“The Impact of Social Media on Breaking into the Music Industry” // my FMP

2018, music, photography, student

Hello!

I feel like the only thing I’ve talked about for the last three or four month is my FMP – my final major project, ‘my degree’s equivalent to a dissertation’ (I hate having to say this); the big project to show what three years of uni have taught me.

My FMP included making a 10-20 video, 10-20 minutes of audio, 20-40 pictures and 3000-6000 words of copy. I also had to do a pitch presentation and contextual essay but that’s the boring bit.

And the topic I chose was how social media effects musicians trying to break into the industry – how social media effects how much work they get, what defines success and how both social media and the music industry have effected musicians and those wishing to work in the industry at the beginning of their career. It was a really interesting investigation and I learnt so much about the industry I’d like to go into in the future – social media is a massive passion of mine (as in creating content, not just scrolling through twitter for hours) and I love music so making digital content within music is a huge dream of mine.

So I thought I’d do a little run down of my project! For anyone that’s interested in what I did, interested in the topic or maybe a multimedia journalism students looking to what their final project may have to look like!

For our project we had to pick a publication to write for, so my project is done in the style of BBC Three.

The copy articles I don’t want to just drop in here otherwise this blog post would be thousands of words long, but I wrote four articles about a variety of topics – an introduction to the topic, a look into a relevant example from this year and a couple of listicles. I didn’t think my writing was going to be very good but I was actually pleasantly surprised at how pleased I was with my copy in the end. If you’d like to read it, I put the copy doc (and the full final hand in doc if you want to read 100 pages of that – it’s not all words, it’s just everything I had to hand in) you can have a look at this Google Drive folder.

My pictures went hand in hand with the copy, but in the style of the publication BBC Three don’t use a lot of pictures so I made a few stylised edits but predominantly used my pictures as if they were promotion on social media which all felt very relevant to the project. I’ve chosen a selection to include here:

This is the thumbnail I made for Episode 2 of my video series interviewing Producer Connor Panayi. This is my favourite photo from the whole project

I then edited that thumbnail to look like a tweet from BBC Three’s account – using the photo, a screenshot from my own twitter to get the font and the style and a screenshot from BBC Three to get their twitter profile. I think it looks pretty legit

I used this style for my Radio interviews as well

This edit was used as an image in one of my copy articles – I was writing about music that had blown up on social media and wanted a more relevant way of using images that also showed my ability to use and manipulate photos (from the point of view of the grading of the project)

I actually took this photo when I worked at Reading Festival last year but 1) I really like it, it’s a well taken photo so why not use it? 2) It was a really relevant way to show how people get so passionate about music

This photo was taken on a shoot for one of my videos but I loved having the opportunity to photograph live music – the Blue Lion Band were amazing and if you get the chance to see them you definitely should, they’re incredible

Another still from the Blue Lion Band shoot (and another one of my favourites)

I also made a couple of infographics to represent some of the statistics in my articles and I really enjoyed making these, I’m going to work more on my graphic design skills in the future for sure

I was going to include a full portfolio of my photos but I don’t have enough space in my Google drive, so if there’s anything else you’d like to see shoot me a message and I’ll find a way!

Onto audio – I did my audio as two radio interviews as if it was a Radio 1 Breakfast Show takeover promoting the new BBC Three series. I uploaded both episodes to YouTube so you can listen to them here:

And lastly video – the pride and joy of my whole project. Making video content has always been my favourite (I’ve been on YouTube since December 2013) and I wanted to use this project to push myself with my videography as much as possible and boy did I.

It’s the most high quality video project I’ve ever shot – with the help of friends and the beautiful 50mm lens, I think the quality and aesthetic appeal of my video is better than anything I’ve ever made on my channel. I taught myself how to use AfterEffects to make a title sequence for the end of the video and I daren’t calculate how many hours I spent editing the whole project. The video element of my project is the one I am most proud of and I’m so happy to share it.

So rather than one long documentary, I made a three part episodic series and a series trailer.

Series Trailer:

Episode 1:

Episode 2:

Episode 3:


I’ll be honest, I was aiming for a First with this project – my life and soul went into it and I was (and still am) really proud of it. Unfortunately I didn’t quite achieve this but I was awarded a high 2:1 (68%) for this project.

Overall in my degree I will be graduating with a 2:1 – 69.06% (only 0.44% away from a First). Yes, I did want a first and I thought I’d done enough but you know what – it is what it is, I did my best and I can’t change it now. I’m going to be writing a blog post about holding too higher standards for yourself at some point in the future because getting those results were somewhat heartbreaking.

But either way, I’m proud to share my project and I hope you’ve enjoyed it.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

 

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Advertisements

“a million dreams are keeping me awake” – The Greatest Showman

2018, lifestyle, music, student

Hello!

