Learn how to make video with no budget

Thursday, July 24th, 2014|Advice, Video production|by Martin Zeman|No Comments

There is a widely spread misperception that making a video is very expensive. Unfortunately this stops a lot of businesses from engaging with their target audience through this extremely powerful medium and hence missing a huge opportunity to make money.

In this article we will break this myth and show you how you can start producing high quality videos on almost no budget.

This week I had an opportunity to attend a video making workshop by Training-n-Promo run by a BBC veteran Neil Ben. Neil teaches small and medium business owners and marketers how to make HD videos using nothing else than their smartphones and headphones.

Neil started by explaining the technical aspects of filming on a smartphone, how to capture great sound and gave us an introduction into lighting. But that was just the beginning.

You don’t learn until you do what you’ve listened to. And to me, the practical experience, was the most important part of the training. I feel we spent more time working on videos than we spent listening to theory and that’s the main reason the workshop was so valuable.

We, people, are usually quite shy in front of a camera. Having a safe and supportive environment with others like us and someone who pushes us out of our comfort zone to actually do it is absolutely invaluable.

If you are an SME business owner, marketer, freelancer or for example a musician – sign up to the next Training-n-Promo workshop and discover, like I did, how easy it is to produce great quality videos through your smartphone.

As a bonus, here is one of the practice videos I made on my own during the workshop on my iPhone 4 (if you have a newer phone like 4S or iPhone 5, the quality would be even higher).

If I can do it, so can you!

PS: If you can’t attend the workshop near London, Neil has also got an online training called 10 Minute BluePrint.

How to turn off ads on your Youtube videos

Sunday, June 29th, 2014|Advice|by Martin Zeman|No Comments

You have made an amazing video and you can’t wait to share it with the world. The problem is that Youtube keeps showing the annoying pop up banner with third party ads. Don’t worry, you can easily turn that off. Read on to find out how.
Read more »

Story of an Entrepreneur & Wedding Photographer – LJ

Thursday, August 15th, 2013|Advice, Guest posts|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

 

Intro

It’s amazing how a single question turned out to be one of the best pieces of advice that anyone ever gave me;

“Does everyone you know, know what you do?”

Question

Starting your own business sounds like a dream. You imagine being your own boss, making lots of money, working your own hours, taking holidays whenever you want, not to mention the ability to work at home wrapped up in a fluffy blanket (so far I’ve got the fluffy blanket part down to a tee). However, the reality is somewhat different when you actually take that leap of faith.

Know what you do

I remember setting myself up as a photographer. Throughout university whilst studying Photography for Fashion & Advertising, I did the odd bit of freelance here and there, collaborated with fashion designers, models, make up artists and managed to get bits and pieces of my editorial work published in Buzz, a local South Wales magazine, and a few others. Looking back on it now I think I was a bit naive and imagined that work would magically fall into place after I got my degree and that I’d be a world renowned fashion photographer, mingling with the likes of Kate Moss, John Galliano and Rankin.

6015637

Then I met a boy…

Met a boy

We fell in love (all, don’t throw up at once), decided to get married and then life got really busy. I was in my third year of university trying to write a dissertation, plan my final year exhibition and organise a wedding that would take place in Northern Ireland whilst I was in Wales. That year was a blur of flights, phone calls, emails, meetings, deadlines, an empty purse, photographs, prints, and excitement mingled with stress! I’m not sure I knew the difference between those emotions by the end. The thoughts of setting up my own business took a backseat as I looked forward to finishing my degree, become someone’s wife (which made me feel extremely old, even though I was only 22) and building a home together.

Building home

Life eventually began to settle down in the months that followed. I was working part time and just enjoying this new stage of life. In essence, I was the epitome of what it means to be “chilled out.” Eventually though, I needed to get a full time job to build up my photography kit and to simply pay the bills. I began working as a Marketing Executive for a Digital Marketing Company. Through this role I realised the importance of effective social media strategies and really enjoyed learning more and more about Marketing. It gave me the motivation and drive that I needed to setting up my photography business properly this time.

