Birkebeinerspelet 2018 was performed over three February evenings against the stunning backdrop of Sør-Mesna at Mesna Activities and Accommodation. A resounding success, over 2000 people attended and they were both entertained by the markets and stalls and wowed by the spectacle of a mid winter night time outdoor play. Plans are now well underway for an even bigger event in February 2019. Mark your diaries now – this is one Norwegian event not to be missed. This year I was able to use my new Nikon D850 as the camera of choice and the high pixel count, low noise and superb focussing all combined to help me take some images I am very proud of.    
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Next week I return to Mesna in Norway, to take part in Birkebeinerspelet 2018. The following is an interview I undertook for the programme. Photographer and author Ian Brodie has many years’ experience in the film industry. He has specialised in film location tourism, and has published a number of location guidebooks that showcase the beautiful places in his native New Zealand where both the the Lord of the Rings and the The Hobbit film trilogies were shot. In 2012 he was invited to speak at a film tourism conference in Lillehammer, having never been to Norway before. At the conference he met representatives from the Norwegian film industry including Paradox Film. In 2014 they asked him to be unit stills photographer on Birkebeinerne. The rest, as they say, is history. Ian now spends many months every year in Norway working on a number of varied projects. – I fell in love with Norway immediately, says Brodie. – To me, it was a lot like home, like New Zealand, another Middle-earth, but with a long history and a broad mythology that actually inspired Tolkien. – The people, too, are similar: sensible, practical, reserved till you get to know them, but […]
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Living in a world of social media and instant sharing, the travel guide is perceived by many to be a thing of the past. A dinosaur that has been replaced by the instant consumer review and obligatory selfie, denoting both a “this is where we are and this is what we thought” moment for the poster and all their friends. Unfortunately these type of posts and reviews often have no basis of fact or knowledge and can have a detrimental effect as the post spirals out into the cyberspace. However, technology has also delivered a new medium for the travel guide that allows tourism organisations to provide an authoritative platform that showcases a country, a county, a town or an attraction, with consumer interaction and social integration for the reader and user. The modern e-book has a number of benefits. It allows us to merge the content and the purpose of a traditional guide book with new technologies, new narrative concepts and dynamic, interactive content through handheld devices such as iPad, iPhone and HTML5. It provides a platform that immerses the user and reader into stories, histories, landscape and places by using moving images, animation, sound, photos, live interviews, samples […]
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The three months that Dianne and I spent in Provence during 2015/16 was one of the most memorable experiences of our lives. Today, I am dreaming of Provence, and vowing to return. For more, see my Provence Page Here, which includes the gallery below.  
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Robert Follan
Working with some wonderful people as we practice for the opening of Birkebeinerspelet 2017 on Friday 17 February. Robert Follin is a professional stunt man educated in the United States. He has choreographed fighting for film and theatre, in addition to working as a stuntman and actor in film, television and theatrical productions in Scandinavia. He has featured in Arn, Vikings, Mammon, Bridge, Eyewitness, Fair Game and the movie Birkebeinerne.    
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The update of my website continues. The latest page brings back very many happy memories of our three months spent living in L'isle-sue-la-Sorgue in Provence.
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In 2015 I was very fortunate to be able to have a footplate ride on the West Somerset Railway between Bishops Lydeard and Minehead. As a true train buff, this was a dream come true. An unforgettable experience. The gallery below is just some of my images of that amazing journey.
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Wishing you all the best for an amazing 2017. May all your dreams and aspirations come true.      
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