I’ve been running Sonar Film, my university’s cinema and film society since last June. One of my favourite parts of what we do is being able to look at the films coming out and picking what films we show.

I’ve had my eye on The Greatest Showman for a little while now and we started showing it on Friday. I worked opening night because I’d heard such mixed reviews and I was so excited – Hugh Jackman, Zendaya and Zac Efron in a new original musical about the first circus, it was right up my street!

There aren’t any words for how obsessed with this film I now am – I was completely absorbed from the first note to the last. I had tears in my eyes for most of the film and I felt this weight in my heart as the credits rolled because I was just so full of love for the music, the characters and the story.

I think this film is everything La La Land wanted to be without being tailored to Oscars, it’s not pretentious or trying to be nostalgic – it’s full of genuine love for musical theatre, incredibly passionate songs and a surprisingly modern soundtrack considering it’s based in the 19th century.

The rhythms and drums I think are the thing that really modernised the music for me – it was a huge part of the opening number and paired with the choreography it was really impactful and, as part of the audience, it was really gripping. I was genuinely sat watching the film bobbing along in time, resisting the urge to clap on multiple occasions. The rhythms and choreography were really poignant in ‘The Other Side’ and ‘From Now On’ – ‘The Other Side’ was really clever and the way the bar man was choreographed in was just so much fun. But while the rhythms are modern, the music doesn’t seem out of place for the time.

Side note, the dancing was so much fun – the bit where his daughters join in the dance from the audience is just so cute.

It’s such a beautifully human film – there was a quote from the critic character James Bennett at the end that said something along the lines of ‘a happier critic would describe it [the show] as touching every circle of humanity’ or something along those lines (I’ve scoured the internet, I just can’t find it anywhere) and I feel like that’s how the film should be summarised because it’s a beautiful celebration of everyone and anyone. It very delicately touches on issues like racism in a gentle and realistic way for the 1800s – it was relevant without being focal and I adored it.

The words I wrote in my initial rambly ‘omg I’m obsessed‘ plan for this post were that it was heartfelt and human and flawed – the characters weren’t perfect and where it was so easy to be stereotypical and predictable and it was so genuinely not. I’m now really interested to watch Barnham (a West End Musical about the same circus) and somewhat compare the two and how they tell the same story.

I did make a lot of jokes about Wolverine and Troy Bolton singing together though, I can’t lie. And can I just say – Zendaya is only ten days older than me, she must have been part of the High School Musical generation and omg I was fangirling on her behalf because while Zac Efron is so much more than he was in the DCOM days, he was still one of my first celebrity crushes.

I really wanted to make this more than just a review of The Greatest Showman and at this point I don’t know if it’s even a review or if it’s just me gushing about why I love it, but I think there’s a place for sharing things you love in your own words on the internet, so here’s me adding to my corner.

Also, I read at the end of another post about the film (I’ve done a lot of reading about it since seeing it two days ago) that I wanted to reiterate – my adoration for this film doesn’t mean I support the idea of the modern circus and treatment of animals as performers. It’s something I hadn’t actually thought about (partially because the animals in the film are quite clearly CGI) but it’s something I want to reiterate because supporting the film based in the 1800s doesn’t condone it now.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

what I got for Christmas 2017

2017, lifestyle, photography, student

Hello!

Christmas is a time full of love, thankfulness and gifts. I wasn’t sure about writing this post but looking at the gifts I got this year and the ones I have chosen to include, this isn’t a list of me showing off how much money my family spent on me and I think the controversy around these posts are kind of centred around that. Assuming people that write these posts are in the same mindset as me, these posts aren’t boasting about anything – I just want to share some of the wonderful, thoughtful gifts I got, take some pretty pictures and show thanks to those who went to the trouble of buying me a gift.

So with that in mind, let’s get into what I got for Christmas this year!

Long story short, I have a collection of cactuses and plants (some real, some felt) and I’ve named them all David – David I is a felt plant from Tiger, David II is a real succulent that I always forget to water, David III is a DIY cushion that I never made, David IV is an Ikea toy, David V, VI and VII are a set of three plants from Ikea and this, is David VIII. I love my little collection and I love that these coasters can be arranged in whatever fashion I like, I think it’s so fun. My mum has a way of finding the weirdest and most amazing little gifts.

It’s only within the last six months of the year that I’ve really got in to any kind of gaming. I’m still completely head over heels obsessed with Overwatch and the depth to which the creators go with the characters and their story arcs. The basic story about this character, Bastion, is that he’s a kind of robot built to fight in a war – the one in the game gets lost and finds a bird in the woods who becomes his friends. Ganymede, the bird, teaches him about love and friendship and the robot essentially becomes sentient. So this is a Ganymede toy and the box is shaped like Bastion’s head and it’s really cute.

I don’t know if I’ve done the game any justice in my description but if you want to add me on X-Box my handle is ‘sophieislame’.

