Google Virtual Tour

To busy for Crufts!

Well, Murphy is such a cool dude. He joined us on a photoshoot. Almost always too busy for Crufts he says. Enjoy.

#lucyruralandcreative, #rurallife, #crufts, #jackrussell, #GoogleVirtualTour, #Dumfries

Just what is the prettiest photoshoot you can do?

Just what is the prettiest shoot you can do? Well, I think it must be a florists. It was a first for us, The Hanging Basket in Lancaster has been one of our most picturesque shoots.

Try Googling ‘The Hanging Basket Lancaster’ on an iPad or tablet and first take a look at ‘Photos’ and as you scroll you will see lots of lovely flowers and displays as below.

The Hanging Basket Lancaster Photos on the Google

The Hanging Basket Lancaster Photos on the Google

It was a smallish space in which to work, but the Google Tour looks great, try moving around in the image below

Or even better try it on Google Cardboard (Google Street View App) for the full immersive virtual reality experience

The Hanging Basket on Google Cardboard Virtual Reality

The Hanging Basket on Google Cardboard Virtual Reality

 

Bet you didn’t know you could do that now – did you! A-maz-ing!

 

 

It’s anything but glamorous!

One of the things about doing a shoot in a hair or beauty salon such as Nelson Browns, is the problem with all the multiple reflections in the mirrors. The other day we performed a minor miracle to get all the shots for the Google Virtual Tour without the camera or ourselves getting in the picture. Mind you, it meant hiding in the toilet for most of the shoot for one of us! It was worth it though.

Click on the arrow on the floor, and then drag and zoom in and out of the image below.

We were with Nelson Brown at his salon, this time in Lockerbie. Nelson specialises in education and has a fantastic team behind him. Nelson also assists backstage on hair for the cat walks at London, New York, Paris and Milan fashion weeks, including John Rocha, Burberry, Jasper Conran, Paul Smith… and you can see why. Now this IS glamorous!

Amazing hair by Nelson Brown.

Nelson Brown - fab hair

Nelson Brown – fab hair

 

How not to impress at a beauty shoot…

Unlike Nelson’s style beneath, I’ve been perfecting the ‘through a hedge backwards look’ recently that only I can be proud of. Yes the day we came to do our shoot at Browns, we arrived in a rain storm. We were so wet through, Nelson Brown offered us towels to dry off!

And of course Browns just happens to be a hair salon! It was very embarrassing for us to turn up like that to say the least!

And it wasn’t just any hair salon. It’s not often that you come across such exciting talent.

Nelson Brown fabulous hair design

Nelson Brown fabulous hair design

 

Nelson has just been awarded 5 stars in the Good Salon Guide, and we came to do his Google Virtual Tours for his salons. Here’s our tour of the Dumfries salon.

 

 

If you want to see more of Nelson’s style tune in to our next blog…

 

What makes a good whisky? Is it prancing about in a kilt?

Ask one hundred people and you will get one hundred answers. It has been said that there are at least 500 brands of whisky in the world – so there seems plenty to have a go at.

There’s certainly plenty here at this local specialist, T B Watson in Dumfries. Click and drag on the image below.

We’ve tried the elusive Glenmorangie Cellar 13, now going up and up in price. And by experts I am told this is (or was) one of the best, being influenced by it’s being aged in barrels close to the sea shore. So the ‘terroir’ and casking is a major part of the magic.

Theories and myths abound, particularly The Angel’s Share, which is the small proportion of the whisky which is lost through evaporation from the barrels. A film was made with this title, and directed by Ken Loach in 2012 and is worth a look.

Apart from the famous 1949 Whisky Galore film, there is also a 1897 Dewars Scotch Whisky film, reputed to be the first filmed advertisement. In advance of their time, some have suggested that the dancers in Scottish kilts are rather the worse for wear whilst they dance in front of a Dewars Whisky sign. Which seems rather harsh!

 

Colour psychology in restaurants

As a restaurant owner, one of the most important factors for your success (after the provision of good food) is often the decor and ambience. But what to choose?

Each restaurant is different and individual, and it has been shown that the colour red, attracts people, stimulates people to talk, stimulates blood pressure and heart rate and most importantly stimulates the appetite. You just need to Google ‘the use of the colour red in restaurants’ to find more about this.

It’s not exactly known why this should be. We’ve got an example below of one that works, The Granite Kitchen, Dalbeattie, Scotland. We had a business meeting here, and talk was free flowing and exciting and we observed a great turn over of clientele. The ambience that is created is good.

Click and drag on the image below. It all tastes as good as it looks.

If you Google ‘The Granite Kitchen Dalbeattie’ then this is what you see on a pc (other devices give similar results), with appropriate imagery. It looks good.

The Granite Kitchen, Dalbeattie AFTER the Google Virtual Tour

The Granite Kitchen, Dalbeattie AFTER the Google Virtual Tour

 

Virtual Tourism, the Sistine Chapel from your armchair

Well, it still never ceases to amaze me just how well travelled we can be without leaving our home. An internet connection is all we need and we can be a virtual tourist.

The world is responding to our desire for imagery whether that is for shopping or visiting tourist spots or seeing virtual exhibitions. Here’s a small collection of museum and art exhibitions from very well know locations around the world.

