Category Archives: Photography

Body Power 2017 Is In Effect

I shall be down at the Body Power 2017 Expo at the Birmingham NEC from Thurs 11th until Monday 15th, so won’t be available to answer emails or anything else reliably. I will try to answer emergency requests and the ticket monkeys will maintain essential support. 

This will be the first work I have undertaken since my Shoulder Surgery, which was done early March, so hopefully it goes well. Assuming this goes well, I should be slowly returning to work towards the end of May according to my doctors anyway.

Below is a Flash Back Gallery from Body Power 2016, which was the biggest Body Power yet, with over 100,000 visitors. Exhibitors covering everything from clothing to supplements to medical to equipment, along with athletes from strongman, body building, power lifting, boxing, martial arts, physique, fitness, instafamous, and loads more. 

Kevin Levrone, Kate Errington, Faye-Evette Betts, Ania Malys, Tiny Iron, Bill Kazmaier, Rich Piana, Zydrunas Savickas, Rob “Mr Hyde” Archer, Paige Hathaway, Michelle Lewin, Zack Khan, Laci Kay Somers, Jade Katy, Dorian and Gal Yates, Calum Von Moger, Martyn Ford, Jeremy Buendia, William Bonac, Bionic Body, Sara Beverly Jones, Krzysztof Radzikowski, Terry Hollands, Eddie Hall, CT Fletcher, Natalie Woodall, Nick Orton, Carmen Black, Daniel Yeomans, Jimmy Lewin, Nina Ross, Abby Pell, Kirk Miller, Craie Carrera, Justin Gonzales, Katrina Freds, Steve Cook, Nora McAnulty, Dounia Rijkschroeff, Dana Linn Bailey. 

I’m sure there are many many more that I missed or forgot to list, don’t even get me started on the companies attendance. 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Body Power 2015 – Flash Back Gallery

We are now mere days away from Body Power 2017 at the Birmingham NEC, which will be my 5th Year, and each year the show gets bigger and bigger. I previously posted Body Power 2014, now its Body Power 2015 and lastly a Body Power 2016 Flash Back. 

2015 Saw a boom in Stongmen, Fitness Girls and Competitions/Contests all boomed and even The Hulkster as in Hulk Hogan and Jimmy Hart made an appearance with Queue longer than an airport customs queue from Colombia.  Worlds Strongest Man Brian Shaw, Runner up Eddie Hall, along with Dana Linn Bailey, Flex Lewis, Ania Malys, Rob “Mr Hyde” Archer, CT Fletcher and many other names made an appearance. Lots of new products launched here ProMixx Blender with the main man Daniel Yeomans, BLK Volmix Water with Alternative model Becky Holt and many many others.

I’ll post a Body Power 2016 Flash Back soon. if I can obtain permission for Body Power 2013 one for that too. 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Body Power 2014 – Flash Back Gallery

Body Power 2017 is coming on 12th May, just next week. Body Power 2014 also at the Birmingham NEC was my first Freelance year at body power, previous year I was with a publication as a second photographer. The show was still early days for Body Power 2013, mostly body builders and supplement companies, 2014 saw an explosion with Fitness and Physique mixing along with fighting and combat people in the Combat Zone along with Boxer Ricky Hatton. You could see the massive growth from 2013, and this reflected in range of companies attending with bigger and bigger displays, along with an a huge boom in new products launching. 

The big names were Boxing Legend Ricky Hatton, and Worlds Strongest Man Brian Shaw, other names included Strongman Mark Felix, Mr Olympia Dorian Yates, Model Louise Glover and Body Builder Kai Greene and loads more. 

Many images I’m not able to post here due to exclusivity and sales, but I’ll post a Body Power 2015, and Body Power 2016 flash backs soon. 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Photoshop Cheat Sheets

I don’t know about all of you, I could never get used to dedicated keyboards, didn’t help much that I switched between Adobe Photoshop (Photo Editor), Macromedia Dreamweaver (Website Editor) and Adobe Premier (Video Editor). I would have needed a armada of keyboards. By dedicated keyboards I mean those almost rainbow coloured keyboards with short cut keys and macros printed on them. When I moved to Alienware Laptops for mobile editing, I stopped even trying to use the dedicated keyboards and used cheat sheets on copyholder clips which were equally mobile.