Social Media

I attended courses on Marketing, started teaching myself SEO, Google Analytics, and being pro active on social media and blogging more frequently. This is when that piece of advice I mentioned at the beginning came into play.

Advice

I began to talk more about my photography as if it actually was a business and not just an idea or a concept or something that I do in my spare time. I made sure that everyone I knew, knew what I did. When I decided that I was a professional photographer, other people saw me as that as well. In a period of two months, I had designed and built my website, received three wedding bookings and two charity events! My latest client is Karen Paullada, the actress who plays Nadine in Stella – Ruth Jones’ hit comedy on Sky 1! Each of these jobs came to me through word of mouth and, at times, a line of referrals. Whilst I still work full time as a Marketing Executive, photography is picking up quite quickly and although I’m nowhere near the stage of becoming self employed just yet, it’s looking a lot more realistic now. There are countless other hints and tips that I could go into, but for now, let’s start with that single question…

Does everyone

“Does everyone you know, know what you do?”

395571_310024912366009_1913307247_n

Author: Lisa-Jane Meates

Creative Director at LJM Photography

Website: www.ljm-photography.co.uk

Tweet me: @ljmeates

In conversation with Larry H. – Part II

Thursday, July 4th, 2013|Advice, Interviews, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

In continuance to conversation with Larry H. – Part I

Born in England in 1977, Larry Hallegua is an award-winning street photographer based in London. Larry strives at capturing candid moments of everyday life, trying to incorporate elements of art, fun and surrealism in his photos. His subject(s)’ are generally unaware of him capturing their emotions, Larry states, ‘’If emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.’’

MB: Elexu Senior Associate, Meng Bean
LH: Photographer, Larry Hallegua

A good street photo

MB: Have you ever asked yourself the question – ‘’Am I shooting to please just me or to please my audience?’’

LH: I always shoot for me in the first instance. When I edit I try to think whether it’s a good shot, by how difficult it was to take, what it’s trying to show, as well as how interesting it is for the viewer. A great photo in my opinion, is one that you can look at and enjoy for more than a minute or two, that makes you want to come back to it for repeat viewings.

So many factors make a photo aesthetically pleasing and interesting to view – the composition, colours, subjects, etc… I think street photos are unique in that they are not necessarily reportage or documentary, although I think there is sometimes a crossover, they can purely be showing a quirky or fun scene. I do enjoy reportage and documentary shots too but I’m usually drawn to quirky or funny situations.

shooting to please

Funny, quirky and surreal

MB: Except for fun and quirky I notice that you define your work also as surreal, so what is surrealism to you?

LH: I guess in its widest definition it’s when something ordinary becomes extraordinary and reality is being played with through the exploitation of chance effects or unexpected juxtapositions. A good example would be “Light Being” which was hanging in Urban Picnic’s gallery in the UK, during May this year, I was one of 30 finalists in Urban Picnic’s International Street Photography Competition.

Light

Artist or anthropologist?

MB: You said that “if emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.” Do you think of yourself more like an artist or an anthropologist?

LH: Maybe both at times. But I don’t study my subjects, the art comes first definitely.

artist or anthropologist

Photographer’s perspective

LH: I often think my photos say more about me than my subjects. People see your perspective on things, the world through your eyes. It is open for all to see, you cannot hide it.

MB: Do you feel insecure about it?

LH: No, not insecure. I am lucky as I enjoy the method, the hunt as it were, as well as the obvious satisfaction of having taken something that people find interesting and engaging to look at.

photographer's perspective

All rights reserved

MB: I notice that you don’t normally put watermark on your photos, do you mind if somebody uses your work for other purposes without giving you the credit? Have you ever struggled with protecting your own intellectual property?

