Archive for the ‘my films’ Category


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One year ago, on this very Monday, I started the #MiniMondayMovies hashtag on Instagram by sharing the film above.

The idea of creating a 15 second film intrigued me, I wondered if it was possible to tell a story in such a short space of time.

So I started the hashtag to get into the habit of sharing a film every Monday, using footage I’d collected over the weekend. “Scenes from the weekend” was born and I loved the memories I was collecting each week… little snippets that told the story of what we, as a family, had been up to.

Some of the mini films became part of longer films… Here is the longer version of that first film -

The year-long project just flowed. The challenge of it soon diminished, when I saw the joy that each film brought me at the time and realising these were mini time capsules, just shorted versions of the films I’d been making anyway. But these were more frequent films, full of the everyday details and the ordinary adventures…. All the things I’ll really enjoy watching back in years to come.

I share more about my love of these films in this post and you can see more of my Mini Monday Movies HERE.

To celebrate the one year anniversary! and the achievement of consistently creating a mini film every week, I thought I would recreate the film that started it all. Shoot it in a similar way and in the same locations but include the subtle changes that have happened over the year.

It was a fun project to work on… There’s a longer version too…

With all the hundreds of films I’ve made, I’ve never recreated something so closely… it’s an interesting process and one I’d like to explore more of, as the concept of the Time Capsule and the changes over time, could be documented so well by doing this.

As I’m in this celebratory mood! – I’d love to give away a few places on each of my online courses – you can choose between MAKE FILMS or Creating Time Capsules starting in March.

One person for each course, chosen from here on the blog and one from Instagram (this film).

Just leave a comment letting me know your favourite part of this weekend and which course you would prefer… I’ll announce the random winners next Monday 15th…

All the best!


Written by xanthe

February 8th, 2016 at 10:06 am


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I’m currently offering two online courses, sharing how you can make your own little films -

MAKE FILMS & A Year of Creating Time Capsules.

It’s the first time two of my film-making courses are launching at the same time… I’d hoped the variety would give people a choice, as I’ve noticed over the four years of teaching online that everyone takes information on board differently.

I’ve had a few emails asking which course I would recommend first… so I thought I’d share the information here.

Both courses are suitable for all levels… from beginners wanting to get started, to people who are already making films confidently, but would like some encouragement and project ideas to continue on the path.

You can use whatever camera you like on either course – DSLR, mobile or compact… whatever you are familiar with. For the editing software – I share techniques in iMovie, but you can use other editing programs… some of the editing tips can be transferred easily. Additional equipment – tripod & remote (but not essential).

Some of the course materials cross over on both courses, for example… Creating a stop motion. In A Year of Creating Time Capsules there are step by step guides and lots of examples of Time Capsule films where I’ve used stop motion. In the MAKE FILMS course, we will focus on stop motion as one of the weekly projects… I will take you through how I create my stop motions, so you can create your own.

Let’s break down each course…


A Year of Creating Time Capsules is the year long version of my original six week course Creating Time Capsules. During 2015 over 500 films were lovingly put together as part of the course. Those memories are safely locked away into beautiful films to be viewed in years to come. With the goal of one film a month, this course is about making films all year long – a gentle nudge to create often, so you can have some wonderful memories of 2016.

The course materials will guide you through shooting tips, tons of project ideas for inspiration and bite sized tutorials showing you the editing process in iMovie.

This course is for those people who want to make regular films of their life and family times… Be part of community all committed to telling their stories and you’ll have access to me to ask questions.

You can create films of any subject or any length. There is no set schedule to follow, you create at your own pace. I will offer monthly project ideas and share what I’m working on with a behind the scenes look at my process.

For all the details head over HERE. This course has begun and registration will remain open till mid January.

Some examples of films you could create – One Minute Memories, Random Happenings or Day In The Life films.




MAKE FILMS is a brand new course! I’ve been busy creating this new offering based on all the films I’ve been sharing on Instagram.

With weekly prompts and inspiration, this 10 week course will look at different shooting & editing techniques, and the various stories you can tell through making 15 second films for Instagram or one minute films to share online. It’s going to be packed with tips and tricks of how to make all my favourite films! We’ll concentrate a different type of film each week, from stop motions, time lapses, slow mo stories, scenes from the weekend films… to simply shooting interesting footage to edit into little films.

