Sunday, 6 July 2014

My Yorkshire Photo: Strawberry Fields



Inntravel recently asked me if I'd like to take part in a photography project called  #My Yorkshire Photo, in which Yorkshire residents share and celebrate their favourite parts of our county. Inntravel are a Yorkshire company who offer a slower, more pared down approach to travel, a bit off the beaten track. I like their ethos very much, and I wanted to take part as I do love to take photos, and also since they very generously sent me a Polaroid camera and some film so that I could have fun documenting our adventures. Now, I know what a Polaroid camera is and what it does, but I'd never used one before. Call me childish, but I was not expecting the absolute thrill and delight when that little photo emerges from the camera. It's so cool. (And I'd forgotten how powerful and meaningful it can be to hold an actual photo in your hand, rather than look at one on the screen, and it reminded me that I must get some of my Instragram photos printed out.)

So I had a think about what and where I'd like to photograph and, my goodness, there is a lot of choice in this glorious county; the moors, the coast, the Dales, the sheep, the pretty villages full of stone houses and dry stone walls...but the thing is, I do not live in those places. The part of Yorkshire I wanted to celebrate is my Yorkshire, Leeds, this huge sprawling city in which I've lived for almost 14 years. I'm gradually finding the bits that mean the most to me, those pockets of calm and beauty that lie between ring roads and junctions, where the traffic noise disappears and you feel you are almost in the countryside.



I decided to share our afternoon spent picking strawberries yesterday. Since the children were very small it's become a little tradition of mine to go at this time of year; we always go to the same place, every July, and it's always just the children and I as we go at the weekend when John is at work. We spend an hour hunting and gathering (Bella and I enjoy it much more than Angus, who is soon bored) then we take them home and I make jam and do lots of strawberry related baking and eating. It truly is one of my great summer pleasures.

The children's reaction to the Polaroid was priceless. They actually fought over who's turn it was - that thrill of the click and whir, as the little picture emerges, was as fascinating to them as it was to me. I had to keep saying "Don't just snap away, tell me when you're taking a photo!" as it costs about £1 a photo. Not cheap, no, but hugely enjoyable.

Today I made jam with the 2.5 kilos of fruit we picked, and had fun playing around with the images here.




But I wanted to find a better way to display our fun and so I blue-tacked the photos to the wall, creating a little summer display, a visual memory of our family time. I've got one film left and I'm saving it for when we go on holiday to Cornwall in the school holidays.



It doesn't take the best photo in the world, they are all a little overexposed, but as far as photographic fun goes, I don't think you can beat it.



Thank you Inntravel for this fabulous camera, I have enjoyed using it enormously.




43 comments:

  1. That sounds great fun and I've not used a polaroid in years, but see Ade Edmondson doing it on that show Ade in Britain. The snaps were good, especially the strawberry fields (love strawberries) and sounds like you had a great time using them. Enjoy your summer and take care.

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  2. I love your little photos Gillian...sometimes I do miss actual photos, but I never get round to getting prints of my images.
    The strawberry picking looks like great fun.
    Meant to say congratulations on the magazine feature too.
    Jacquie x

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  3. A great project with a wonderful result, Gillian :) This post reminds me of taking my little ones to the strawberry fields in NY many years ago. My 18 mo. old jammed juicy red strawberries into his mouth and pockets with great delight and his precious image is one of my clear and happy memories...thanks for reminding me! xx

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  4. Oh what fun and such great results - it is exciting seeing that pic pop out isn't it and such a lovely compliment from Inntravel on your photographic skills: go Gillian! Your wall display looks lovely and refreshing - I'd forgotten how sweet polaroids could be. Wishing you a happy week, xoJoy

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  5. I love your photo display. I've never used a polaroid camera but they sound great fun. We too went strawberry picking this week and, I agree, it is a fantastic day out. x

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  6. I saw you Instagram feed already, and was immediately in love with the photos :-) !
    I must have missed somewhere that polaroid also started producing a new camera - and now I want it - of course :-)))) I have the fuji instax, also fun, but the photos are so small..
    I tried several times old polaroids with Impossible Project film, but I'm not happy with that film.

