1,500 Reasons To Be Grateful

Today the 1,500th person followed my blog. I’m feeling very grateful. I’m aware that people follow me for different reasons. I hope that I continue to create posts that you enjoy it relate to, as well as my studies.

I’ve also made some friends by following you and engaging with you via your posts. It’s wonderful to have friends from around the world.

I welcome any ideas that you may have so that I can create meaningful dialogue.


I thank you all and I’m feeling very grateful.

A Successful Day Does Not Have To Feel Good! Thankyou.

Yesterday was a day won. That I won. That we won. Yesterday I succeeded.

Yesterday I felt physically unwell and in distress, and was challenging mentally and emotionally. I went to bed drained and had nightmares that involved me being force fed, binging and people being intensely violent towards me. But yesterday was very much a successful day for me.

Despite my panic around calories and feeling the need to restrict my calories further, along with an obsession about binging, I did neither.

I stuck to the foods and calories that my eating disorder team and I have agreed. This is an achievement considering how I felt.

I was nurtured by my friend P and cousin L, and supported by you, my friends and fellow bloggers. I thankyou all so so much. I can’t express how much being nurtured and supported helped.

This old saying rings true:-

I alone can do it, but I cannot do it alone.

I can make no promises about today. I’ve woken up with the desires to binge and starve, and yet I feel much calmer and more positive, and I feel very grateful that yesterday was a successful day.

A Big Thankyou To All Of My Followers


Yesterday afternoon I had the 1,000th person follow my blog. Thank you so much for choosing to view my photography and read my posts. I’m just a guy with a camera, finding my way through the complexity of life, and as such I find it quite humbling that you want to share my journey.

I’m very grateful for your support.

Photography Competition

The Photo Sociology “I can do better than a Turner” Photography Award (see here to enter) has had its third entrance today (see here for the gallery). The competition is open to anyone over 18, it’s free to enter, and there is a £50 amazon voucher for first place, and £25 each for two runners-up (or the equivalent currency value of Nation were the winners reside). Why not pop over and enter the competition.

Liebster Award


Feeling a touch embarrassed because I have just been nominated for a Liebster Award by She from This Door Is Alarmed. She, writes poetry, prose and fiction, in such a manner that there are times that I think I’m reading a short story and it turns out to be a memoire, and other times She combines fiction and prose in the same blog. One of the most enjoyable and fascinating posts by She is called The Shorthand anomaly, is it a memoire? Is it a short story? Either way it’s incredibly well written, and to go a way from a blog, and still be thinking about it, ensures that I will keep returning.

The GUIDELINES for the 2018 award are as follows:

  • Thank the person who nominated you
    • Display the award on your post
    • Write a small post about what makes you passionate about blogging
    • Provide 10 random facts about yourself
    • Answer the questions given to you
    • Nominate 5-11 other blogs for this award
    • Ask them creative and unique questions of your own
    • List the rules and inform your nominees of the award


What makes me passionate about blogging?

This is where my embarrassment comes in for being nominated for awards. I study photography because it has changed my life. It’s given me an ability to have some management of my mental health by igniting a fire within me, a spark of creativity and the joy that has come from that. Life through a lens is a way that I can live in a world that I find frightening, and my blog, which is essentially a requirement for my studies with the Open College of the Arts, has given me a community. I am happy to not spend time with others, and enjoy being with myself, but I still have a need to feel valued and have the opportunity to give back, and that’s what my blog, and my WordPress community has given me. That’s why I feel embarrassed. Yes my blog has developed beyond being a student blog (which it still is), but I’m nothing special, I’m a student, I like this form of connection with my fellow students, and the other blogs that I follow and who follow me. That’s it, nothing special. Just a human with a camera, learning how to live.

10 Random Facts

I do not live alone, I live with myself.

Spirituality is about three relationships, my relationship with the universe, my relationship with you, my relationship with me.

I am not my circumstances, I AM.

I had no odea that I was creative, and now I am so grateful to have discovered an aspect of me that was hidden.

Meditation is vital for me to cope with life.

I have an eating disorder, men get eating disorders too, and help is available for anyone with an eating disorder (see below).

I worship the sun, not a get down on my hands and knees and prostrate myself kind of way, but I will sit in it until I burn and then stay in it for as long as I can.

I collect crystal and gemstones.

Clothes have to have the right texture for me to be happy with them. Fashion isn’t important but how clothes feel against my skin is. I get quite agitated with the wrong texture.

