Friday, 27 May 2011

College Stand Down

So, today was my last official day at college. I don't really have much to comment about the day, but it was a lot less emotional than I thought it would be– perhaps because we haven't really finished college, we all still have to go in for exams.

Beth and I sat together during mass (I go to a Catholic college) and, afterwards, we all went outside to release balloons which are supposed to represent our collective hopes and dreams– or something equally cheesy and ridiculous. It made for a good photo opportunity though, so it all worked out for the best:

Ben starting to wave before releasing the balloons.

After the balloon releasing, Ben came down to meet us (because we didn't have chance to see him much before then), and we also found Lauren within the throng of people. We then proceeded to get our first ever photo together:

L-R: A cow, Lauren, a moustachio-ed fellow, Ben, Beth, two very-much-alive dinosaurs, me.

Once a few photos were taken, we went back inside for the leaver's assembly and, since I already had my camera out, I thought it'd be a great opportunity to do a bit of freelensing... typically.
I think this is my favourite of the three that I took.

After clapping for so long that my hands stung, the assembly reminisced about the last two years of college and celebrated people's achievements within that time. It was heart-warming but not overly emotional, which I was happy about.

Once the reminiscing subsided, we all scuttled out and ended up outside, with Ben showing off his morris dancing skills– because he actually does morris dancing, complete with bells and wooden stick. He tried– and failed– to pass on his dancing ability to Lauren, but it didn't matter and they had a pretend sword fight instead. We gathered together and took even more photos:

(My favourite photo ever. It's such a shame Lauren isn't in it. D: )

We proceeded to go to the pub for a few pints, which was nice (even though I'm underage but shhhh, don't tell anyone).

Lauren and I left the pub and we both got a hug from a guy we've known for a year and have never even touched before. He had his face painted blue and some of it ended up on my face.

Overall, an amazing day. I have nothing much else to say. :)

Although, I have already managed to cross one thing off of my list– I now have photos of both Beth and Ben. If you're to look through my photos, it looks like they didn't exist until the last day of college, despite us being friends for over a year and a half.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

New Camera! :)

I know that, from the title, it appears that this post would be more suited to my photography blog but I decided that I would post it here because it's not just about the camera in this case.
Just for reference, here is a (particularly badly edited) photo of said camera:

It's the body of a film Canon EOS 500 SLR. Now, most people would be like "whatever, big deal, I can buy one from ebay for about a fiver" but this camera does have some sort of significance, maybe not to me but to the person who gave me it.

This was a gift from my form tutor, Mr Davies. He's been my form tutor at college for two years and, after tomorrow, I will no longer have tutorial at all. We (everyone in my form) had one to one interviews with our form tutor so he can write decent references for us all and, during mine, we (Mr Davies and I) got talking about photography and I mentioned that I was getting a film SLR camera body for my birthday– I neglected to tell him that my mother had already bought me one. He then preceded to tell me that he owned a film SLR that he used to use for years but was trying to get rid of it. He tried to give it to his father (who is a semi-professional photographer) but he didn't want it. Then Mr Davies, very kindly, offered to give it to me free of charge.

I can't use it yet since I haven't got batteries, film or a lens for it– all of which I'm getting for my birthday. I can just imagine all of the memories he has attached to this little piece of technology and I hope to also attach my own memories as well and, maybe when I've finished with it, I can pass it on to someone else and give them the gift of film photography.

Plus, giving me this, I will now always have a reminder of my college years and, in particular, of my form tutor– something that can comfort me when I move away for university and everything is strange and unfamiliar.

And now I'd like to present to you, my form tutor, Mr Davies busking in his hometown (because he's also a talented musician):

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

A List of Life Ambitions

I was flicking through Stylist magazine earlier (a free magazine that acts as the 'girl's' version of Shortlist magazine– personally, I prefer Shortlist, but I digress) and I came upon an article about this year's Cannes film festival and it made me think how amazing it would be to actually attend an event as huge and mind-blowing as that– especially seen as I'm already a massive fan of film. From this, I decided that I should write a list of all the things I'd like to achieve, things I'd love to do, and things that I certainly will do in due course. I can then come back to this post and add extras and mark things that I've managed to achieve within my life.
So, here we go. I must stress that this list is in no particular order, it's not in chronological order or by order of importance, it's just the order my brain decides upon.

1. Go to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival
2. Travel to America
3. Go to Australia and visit all the 'Big Things' they have purposefully built there
4. Attend a film festival
5. Learn how to develop film
6. Go to University and get a degree
7. Get a job
8. Get a job that I love
9. Move away from home
10. Get my first boyfriend
11. Lose my virginity
12. Get a photography pass for a concert
13. Go to Leeds Fest with Lauren, parent-free
14. Meet the members of Bowling For Soup
15. See Carl Donnelly live
16. Go to Ireland
17. Turn 18
18. Have my first night out
19. Pass my A-levels
20. Get rid of my verrucas
21. Make a short film
22. Get a photo containing Beth and Ben
23. Complete Pokemon Red for the Gameboy Colour
24. Host a Christmas dinner
25. Decorate my first flat
26. Learn to drive
27. Work at a radio station
28. Finish reading all the books I currently own
29. Keep a diary for a year
30. Learn to play an instrument

I think I'm going to leave the list at thirty for now, but some (such as the turning 18 one) will be accomplished soon. This is probably a really boring list but never mind. :)

Existential Self-Doubt Moments in Life

I've been listening to a lot of Dave Gorman's podcasts recently and, at the end of each show, he has a feature called his 'favourite existential self-doubt moment of the week' and, since listening, I've noticed these moments cropping up frequently. They may not be exclusively existential self-doubts, but self-doubts nonetheless. And I've decided that sharing some of these might make a nice, less awkward warm-up before this blog gets fully underway and becomes an awkward-free zone.
These are just 2 that I experienced yesterday:

1. I was using my webcam and, like most webcams, it was delayed. Usually, as anyone who has ever used one will know, they're only delayed by a few seconds. However, mine was delayed by about 30 seconds and it was frustrating me. I kept closing and reopening the webcam software but it didn't make a difference. After about 3 minutes, I started to panic a little bit and I started to think that maybe, just maybe, what I was seeing on the webcam was happening in the present and that perhaps I was 30 seconds in the future, watching my present self, and I shouldn't be angry with the webcam for being slow but rather I should be patient and wait for my present self to catch up to my future self.

I realised about 5 minutes later that I was being an idiot and shut my computer down.

2. I was on the bus, looking out of the window, and I noticed that something was smudged on the window- something that looked a bit like an apple, complete with pips. Largely trying to ignore the filthy window, I carried on staring out of the window and people-watching– as I am one to do– but I noticed after a few minutes that my vision was blurry, which I put down to it being half 7 in the morning and me still being tired. After blinking and rubbing my eyes several times, the blurring refused to subside. I waited and in 5 minutes my vision still hadn't cleared , at which point I was starting to convince myself that I had an early onset of cataracts– at the age of 17.
It was only after 10 minutes that I remembered the window was dirty. This happened 3 times.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Awkward Introductory Post

Hello there. Welcome. Would you like a cup of tea? No? Okay then, let's begin with the introductions.

My name is Natalie and I'm 17 years old. I live in the UK, which is fun but it's rather wet and windy at the moment. I don't really have any interesting things to say in these introductory posts but I'm going to attempt to carry this on anyway.

I'm currently at college, studying frantically to try and pass my A-levels and get into university. Okay, maybe not 'frantically', but I am actually revising. At a steady pace. Semi-frequently.

I've already ran out of things to say so I'm going to cut this short.

New, less awkward post to follow tomorrow.