child is heading to prom in the next couple of months I'd say there is probably no better time than now to have portraits created of your growing teen. With the purchase of a new (and probably expensive) outfit wouldn't it be nice to capture this milestone with a portrait created by a professional. Across the pond this is a hugely popular time to create portraits, and although I am not American (I'm Canadian) I wholeheartedly agree that this is a special moment to record. My prom was a key memory in my teen years and in fact I myself had professional portraits created also. I think I'll go dig them up if I can, though admittedly I think my mother has them back in Canada. I wonder if I can get her to scan one for me. My daughter is currently making plans for college and in the running is one that will move her away from home, as many others are probably experiencing for themselves, particularly those who are 18. This makes it all the more important to

Headshots and Portfolio Shoots: Here's What we Offer

Headshot requests are becoming more frequent so I thought I'd put together a post to share some recent work and explain the packages I offer in greater detail. Headshots are typically a simpler and quicker session so my packages are also a little simpler than what I offer in my full studio sessions. If headshots are what you or your child need its really important that you get good quality headshots that can stand out amongst the crowd. A headshot is a representation of you and often the first impression you are giving out to your audience, whether its casting directors, agents or college officials considering your application. A good headshot is more likely to get you noticed and ultimately get you further along your path. Making your headshots the best they can be should go a long way in helping you progress in your chosen path. I offer 2 different levels of service in order to make it as affordable and appropriate as possible. The first is a simple straightforwa

London in Spring, Whats Not to Love?

Well I know there is still a lot not to love but I'm choosing to see the great things about London at the moment. I am having a ball this year visiting London as often as I can. Which is unusual for me since I usually prefer the comfort of my own home, in rural old Leicestershire. Staying home and avoiding people has always been the easy option. But this year, possibly due to the wonderful weather we keep having, has me longing for venturing out. Again, just like my last trip, I headed out with my good friend Panikos Hajistilly . Living in North London he finds it easy to meet up for our shoots. This time though I had more of an idea of the sights I wanted to use as the backdrops for my portraits. With it being spring I was in search of colour, preferably flowers. Admittedly. I didn't quite get what I was looking for. The white fronted terraced houses with pink magnolia trees we did not find unfortunately. But I did make it to Peggy Porchen's which was a must see on m