    And thanks for the title of your blog, now I can't get a certain song out of my head... Strawberry fields forever... ;-)))... Well, there are worse songs to have in your head !

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  7. Oooooh a Polaroid?! how exciting! It must be very addictive.
    The photos look a delight and I'm not surprised Inntravel chose you, you have a great photography style.
    Love the photo mosaic of your happy summers day.
    love Jooles x x x

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  8. strawberry picking and polaroids go well! it makes a lovely collage. They look fun, I have never taken one. You could make cards! X

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  9. What fun! The photos make a great display on the wall. Lovely to involve the children too. Strawberries, mmmmm! my favourite fruit, so evocative of summer.
    Jacqui xx

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  10. We went strawberry picking too on Saturday - but we picked blackcurrants and raspberries! great picks Jo x

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  11. I didn't know you could still get Polaroid cameras and film! Great fun.

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  12. A polaroid camera is on my "I Want" list. Now I can show hubby why.

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  13. Aw gorgeous photos. The polaroid snaps are so cute. Love strawberry picking must hurry along to our local fields x

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  14. I remember using a polaroid camera, it is such great fun and the photos are priceless. They fade with time, giving them a perfect retro look. We have the same strawberry picking tradition here, we went last week and I also made jam. x

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  15. Hey Gillian,
    The polaroid collage is great. My Dad used to have one when we were little, and I still have lots of the photos that he took with it. You reminded me of the excitement at watching the photo develop before your eyes. I had one for work once, but it was only ever used to record slip and trip injuries and raised pavements (pre digital times). I did used to take the odd sneaky picture with it, but the film was expensive.
    I must take Olly to Trevaskis Farm for some pick your own. He'd love it. One more thing to add to my list for the summer holidays.
    Leanne xx

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  16. Looks like you had a lot of fun and what an absolutely great idea!!! I still have some polaroids of me and hubby when we were young and beautiful!!! Great to see it making a come back!!! Have a fab week!!!
    Love
    AMarie

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  17. I still have a few polaroid photos taken in the 70's. I didn't realise that those cameras were still around, but you have snapped some great photos with yours.
    We take 100's, 1000's of digital photos these days, just stored on the computer or another memory drive.
    It's not the same though as reaching up to the top of the cupboard, dusting the top of the box, opening it and holding your memories in your hand.

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  18. How fun. I agree, they don't take awesome photos, but it's a fun camera to use and it's always a thrill to watch the photos develop before your eyes. What a great project to be part of, it looks like you really enjoyed yourself.

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  19. I have actually never used a Polaroid camera either. Aren't we Moms lucky that we get to have the fun with the kids while the Dad works? The little babe and I have done all of the berry picking this year.

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  20. The polaroid camera looks like so much fun, and I really like how you've displayed the prints. I used to be so good at getting my photos printed but since having kids that has all but disappeared... I really must make time to get some printed. x

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  21. I remember my dad bought one of those cameras for my mum years ago. I don't think she used it much though.
    Love the strawberry tradition you have with the little ones. I bet the jam is lovely with cream on scones.
    Lisa x

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  22. Your strawberry picking day looks like it was a lot of fun. Love how you have displayed your Polaroid snaps, they look fantastic. I remember my dad had a Polaroid camera years ago, we all thought it was so cool!
    Marianne x

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  23. Fabulous photo's and photo's of photo's!! I'm SO behind on my blog reading but huge congrats on the house/magazine feature, it all looked beautiful. Sarah xo

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  24. I remember we had use of a polaroid camera years ago. It was so exciting watching the pictures develop. I was very disappointed when I had to give it back. Looks like a lot of fun even now. I'm hoping to take the Rs berry picking this week if the weather isn't too bad!