Sleep doesn’t matter to me. I can, and do, function quite happily with between 0 and 5 hours sleep.

oh and one more thing… I still have not worked out how to get rid of this damned double spacing, however, WordPress for Dummies arrived yesterday.


She’s questions for me

How straight is straight?

Who cares? How true to yourself are you?

What would you think I was referring to if I told you to ‘put it down’?

My paranoid think or over analysing, I can be like a dog with a bone.

Why are swans graceful?

They are beautiful, protective, loyal, nurturing, fierce and aggressive. Their beauty is what I most connect with rather than grace. The purity of their white feathers, and the subtle definition, the shape of those feathers and the contours when they have their wings arched behind their backs. Those thin fine lines upon their necks where their have much smaller feathers. They are stunning, who cares if they are graceful, there is so much more to a swan than its cliched grace.

Would you be a superhero or a sidekick, and what would your name be?

I’d be called Leigh Me’Alone, and would be running and hiding to get the hell away from people – neither superhero, anti-hero or sidekick. Preferably I wouldn’t even be thought of to be included in the story or film.

If you could remove one letter from the English alphabet, what would it be, and what consequences do you see coming from it?

My gosh – what a question. I shall cheat and remove two (I just can’t conform can I). I will remove ME. The consequences – I would no longer exist, I would cease to exist – I can live with that (ironic), lol.

What was the last thing you lost and never found? What do you imagine has happened to it?

My Sanity – Not sure if I lost it, it was taken from me or never had it to begin with. It’s been hidden behind a wall so deep and so strong, but it is starting to get cracks now. Little bits of sanity are beginning to seep through as the wall ages. I think photography is a little chisel that’s slowly scraping away the cement between the bricks.

What significance does the number seven have to you? What memories do you associate with it?

A threat that my birthday would be cancelled and the fear of that, the joy of receiving a football and remote control bike, deciding there is no point trying because I would be in trouble no matter what I did, the mental decision to give up on life.

Young and completely broke or old and disgustingly rich?

If richness equates with diversity, passion, inclusion, justice, friendship, a sense of belonging, being able to give back, with equality, with living an authentic life, then I’ll go for old and disgustingly rich.

If a giant squirrel had commandeered your mode of transportation, whether car, moped, bike etc., and seemed to know how to make it work, what would you do to stop him?

Well that could be quite tricky. My mode of transport is legs and feet. If a squirrel commandeered those then I imaging it could be almost impossible to do anything. Maybe I should start to carry peanuts and a long club around with me?

If you had your own coat of arms, what would I expect to find on them to describe you/ your family?

A coffin, a camera, birds and flowers on one side, a lightening strike down the middle, and nothing on the other side.

(I am aware that at times I may come across as over serious or too honest – kinda can’t help it, sorry)


My Questions for my nominees

(My time is limited so I’m gonna cheat and re-feed you She’s questions)

  1. How straight is straight?
  2. What would you think I was referring to if I told you to ‘put it down’?
  3. Why are swans graceful?
  4. Would you be a superhero or a sidekick, and what would your name be?
  5. If you could remove one letter from the English alphabet, what would it be, and what consequences do you see coming from it?
  6. What was the last thing you lost and never found? What do you imagine has happened to it?
  7. What significance does the number seven have to you? What memories do you associate with it?
  8. Young and completely broke or old and disgustingly rich?
  9. If a giant squirrel had commandeered your mode of transportation, whether car, moped, bike etc., and seemed to know how to make it work, what would you do to stop him?
  10. If you had your own coat of arms, what would I expect to find on them to describe you/ your family?


My Nominees

Dd AL from happiness between tails

MwsR from MwsR writings

Rising Strong

Robert from Robert Loves Pi

Songa from Songa Stories

Ulrika from instaology

Fred from Fred Gardner Blog

Indigo Turtle’s Musings

The Vaping Life

Mua from As Told By Mua

Eating Disorder Support


Men Get Eating Disorders Too

United States





The Minds Foundation




Photo Sociology Featured On WordPress Discover


Yay. Oh my gosh, I feel very excited and extremely grateful. Discover is an official WordPress site which has some important roles. One of those is to feature the writing and blogs from the WordPress community – Editors Picks, which I have featured on today, another is to provide information, hints and tips so that you can improve your experience with WordPress, and they also showcase examples of other people’s sites so that we can find inspiration with the development and presentation of our sites.

As a WordPress blogger you can submit your site, or that of a blogger who inspires you, to the Discover editors for their consideration. To do so you can visit the discover.wordpress.com about page.