Starting with a real exhibition at the Fundacion MAPFRE in Barcelona. The exhibition is called The Triumph of Colour. From Gauguin to Matisse. It features paintings from the collections of the Musee d’Orsay and the Musee de l’Orangerie and runs until 10th Jan 2016. It’s a pity that it’s not on an HTTPS server so click on the image below and a new page will open. When you find a ‘+’ sign this means you can see the painting close up, and look for other icons to find written and audio commentaries. Explore and see what you think. (It’s in Spanish, I did look for other language versions but I could not find any).

Fundacion MAPFRE Barcelona Virtual Tour

Fundacion MAPFRE Barcelona Virtual Tour

Next here’s a Google Street View tour of the Orangerie Museum in Paris from way back in Dec 2011. Pretty cool for those days and still excellent today, it’s one of my favourite exhibitions in Paris. It’s on a HTTPS server so just click on the image embedded below and move around and zoom.

And finally for some real funky stuff, we have The Sistine Chapel at the Vatican in Rome. There is so much detail here, it’s just amazing. The controls are quite ‘sensitive’ and I can easily end up with the picture spinning, but my goodness, it is so beautiful. Again it’s not HTTPS so this will open another window, but with such high resolution you can forgive anything. [Post edit: Please note this tour is in ‘Flash’ which is not supported by Apple iPhone or iPad, which means it won’t work on these. You need to access this on other devices and non-mobile devices such as a desktop or laptop. It would be worth the Vatican re-engineering this into a non-flash version to be accessible to so many more people. I think it’s worth it].

Sistine Chapel at the Vatican Rome, Virtual Tour

Sistine Chapel at the Vatican Rome, Virtual Tour

There’s plenty more to come with virtual reality, watch that space….virtual or otherwise

Go and explore on line.

Perfect for your Christmas Presents!

This place is just perfect for your Christmas presents and stocking fillers. Or at any time really. Takes me back…

Jacksons Models in Wigton, (specialists in model railways and diecast models) the place to spend a while…

Click on the image above and move about the premises.

Jackson Models before the Google Tour on an iPad

Jacksons Models on an iPad Before the Google Virtual tour

Jacksons on an iPad Before the Google tour

Jackson Models AFTER the Google Tour on an iPad. LOVELY.

Jacksons Models on an iPad AFTER the Google Virtual tour

Jacksons Models on an iPad AFTER the Google Virtual tour

 

What a difference a day makes!

 

 

Jewellery by Michael King, photography and Google virtual tours

Following on from our previous post, we were delighted to do some photography for Michael King Jewellery including a Google Virtual Tour, which we start with here. Try click and dragging on the first image below.

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery is one of the most complex and difficult areas of photography, due to reflections on polished surfaces and facets in the jewels themselves. Special lighting helps, but mainly it’s experience plus a fair helping of time and patience to get it absolutely right. We think it’s worth it!

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Michael King has been commissioned for ceremonial crosses for bishops and Elizabeth II, items for films and many other unique pieces of jewellery. They have recently made the designer pieces for the House of Holland consumer experience on the catwalk – see our earlier post.

Jewellery by Michael King, signature piece

Jewellery by Michael King, signature piece

Here’s some more of my favourite shots

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Jewellery by Michael King

Of course we did a Google tour, which you can find for yourself on Google and Google Maps, and now they are presented like this on the web when you search for Michael King Jewellery (for example using an iPad below).

AFTER the Google Tour on search on the web

AFTER the Google Tour when searching on the web

A vast improvement to what went before, I think you will agree (below).

Before the Google Tour on search on the web

Before the Google Tour on search on the web

A pleasure and a privilege to have worked with Jewellery by Michael King. Thank you.

Not seeing your virtual tour on FaceBook?

Well, this is a reasonable question. How do I get my virtual tour onto FaceBook?

Sciarts Google tours on customised FaceBook tab

Sciarts Google tours on customised FaceBook tab

The first thing to note is that FaceBook uses https by default. ‘https’ means it has secure browsing which helps to prevent hijacking of your pages by others. It has a higher level of encryption.

The impact is that if you want to reference other media (such as a virtual tour) then that needs to be on an https server too! Many people struggle with this. It means that if you try to embed a tour held on a non secure server it will never ever show up on FaceBook.

How do you know if you have a web site on an https server? Easy, look at your web address. If it says http (before the www) then it is not https! You can also check with your host.

Google Street View Trusted tours is https. So these can be displayed easily on FaceBook. We have many examples on our own customised FaceBook tab of 360 virtual tours (above) that we have completed, and many of our clients have included these tours on their FaceBook pages too. They wanted to integrate their tour with their social media. It makes perfect sense. It’s really great for retailers, galleries, restaurants, gyms…. and anyone wanting to make the most of their social media.

You don’t have to use your tour on FaceBook of course, instead you can embed it in your blog and in web sites whether using http or https.

As ever, it’s horses for courses. For instance, we also do customised tours (see next blog) which don’t go on FaceBook unless someone uses https for their web site.

If your expectation is that you want your tour to integrate with your social media then you need the higher level of security afforded by a Google Tour, (unless you have an https web site already). Don’t waste your money on anything less.

Depending on what is requested by a client, we can produce both sorts of tour, all at the same time, thus saving some time, and giving clients both options and freedom of choice.

Next a little more on those customised tours.