I thought I’d share something a bit different today with a video of scenes from the weekend! It’s pretty much what happens when we have a relaxing weekend in London (with a bit of creative direction! 😉 )

MAKE FILMS – SCENES FROM THE WEEKEND – 20/21 MAY 2017 from Laura Pritchard on Vimeo.

This is the first video from the Make Films course I’m taking part in, which is run by the fabulously creative Xanthe.

I love the films Xanthe shares on Instagram and have long been and admirer of her work. It’s full of colour, creativity and happiness. I tried my hand at a video a while ago (you can see it here) and for a long time have wanted to join the 10 week course she runs. But one way or another either the timing wasn’t right or I didn’t quite have the funds. As luck would have it I won a place through a competition she was running and was totally thrilled.

Each week she shares something new to learn with a film prompt to help put it in practice. So for the next 10 weeks I’m going to pop them up on here. I figure the more I share them, the more confident I’ll get at filming.

The first week was all about getting started with filming with an introduction to filming and editing, plus six starting shots. Then to put it all into practice we had a prompt to put together scenes from the weekend, a 60 second video we can post to Instagram (longer versions also encouraged over on Vimeo)

I took so much away from the first week, here’s a few things I’ve learnt on the Make Films course so far:

  1. There’s a lot more to filming than it seems after just filming on the iPhone until now.
  2. A collection of six starting shots makes an immediate impact to your filming skills.
  3. It’s a really fun challenge switching from photos to filming. You should definitely try it!
  4. I’m much more uncomfortable and awkward in front of a rolling camera. But I figure the more I do it, the less bothered I’ll get?
  5. I have total respect for fashion bloggers. I got James to film a few seconds and I felt so awkward just asking and then filming in public.

Hope you like it and don’t mind something a little different! I’m looking forward to seeing what else I can create to share with you, but there’ll be other posts going on in between.

I’m a full believer that city escapes are good for the soul. Even though I love city life, there always a point where I just can’t bear crowded trains, hectic shops and busy restaurants. I crave more personal space, less noise and fewer people.

Last weekend, I had reached that point. I knew I was getting there when we went to Ham House and I spent the rest of that weekend plotting a proper escape. I worked through my list, thinking about what might work and which option was best for this time of year. We’re in the process of buying a house at the moment, so it had to be a day trip and not an expensive train. Eventually, I settled on Hastings, a seaside town in East Sussex somewhere between Rye and Brighton. Less than £20 for a day ticket and just over an hour and a half from Charing Cross, it’s a great last-minute choice.

I have to admit Hastings’ station and the immediate surrounding area doesn’t give you a great first impression of the town. But walk about 10 minutes to the coast, go past the whizzing fairground rides and rattling arcades and you’ll discover the Old Town.

A cobbled high street with side streets worth exploring.

Since May Day was approaching there were lots of colourful outfits and tinkling bells as Morris Dancers made their way through the street. I watched all of this perched in a cosy cafe, called Hanushka.

It’s a bit of an eclectic cafe, with a stall outside selling polish hotdogs and a name that doesn’t quite match up with what you might expect to find inside.

With the bookshelves filled from floor to ceiling and desk lamps adding light to a bit of a grey day, it felt a bit more like a library. We ordered coffees (good but not great) and portugeuse custard tart (otherwise known as a nata) to give a little bit of fuel before lunch.

The Old Town is quite easy to navigate with a main high street that runs virtually paralell to the sea front and a few smaller streets to the side.

(You know that I’m totally regretting not getting a closer snap of that mint green and pink door combination.)

You’ll quickly discover that one of Hastings’ specialty is an abundance of antique furniture and general homeware stores.

I wanted to rummage through each one.

But I thought it might be more fun to return when we finally have our house and garden. And to be honest, I was pretty happy pottering through the cobbled streets and enjoying a slower pace.

There isn’t a great deal to see and eventually we made our way to the coast for a few long deep breaths of the salty sea breeze.

Now we all know that the best views are found up high, so clambering our way up the East Hill was an obvious must-do.

You can choose to take the train and go back in time to when the railway line was built in 1903 for about £3. We decided we wanted to walk so we found the steps to the side.

The view up top is lovely and it made me want to see some of those colourful houses up front as well as tackle the hill on the other side. It’s funny how much more energy you can find away from London, suddenly things don’t seem quite so draining.

On a sunny day, I imagine the sea looks much more appealing, especially in contrast to a few weeks navigating the small and never-ending streets of London.

You could choose to hike across Hastings Country Park, covering some 660 acres.

And this view made it very tempting. But feeling unprepared for an amble along the cliffs, we chose to return to sea level and tuck into some fish and chips.

Maggie’s comes highly recommended but sadly claimed to be fully booked and didn’t take card. We attempted a hunt for an ATM but eventually settled for one of the many fish and chip shops on the shore.

The town had become quite busy by 2pm, so we spent the last part of the day on the sea front. Hastings is well-known not only for the battle that took place in a field not to far away, but also being home to one of the largest fleets of beach-launched fishing boats.

It wasn’t quite as picturesque as I imagined it. But a refreshing sight to see don’t you think?

We walked as far as we were able to, stopped and took a few long deep breaths, watching the waves roll in and listening to the sound as they crashed on the shore. One of the best feelings in the world in my opinion.

One thing you’ll definitely notice in Hastings is that the seagulls rule the roost.

Whether you have a nice car or a lovely camper van, it’s fair game as a perching place.

Whilst Rye and Whitstable may hold the top spot for quaint seaside city escapes, Hastings certainly has its own charm. I wouldn’t necessarily put it high up on the list, but if you’re just after a quick day trip it will definitely do the trick.

As we don’t have many overseas travel plans this year, I’d love to explore more of the British coast. Are there any other seaside towns I should visit?