Even though the focus will be on mini Instagram films, you can share these films anywhere and make them longer than 15 secs.

There is a schedule – The new project or weekly inspiration will be shared in my online learning space every Tuesday… you then have all week to create your project and share it on a Monday with the course community on Instagram.

This course isn’t just about family or personal films. You can use the films to promote your business or brand e.g. make stop motions of your stationery products or time lapses of your surroundings or mini films of your events. There is so much scope for telling stories through film.

All the details are HERE. The course starts Tues 12th January!

Some examples of films you could create - Stop motions, Time lapses, Scenes From The Weekend films, Slow mo stories & Mini Day In The Life films.

So which course DO I recommend?

Both courses offer a similar outline with what’s available to learn – especially the shooting tips and editing guidance. The project ideas are slightly different as you can see from the examples.

So really it’s a personal preference…

Ask yourself… how much time do you have to devote to creating films? What kind of films would you like to make? How would you like to share them? Do you have something specific you’d like to learn? What stories or content is available for you to capture?

I think by answering these questions the right course will reveal itself to you… Come and join in the fun!


If you’ve got any more questions… leave a comment here or contact me.

Happy New Year! I’m easing into 2016 but I’m so excited about all of films we’re going to create.






Written by xanthe

January 4th, 2016 at 2:41 pm


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There’s a lot of excitement about Christmas coming soon… especially from this one. I have a feeling it might be the last one with this level of anticipation.

Our weekend looked like this…

Let me announce the winners for this giveaway winners for a spot on MAKE FILMS starting in January.

Picked randomly…

On the blog – Marian Needham & on my Instagram post – @littlejampotlife

I’ll be in touch later today with the details you need.

For more information about my online courses… head over HERE.


Written by xanthe

December 21st, 2015 at 6:57 am


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All year I’ve been meaning to make a film using just one second clips… I kinda do it with my Mini Monday Movies as most of the clips are between 1-3 seconds. But I wanted to cut a whole film together with that one second pace… although there are some fabulous apps that do it all for you.

I’ve filmed tons this year… what with making weekly weekend films, adventures here and there and a couple of Day In The Life weeks… there’s a lot of footage that goes unseen.

Then there’s the footage that’s goes unloved, because it’s out of focus, not quite enough “action”, or is pushed aside because another bit of footage tells the story better…

These pieces are still beautiful in my eyes… they’re almost like the in-between moments, the pause to look at the scenery… the smile I missed at the end of the clip.

So I thought these unseen clips would be great for the one second concept. I gathered the snippets together… yes, it’s time consuming… but worth it. And the editing is easy peasy… grab a one second section, then another, and another… and keep going till you’re up to two minutes (ish).

Putting it together was a bit like making a slideshow of photos, except these photos were moving. They reminded me of postcards – look at this beach, hilltop or field of grass and they were packed with memories, even in a one second burst. That smile in the sunshine, the wind in my hair, a cup of tea or another beautiful spoon carved.

So this film became an album of memory postcards… blurred and bit tattered on the edges, but full to the brim with goodness.

I love it. This initially unloved footage would’ve been left on the cutting room floor, but here it can shine and evoke the memories of our year.

This will be my December film for 2015 as part of my year long course A Year of Creating Time Capsules. There’s a bumper post coming up with all the films this year… stay tuned.

A Year of Creating Time Capsules has started today and registration will remain open till mid January for those wanting to start after the holidays… although I’m going to show how to make this film during December as either an archive film like mine… or something to collect festive memories.

It’s a great course to really explore all the different types of family films you can create and start making them regularly… so you’ll have some wonderful stories to look back on at the end of 2016.

All the details are over HERE. Will you join us?



Written by xanthe

December 16th, 2015 at 3:11 pm


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Creating Mini Time Capsule films to share on my Instagram feed, began in February this year.

Previously, I’d been sharing video clips on Instagram of slow mo walking and time lapse fun. But I wanted a way of sharing the kinda films I’d been making of my family and maybe encourage people taking my courses to join in.

It all started as I gathered some footage for a Random Happenings film, but I wasn’t that happy with all the footage. But there were a few clips I liked. So I experimented with putting together a 15 sec mini film of my favourite clips. Surprisingly I really liked it, as you could actually tell a story in that short amount of time.

