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Choosing the right photographer to take images of you and your business is by no means easy, especially when there are 100s of photographers with different styles and approaches and that's just Kent! A good photographer will take a clear picture that you will be happy...

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NEW

Support Local Magazine: Celebrating Women In Business Feature.

My Story  Its not every day you are asked to be featured in a magazine like Support Local that champions small businesses and celebrates the brilliant and successful women that run them. I am going to use this opportunity to speak about my personal journey, the highs...

5 Benefits of a professional headshot with Cindy

Choosing the right photographer to take images of you and your business is by no means easy, especially when there are 100s of photographers with different styles and approaches and that's just Kent! A good photographer will take a clear picture that you will be happy...

Equine photography in Kent

Now offering a new photography service: Capturing the bond between horse and rider. My earliest memory of horses was going to the New Forest as a child, I thought it was a magical place and I fell under its spell. Growing up I did not have the opportunity to have...

Let’s collaborate!

Collaboration  Definition from The Oxford Dictionary: The act of working with another person or group of people to create or produce something WONDERFUL  (I added the wonderful!).   I think it’s safe to say 2020 was a difficult and testing year for many...

Black Creativity

I have grown up admiring creatives from all different backgrounds and ethnicities from Andy Warhol, David Hockney and Madonna to salt n pepper, Jimi Hendrix and Marilyn Monroe. I have danced to their music, studied their art and enjoyed watching them, they have shaped...

Beautiful one of a kind postcards for sale

The beauty of Kent and it's stunning flora and fauna lovingly captured on a postcard for you to enjoy or give as a special gift. These one of a kind images also look wonderful framed as they are printed on high quality, recycled paper.   Each picture Is...

Mental Health Fundraising

I have done a collection of mini garden photoshoots (social distancing of course) to raise money for Mind UK, a magnificent charity that means a lot to my family and I’m sure to many of you, especial now during these times of uncertainty. This is what I discovered...

Food Photography

A quick word from me, every so often I will use one of my blogs to introduce you to who else I admire in photography or creative industries. Today its Severien Vits, a friend and fellow photographer, although in a different photographic area, we share a common love...

Street Photography

So I mentioned in my About Me page that I am practicing my street photography skills, this is an area of photography that takes me well out of my comfort zone. The fear of asking someone and them saying no, or even saying yes and then having to take a shot quickly...

Thought provoking photos

My house is filled with photography books and as I studied this wonderful art I came across a few thought provoking pictures. I love photos that make you feel a little uncomfortable, sad or just angry, pictures you can’t take your eyes off but you’re not sure why,...

Ecotherapy is the practice of using nature to improve mental and emotional wellbeing. We will all go through tough times in our lives and periods of uncertainty, even more so now when we are having to follow social distancing as this only heightens our emotions.

Mental health is of growing concern and while it is upsetting that the figures continue to rise with people suffering, it’s of great comfort that it is now taken more seriously and openly discussed without shame or stigma.

Everyone will have a different experience of lockdown during Coronavirus and have their own ways of getting through. I’m blessed to have my boys and husband with me but I have to say its been a rocky ride with homeschooling, constant bickering and fear of anyone I love getting infected.

This is when I went onto the Mind UK website and came across Ecotherapy, I fell in love with the convenience of being able to step outside and find therapy for when I’m feeling anxious.

Being a photographer, I used photography as a creative outlet and paired it with the beauty of my surroundings. The idea is to not capture what I would normally, but to pay closer attention to the little things, and not just visually but the sounds and smells of nature and really take it all in. Fresh air cleanses the soul and reminds me of how much to be thankful for.

Now I always take my camera on our little strolls; I have noticed so many things that I would normally walk by without a second glance. I now pay attention to the abstract patterns in tree trunks, I look up more to the blue sky peeping thorough the pastel blossom on tree, I’m not sure why moss makes me think of a fairy gardens though?!

By observing the beauty of the outside world, it takes my mind off what negativity may be going on inside.

My passion is portraiture but right now nature is essential, it’s incredible, spiritual and ours to love, treasure and take care of.

I have put together a list of things that you can do under the umbrella term of Ecotherapy and links to Local activities and charities practicing the holistic benefits of this:

  1. Go for a walk.

Whether in your garden, down the street, or in the closest park.

  1. Sit outside and breathe and take in scents of nature.

What smells can you pick up wafting gently in the air? Rosemary? Rose? Lavender? Nature is an incredible aromatherapist.

  1. Walk on grass with your bare feet.

Find a clean patch of grass, and let your feet feel the ground.

  1. Sit under a tree (or hug it if you are brave).

Yes, I know this sounds a bit hippy, simply sitting with your back against a tree is an effective way to get back in touch with yourself.

  1. Go bird-spotting.

How many birds or butterfly can you name?

  1. Go collecting.

If you live near the ocean or near a woodland get creative and go on the lookout for beautiful natural trinkets, you could collect them for an art project?

  1. Look up at the sky or look out over a lake or pond.

The sky and water are some of the most soothing aspects of nature. The sky is so vast, when I look up I feel so small in the grand scheme of things and sometimes so do my worries.

  1. Plant a small garden.

Nurturing and tending to life is immensely soothing and rewarding. You could choose to plant flowers, herbs, vegetables or fruit.

  1. Take a camera with you.

Use your time in nature to free your inner artist, nature offers numerous scenes of beauty.

  1. Collect flowers.

Collect and press flowers by flattening them out in a heavy book. You could use them for hand-made cards or any project.

Just a quick note – Ecotherapy is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, medical treatment or therapy, but I believe it can be a beneficial help to your wellbeing.

 Links

West Kent Mind, Let’s Grow’ allotment project: Tending to the vegetables and flowers, playing with wood, monitoring the wildlife, and creating a positive and supportive space.

https://westkentmind.org.uk/what-we-offer/allotment-project

 West Kent Mind, Take Root project: This programme is designed to help people improve health and wellbeing by connecting them to their community and with nature, by taking part in conservation-based programmes, walks and workshops.

https://westkentmind.org.uk/what-we-offer/take-root

 Information on formal ecotherapy programmes, and where to find out more:

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/tips-for-everyday-living/nature-and-mental-health/about-ecotherapy-programmes/

 The Conservation Volunteers: Runs a network of Green Gyms across the UK.

https://www.tcv.org.uk/

 Grow Wild UK: Kew Gardens outreach initiative that aims to bring people together to enjoy wildflowers and nature.

https://www.growwilduk.com/

 Thrive: Charity that runs gardening projects for people with mental health problems:

https://www.thrive.org.uk/

 National Garden Scheme: Lists gardens and walks open to the public across England and Wales.

https://ngs.org.uk/

 Bumblebee Conservation Trust: Aims to protect and raise awareness of bumblebees.

https://www.bumblebeeconservation.org/