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I love Boomerangs….

Do you know what a Boomerang is? It’s a little video loop created in an app by Instagram.

It shoots a series of photos and turns them into a video clip that loops backwards or forwards depending how you set it.

The beauty of the Boomerang is it’s not like a regular video clip or even a GIF, because the action is played one way and then the other… and then repeated! So even really simple actions look cool.

This makes the app is really fun to play with. Boomerangs are fun to shoot and fun to watch.

I love shooting them with friends as they always make us giggle and I love introducing them to people who haven’t played before, as more often than not, the whole process brings out a smile.

It’s pretty simple to use. Let me show you.

Once you’ve downloaded the app, open it up.

The full screen camera opens up. You can choose front facing or “selfie” mode.

You’re looking for little movements. I find if the movement is too quick, the loop is fast and blurred.

You tap or hold the shutter button to capture the movement.

It might take a couple of tries to get it how you have envisioned. But you also might create something that hadn’t occurred to you and this might spark further ideas of how to play.

Each time you shoot, you’ll be shown a preview. You can choose to save to your camera roll or share.

Then you’re ready to shoot another one.

You can check out all the Boomerangs you’ve made by clicking the square in the bottom left corner when you’re in camera mode.

More tips for getting the most out of creating Boomerangs.

ILLUMINATE – Find good light! The app doesn’t let you adjust the exposure of the frame – Please can you make that happen Instagram??!! The better the light, the crisper your clip.

EDITING – The options are limited within the app itself. You can add a filter and trim the clip down once you’re uploading in Instagram… you could even edit together a series of Booms together if you’d like.

THE SECRET MENU – you can adjust the settings like resolution and direction of action. Once you’re in the app, tap with four fingers, four times to bring it up. It can sometimes take a few tries to bring it up…

It looks like this….

RESOLUTION – The compression that happens when you upload a video clip to Instagram, can distort it, so I tend to shoot at 720p instead of 1080p as it seems to be smoother.

PLAY – The best results come from experimenting. It takes a while to figure out what movements work and how long they should be, plus when to press the shoot button… But that’s part of the fun and what keeps me playing with it.

THE APPS ARE CONNECTED – You can add your Boomerangs to your Instagram feed direct from the app, plus you can open Boomerang from within Instagram – When in the camera mode, tap on the small logo in the bottom right corner and it will open up the Boomerang camera. So they work together in perfect harmony…

SHARING – You can add your Boom masterpieces to your feed on Instagram or in your stories. For stories – Pull down when in camera mode to reveal your camera roll from the past 24 hours. Select your Boomerang and add to your story. The most recent update (10.11.16) to Instagram, now let’s you create Boomerangs directly in your stories, which is so cool!.

COMMUNITY – Find other people sharing their Boomerangs, by checking out these hashtags on Instagram – #boomerangoftheweek #boomerangbangbang #boomerangforinstagram #boomerangoftheday #boomerangfail and something new I’d like to start #theartoftheboom (Do let me know of any more in the comments).


PLEASE NOTE – These boomerang clips have been coverted into GIFs for this post.


Written by xanthe

November 10th, 2016 at 4:34 pm


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I’m on Day 10! of the #makefilms_dailyproject… Wow.

Although I’m only sharing my films up to yesterday… as I’ve not created/shared today’s film. And besides 5 films is enough for one post, don’t you think?…

The past five days have been fun… lots has been captured in a variety of ways. If you’re interested in which camera I’m shooting on etc, I’ve added notes at the end of each post for this project.

I never expected (only hoped) that so many people would join in along with me…. The number of films being shared on Instagram keeps going up everyday! It really spurs me on to know that so many are noticing the movements around them, capturing it so beautifully and gathering stories that might not have created if it wasn’t for this project.

It’s so brilliant!! Check out the hashtag #makefilms_dailyproject to be inspired!

We’re a third of the way done. Still a fair way to go.

Gotta keep going, keep making, even something simple and quick. Just keep doing. It will be so worth it.

Now… what will I film today?…

Day five – SLOW MO TEATIME – IN BETWEEN THE CHAOS – Shot on Canon 5d3 in slow mo.

Day six - I LOVE ALL THE CHAIRS IN KIM KLASSEN’S STUDIOShot on Canon 5d3 as a stop motion.

Day seven – MINI MONDAY MOVIE – FIREWORKS, FLAMES & FUN – Shot on Canon G7x & 5D3 and iPhone 6s

Day eight – SCENES FROM THE #DISCOVERYOURSTORY PARTY – Shot on iPhone 6s using Boomerang & Hyperlapse and Canon 5d4

Day nine – MARVEL AT ALL THE COLOURS OF AUTUMN – Shot on Canon 5d3 as a stop motion.




Written by xanthe

November 10th, 2016 at 7:00 am


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Excited to announce that I’m running a mini workshop… sharing how you can make a simple stop motion film with your mobile device.

It will be happening as part of a curated pop up event being held by 91 Magazine at West Elm, Tottenham Court Road, London, to celebrate the release of their latest Autumn/Winter issue.

My stop motion workshops will be on -

Friday 18th Nov at 2pm – 3.30pm

Sunday 20th Nov at 12 – 1.30pm

You can book a place over HERE – Tickets are £25 + eventbrite fee.

There are other amazing workshops happening between 17th – 20th Nov from making ceramic decorations & paper wreaths, to photo styling, weaving & creating a wall hanging… you can find the details HERE.

Hope to see you there!



Written by xanthe

November 5th, 2016 at 7:26 pm


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It’s actually happening… 4 days into the makefilms_dailyproject and 4 films done.

