There's absolutely no way anyone can get through February without seeing or hearing those 3 little words.  I love you. 

We're bombarded from all angles with hearts, roses and lovey dovey sentiments which after a while can get on your nerves.  Having said that I still get seduced by it all and if I don't get a bunch of flowers and a card from a secret admirer on the 14th February he knows he would be in the dog house - if we had a dog.

Valentine memories over the years include:  telling school friends I'd received at least 4 Valentine cards (didn't tell them I'd sent them myself); dad presenting mum with his usual last minute petrol station bouquet & for her to crossly point over to the sofa & the luxuriously wrapped, beautifully scented, bouquet of 100 deep red roses (to my third sister from a secret admirer - they've now been married 25 years & she never got a bouquet that size again); a few cards & gifts in my younger days that I honestly don't know who sent them - probably Keanu Reeves I once shared a lift with him.

Moving on from Valentine's Day but keeping the I Love You line in mind & why I chose this photo of Mike Scott (The Waterboys). 

Obviously I love photography & I love music photography beyond belief.  So I was in my little brain trying to think of someone I'd photographed & loved too. 

Voila or is it voici - Mike Scott (although not him as such - his music - just to be clear). 

Songs I seriously love:  The Whole Of The Moon, Don't Bang The Drum, Red Army Blues.  They all remind me of the 1990s & my London days (nights if you want to be pernickety), my Disney friends (especially Caz, Jo, Tim no longer here) & the many happy times I spent at Beach Blanket Babylon (Notting Hill), Harvey Wallbangers (The Hand & Flower, North Kensington) & CafĂ© Boheme, Jimmy's, The Nellie Dean, The Borderline (Soho).  I love How Long Will I Love You - sung by Jon Boden (Bellowhead) down in the London underground in the About Time film by Richard Curtis.   However when I heard Mike Scott sing his own song I loved it even more.

Although remember with love there's always pain. 

To post this photo of him when he was singing Raggle Taggle Gypsy at the Cambridge Folk Festival I seriously suffered pain. 

I really love the Raggle Taggle Gypsy song - it's the Cambridge Folk Festival, the pit ponies (photographers I worked with), backstage crew and lots of music. In order to get this photo I had to climb up into the attic, spend hours searching through my  photo archives & despite my interesting filing system I found it.  Pure love and excitement shone all around me. 

Unfortunately I then fell through the attic hole because the ladder,  bored of waiting for me, had gone on strike.  

Bruised but not broken I'm slowly recovering & my love of Mike Scott and The Waterboys & Raggle Taggle Gypsy lives on.

Raggle Taggle Gypsy

Mike Scott, The Waterboys

Tips and Tricks Photographing Love

1). Write down a list of just 10 things you love the most - for me it's:  my family & friends, horses, music, landscapes, marmite, books, red wine, sunrises & sunsets, beaches, sand dollars.  (use of the & (ampersand) makes 2 things become as 1)

2).  Photograph them - try and think outside the box eg instead of a portrait do another aspect of that person - shoes, back of head, hands ...

3).  Share them - prints or social media

4). If you have to use a ladder for any reason always make sure you're using it correctly and safely.

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