To be honest, I was really awful whenever my mum asked me what I wanted for Christmas because there really wasn’t anything I wanted this year. But she did offer to take me to Long Tall Sally so I picked up this gorgeous loose turtle neck jumper in grey and my new favourite yellow jumper. I’m really into yellow right now and the fact that the sleeves are long enough that I can actually wear it properly make me unreasonably happy. Also it’s like wearing a hug it’s the softest thing I have worn in a very long time.

I don’t know if there’s much to be said but wow I’ve got a lot of food this year, like a lot. I’ve eaten so badly.

Also shout out to the honey roast ham my mum made because oh my god I’m salivating thinking about it.

It could be said that I’m somewhat of a stationery nerd – I have a rather large collection of pens and, my oh my, did my family build on this – my mum bought me two different sets of pens and a cute little elephant pencil case with stencils for my bullet journal (I’m actually dead excited to start putting these to use!) and my sister bought me a book on fancy lettering and brush pens to go with it! I’m so excited to learn about writing all fancy and making my bullet journal just that little bit more beautiful. It’s going to be stunning.

Now I don’t think it would be a ‘what I got for Christmas post’ if I didn’t include what my gorgeous boyfriend got for me this year – he’s truly spoiled me, pre-ordering the new Fall Out Boy album, a ‘merch voucher’ for when we see them in January, a Hufflepuff scarf (that I’ve wanted for so long) and amongst other things, this frame – that makes absolutely no sense out of context. Here’s the context – two of my favourite albums of all time are ‘Save Rock and Roll’, Fall Out Boy, and ‘This Is War’, Thirty Seconds to Mars, (let’s leave all opinions to one side please and thank you) and I’ve been saying for ages that when we have a permanent space I want to get them properly framed and hang them in an office space. So Lucas bought me new copies of both albums so I could cut them up or whatever if I needed to and then drew this wonderful interpretation and stuck fairy lights on the frame. I actually adore it, I think it’s really cute and I’m excited to have it in years to come.

This post ended up being way longer than I thought it would, but tell me all about what you got for Christmas in the comments! I feel like the memories that come with the presents are the best bit and that’s what I want to savour.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

 

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

August favourites

2017, lifestyle, music, student

Hello!

I’ve not done a favourites for a while, but it’s nice to be able to look back on the month and pick out the things I enjoyed the most. Lots of new content came out in July and August and I spent a lot of money on things I really didn’t need, so I really love the selection of things I’ve picked this month!

Image result for spider-man homecoming

Spider-Man Homecoming: Spider-Man has been my ultimate favourite superhero since I first saw The Amazing Spider-Man with Andrew Garfield in the cinema – his wit, morality and agility are just everything I would like to be really (who wouldn’t want to swing so high you feel like flying – yes please!) so I was nervous seeing this film. I had every faith in Tom Holland having seen him in Civil War but there’s still every chance this movie was going to be awful. But it wasn’t! It was incredible! Every film has pros and cons and no film is without it’s flaws, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and couldn’t recommend it more (and omg Zendaya).

‘You’ – dodie: A new dodie EP? Of course I’m obsessed. I treated myself to a bundle with a t-shirt, the EP and a vinyl version of the EP and I just love it. I love how the yellow of the case brightens up my room, I love having a studio version of ‘6/10’ (because god knows that song is my anthem) and ‘Would you be so kind?’ is just so happy. On the first EP, ‘Absolutely Smitten’ was the token really happy clappy mood lifting song and wybsk is the ‘You’ equivalent and I just can’t put into words how much it makes me smile.

"Chai! Chai! Chai!" | Reaper #LatteArt from @kyoffee. #Overwatch

A post shared by Overwatch (@playoverwatch) on

Overwatch ‘Summer Games’: I think I’ve mentioned it fairly regularly – I’m obsessed with Overwatch, it’s all been very sudden but I’m now properly invested in my first and only video game and there’s been a fun event with extra things to collect and a fun new game to play and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

My elephant water bottle: We all know about my major obsession with elephants, but I was going to Primark to buy plain black t-shirts to work at Reading and it was in the aisle you have to go down towards the tills and it was all by itself and it was calling my name. It’s just gorgeous and I could never resist. I love it.

From Ikea’s website

Ikea shelving unit with wheels: For some reason, I went to Ikea three times in August and the first time I went I spotted this unit that I became utterly obsessed with it. On the second trip, I resist and it was that third trip that I gave in and just did it. I’m not recommending just spending money like I did if you can’t afford it but I knew exactly where it was going to go in my room, what I was going to put on it and how gorgeous it would look and I don’t regret it for a single second. I love it and it looked beautiful.

