Tag Archives: The Blogcademy

Spending my Birthday at the Los Angeles Blogcademy

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After a blissful few days in Portland, it was time to hit the road and fly down to Los Angeles for the next stop on The Blogcademy world tour. I’m not gonna lie, I’ve visited LA once before and didn’t really fall in love with it, but I was looking forward to experiencing it with my girls and seeing if my mind could be changed. I mean obviously the weather made it much more bearable, it was a scorching 25 degrees a lot of the time which was rather blissful, especially when hearing that it was snowing heavily at home!

The thing that drives me crazy about LA is all the damn driving. The city is so spread out that if you’re car-less (as we were) and in the wrong neighbourhood you’re a bit screwed. Luckily we discovered an amazing ride sharing service call Lyft and we stayed in a loft just in the heart of Hollywood, right in the middle of the action. Although it was noisy at the weekends, it was the perfect location for us as it was just a short car ride to our workshop space, McCaddenSpace Studio.

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Unlike a lot of LA, there were also plenty of things to do in our neighbourhood that were walking distance. Gala & I quickly became obsessed with the juice bar that turned me into a green juice addict and all three of us agreed that Tender Greens needs to move to our respective cities, like, now. There was a Frog frozen yoghurt stop (yes, the same chain as Snog here in the UK!) and an Urban Outfitters where we stocked up on all our rainbow film!

The workshop fell on my birthday weekend and I was excited to spend it with some many inspiring babes. They spoilt me with unicorns, flowers and yummy cakes!

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Keep Portland Weird: The Blogcademy Recap

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After a solo long haul flight, an epic Q&A livestream and a whistle stop tour around Portland’s least reputable establishments, I barely had time to catch my breath and it was time for the next leg of The Blogcademy World Tour. Portland is a weird little town, but one I felt an instant affinity with. I loved all the independent stores selling all manner of crazy creations, and the candy-coloured houses and walls obviously made my little heart sing!

Over Easter weekend Gala, Shauna and I descended on The Ace Hotel, in the downtown area of the city. With our photography BFFs and Auntie Nubs (Shauna’s Aunt and our trusty assistant for the weekend) in tow, we were ready to meet a new crop of Blogcadettes and to teach up a storm.

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I’m always nervous before a workshop, but as usual the babes that attended were nothing but sweet, inspiring and amazing. Within minutes of meeting them all my wobbles subsided and we were laughing, getting to know all about each other and quickly becoming instant best friends. We were blessed with students who had travelled far and wide to attend, but extra special props must go to our scholarship winner, Jessica, who came all the way from Arkensas on her own. She’d never even been on an areoplane before and she came all that way – what a babe!

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I love this photo because it totally looks like I’m thinking “damn I hate these bitches!” but really, that’s just my “I’m literally the best dancer ever” face!

Of course The Blogcademy would never be possible without our amazing sponsors. Let’s give them some LOVE shall we?

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Fun With Film & Rainbows

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I love old film cameras. There’s something so innocently wonderful about having a tangible and imperfect photograph to hold in your hand. In this hyper digital age, I think we’ve all been so quick to forget that unadulterated joy of taking your rolls of 35mm to the developers and waiting with baited breath to get the prints. They didn’t always turn out, but that was weirdly part of the appeal. When you did get that one perfect shot, without previews on the back of the camera or Photoshop wizardry to help, it was utterly magnificent.

I wish I took more photographs. But when you’re working at home most of the time, with your main entertainment being your cats or a weekly trip to the supermarket (oh the glamour) it can be difficult to see fun or beautiful things that you might want to capture. However, when I was in the US recently I decided to indulge my passion and have a little play around with some new toys.

Film might be amazing, but combine it with rainbows and you’ve got me. Bad.

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The Ace Hotel is… er… Ace!

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Booking a hotel as your wedding venue is no longer the number one choice for engaged couples. The bland conference-style rooms, the package deals and the dodgy carpet have fallen out of favour, and somewhere with more personality, where they can really put their own stamp on their day, has taken it’s place. In many instances this bad rep is understandable. I’ve visited more soulless and lacklustre hotel wedding venues charging extortionate rates than I’d care to admit. Luckily these days, brides & grooms seem to be quickly realising that they don’t have to go with a traditional wedding venue, and smaller spaces like studios, pubs, restaurants and galleries are getting more of a look in.

In saying all that, I’m always happy to be proven wrong, and in this debate the Ace Hotel was the place to do it.

We’d booked The Ace’s event space, The Cleaners, for the Portland leg of The Blogcademy. In fact as soon as we’d decided that our next destination was to be Shauna’s home town she insisted that we used them – and only them – as our venue! And after spending the weekend there, I can see why.

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The Ace has a cool, laid back vibe. The décor is quirky and industrial but the rooms are cosy and comfortable. There’s a vintage photo booth in the lobby and the famous Stumptown Coffee is right next door. As you can imagine we used and abused both these facilities mercilessly!

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Offline

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It’s getting to be quite the regular occurrence for me when I’m travelling. Every time I return home after some far flung adventure, I start to daydream about the benefits of spending less time online and more time, you know, actually out living my life. I don’t know if it’s the sunshine, spending so much time with friends or all the new experiences, but I always land at Heathrow with a surge of ambition to spend more time away from the artificial glare of my computer screen.

Never has this been so prevalent than during my latest trip to The States, which I returned home from yesterday. Ironic really, as I was there to teach a workshop on how to be successful online. Despite that fact Gala, Shauna & I spent a disproportionate amount of time discussing the benefits of cutting our time glued to a screen. On one day we even spent an afternoon with an ex-fashion blogger who had recently decided to curb her online addiction. She had pretty much decided to quit blogging and most social media completely and so obviously she had a lot to say on the subject. While her reasons for wanting to completely unplug were very different to what mine might be, chatting through the idea with her did make me strongly evaluate just how much time I spend on my computer, how often I check my phone and why I can’t seem to stop the aimless – and constant – browsing for distractions.

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The Blogcademy: Live in your Living Room…

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The Blogcademy online Q&A session is starting at 1pm PST / 4pm EST / 8pm GMT today. Sign up below for the bargain price of $7 to watch and participate in the action. If you can’t tune in live, don’t worry, your ticket will give you access to a recording of the action forever. Signing up is easy – just press the orange button!

However I do have to warn you, I only got into Portland late last night so I’m pretty darn jet-lagged… it may not be a pretty sight but maybe seeing that is worth the $7 in itself!? Thank God I have Gala & Shauna to keep me awake and excited. See you there my pretties, and don’t forget – this is your chance to grill us and to ask us all those difficult questions! Either pipe up during the livestream or tweet them to us in advance.

EDIT: The livestream has now taken place but you can still sign up and watch a recording of our shenanigans below!