Little snippets of fun.

The best bit… the bit that makes me really smile… are all the films being made and shared on Instagram. Wonderful stories and peeks into people’s lives.

Films that might not have been made if it wasn’t for this makefilms_dailyproject.

Roll on day 5!

(Another thing making me happy – the lovely Andrea and Jeanine are daily blogging this month!)

Day one – An armful of autumn – A stop motion shot on Canon 5D3

Day two – Let’s downhill – A time lapse shot on the iPhone 6s using Hyperlapse

Day three – All the pretty details of my day – Compilation film shot on iPhone 6s & Canon G7x

Day four – All the colours & fun of the Boden spring 2017 event - Compilation film shot on iPhone 6s & Canon G7x



Written by xanthe

November 4th, 2016 at 10:50 pm


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It’s November! Shall we begin?

The MAKE FILMS daily project starts today…

I will be attempting to share a film everyday and I hope you’ll join in!

The kind of film you create, is up to you…. Shoot any kind of movement you like, in any style. It’s about having fun and experimenting.

For example it could be one short clip… you can shoot in slow motion or time-lapse. You can play with the Boomerang app or create a stop motion film. Or you can shoot a Day In The Life film or Scenes From Your Weekend or any other stories using multiple clips.

You could shoot something different every day, or stick to the same format, e.g. 30 Boomerangs or 30 DITL films.

Explore the possibilities!

If you don’t think you can create something everyday, then try and do it regularly - Make your own project guidelines.

Share your films…

Joining in is simple – Use the hashtag #makefilms_dailyproject to share your film. I will be sharing on Instagram and on my blog, via Vimeo. Feel free to use your favourite platform. You’re welcome to tag me or share your films with me… I’ll do my best to check them out.

Let’s have some fun!

This is a playful personal project, so do what you can, when you can. There’s so much to be learnt from a creative daily challenge, I hope you enjoy it and make some films you love!

Can’t wait to see what you create!

Written by xanthe

November 1st, 2016 at 7:00 am


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Another month, another film for the fabulous The Sixty Second Photograph project.

Yes, it’s another story of bike rides! A familiar theme of my films of this year long project, but cycling is a big part of life right now. It’s one of the few times I get to hang out with the boys, so these are the memories I want to remember.

I love this project to push me to create something precious just for me.

Do check out the other wonderful stories being told over at The Sixty Second Photograph.

See more of my films from this project HERE.



Written by xanthe

October 31st, 2016 at 9:25 pm


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This November I’m going to do a 30 day MAKE FILMS project… and I was hoping you would join me!

For the past few years I’ve taken part in NaBloPoMo… where you blog every day during November. It’s a project that began here as a writing exercise and has evolved into photo projects, daily blog posts and people vlogging everyday – the discipline of doing something for 30 days is really good!. This year instead of blogging I thought I’d make some kind of mini film every day. Any goes, as long as it’s some kind of motion – A simple slow mo or time lapse, maybe a stop motion, or a DITL or weekend film… even a boomerang would count.

Just some kind of film, EVERY DAY. For 30 days.

I’m excited!

I know how satisfying and challenging a daily practice can be… I love a personal project with all the fun and lessons it can bring and wondered if anyone else out there would like to join me…

Starting Nov 1st… create a little clip daily. As I said… it can be a simple 5 second clip like a Boomerang (imagine how cool 30 Boomerangs would be!) or something longer like a one minute story with a collection of clips edited together. It’s up to you… It can be shared wherever you like – Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo, YouTube or your blog – I’ll be sharing mine on Instagram and here. But even if you don’t feel like sharing, there’s still so much to be gained from just doing it!

Please join in with the hashtag…

#makefilms_dailyproject so everyone joining in can see your films & share your creations with me – @xantheb so I can take a peek.

You’re welcome to sign up to this mailing list so I can see who’s on board and I can email occasional tips and inspiration to keep you on track… plus, I’ll be posting here on the blog as well.

Most of all let’s have fun with it!

(P.s If you feel like daily creation isn’t achievable for you, just join in when and where you can… no pressure… Make this project your own!)


Written by xanthe

October 25th, 2016 at 9:22 am


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Let me share with you my latest offerings for learning to create your own films…

Take a look at MAKE FILMS which begins on Tues 25th Oct.

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 films for Instagram or to share online. MAKE FILMS is packed with tips and tricks of how to make all my favourite films!

Check out the Instagram films that have been made on previous courses – over 1.5K films! or these testimonials.

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.

Creating Time Capsules starts Fri 4th Nov - this six week online course, shares all you need to know to start making family films full of memories. You’ll love watching the little details of your life, as those memories will be safely locked away into beautiful films to be viewed in years to come. We look at making films with photos & video and combining them to tell your stories!

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.

Head over here to join the fun.

Hope you’ll join me on one of these experiences!

To read more about these courses – Head over HERE.

Films shot Canon 5D3, Canon G7x & iPhone 6s


Written by xanthe

October 2nd, 2016 at 6:00 am


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The latest installment from the collaboration The Sixty Second Photograph…

I love the theme of this film because riding my bike is my happy place… and taking these early evening journeys with Cosmo fills my heart.

This film tells the story of my joy.

As always all of The Sixty Second Photograph films are breathtaking. Do take a look!

See more of my films from this project HERE.

Written by xanthe

September 29th, 2016 at 5:03 pm


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The end of August tradition continues.


I love this time away so much. Let’s ignore the fact it rained pretty much the whole time and the wind was fierce.

It’s about the tradition. And the friendships. And the food.


Written by xanthe

September 4th, 2016 at 6:09 pm

Posted in our life