Jeffrey the bear: In August my sister was doing a summer course at Arts University Bournemouth and I went over to see her for the day. My boyfriend and I love this arcade cafe place called Fun Central and we’d decided we were going to win the bear that was worth 6,000 tickets for sure on this, our third time to the arcade. Shock horror, a new bigger bear worth 14,000 tickets had been added but my bear had been reduced to 5,000 tickets. We totally smashed it and I named him Jeffrey. I love him so much there aren’t even words.

My new hair colour: I haven’t really photographed it properly at all but I finally got my hair fixed at the hairdresser! It’s a deeper pink than I wanted (I was going for red) but I adore it because the blue is gone and it’s actually a nice colour and I’m still growing it out – think I’m going to get it dyed properly again in December when I’m next home and can go to the salon again. Can’t wait.

jelly > meringe > melted chocolate > sprinkles

The best dessert I’ve ever made: Just a silly thing I got very excited about – strawberry jelly with crumbled meringue, drizzled in melted chocolate and sprinkled with an excess of brightly coloured sprinkles. I recommend stirring it all around and mixing it all together but I’m very excited to have it again soon, I’m not going to lie.

Reading Festival: I wrote a whole blog post about why I loved working at Reading Festival, but I wanted to include it here as well because I’m still just so in awe that I was lucky enough to get to go.

VEDA: I’ve known for a few months now that I wanted to take part in VEDA and I’ve been noting video ideas for that long. But you know what? I never thought I’d actually manage it – 31 videos, let alone all of them being edited and uploaded by 6pm! But I did it, and you can watch the whole playlist here.

Wasn’t that a wild ride? I’m excited to do this again in September because September is my favourite month and my birthday month, very exciting! I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

 

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

know how good you are – working @ Reading Festival 2017

2017, lifestyle, music, photography, student, travel

Hello!

Getting the chance to work at Reading Festival  as a Camera Operator was something I was never going to turn down – if I had to apply in any other way I wouldn’t have got it because I haven’t done any camera opping before, but my housemate was recruiting and he took a chance on me (hopefully he thinks it paid off).

When I went to Channel 4 and BBC Three (and Sky next week) I always say there was no luck – I spent a lot of time and effort getting those placements and there was no luck involved. Reading however – it’s all because I happen to live with the guy that needed camera ops. Obviously there was a bit of skill involved – if he didn’t think I’d be good at it he’d have said no but Reading was all chance, and I’m very, very grateful for it.

Watching every act from the side or right in front of the stage is something I’ve dreamed of for so long

I was so unbelievably anxious before we left I can’t even put it into words – I felt ill, I was overanalysing everything and I contemplated not going because I was so scared of getting things wrong or being bad. But I knew I couldn’t turn down Reading.

And I went. And I did well. And I loved it.

Camera 2 – my favourite Camera

I learnt a lot about how to work the cameras but I also realised how much I already knew – I know what a good shot looks like, I knew to keep an eye on what was happening on stage, what the other ops were filming and the crowd (filming someone holding a Lightning McQueen balloon was a highlight of the weekend).

I felt comfortable doing the job – it was like I’d found something that I should have been doing all along – filming live music, surrounded by artists, techies and heavy bass. I don’t think I would camera op for the rest of my life, but working with bands in environments like this is what I want to do. Now I have more of a focus to get to that.

The crowd for ‘The Hunna’ were absolutely mental, favourite crowd of the whole weekend

No one really expected me to excel at this festival, and I don’t think I’m the kind of person to make the assumption that I did, but I did learn this – have faith in your own skills, don’t be afraid to say you’re capable and you’re good enough. I’m definitely the sort of person who puts themselves down (to no end), assumes that I will never be good enough and I’m afraid to apply for jobs or work experience opportunities in roles that I could do but I haven’t done before but I know what I’m good at.

The last sunset of Reading 2017

I’m a good writer, I know how to film and edit good videos, I know how to take a good photo, I’m a good presenter and I’m really good at research and organisation. And there’s nothing wrong with knowing your skills or talking about them.

I’m so glad I had the opportunity to go to Reading and prove this to myself. I am capable of it even if there are people who would quite happily tell me I’m not.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

The sunrise at Basingstoke station on 6.30am on Monday morning was worth the all nighter

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

“As long as I’m playing music, I’m happy” | Sam Harding interview

2017, lifestyle, music, student

Hello!

In my last semester at uni, I got to do a couple of optional units – the two I chose were Lifestyle PR, where I wasn’t taught anything and had to use common sense to do the assignment, and Music Journalism, where the teacher kept giving us examples of why he was an awful journalist and a bit of a dick as a human.

However that didn’t deter my love and passion for writing about music and musicians – part of my assignment was to create a music journalism portfolio, including a new artist profile. I reached out to my friend Sam to ask if I could interview him and thankfully he said yes. But I’ll let the interview speak for itself.