LH: I don’t like watermarks. When I started doing this, particularly on Flickr I was using an attribution licence. My images were used for various things but they always credited me. With the Internet and website like Flickr, it is even harder to protect my work. I guess I am too busy shooting to care, but I should be getting serious about that.

all rights reserved

Advice(s) to young people if they want to be a street photographer

1. Get a camera
2. Look at some good examples of street to get you going (Henri Cartier Bresson, Martin Parr, Garry Winogrand, Bruce Gilden, Lee Friedlander, Vivian Maier, Alex Webb, Jun Abe, etc… as well as lots of amazing street photographers on flickr)
3. Do not wait to be inspired, go out there and start shooting
4. Shoot, shoot and then shoot some more
5. Be confident and don’t be afraid. I shoot normally within a few metres of my subject or even closer. The more you do it, the more it will start to become very natural.

so many factors

Additional information about Larry Hallegua

Prize:
2012, Runner-up of Practical Photography & Digital Photo Magazines’ 2012 Photographer of the Year, Round 6 - photo
2013, 2nd prize in Chicago Photographic Society’s Annual Street Photography Competition - here
2013, Finalist in Urban Picnic’s 2013 International Street Photography Competition - here

Featured:
2012, Eschon Street Photography website - The role of SPNC in street photography
2012, Professional Photographer, Photo of the Day 19/12/12
2012, Alex Coghe’s blog – “gallery of the month” for Dec 2012 - “Noodles”
2013, Alex Coghe’s blog – “gallery of the month” for Jan 2013 - “Profile of a Woman”
2013, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography website, Featured Photo of the Day (Best of Feb) - here
2013, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography website, Featured Photo of the Day (Best of Feb) - here

Exhibition:
2013, March, Chicago Photographic Society’s Annual Street Photography Competition in the gallery section of Calumet Photographic in Goose Island, Chicago - photo
2013, April 12th – May 2nd, Urban Picnic’s Street Photography Exhibition, showcasing the 30 finalists from their International Street Photography Competition - exhibition details
2013, May, “Useless Useless” Exhibition in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Photos selected from over 17,000 international contributions, organised by You Are Not A Dinosaur - photo

Published:
2012, 2012 Photographer of the Year, Digital Photo & Practical Photography Magazines, Nov Issue

In conversation with Larry H. – Part I

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013|Advice, Interviews, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

Larry Hallegua

Larry H

Born in England in 1977, Larry Hallegua is an award-winning street photographer based in London. Larry strives at capturing candid moments of everyday life, trying to incorporate elements of art, fun and surrealism in his photos. His subject(s)’ are generally unaware of him capturing their emotions, Larry states, ‘’If emotion is on the street it must be poured onto the page of the photo, for all to learn and benefit from.’’

Larry Hallegua’s pictures have been exhibited across the UK and US. You could also check out Larry’s collection:

Webpage: http://larryhallegua.wix.com/photography

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/hipnshoot/

500px: http://500px.com/LarryHallegua

Intro

Currently teaching English in Tokyo, Larry spends the rest of his time capturing the city through his Fuji X100 (current camera of choice) or Leica M2.

Before we started the interview online, he just got back from his shooting in Harajuku – a fashionable district in Tokyo. So, our conversation started from there.

MB: Elexu Senior Associate, Meng Bean
LH: Photographer, Larry Hallegua

Confrontation with the subject

MB: Is there any difference between shooting British People and Japanese? I heard that Japanese can be shy and less open to strangers.

LH: Well, the reaction is generally better, and less confrontational. British people are becoming more and more defensive over having their photo taken in public, I think this is due to a number of reasons but is definitely affected by the popularity of social networking sites like facebook and how quickly and widespread information can be shared nowadays. Japanese people can appear much more forgiving or less wanting to engage in a confrontation, which makes my job easier. I have also experienced a much more positive attitude towards street photographers from the Japanese compared to the British public.

If they notice, I usually make some kind gesture of thank you or point out what it was that I found beautiful and shot. Today, when I was shooting in Harajuku I used ‘kirei’ (beautiful in Japanese) quite a bit after photographing people, mainly to avoid any uncomfortable moments. No one here has asked me to delete anything, in fact some encouraged me to take more once they realised what I was up to.

