Yesterday saw me taking a trip to Birmingham – all by myself, no small people to worry about. This in itself is of course something of a luxury and the train journey was a pleasure – all that time to sit on my own in peace! The purpose of my trip was to attend Blog Camp, a free blog conference hosted by Tots100. I’ve been to Blog Camp before so had a pretty good idea of what to expect, I wasn’t nervous in anyway just excited to spend a day with like minded people and learn some stuff along the way!
The timetable for the day was pretty packed with three or four sessions running concurrently. This always makes it difficult to pick and choose which sessions to attend but this time round I was quite pleased that there wasn’t too much in the way of clashes for me.
Pro-blogging, as defined by Penny and Becky, is basically making your living (or at least part of it) from blogging so I guess that makes me a Pro Blogger – it sounds really pretentious doesn’t it? It’s a label I’ve been nervous about giving myself but the session gave me the confidence in what I’m doing to admit that yes I’m not just playing at this. Blogging isn’t just a hobby, it is a job for me now. The session was informative and inspirational – I came away with a list of things I need to do and a clear pathway forwards in my own mind to make the most of my blog.
The power of testimonials… Definitely need to tap into that one – *adds to ‘to do’ list* #BlogCampUK
— Colette (@Lollinski) April 25, 2015
Don’t get caught up in what others have and you don’t …. <= YES! Comparison is the thief of joy #BlogCampUK @tots100— Colette (@Lollinski) April 25, 2015
Session two – Product photography with Phil
It has been a while now since Jonny came into my life (for those of you who don’t know my camera is nicknamed Jonny) and I know my photographs have improved dramatically just for his existence however I’m always keen to learn when it comes to getting the most out of my DSLR and photography in general. I was excited to see what Phil would come up with in the product photography session as it’s obviously something I do a lot with writing reviews. Phil had some really interesting slides to show us demonstrating different shots of the same item and also his set up for those pictures. A top tip from Phil for getting a more natural light effect indoors was to use a blue filter on a desk lamp – I can’t wait to try that one out! I basically came away from the session with a shopping list (which seems to be the case whenever I go to a photography workshop). So top of my wish list right now are a tripod, an extension tube and a reflector . . . I can hear Dave sighing as he reads this!
Lunch was lovely and a great chance to have a catch up with friends and meet some new faces too. If I was being a proper blogger I would of course have taken you a picture of my lunch . . . but I forgot. Whoops.
Session three – Travel writing with Kirstie
I heard Kirstie speaking about travel blogging at the last Blog Camp I attended and was really inspired by what she’d had to say. As my blog is including more and more writing about our adventures and travels I was keen to learn about writing great travel pieces from an expert in the field! What made this session great was that it was kept intentionally small so that it had more of a “workshop” feel to it allowing everyone to chat and ask questions. Kirsty gave us a great list of tips and suggestions (including making sure you try to find a story or angle for everything you write to make it stand out).
|Listening to Vicki talk about being camera ready – Photo Credit: Sally Whittle|
Session four – Being Camera Ready with Vicki
Vicki is as used to being behind the camera as she is in front of it meaning she’s perfectly placed to advise on being camera ready! Vicki really does ooze confidence and she is keen for that to rub off on the rest of us.
Session five – working with brands
The final session of the day was a question and answer panel session with Sally setting off the questions and then throwing it open to the audience. It was really interesting to hear different (and sometimes conflicting) opinions on the topics such as media kits, working for free and building relationships.
So apologies for the distinct lack of photos – not like me at all but I was just too busy listening, and tweeting!! I didn’t take a single photo all day!
Big shout outs to all the people I spoke to – both old friends and new and special love for the people who made lovely comments about my lipstick or my weight-loss! It was really appreciated!!
If you’ve never been to Blog Camp I recommend you keep an eye out for the next one!