Photo by: Dani Blakeley

Getting a foot in the door of the music industry is harder now than it ever was before – the door is infinitely bigger, leading to a huge variety of different paths that determine ‘success’ and there are millions of feet trying to make their mark.

Sam Harding is a musician from a small town in the East Midlands, now studying at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester and working on countless projects as a freelance musician. But Sam’s work ethic hasn’t changed since he was at school in that small town.

“I’ve been performing in bands since I was 13, starting off gigging all over the place with a really heavy metal band. The last year before I moved away from home to study gave me a taste of what it would be like to be a professional musician, and taught me a lot about music and what I wanted out of it.”

Sam has always had a very clear focus, determination and drive to get where he wants to be. “I picked up the bass at the age of 11 and fell in love with it instantly. Bass and guitar are the main instruments I play but recently I’ve been trying to get my chops together on upright bass and synth bass in an effort to make myself more versatile.”

With a taste of being semi-professional in playing in pro tribute band Latino Sound before Sam left home, he knows what he wants to work on to make himself a more diverse musician and give himself an edge in the industry he has already had that taste of.

“When I was 10, I discovered My Chemical Romance. They were the first band I really listened to and followed in a serious way. The music, the aesthetic, the energy – I thought it was all so cool! I remember spending most of my time playing along to My Chemical Romance tunes in my bedroom in my early teens. After a few years of playing I just suddenly found myself in a position where there was no question about it – music was just what I needed to do.”

Sam has not let moving to a new city over a hundred miles away phase his journey: “I’m playing with a few bands including a pop-funk band called Fresco, a neo-soul band called Silcaa, a jazz quartet and with the Tom Knight Band, as well as various one-off gigs. I have also started a production company called Blue Handle with my good friend and fellow RNCM student Tom Knight. We provide studio recording, live sessions, videography and photography services to musicians in Manchester and I’m feeling really excited about that project.”

But the music industry is unpredictable – there’s no distinct method to become ‘successful’; it’s not a clear career path. “I set goals for the projects that I am a part of, as well as for my own playing. Setting yourself targets to hit is a good way to stay focused and have things progress in a more efficient way.”

“I have a rough plan. I want to finish my four years of study and then further my career as a professional musician. It could be playing for artists live or in the studio, it could be writing and performing original music, it could be a combination.”

Sam has had a long history with music but he’s still young and has a long career ahead of him. “As long as I’m playing music, I’m happy.”

Sam’s pop-funk band Fresco has a new EP ‘Muy Funky’ and it’s out now on iTunesSpotify and Bandcamp.


Being able to interview Sam and see how successful he’s already being was genuinely a pleasure and, on a slightly less heartwarming note, I got a pretty good mark for my portfolio. I thoroughly enjoyed writing up this interview and I can’t recommend Sam’s music more – his passion shows in his talent.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

May favourites

2017, lifestyle, music, photography, student

Hello!

Another favourites post! I’ve done this one a little differently and separated it into different categories, but I’ve been loving a lot of things this month so let’s crack right on!

beauty

Highlighters are my new guilty pleasure and for the first time in my life I don’t mean the florescent stationery kind. My ‘go to’ every day make up is eyebrows, mascara, lipstick and highlighter because it just makes me feel cute because I have glittery cheeks. I picked up these beauties while I was home last week in the shades Iridescent Gold and Pink Shimmer from MUA and they were only £3 each! They’re super pigmented and the colour is really clear – it’s not very subtle but I like to go a bit overboard on the highlighter so if that’s what you’re into I’d definitely recommend them!

organisation

As I’m lacking in the florescent stationery highlighters, I need a new way to organise! Not really – I love my bullet journal and it’s good for organising the finer details of things but for an overview of what my month looks like in a more general way then I like putting everything into Apple Calendars. I like being able to have different categories and I can sync with my other Apple-product-using friends and I like having it on my computer where everything else is in my journal. I like the combination of the two.

food

I think it was April when my mum and sister came to visit and we drove to the beach and had ice cream but this New Forest Toffee Crunch Ice Cream was beautiful and I can buy it in big tubs at Asda but they’re £3 a pot and somehow a highlighter feels like a better way to spend my money. If you’re on the South Coast of the UK at any point over the summer I thoroughly recommend it! I might have to treat myself.

watching

Fairytale – my boyfriend is really into anime and he’s been asking if I want to watch this one for a while. He gave me no context of what it was about but the other day he said to me “I just want to show you the title sequences!” and then proceeded to show me all of episode one. Whilst I wasn’t too pleased to be manipulated into watching his show (when he outright refuses to watch anything I suggest even when he watched a couple of episodes and enjoyed it… not that I’m salty) it is actually really good – I often find animes to be too melodramatic and serious (which I don’t mind, like I still enjoy them but it’s a tiny grievance of mine) but this one is really funny and the title sequence song from the first arc is amazing, I thoroughly recommend putting this cover by NateWantsToBattle on repeat for a while.