Brit and Japanese

Capturing the moment

MB: Do you carry a camera everyday or go out and shoot for a particular topic or area as you did in Harajuku today?

LH: I try to carry my camera all the time, very rarely do I leave home without it. I even take it to the University here when I am teaching.

Do you carry camera

MB: Has there been a time that you took out your camera too late and missed a moment that you regretted?

LH: Oh yes, that happens. I try not to regret things as there are always more moments. I will go insane if I am hard on myself all the time for missing shots. But sometimes I hit the air with my fist in irritation that I missed something.

I think the key is to keep your eyes open. Since starting this over a year ago, I have definitely developed my eye even more and now I am much instinctive and also getting better at editing down the good shots from the bad. Sometimes it’s hard not to fall in love with some photos, even the bad ones.

MB: So you care more about the moment than the person’s life story? Unlike Humans of New York, I feel they are trying to peek into normal people’s life from that one fragment of time.

LH: I do sometimes focus for a few minutes on a subject that I find very interesting but I am not trying to carry out a social study. If that comes out of some of my photos then great, but it is not my initial intention. When I shoot it is usually very impulsive and I like to shoot candid, not posed.

unlike humans of new york

To be continued…

Ask and You Shall Receive

Monday, April 15th, 2013|Advice, Elexu Team Posts, Uncategorized|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

As a student coming from small town America (De Pere, Wisconsin to be exact), I was excited to receive the opportunity to study abroad in London and intern at Elexu. “Excited” being the understatement of the year. Never before was I able to receive an opportunity as such.

The process for me to study abroad was simple. All I had to do was set up an appointment with a study abroad advisor at my college. In a period of three months I filled out a stack of paperwork, applied for a UK Visa, and before I knew it, I was on a jet to London. Little did I know that this first step of asking about studying abroad would lead to a chain reaction of asking and receiving more opportunities.

As someone with literally no sense of orientation in combination of having no GPS on my phone, it has been a necessity for me to ask strangers in London for directions. After the first week of successfully making my way around the massive city through asking, I learned that strangers can be wonderful and it is not so scary to approach someone with a question. More often than not, people are been willing to give a helping hand.

Please continue reading, because this blog post has more substance than about teaching you how to ask for directions. I understand that most people will be able to do so, especially when lost in a large city. This example is merely a template to be applied in other situations in life.

I have received several unforgettable opportunities using this template. At London Fashion Week I was able to receive access to a fashion show by asking a security guard for permission, although I had no credibility to have access into the show. I was also able to receive a chance to shadow a journalist at Sky by asking a tour guide, I made it into the Brit awards for free by asking two people who had just left for their tickets, and I got to go back stage at a show at Ministry of Sound to meet chart topping DJ, Kaskade. These experiences were unforgettable in themselves, but I will also not forget that it was just the enthusiasm and initiative of asking that allowed me to enjoy them.

I think as most of us go through life, we tend to get in a habit of playing too much by the rules. Get in the queue, do not slurp your tea, and most of all, do not talk to people on the tube! But why not break these social norms sometimes? It is a natural human tendency to avoid awkward or uncomfortable situations. Although it may be difficult, it is better to sacrifice that few seconds of embarrassment than to lose out on an opportunity all because you may have been too scared to just ask.

I am not saying that asking will get you anything you want, but it may work out a few times for the situations in which you did. And is it not better to ask and know than to not ask and never know if something would have worked out? You may remember that cheesy, but true quote by Wayne Gretzky, “You miss one hundred percent of the shots that you don’t take.” On this track, I should also recommend Paul Arden’s book, It’s not how good you are, it’s how good you want to be, which illustrates that sometimes people appreciate the initiative to ask more than anything. These simple and common sense theories shouldbe enforced within us at all times!

Although I have already leaned a lot from my classes in London, the lesson that I have learned about the initiate of asking is something that I value more than any textbook knowledge. I hope that this blog post inspires and challenges you to learn the same lesson that I have through my experience in London so far. So the next time you see an opportunity, do not be scared to take advantage of it!