Many many thanks to the Discover team for featuring Photo Sociology. Richard

I AM Flying HighTyphoon Display Team


Big Thanks To “What You Blog About?”

Anar from What You Blog About? approached me last week to ask if I would like my blog to be featured on their site.

What You Blog About? features other blogs as a way of developing links and growing traffic within the WordPress community. As well as asking people if they would like their blog to be featured, Anar has a contact page in which you can submit your own blog, there are a couple of questions on the page so that you can write a brief introduction to your blog.

Here is the link to photosociology on What You Blog About?

Macro (18 of 38)

Wet Collodion Ambrotype (c1854) Direct Positive On Glass – An Amazing Gift I Have Just Recieved


Can you believe that I have been given this? I can’t. The photo looks better in the flesh than the scanned image, the scanner doesn’t appear to be able to pick up the detail through the glass, and I refuse to take it out of the frame.

He is an ancestor of mine, and we can date the photo from in between 1851 when the ambrotype began to be used, and 1860 because of family events. My cousin has given me a lot of photos of our ancestors, from her family line, most of which are pre war. I am feeling very blessed and very grateful.

The next two photos are from c1888 and c1902 respectively.



Blogger Appreciation Award – Mental Well-Being With A Mental Illness

Blogger Appreciation Award

I have just received the blogger appreciation award from  Nash Christmas (link).

Nash is an author who believes in self expression, and he writes about all things human but especially relationships. He is a Serbian national who writes his blog in English.

guidelines for the Blogger Appreciation Award

1.Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link back to their site.
2.Write a paragraph of something positive about yourself.
3.Nominate and notify as many bloggers as you wish.
4.Use the Blogger Appreciation Award image.

Something Positive About Me.

What is mental health?

Often when people think about mental health they think of mental illness rather than being mentally healthy. My slant for today is that it is possible to have a mental illness and still be in good shape mentally.

I am diagnosed with several mental illnesses, and life has certainly had its ups, downs and hospital admissions. However, I do my best to live a lifestyle that is positive for my mental well-being.

Mediation and trying to live mindfully are the mainstay of my health. I meditate for an hour each day. Living mindfully takes a while to get used to. Mindfullness – paying attention, on purpose, to the present moment, non-judgementally. This way of life is teaching me to just let circumstances be. Allow my feelings and thoughts to be there, without trying to chase them away with distractions, behaviours or addictions. Whats the worst that can happen if I’m feeling paranoid, having a panic attack, feeling depressed? The only way it can affect me is that I don’t like how I feel, or what I am thinking, and that I feel disturbed.

There are times that I sit watching a movie with my hand resting on my heart, this releases oxytocin, which has two effects, it’s a happy hormone, and it lowers the stress hormones, cortisol and adrenalin. I write five things down in my gratitude diary, things that have happened or that I have achieved during the day. It may be as simple as having hoovered my flat, spoken to a friend, or completed a bit if study. Making sure that I have breaks, and rest are important to me, as is being involved in my community. My community is my friends, my fellow students, and fellow bloggers. Giving back is also a vital component of my life. Giving back doesn’t have to be a big demonstration, holding a door open for someone, speaking to a homeless person, commenting upon someones blog, these create a sense of value and belonging.

Having a mental illness and being mentally well is not an either/or situation.

The bloggers who I am nominating are.

Jade from Crescent Raven


misschauhan from Shoot Me With A Camera

Cinnamon Buns and Roses

Old Boy from Movies From the Silent Era


The Liebster Award 2018


The Liebster award is a peer nominated way of discovering new blogs and bloggers, increasing traffic to your own and other bloggers sites, and potentially a marketing tool as well. I have been nominated by The Everyday Alternative (Janine). The everyday alternative is a gothic journalism student, with a fascinating taste in heavy rock and metal. She is gothic, it’s in her blood, it’s a significant part of who she is, and therefore lives the lifestyle, rather than being a “hobbyist”.

My blog has developed because of my study with The Open College of the Arts. I study photography online with them, and they ask students to set up a blog as a way of keeping track of coursework and to submit assignments. As well as making use of my blog for these purposes, I have a personal photo gallery and write some poems from time to time, with recovery from poor mental health featuring heavily.

I have an interest in people, sociology and society. If I find something that I would like to learn about, then I research and write photo essays, either alone or in collaboration with others, so there are a couple of photo essays on my site as well.

Anyhow, enough about me and more about The Leibster Award. After the Leibster rules I will answer the questions that The Everyday Alternative has set for me.

