Category Archives: Photography

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.

Jaded Photographer

I used to shoot loads of photographs, I loved or rather still do love it but when it became work, I really got jaded with it all.  Its a very bitchy game with lots of “new” people entering all the time who are trying to snipe and undercut everyone else. Not to mention the night after night editing, cropping, digitally re-mastering images it gets tiring,

Manchester Town Hall

Manchester Town Hall

Over the years I have seen so many things I’d love to shoot myself; with my own twist. There are a few idea’s I have loved but thought about going in a different direction than the original artist did.

Thinking back over the last 12 months, almost every photo I have taken has been at events, exhibitions or shows, if you don’t include pics of my doggies. Not a single shoot for my own enjoyment, and I wonder why I’m jaded by it.

I think its time I arranged some shoots, which are fun and strike my interests a little more.

Manchester Town Hall

The photo of Manchester Town Hall to the right were a some what rush job, taken in the middle of the night. I wish I had a wider lens, I miss my 16-35mm at times like that. I remember having to make the choice of head on which made the figure look flat or move to the side and get some skew and distortion but get more depth. I miss that so much.

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