Doctor Who – I’m one of those Doctor Who fans. I’ve been watching the series since Freema Agyeman was David Tennant’s assistant in 2007 and I’ve watched every episode since and this season is really close to being one of my favourites (but nothing will ever beat Matt Smith and Karen Gillan’s series 5) – I wish this was what Capaldi’s first season as the doctor had been like because I feel like fans would have liked that so much more (though I have a lot of opinions on Series 8/9 Doctor/Clara Who). It’s something I could write a whole blog post about so let me know if you want that!

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – I saw this film right at the beginning of the month so I couldn’t write a full on review for it, but all I can say is if you like comedy go see this film, even if you’re not into action superheroes and even if you’ve not seen the first film it’s absolutely brilliant. Personally I think it matched the first one in the perfect way without overshadowing it – the special effects were absolutely astonishing, the action moments were incredible, it was hilarious, surprisingly heartwarming and I wish I could afford to go and see it again!

Also Baby Groot – I’ll say nothing more.

things I’ve created

I wasn’t so sure of this as a segment but I’m really proud of this content and why not a favourites post to be able to share what I’m proud of?

2017 beginner’s bullet journal flip through – this whole video was really last minute and took me a surprisingly long time to edit but I’m really proud of it and the comments are so positive! I’m can’t wait to do another flip through in a few months or when I finish the book! I got to nerd out about organisation and stationery and I loved it.

New instagram – ahealthiersophie – I started this because I watched John Green’s series ‘100 Days‘ and he said he found it was much easier to control his diet when he made himself document it all and that’s what sprouted the idea. But I didn’t want the account to be 100% food so I post twice a day to break it up a bit. The intent was to post lots of workout photos and show how I was being healthy in that aspect but that only really started in June when I started this 30 Day Ab Challenge but it’s been an outlet for me to talk a lot about my mental health. May has been a really tough month and I’ve multiple people message me like ‘u okai??!11!’ and I’ve had some amazing conversations with my friend Sarah about a potential diagnosis (obvs not going to say anything ‘official’ (???) until I’ve been to the doctors but I’m working on the courage for that) and it’s been very therapeutic. It’s also highlighted a lot of scary things that go on in my brain but I think that’s a good thing.

Lupton and Luckett – new YouTube channel with Alice! My friend Alice and I kinda joked in Instagram comments about starting a channel now here we are – Video 1 live, Video 2 filmed (it’s a baking video, I thoroughly recommend subscribing for that going live next Thursday!) and videos planed all summer. I love Alice and I’m so ridiculously excited to create with her. She’s so little and cute (and I look like a mouldy purple potato next to her) but I love this girl and I think you’ll love her too.

my ‘no spend’ month – the blog post I wrote literally two days ago! In May I found out that I had a savings account that I’d completely forgotten about and I closed it and withdrew the cash (which was vewy nice) but it’s going straight into my other savings account for my travel funds but on a similar note, I’m trying to really save my money and get out of my overdraft right now so I cut back a lot in May and I wrote a whole post about it which I’m really excited about because I tried a new kind of format and style and I’m really excited about it.

These posts always end up being really long and I don’t think I mind, because it’s nice to share things I like and just type and type and type and suddenly there’s a thousand words. Blogging is really therapeutic for me and I’m very excited about not having uni distract from it for a few months.

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

preparing for a long haul flight | travel tips

2017, lifestyle, music, student, travel

Hello!

Whenever I write about travel I’m painfully aware that the only ‘big’ trips I’ve done were project work trips to Tanzania in 2013 and Ecuador in 2015 and I’ve not been abroad since but being able to write about travel doesn’t mean you have to fly regularly or have been recently or make me any less valid.

A little bit of good old self justification to start a blog post never hurt anyone, right?

So, I don’t think anyone enjoys a long haul flight – even if you are a seasoned traveller going all over the world, long haul flights are bring.

When I went to Tanzania it was two six-hour flights and Ecuador was a ten-hour and a six-hour flight. Here are six tips for how to keep yourself entertained on long flights assuming you don’t plan to sleep for nine hours and fifty-eight minutes.

1) Bring a notebook and pens – personally, I’m someone who likes writing things down on paper, I always start my journal for the trip on the plane, but even if you’re not planning on documenting the trip, you can write, draw or play silly games if you’re flying with friends. Nothing wrong with paper and pens!

2) Handheld gaming – if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on a new Nintendo Switch, then you can bring big screen games to the sky, however anyone else who has a 3DS or 2DS or a gameboy or, I don’t know, a PSP maybe, I know I can get lost playing games from an altitude of two feet let alone fifty thousand – if you’ve got some good music and lots to do in game (I love seeing that full 100% completion on a game) you’ll find you’re a good few hours closer to your destination.