Also, I realised this kinda film was quicker to shoot and edit… but still contained all of the feelings to transport me back to that time.

I was in love!

So the #MiniMondayMovies hashtag was born.

The idea was simple – Gather snippets of footage over the weekend… Clips that represent the things I/we did. Then string together between 5 to 8 clips into a 15 second film. Voila!

I usually edit it on a Sunday evening when I’d possibly be just slumped on the sofa… it doesn’t take long if I already have the music chosen.

So I now have nearly a years worth of weekend films saved to look back on. Which makes me really happy…

Rather wonderfully, through my #minimondaymovies hashtag other brilliant people have been joining in. So many interesting lives all around the world.

If you’re inspired to make your own mini weekend films, it will be one of the projects we’ll be making during my MAKE FILMS course. The course starts in January… Maybe you’d like to join in? or enter the giveaway above…

Happy Monday.


How about a giveaway? Two places to take part in MAKE FILMS… One person chosen from here on the blog and one from Instagram (this film).

Just leave a comment letting me know your favourite part of this weekend… I’ll announce the random winners to join MAKE FILMS next Monday 21st…

Written by xanthe

December 14th, 2015 at 7:15 am


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I’ve been reminiscing again…

This time looking at 12.12.12… it’s the 12th tomorrow!! these films were made only three years ago… but feels like WAY longer…

I literally just finished watching all of these, as I’m putting them into my new course space for the 2016 round of A YEAR OF CREATING TIME CAPSULES starting next week.

These films are a complete joy to me… those boys, I remember them like this of course, but they’re SO different now… not just the teeth and size of them, but also the little people they were… is so different to who they are now. I doubt I’d be able to get them to dance in front of the camera now!.

What a blessing to have this record of life on that day. I can’t stop smiling!

In fact, so much is different… the little things in the background that made up our life then, have changed… our home, our routine, our sofa, our car, our work, our activities… the list goes on. But they are preserved here.

I had another post scheduled to announce the winners of my giveaway… but I had to share these instead because they represent everything that a Time Capsule film should be.

A gift for the future.

What a pleasure it’s been transporting myself back to 2012.

Now… on to the winners… Picked randomly…

On the blog – Mel Whibley & on my Instagram post – themonsterandme

I’ll be in touch with the details you need.


If you didn’t get picked, don’t fret yet… I’ll be doing another giveaway on Monday for a couple of places on MAKE FILMS starting in January… stay tuned.

But there’s still time to join A YEAR OF CREATING TIME CAPSULES if you’d like to create some films to be your gift for the future…

The course starts on Wednesday 16th Dec… with registration remaining open till mid January for those wanting to start in the new year. I hope you’ll join us.

Written by xanthe

December 11th, 2015 at 1:33 pm


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This time last year I made this film… it’s one of my favourite Time Capsule films I’ve ever made.

It was totally spontaneous… woke up on that Saturday and decided to film the day. The weather was gorgeous… so that helped… and it was the start of my love affair with slow motion sequences in my films.

And of course… all my boys are in it.

I adored the film at the time… but I love it even more now. A year later. It’s such a good representation of the end of 2014. When I watch it… I FEEL everything.

I’ve been putting together a blog post, with some films I made in 2015… this will mark the end of the A Year of Creating Time Capsules – 2015 course, but I wanted to highlight this film… because it was the first film I shared when the course began.

Every month or so, as part of the course, I would share my editing process and thoughts behind the film I’d been creating.

Would you like to see behind the scenes, in iMovie, of the film above?

It gives a flavour of why and how I edited this film. People taking the course loved watching these, it’s great to see how other people approach creating a project and understanding why they use certain clips of footage and where.

If you enjoyed getting a peek into my process and would like to spend 2016 creating your own films…

A Year of Creating Time Capsules 2016 begins on 16th December – with registration open till the end of January for those wanting to start at the beginning of the year.

I share how you can capture your moments, edit them together to keep them forever… There will be all the materials from my original Time Capsule film course, plus monthly encouragement to create regularly, more behind the scenes tutorials and a community all sharing their films. We can make more films together… inspiring each other along the way.

I know not everyone has the means to take part, so I’m launching a giveaway for TWO places – one place by leaving a comment here on the blog & one place by leaving a comment on my Instagram feed (this film)…

Let me know what you would like to capture in a Time Capsule film next year.

