Spring! You Beauty!

Whilst on my way to work, I couldn’t resist seizing the opportunity to photograph mother nature in her finest form.

Her charismatic beauty brought about the sunny weather, the warmth of the world and the beauty of colour made her boldly shine through and her vibrant and positive energy shone through.

Did you enjoy the lovely, warm and sunny Spring weather?

Please tell me. I would love to hear if you soaked in the sun and made the most of the wonderful outdoors.

Alex Smithson

Real Emotions: A True Sign of Strength.

Societies nowadays, especially now, expect you to suppress your real emotions to build an image of emotions that they expect of you.

In this case, you put on a face where you look happy to everyone else, and that you are made to look like you can make it alone, but deep down, you feel broken, torn up inside, and you feel the true pain where you have been forced to suppress your real emotions because societies want you to look strong, when in reality, you are strong, but they feel the need to nitpick and make you feel like you’re weak for showing the real emotions you were born with.

From experience of losing a family relative and two close friends of mine, I refuse to not show my real emotions as I would rather everyone know I am okay, but I’m not okay and that I’m showing real emotion rather than suppress the real emotions and bottle the emotions up.

If you want to cry, then cry. If you want to show real emotion, then show real emotion and if someone tells you to suppress your real emotions, don’t suppress your real emotions at all.

Showing your real emotions is a true sign of strength, and not a single soul can tell you otherwise.

This has taken me a lot of courage to write, and although I’m still grieving, I’m gradually getting stronger as the day goes by.

One more thing. Never suppress your real emotions, but always show your real emotions, as it’s a true sign of strength.

Alex Smithson

I Know You’re Somewhere Out There, Somewhere Far Away.

It’s been an emotional rollercoaster this week, getting through each day has been quite hard, and I was away for a whole week as I’ve been making sure to pay my respects as I lost a close friend of mine of two years last week.

I won’t make this too long-winded, but I want to take this opportunity to pay my full respects to my close friend who was an absolute inspiration to me and everyone else, and that she’ll be remembered for spreading positivity and happiness with everyone she came across.

I thought it would be wise to use this photo of the moon I produced as Bruno Mars‘ ballad, Talking to the Moon, moved me to tears but in a way where it helped me to understand and come to terms with her sudden passing at such a sudden, yet saddening time.

This week has been really emotional for me and everyone else, but with each day, I’ll get stronger. We’ll get stronger. I want to be strong for my friend and continue to get stronger and value the time me and all of you have.

I want to make the most of every opportunity to go out and make the most of the time, as going out and making the most of the time and valuing every single second is what my friend would want for me to do.

I know you’re somewhere out there, somewhere far away, but I’ll always be thinking of you in my heart, and the inspiration you gave me and everyone else.

You are and always will be greatly missed, but I shall remember you for the positivity and happiness and that you’ll always be my close friend.

Rest in peace, my dear friend.

Alex Smithson x

Who’s Going to End This Bloodshed?

Since the start of 2018, the rise in knife crime has worsened, as it’s been revealed that more than 50 lives have been lost so far, with most of the stabbings taking place in the space of this week. There were two more stabbings just a few hours ago, and there are some victims, especially the most current victims who have just been stabbed whose lives now hang in the balance.

For the current generation, they see violence as an answer to their problems by using knives, guns and acid as weapons of choice, and it’s disgraceful behaviour.

To the current generation, put down the knives, put down the guns and acid and stop hurting everyone around you.

Do you think you’re going to get anywhere by seeing violence as the only answer to your problems? No! Violence isn’t the answer to your problems, but getting a life and being able to live your life is better than losing your life.

You’re hearing this come from someone who has experienced losing someone through these kinds of means, and it’s traumatic and heartbreaking to lose someone you know who went to the same school as you, but it’s even more heartbreaking when you know you and that friend of yours were close friends at secondary school. I know how that feels, and I cannot imagine you must be worried that your life isn’t safe knowing there’s a bloodshed currently on the streets of London.

Who’s going to end this bloodshed? Only you can, so please put down your knives, put down your guns, put down the acid and stop seeing violence as the answer because it’s not the answer to your problems. Stand up, be counted and start making a difference!

A positive difference!

Alex Smithson

Reignite the Flame! Spyro the Dragon is Back!

After much hype, anticipation, rumours and a social media storm that has been talking about the iconic roast master following the success of Activision’s reboot of the original Crash Bandicoot trilogy with Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy, Spyro the Dragon is finally back to kick some butt!

Twenty years ago, Spyro the Dragon graced the PlayStation thanks to Insomniac Games bringing the purple dragon’s adventures to life, with Spyro kicking Gnasty Gnorc’s butt, defeating Ripto and making sure the Sorceress was toast! Twenty years later, and the purple dragon is back to kick butt once again!

Just like the Crash Bandicoot: N. Sane Trilogy, released last year on the 30th June for the PlayStation 4, and releasing on the 10th July to XBOX One, PC and Nintendo Switch, the Spyro Reignited Trilogy receives the true-to-form remaster treatment that recaptures the essence of the original trilogy, and the design aesthetics of Spyro, Sparx the Dragonfly and the design aesthetics of the remaster are beautiful and makes the soon-to-release remaster as promising as it can get.