3) Music – always music – if you’re fully prepared with an up to date iTunes library or some good Spotify playlists downloaded, music can make hours feel like seconds. Music’s a good one for if you’re travelling with friends too because a headphone splitter and new music is a great way to find the song or make the playlist of the trip.

4) Games – word games, card games or even travel board games – there’s so many easy little games that you can squeeze in your hand luggage. Uni is a fun, sometimes friendship destroying, card game, or there’s the alphabet game that my family always liked to play. You pick a topic (i.e. films) then go through the alphabet letter by letter and thinks of something for each letter, for example – Avengers Assemble, Baywatch, Chronicles of Narnia, Deadpool etc. The Alphabet Game gets more exciting more and more family-destroying the more you narrow the topic.

5) Organisation – this might be more of a me thing, but I’d take the time to organise my life – sort out my bullet journal, plan ahead on my calendars, make a lot of lists that would make me very happy and would take a good chunk of my flight. I love coloured pens a lot.

6) Mindless iPhone games – I guess it counts as handheld gaming, but there are enough mind numbing basic phone games (you don’t have to have an iPhone, it’s just a phrase, there are lots of very nice Android phones) that are much cheaper than a handhold gaming console and have a habit of passing time just as quickly. I’ve been playing a game called Riddle Stones recently and I’m thoroughly enjoying that.

Obviously there’s always films to watch and perhaps talking to the people you’re travelling with, lots of snacking, y’know – there’s plenty of things to do! If I was travelling now I’d probably take my laptop and blog or write or edit videos, but depends entirely what you’re travelling for and what you’re interests are. Let me know what you’d do on a long haul flight in the comments!

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

 

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

Monthly Music: April

2017, lifestyle, music, photography, student

Hello,

Here I am, trying to make this series part of my schedule all over again, but sticking with it – I’m excited.

Life of The Party – All Time Low: Another new song that is on the album that’s coming out next month and I’m so pumped, I love it. It’s a little taste of new All Time Low but with chimes of what core All Time Low is. They’re my favourite band, so I’m going to want to like everything they release and luckily so far I have but I’m not above admitting if I don’t like something that a band I love have done (like how I didn’t love Dirty Laundry at first), so hopefully that makes me sound a little more legit.

Take Cover – All Time Low: This song isn’t new, however – I heard the song live when I saw the Last Young Renegades tour in March and I found the song released as a b-side to the ‘Straight to DVD II’ live concert CD (That I haven’t listened to because I was at the DVD recording and I’m not mentally prepared for it) but oh my god – 1) this song live is so good and 2) the studio version is also so good. The lyrics are beautiful (which is an Alex Gaskarth staple at this point) and I just adore it. In my head, I call this ‘proper’ music because it’s all real instruments and not the electronic dance stuff that is popular right now – obviously this is proper music too but in my head I don’t know how else to describe it.

I think the thing with this song is that the first time I heard this was live which is very unusual when we have platforms like YouTube and Spotify. Somehow I missed this and I”m so glad I did.

Up All Night – Alex Clare: This whole post is basically just listing the playlist I’ve been listening to all month. I found this song because it is the theme tune to a because it is the theme tune to a Doctor Who spin off called Class that was on BBC Three. I wasn’t a massive fan of Class but I adore the song – the full ‘not titles’ version blew me away and the first time I listened to it with headphones on I just heard so much more than I’d heard before; so many more instrumental layers. Thoroughly recommend it, I’ve converted so many people to this song.

Young and Menace – Fall Out Boy: At first, I really disliked this song; the video was (and is) creepy as fuck, the weird, electronic bit in the chorus is so not Fall Out Boy and I just felt the song was taking the route of everything I didn’t like about American Beauty American Psycho. However, when listening to the song again I warmed to it – it still has the essence of what Fall Out Boy are but I don’t think I’m going to be a big fan of Mania when it comes out. Though I’m intrigued about this Brendon Urie video that surfaced the other day.

The Addams Family musical: I’ve only heard some of the songs from the show because I can’t find a soundtrack anywhere but the songs I have heard, I absolutely adore. I know a bit about the musical because we nearly performed it at Drama and Performance and also because one of my favourite YouTubers Carrie Fletcher is playing Wednesday in the UK tour of the show (which I’m seeing July 18th on it’s opening night in Southampton) and her video series ‘Watch me, Wednesday’ make me so happy – I love seeing the behind the scenes of shows. If they could release a tour soundtrack that would be amazing please and thank you.

To listen to next month: Hamilton: With musicals in mind, I thought why not jump on this hype train right? I’ve seen so much about this musical and I can’t wait to listen to it.

I get an overwhelming feeling of love for music whenever I write one of these posts and I feel like I will post more covers and be more engaged in music again once when I move out of my horrible flat and into our gorgeous house, it’ll feel more like home and I won’t feel like a guest in my own flat.