On a quick side note, The Alienware M18x R1, M18 and M17 laptops have all been fantastic at editing video and photo. If you need a Mobile Editing station, its well worth considering one. The main reason I advocate Dell is for their Warranty and Accidental Damage cover, usually next business day and engineer turns up, so don’t cheap out.

Back on Cheat Sheets, I found various cheat sheets which were hard to read, huge walls of text and some not so. I eventually stumbled on keyboard style layout cheat sheets and saved them. It was way back on CS3 I started this, and this a more up to date kayout for Photoshop CC, but most of them look the same due to Legacy.

Click it to see the full size version and save it.

Adobe Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts Cheat Sheet

Adobe Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts Cheat Sheet

I’m not sure who made the above graphic, its very good though and suits Apple Photoshop and Windows Photoshop. However remember that wall of text style cheat sheet I mentioned. This one seems to be made by Adobe and is very complete. You’ll see what I mean by wall of text when you blow up the lists below. All 4 Walls of Text Shortcuts, click on them and save them.

Photoshop CS2 Shortcuts Part 1

Photoshop CS2 Pt 1

Photoshop CS2 Shortcuts Part 2

Photoshop CS2 Pt 2

Photoshop CS2 Shortcuts Part 3

Photoshop CS2 Pt 3

Photoshop CS2 Shortcuts Part 4

Photoshop CS2 Pt 4

 

 

 

 

 
Its worth having a google to see what other cheat sheets there are around, maybe another style will suit you.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Body Power Expo 2016

Body Power Crowds

Body Power Crowds

I recently attended the Body Power Expo in the capacity of a Photographer, this were my 4th Annual Body Power event. Its interesting to see the Fitness and Health scene in the UK Evolving as this expo is almost like a “snap shot” of the industry; you can almost watch its growth and diversification.

Early Gyms and Expo

In some ways it reminds of my first Gym 1996/7, what looked like an old public toilet on the edge of an industrial complex (Mirrlees Blackstone), it had concrete flooring, a bit crap cord like carpet, a radio so old I’m saying a wireless, it were stuck on local radio which were KISS or Galaxy. No heating, no showers, a toilet with the box like 7ft high. I think 2-3 machines a bike, an form of elliptical and a basic rower. Hardware wise, a dozen bars, a tonne of plates, half dozen benches oh and a Rack in 1 corner and that were it. Many gyms were like this to various extents.

Strongman Arena

Strongman Arena

Fast forward to my current gym 2016… 2 floors, 5 different types of exercise bike, chest press machines, diverging lat pull down machines, lateral raise machine, cable pod, 8 stack, trx, rope trainer, loads of machine, video based music, studio place, brightly lit, toilets, showers, kinds small on the weights but still 2 racks, 2 smiths, a dozen benches etc, and its open 24/7.

Product Launch

Thinking back over Body Power its the same thing. This year there various brands some old and some new choosing to launch their brand or new product at the show. My first year, there were literally no newbies, it were all the old guard as it were.

I think the first major new brand I saw launch there were NOVO who make protein bites, which look like a quaver only smaller, don’t taste as good as a quaver though, but its protein and snackable. It falls in the “flexible dieting” and “protein snacks” categories.

Reflex Protein Coffee

Reflex Protein Coffee

This year existing companies were launching new products, Reflex nutrition launched their new protein coffee, with a stand dedicated purely to the 1 product. Mars were pushing their new Snickers and Mars Protein ranges and various others. On a smaller scale, some new brands like “Serious Ammunition” with their Bullet Reloaded product, then “Active Sport Nutrition” were  launching Zombie Juice, another new brand were TNT. There were sooo very many others which I can’t list here.

Some of the past product launches are now rapidly growing into major brands; NOCCO is one which stuck in my mind. I commented on in another blog post, which is an awesome product. Another would be NOVO who make protein bites (crisp), 3 yrs ago their stand were small, it were about 5-6x bigger this year with some fairly big name athletes on it such as former Miss Netherlands Dounia Rijkschroeff.

USN Stand

USN Stand

The Big Boys Roll In

This year also some of the old guard attended for the first time like MyProtein, who came packing mini-guns to mow the competition down. I think they literally brought EVERY athlete they sponsored.