So for those who don’t know about the Liebster Award, here are the rules:

  1. Give some recognition and promotion to the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Create a post about the award on your blog.
  3. Give a reason you are passionate about blog posting.
  4. Answer the 10 questions you were asked.
  5. Nominate 5-11 other blogs.
  6. Inform those bloggers you nominated them.
  7. Make sure you put these rules on your post so everyone else knows what to do!

So here are the 10 questions I have been asked:

1. If you could travel anywhere in the world where would you go?

I will not go to the one place in the world that I want to go to. The Galapagos Islands. I choose not to go because of the impact of tourism on the natural environment and wildlife. Carole Cadwalladr wrote an article for the Guardian about this in 2012. I would love to go, however I will stick to documentaries.

2. If you could visit a fantasy land from one of your favourite films, TV shows or books where would you pick?

Middle Earth from J.R.R.Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings. I cannot say how many times I have read the books from being a youngster until the last time just under three years ago. It is a retreat, a place of safety in a crazy world.

What food do you crave most often?

Ummm… this changes so often. Chocolate, jam roly poly, Dime Bar cake (still frozen not thawed).

What job would you be absolutely terrible at?

I couldn’t work on the bins or down the sewers, massive respect to those of you that do, thank you for the service that you provide us.

What is your favourite ice cream flavour?

Lemon Curd. The CO-OP (UK supermarket) make their own brand. Its yummy.

What would you do in a zombie apocalypse?

Become a zombie (death would be an awfully big adventure). I can’t run, I get paranoid about my own reflection, I’m prone to anxiety, panic and tears. Lets face it – I am zombie meat.

What song would you pay money to never hear again?

I genuinely do not have an answer. I have an eclectic taste in music:-  House of the Rising Sun by Five Finger Death Punch (heavy metal), True Friends by Bring me the Horizon (Rock, Death Metal), Holy Driver by Killswitch Engage (metalcore), Beethoven VS Chemical Brothers – Symphony Number 5 VS Galvanise by DJ’s from Mars (Electrodance, mash), Dark and Long Train by Underworld (Electronic), Jump by Girls Aloud (girl group, pop), Walk This Way by Elle and the Pocket Belles (a capella), Potiphar by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice (musical theatre), The most haunting symphony that takes me on an emotional rollercoaster (if you want me to cry play the whole of this to me) Dvorak’s 9th “New world” symphony, played here by the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra (classical). I could go on forever.

Is there a quote you strive to live by?

Not a quote, but I do believe that we are all human, no matter where in the world we live, or what our gender, class, ethnicity, status, wealth, poverty – We are all human, from earth, deal with it and stop fighting, tear down the barricades that we all use to be special and different, to protect whats “mine”. It’s not “mine” it never has been, never will be, it’s all “ours”. Rant over. I also believe that we are all capable of making grave mistakes, of gettings things badly wrong, and being able to move beyond and back into our strengths.

Would you rather be able to fly or turn invisible?

Fly. I love birds. I could be a black basa, a yellow wagtail, a greater racket tailed drongo, a blue footed booby, an Indian Roller, an ostrich or a firecrest.

If you could ask your future self one question, what would it be?

Existentially there is no past or future. They are memories or dreams, either way they are imagined. They don’t exist. Quantum physics supports this, although I dont have the space to write about that. What is self? Is it what I think I am? what you think I am? Conditioning and memory? I believe that “Self” is a construct and also has no basis in reality. However, I will play the game. Too my future self – “How soon will it be before I am free to die?”


I have to make my nominations now and create 10 questions. Please be assured that you do not have to accept the award or answer the questions if you don’t want to.

My nominees are:-








Tanya Keane


Archna Singh

Your Questions – should you choose to accept them:-

1 – If you could walk in someone else’s shoes for the day, so that you could understand their outlook on life, who would it be and why?

2 – A genie grants you three wishes. What would you wish for?

3 – What does “mental well-being” mean to you?

4 – Name three things that happened today that you are grateful for?

5 – If you could achieve one important thing during the course of the year, that would make you proud, what would it be?

6 – You are granted a superpower (like batman, not the cold war), what do you choose?

7 – If you could be told the answer to any of your deepest questions, what question would you ask?

8 – Your given the ability to play a musical instrument fluently, what do you choose and why?

9 – If you had the time to write a book what would you write about?

10 – If a photon travels at the speed of light, and the laws of special relativity mean that time stops when travelling at the speed of light, how much time has passed for the photon, compared to the time since the big bang?

Whether you choose to accept this award or decline it, I know that you are amazing.

For more information about the Liebster Award, check the webpage here.