Although Carlos Alazraqui isn’t returning to voice-over Spyro in the remastered version of the first game, Tom Kenny, who did the voice-over for Gateway to Glimmer (US Version: Ripto’s Rage!) and Year of the Dragon, is officially returning to voice-over Spyro the Dragon but for all three of the original games in the remastered trilogy.

Ready to kick Gnasty Gnorc, Ripto and the Sorceress’ butts once more? Hold your horses as the purple dragon arrives on PlayStation 4 and XBOX One on the 21st September!

I’m so excited the trilogy is coming back, and if you’re as excited as I feel about the trilogy returning, please tell me. I would love to hear what you’ve got to say about Spyro the Dragon returning after twenty years!

Alex Smithson

© Insomniac Games & Activision Blizzard, 1998, 2018

© The Official Art of Spyro the Dragon from the Spyro Reignited Trilogy is copyright of Activision Blizzard and Spyro the Dragon is copyright of both Insomniac Games and Activision Blizzard. Full copyright goes to the respective owners.

New Page!

I have officially published a new page for the photography series: “The Concept of Expression” as I wanted to make sure the photography series gets its own designated page.

The page details a short and brief description of what the photography series is all about and to access the page, you can now click on the drop-down menu to access the page.

The drop-down menus remain the same, and the photo-sets can be accessed as usual, but the menu: “The Concept of Expression” will now link to its own page.

The page will receive some tweaks over the course of the next few months so keep your eyes peeled for more as more photo-sets will be published and the page will receive some updates to better accommodate the photography series, as well as the models I have photographed and the models I will be photographing for the series.

I hope this helps and please feel free to suggest anything I may have missed as this can help me to tweak the page more should there be any further improvements I may need to make.

Alex Smithson

Welcome to April!

Welcome to April! As the days begin to get brighter over the next few weeks and the days lasting longer, it’s safe to say that the next few weeks will not only be busier, but the time will be a little slower than usual.

As the weather is set to improve over the next few weeks, make sure you wrap up warm if the Beast from the East returns as there is a possible chance of snow, but hopefully, if we do suddenly get a blanket of snow, hopefully the wintry weather shouldn’t last too long considering that Spring is here and the warm weather is slowly but surely returning.

As there are a very busy couple of weeks ahead, it’s safe to say I won’t be publishing as much due to work, but I’ll be trying to find the time now and then over the next few weeks to see if I can publish some articles when I get the free time available. On the plus side, as Summer is approaching, it’s safe to say that the time will fly and it will be a lot warmer than last year.

Until then, Welcome to April and have a Happy Easter!

Alex Smithson

Monthly Roundup: March 2018

What a month it has been!

I didn’t expect to publish more articles this month considering I’ve been busy mostly with work and getting a lot of stuff completed, but this month has been so good considering I’ve been travelling and going out more, and the fact I’ve been able to make the most of the free time this month by going out photographing for my photography series has made these last few weeks special.

I’ll quickly summarise the articles I published over March before this month closes its doors.

1.3.2018 – March got off to a freezing cold start as the Beast from the East impacted the United Kingdom, with Storm Emma impacting the United Kingdom almost immediately after the first ounce of snowfall.

3.3.2018 – Storm Emma impacted the United Kingdom as the Beast from the East reached its end, but the wintry weather didn’t disappear fast enough, and as such, fell on the day I finished my shift to go on annual leave for a week. “Brrrrrr…It’s a Winter Wonderland!” gave me the opportunity to take a snapshot of the winter weather whilst I waited to get the bus home considering I finished earlier than the original time my shift usually ends as my place of work closed early due to the torrential snowstorm.

8.3.2018 – Following the first photography article I published after the start of 2018, which featured my close friend, Wesley Baker (CDN), I photographed my close friend who I’ve known since secondary school, Samuel Cato.

13.3.2018 – Art and colour are full of beautiful abstracts, but it’s the abstraction of abstract art that makes art unique and interesting. “Beautiful Abstraction.” allowed me to talk in more detail about the vibrancy art brings, as well as the time and effort someone has taken to make that art piece a masterpiece.

17.3.2018 – The United Kingdom woke up to a sudden blanketing of snow and as “Snowfall Saturday” suggests, you can probably tell I didn’t expect to wake up to the snow considering the weather was nice, sunny and warm the day before.

18.3.2018 – On Snowdrop Sunday, the Beast from the East decided to blanket the United Kingdom with more snow and freezing cold temperatures.

19.3.2018 Manic Monday sure made the start of the week manic and full of chaos considering anyone like myself getting into work would be a challenge because the roads were a little icy, while the pavements were more or less clear of the snowfall. Manic Monday, which was a record by The Bangles, written by the late music legend, Prince Rogers Nelson, was what inspired me to write this article with the same name.

22.3.2018 – Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st March were wonderful days to visit Oxford Street, as the scenery was absolutely beautiful, and considering that it was nice and sunny, I seized the opportunity to photograph the landscape all of yesterday, but one of the stores that grabbed my interest the most was the Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics Store.