Please leave any recommendations in the comments (I need suggestions for new music please) and I hope you’re having a good Monday!

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

 

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett

Wonderland – Mayflower Theatre

2017, lifestyle, music, student

Hello!

I was lucky enough to be invited to see Wonderland at Mayflower Theatre in Southampton by @sotonbloggers and I’m going to try and put into words how much I thoroughly enjoyed it. ‘Try’ being the operative word.

Every time I sit down in a theatre for any reason I get goosebumps – architecturally I find theatres to be absolutely beautiful and I love sitting in a room full of people who love musicals and shows as much as me – but when the first notes of the first song begin I will always feel like I want to cry just from pure joy. With musicals like Wonderland that combine more traditional orchestral instruments with modern rock instruments like drums and guitars make for an even more interesting opening number.

The music is one of the most incredible parts of Wonderland – the musicians were absolutely astonishing and seeing how small the band is and how huge the sound was just made it so much more impressive. The vocal performances in this show were astounding – Rachael Wooding, who played Alice, was incomparable. She completely nailed the childish wonder of Alice but had this huge voice that suited the fast, silly songs, the slow, emotional songs and the massive power ballad  duet ‘This Is Who I Am’ with Natalie McQueen as the Mad Hatter.

However the dancing in this show was as important as the singing and balancing the two is a difficult feat – there was some incredible choreography and some wonderful dancers, but credit has to go to Dominic Owen, who played a truly wonderful rendition of the Cheshire Cat and also managed to continue belting out a pretty big song whilst doing a handstand. As someone who can do a (rather rubbish) handstand and has had vocal training, I really appreciate how difficult that would have been and needed to talk about it.

‘Wonderland’ is quite a different take on the traditional story of Alice, with more of a focus on Through The Looking Glass, the sequel to the more commonly recreated Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. The musical follows a grown up Alice, reluctantly divorced and looking after her daughter Ellie whilst neighbour Jack is desperate to catch Alice’s eye. The Looking Glass is a key feature of the musical, as it completely changes who the characters are – whilst trying not to spoil it, it reverses what each character deems important, for example – nice, helpful, wonderful Ellie becomes a typical, stroppy teenager.

But for me, the most amazing part of The Looking Glass was the quick changes involved – I reckon Ellie and Jack were inside the looking glass for maybe 10 to 20 seconds and in this time they completely changed what they were wearing, how their hair was styled and without any fumbling or mishaps with mic packs. The whole production was so slick and well-rehearsed and completely without fault – I was completely immersed.

The Queen of Hearts saw a particular twist in this version of Alice in Wonderland.

One of the characters that saw the biggest changes was the Mad Hatter – she was not written as a traditionally male character, she had an incredible costume and an even bigger voice. She owned every song she sang and every word that came out of her mouth just oozed the character of the Mad Hatter – I wish there was a soundtrack or a studio recording of this show because I’d love to hear her songs again.

From the point of view of characterisation, the Mad Hatter and Alice showed some clear parallels and it was really interesting that writers Jack Murphy and Gregory Boyd chose those two characters to align, especially with the huge duet at the end of the musical – This Is Who I Am.

I can’t quite describe how much I adore this song – it has roots and inspirations from the duets in Wicked but the beautiful, powerful harmonies contrasted with the softer lines. I don’t know if it’s just something about the end of a musical when everything is starting to resolve and the characters realise that they’re strong and independent but I really wish there was a soundtrack recording I could listen to because I want this song and these girls singing on loop whenever I feel like I’m not good enough.

There’s a version on YouTube that doesn’t sound very legally recorded and I wouldn’t normally support that but I thoroughly recommend listening to the song, it’s just beautiful. Totally 100% worth seeing in person.

“This is who I am, who I really am, i’m not going to pretend or apologise”

Then, of course I can’t forget the boyband, led by Alice’s neighbour Jack – their songs and choreography were brilliant and ring true of N-Sync days gone past.

One of the reasons I went in to seeing Wonderland so apprehensively is because I’m not a massive fan of Alice’s story – I don’t particularly like the Disney film, I have no interest in the Tim Burton films and the whole concept just isn’t my cup of tea. But this unusual take on the story, the musical and the production have completely changed my mind – the way the story was interpreted and aspects of certain characters adapted and shown differently made me thoroughly enjoy it, hopefully I’ll get to see it again!

Wonderland is showing at the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton until Saturday 22nd April, to get your tickets called 02380 711811 or go to mayflower.org.uk – students get more than 10% off tickets with a valid student card!

Thank you for reading,

Sophie xx

Press ticket provided by Mayflower Theatre via @sotonbloggers. All photos belong to Mayflower theatre.

YouTube | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Uni blog | The Student Seat
Snapchat: SophieALuckett