I will announce the random winners on Fri 11th Dec – All the best!


For more details about my courses running in 2016 – Check out this blog post or head over HERE.




Written by xanthe

December 3rd, 2015 at 3:03 pm


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The Sisterhood Camp supper happened a couple of weeks ago in Bristol… at the new opened The Forge.

Rather fortunately I was able to watch the whole event come together. From the preparation of lush greenery, to the laying of the table, witnessing workshops and then sitting down to the feast of yumminess.

Hopefully this film gives you a flavour of what happened and what it felt like to be there.

Thanks to Lou Archell for bringing it all together and inviting me to tell the story.

There are more events planned for 2016… I can’t wait.


During November, I’m taking part in a month long blogging challenge - leaving a few words or photos or films here everyday – #NaPhoPoMo

Some of my friends are taking part - Kim :: Karen :: Andrea :: Jeanine :: Barb :: Kelly :: Bella :: Pen – If you’re joining in, please leave your URL so I can add you to my list – Thanks! :: Cassandra :: Mascaraandmud :: Sara :: Dorry



Written by xanthe

November 29th, 2015 at 8:16 pm


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When I begin to create a stop motion, I take a photo with my hand in, as a marker… kinda like the clapper board is used to mark the beginning of a scene in a film. It lets me know which is the first photo in the sequence when I’m editing the photos…

Recently, I was looking through a few of my stop motion creations, as I’m getting materials together for my new course MAKE FILMS and I thought all the hand photos looked kinda cool together…

Super colourful and as you can see… I love a good manicure!

If you’d like to learn how I create stop motions and all the other films I share here and on my instagram – check out my online course MAKE FILMS starting in January!

Here are a few before photos… and the finished stop motion.

Enjoy… Happy Friday!

Addicted to autumn leaves.

My favourite toy collection.

Hello spring yellow.

Kim Klassen’s amazing scissors collection.

Addicted to blossom.

That halloween feeling.

Give me some shade please.

Teatime while camping.



During November, I’m taking part in a month long blogging challenge - leaving a few words or photos or films here everyday – #NaPhoPoMo

Some of my friends are taking part - Kim :: Karen :: Andrea :: Jeanine :: Barb :: Kelly :: Bella :: Pen – If you’re joining in, please leave your URL so I can add you to my list – Thanks! :: Cassandra :: Mascaraandmud :: Sara :: Dorry

Written by xanthe

November 27th, 2015 at 11:06 am


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It wasn’t the most exciting weekend over here… How about you?

Even when I think there’s nothing worth documenting… there are still snippets worth filling the frame with and making a film.

Saturday was continuing with the clean up mission at home… feels good to be getting things organised… and dusted. Oh and it snowed! for a few minutes…

Then on Sunday all four of us headed out to Covent Garden, which was looking and feeling very festive.

Sometimes uneventful weekends are just what you need.

Feeling inspired to make your own films? I’ve got a couple of online courses coming up…

Creating the mini version of the film above will be one of the projects we’ll make during MAKE FILMS – I’ll share all you need to know… from my favourite angles and compositions to use… to editing it together into a 15 second film for Instagram… (or a one minute film). Plus, there will be lots more film projects to make in this 10 week course… stop motions, slow mo fun and time lapses.

Read more about MAKE FILMS here.

If you’d like to explore making films of your life and family throughout 2016… then A Year of Creating Time Capsules might be for you. With the goal of one film a month, there’ll be the chance to tell your stories and gather the memories of family life to be treasured for years to come. Imagine being able to look back at your year with all these memories preserved. I did it 2013 & 2014… and I’ve nearly completed 2015… I know each film is a gift… and I’ll show you how you can create your own magic films.

Read more about A Year of Creating Time Capsules here.

I hope you’ll join me on one of these creative journeys… they’re going to be so much fun!


During November, I’m taking part in a month long blogging challenge - leaving a few words or photos or films here everyday – #NaPhoPoMo

Some of my friends are taking part - Kim :: Karen :: Andrea :: Jeanine :: Barb :: Kelly :: Bella :: - If you’re joining in, please leave your URL so I can add you to my list – Thanks! :: Cassandra :: Mascaraandmud :: Sara :: Dorry


Written by xanthe

November 23rd, 2015 at 10:20 am