The smell of the store as I walked in hit me straight away and it was so welcoming, it smelt like Starburst as I walked into the store, and the fact it spanned three floors full of bath bombs, make-up and even skin care products that smelt so nice meant I was able to produce a really good set of photographs.

They even provided me with a free sample of one of their products after they allowed me to dissolve one of their bath bombs in their sink and as a random act of kindness from one of their members of staff who was intrigued by the photos I showed them yesterday, they gave me a free bath bomb, which made my day so much happier. If you missed the photo-set I produced, click on “The Lush Life of Oxford Street!

After producing the photo-set of my visit to Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics Store, I photographed my close friend, Mikey Andrews, and considering the photo-set of Oxford Street was my best work to date, the photo-set of Mikey Andrews for the photography series: “The Concept of Expression” was also my best work to date considering I was able to produce both photo-sets with much less noise in the photos, which is a first in quite some time considering a few of the photo-sets I’ve produced have been noisy and somewhat grainy.

My trip to Oxford Street ended on a perfect note as I bumped into the Olympic Diver, Tom Daley, and the Oscar-Winning Actor, Dustin Lance Black. If you missed the photo-set I produced featuring my close friend, Mikey Andrews, click here.

March has ended on a perfect note and it’s safe to say that bumping into Tom Daley and Dustin Lance Black has already become the best highlight of my year.

Thank you so much, everyone, for making March such a special month. I’ll try and publish a little more here and there if I get the time, but I’ll still be making sure to try and work on my photography series.

I’ll see you all in April, and stay safe and wrap up warm if the snow potentially hits where you are.

Alex Smithson

The Concept of Expression: Mikey Andrews

Following on from photographing my close friend, Samuel Cato, who I’ve known since secondary school, the next model I have photographed for this photography series is my close friend, Mikey Andrews.

The weather was wonderful in Oxford Street on Wednesday, and given that I visited Oxford Street on Tuesday, it gave me all the time I needed to prepare for Wednesday so I could learn the route to get from Croydon straight to Oxford Circus Station, but luckily, because the weather was wonderful and it was nice and sunny, I was able to produce these photographs with much less noise with more focus.

Mikey Andrews is a fitness coach and is an inspiration, so if you want to see his fitness pages and his website, I’ll provide them at the end of this photo-set.

Below are the photographs I produced featuring my close friend, Mikey Andrews.

I’m so happy with how these photos turned out as they turned out to be much better than I originally expected, and is probably my best photo-set to date since I started the photography series, but I’m so glad to have had the honour to photograph Mikey as he is an inspiration to me, and if you get a chance to see the hard work he’s gone to with his fitness programme, please have a look at his dedication to fitness as he’s inspired me and I’m pretty sure you’ll be inspired too.

If you feel there are any improvements I can make for next time, please feel free to comment below and if you liked this photo-set, please feel free to share this photo-set on with everyone you know.

Alex Smithson

DSLR Used: Nikon D3300

Lens Used: 18 – 55 mm NIKKOR Lens

Mikey Andrews’ Fitness Info

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MikeyAndrews_fitness-653483391502753/

WordPress: https://cyborgfitness.wordpress.com/

The Lush Life of Oxford Street!

Tuesday and Wednesday were wonderful days to visit Oxford Street, as the scenery was absolutely beautiful, and considering that it was nice and sunny, I seized the opportunity to photograph the landscape all of yesterday, but one of the stores that grabbed my interest the most was the Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics Store. The smell of the store as I walked in hit me straight away and it was so welcoming, it smelt like Starburst as I walked into the store, and the fact it spanned three floors full of bath bombs, make-up and even skin care products that smelt so nice meant I was able to produce a really good set of photographs. They even provided me with a free sample of one of their products after they allowed me to dissolve one of their bath bombs in their sink and as a random act of kindness from one of their members of staff who was intrigued by the photos I showed them yesterday, they gave me a free bath bomb, which made my day so much happier.

The staff at Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics Store are so friendly and so welcoming, and even the manager of the store is so friendly and welcoming and is a place I most certainly shall recommend to all of you as they have everything you need to offer. I’ll provide under this photo-set Lush’s social media accounts.

Below are the photographs I took yesterday of Oxford Street and the Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics Store’s products.

What really ended my day on a perfect note was when I bumped into the Olympic Diver, Tom Daley, and the Oscar-Winning Actor, Dustin Lance Black, at Tottenham Court Station just as I was heading back to Oxford Circus Station to get the train home from Oxford Street. This is a rare photo moment for me to share with you all and it’s certainly a memorable photo moment for me. They’re both so down to earth and genuine and they’re so kind, and I was so starstruck last night that Tom took the selfie for me because I was completely surprised.

Yesterday ended on a perfect note and what a perfect and happy day it was.

Please feel free to share this article with everyone you know and if you enjoyed my photo-sets of Oxford Street and Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics, please feel free to submit your responses below.

Alex Smithson

Lush’s Social Media Accounts

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lush

Google+: https://plus.google.com/+Lush

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lushltd

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/Lushcosmetics

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lush/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lushlimited/

Tumblr: https://lushltd.tumblr.com/#_=_

Vine: https://vine.co/Lush