USN were dominating the expo, they sponsored the main stage, the pro IBFF show, they had their own little mini stage, which were HUUUUUGE. One their newer products tastes amazing the B4-Bomb Extreme (Cherry). I tried sooo many of their products.

Which I guess is the point of all the samples, to try them all so you pick the brand for life. I must have tried 40 different proteins, a dozen pre-workouts, 2 dozen bcaa’s and various cookies, muffins, doughnuts and bars of the weekend. A few different products I have gone on to purchase.

CT Fletcher

CT Fletcher

This year there were strongmen, insta-famous, inspirational, physique, bodybuilders, body transformers, bikini, clothing, equipment, supplements, food, snacks, MMA, boxing and even medical services making the event what it is.

The list of names is, and were endless, the top of their game. I really wouldn’t know where to start with such a list.

However some of the biggest pullers were Paige Hathaway and Michelle Lewin on the FitFuel Stand, Steve Cook on the Optimum Nutrition Stand and Christian Guzman on Alphalete Stand.

Below is a 360 view of the queue for Paige Hathaway, the queues for the others were equally impressive but had no vantage point.


The fitness and health sector in the UK is growing at a crazy pace, a truly astonishing rate.

The take away from the whole show were about inspiration, and improving your health and learning. I saw girls meeting Michelle Lewin who were close to tears and gushing. Telling her how they were inspired to lose weight, hit the gym, overcome bullying and more. I saw guys telling CT Fletcher he helped them to push harder

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

NOCCO – No Carb Company Drinks

NOCCO Girls with Mathilda on Right

NOCCO Girls with Mathilda on Right

A few years ago I met Mathilda from a company out of Sweden called NOCCO. She were launching a brand of Carbonated (Fizzy) Drinks which contained BCAA (Branched Chain Amino Acids) with and without Caffeine, or KOFFEIN as it were listed back then, with names like RODA BAR and PARON, none of the cans were in English but they tasted great.

Body Power Explosion

The stand NOCCO had at the Body Power Expo were not more than the size of a Box Room, with Mathilda and I believe 2 maybe 3 staff, fast forward to 2016 and the stand were 3 maybe 4x larger, with a mountain of NOCCO which were probably bigger than the original stand. All the cans are now in English with the same nice print quality, with a semi mat finish, which made them easy to grip even with wet hands. I think there were about 7-8 Staff including Mathilda who says she’s loving the expo and plans to get bigger and bigger each year.

Nocco - Old and New

NOCCO- Old and New Designs

What I found interesting from a marketing perspective is, Mathilda tackled the show with what I could only describe as blixtkrig as the Swedish say or blitzkrieg as we’re more familiar as, which “lightening war”. A number of stands told me, she visited them and dropping a case or two off for the stand. This meant NOCCO had “peppered” than expo, it were EVERYWHERE, almost every Athlete on every stand were drinking it.

One athlete told me, they were fuelled purely by NOCCO, although the can says not to mix with Alcohol, another athlete told me its amazing with a certain Russian drink. This does kind of negate the zero carb thing though.

Product Flavours and Nutrition

Now the drinks themselves are 330ml  and come in Pear, Peach, Mixed Berry and Citrous and Elderflower Flavours, all are Carbonated (Fizzy) and all but the latter are Caffeinated with 180mg, and contain ratios of 4:1:1 or 8:1:1 of Leucine, Valine and Isoleucine and some have L-Carnitine, and Citrous and Elderflower is Caffeine Free, no Carnitine, and 4:1:1 blend of BCAA. I’ll add some Label information soon along with some product photo’s too.

Mountain of NOCCO

Mountain of NOCCO

They all contain, between 3-6g-ish of protein, along with Vitamin D, Biotin, Folic Acid, Niacin, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12, but what is most shocking for example is Citrous and Elderflower is 20 kcals NONE of which come from Carbs in fact none of the flavours contain any carbs, the 5g of protein in the citrous is the source of the 20kcal (4kcal per gram), the other flavours have various amounts of each vitamin, protein and mineral, but all around 20kcals and zero carbs.

I have to say, this is one of the best products I have sampled, certainly the best fizzy drink, and most impressive stats, I’d say top 3 products from the expo and potentially the best marketing.

At some point I’d like to talk more in depth about branding, company name, and product development, not to mention working out the tastes. Many of these drinks frankly taste horrendous, others taste so chemical and artificial its shocking but this seems to be bang on.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.