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  25. What a wonderful outing, and how brilliant to have a polaroid camera to play with. They really are such fun. And I love seeing the pictures all together on the wall, it's a great reminder of your day. I used to love pick your own when I was little, I must try and find one to take the boys to next year. CJ xx

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  26. Bella looks so much like you in these photos. My daughter has been pestering me to go strawberry picking so I'm not going to show her this post! Lovely photos. We had a polaroid too when I was younger and I'm wondering now if it's still in my parents attic - will have to ask as I remember it being a lot of fun too. x

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  27. I like the display of all the photos together, like telling a story. Polaroids always look like such fun. Hope you ate plenty of strawberries whilst picking them!

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  28. My Dad bought my teenage daughter a Polaroid camera for Christmas and as we had one when I was younger it was a thrill for me as well. She has taken some great pictures with it but I particularly like how you have displayed yours, really effective. You can get some deals on the film but you are right, really expensive!

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  29. Oh those photos look FANTASTIC all lined up on your wall, might have to nab that idea and create a summer holiday photo montage here in the Attic when we get back from Dorset. I have a Canon Selphy printer which my camera plugs right into, it's the next best thing to a polaroid and produces fantastic printed images in glorious full colour, like postcards, at the touch of a button.
    Oh, and I see you have made a Toilet Roll Family too!!!!!!!!!!!!! Are they on your blog?
    Lucex

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  30. I love the old style of photos and they look great how you have displayed them. xo

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  31. This lovely post has reminded me of the Polaroid camera my parents had when I was growing up. I remember we got very excited everytime we used it and we took quite a few photos with it. Sadly it got broken and we never got it repaired and the film was expensive even back then. But it's nice to remember this and it's great to see all the photos you took with Angus and Bella. They look wonderful posted on your wall. Have a lovely week! x

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  32. Polaroids are great! We were given one a year or so back but sadly it was broken and we struggled to get film anyway. I'd love a working one...
    Your photos look fab on the wall and the subject matter goes well with the retro-look effect you get with the Polaroid camera.
    Sarah x

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  33. Lovely post, not far from the strawberry fields but never get round to going. Love making jam still have fruit in the fridge from last year.
    Love the photo wall..
    Amanda xx

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  34. Instant photography is magic, isn't it? Love your Polaroid picture corner and there's nothing tastier than a freshly picked sun warmed strawberry.

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  35. Fab display, can't wait to se your origarmi snaps! :) x

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  36. The Sticky gram app that let's you send for your Instagram photos as fridge magnets may be a way to keep the displays going when your film is finished? Jean

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    1. That's a great idea Jean, thank you. I've just ordered a load of instagram prints but some fridge magnets would be great fun. x

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  37. Those photos looks almost vintage don't they? What a lovely keepsake! I like using my poloroid pogo which prints out mini sticky backed photos that I use for my gardening and craft book - should probably do a blog post on that soon! Holly. x

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  38. Oh my gosh I love the Polaroids!!! They are expensive though aren't they? I know way back in the day when they were the latest technology my mom had one, now, they are still awesome technology :) I will have to price them and see how much they are, seeing your display on the wall makes me want to try something quite the same!! You really are good at decorating, everything always comes together beautifully for you. It also made me smile that you're just now picking strawberries, our first strawberry season was months ago, we have 3 growing seasons here because we are near Mexico. It just looks like you had an all around perfect day!
    I Hope the rest of your week is a great one,
    Tammy x

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  39. I love this post Gillian, picking your own fruit is always such a joy. Unfortunately, I'm old enough to remember when the Polaroid Instamatic first came onto the scene and I remember how exciting it was to be able to have instant photos, taking a snap and then waving it about in the air while it dried and developed! Enjoy that lovely jam.
    Jane x

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  40. Sounds like great fun. I remember that excitement waiting for the photo to pop out, waving it around while it developed! Although, yes, it's an expensive way to photograph in this day and age. Great for the kids though.

    S x

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