-Lindsey DePasse

Elexu Intern

Paul Arden's Best Selling Book - It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want to Be

A Day In the Life of a Young Entrepreneur

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013|Advice, Elexu Team Posts, Interviews|by Amarisgentles|No Comments

“I will never give up, my ambition has no limits”

On an ordinary day I get up around 7 o clock, I lie awake for while and mentally analyse whether I have hit the mile stone that I set myself for that particular day. Whether I have or not I tell myself “Keep going Aaron. Consistency is the key and your almost there. You are on the right path to make your life better.” I clamber out of bed and go straight to my computer and check all my emails and voicemails; to give me a detailed motivation of my day.

I walk to my local Tesco express and buy myself a vegetarian breakfast and lunch. Although I’m living on a budget I try to be conscious about what I eat. From the tender age of four I decided that I wanted to be a vegetarian because I’m a firm believer that it’s important to keep your body healthy.

My company is Runway Republic; an online fashion platform that creates a micro-site for designers, boutiques and vintage sellers to nationally and internationally trade. It also has a social network aspect to it all, which allows all fashion lovers, buyers and sellers to connect under one roof.

runway republic video (link to Runway Republics first photo shoot for a campaign)

I was exposed to a certain lifestyle at a very young age and I saw the benefits and downfalls that came with the environment that I was developing in. I managed to get myself in trouble with the police and made unnecessary enemies. However, I was so desperate to separate myself from the individuals that appeared to not want to prosper in life. After watching my older sister graduate and develop in her career and also graduating myself, I knew that if I put my energy into something positive there was a reward that would make me proud unlike the negative aspects to my lifestyle.

After many mornings and nights wandering around my neighbourhood I noticed that there were no young black males to look up to, except rappers or athletes but that wasn’t the conduit I wanted, I saw myself as an intelligent black male so I decided I would represent that figure in society. I put myself to the test. I want to show other black youths that there is space for them on the corporate ladder. I feel like there is a lot of weight resting on my shoulders but I use this added pressure as motivation.

No two days are the same ever since I started up Runway Republic. The day that we first got financial aid for Runway Republic was such a joyful day, particularly because I knew as a young black male it would be harder to find financial support. Working in the fashion industry I discovered the importance of conducting myself in a professional manor and being well presented. So just before I leave my house for any business meetings I make sure that I have a fresh hair cut, intoxicating cologne and a trusting smile.

After a relaxing shower and shave, I drive down to our office proudly in ford focus after I sold my B.M.W in order to invest the money into Runway Republic. I sold and used everything that I’ve ever owned my savings, shares and my car.  As I drive I try to ignore the burn from my tired eyes after a night at work. I had to get a night job in order to keep myself alive while I get Runway Republic off the ground and although it doesn’t pay for holidays to Hawaii it’s enough for me to treat myself to a cheeky Kit-Kat now and then.  Working at night and running a company during the day is hell on earth, it’s mentally and physically tiring.

My youth allows me to take off my CEO hat and put on my worker hat on in the night and switch it back in the morning without running out of batteries. It’s difficult to give up when I don’t understand the word no. The good thing about being an entrepreneur in this decade is that young people are forced to be more ambitious so we are taken more seriously in the public eye. People often ask me if my race has been a barrier to me operating on a daily basis but I think that constraints are self inflicted, not to say racism doesn’t exist but if I feel like I’m being hindered because of my race I’m not going to allow that to determine my success and enough doors had been opened for me to confidently believe that anything is possible.

Some days when I’m travelling between the office and work I have my ordinary human doubts and I start thinking of alternative ideas but then I remember that a wise man once told me “why have a plan b if you know plan a is going to work”

At the end of the day I return home with a brain full of worries and anxiety but my family and close friends are a comfort to my mind. There so much diversity of intellect and beliefs among my relatives and companions.

Before I got to sleep I am consoled by knowing that I will never give up because my ambition has no limits.

Four Tips for Interviews

Saturday, January 19th, 2013|Advice|by ElexuCommunity|No Comments

When you first graduate from University or are applying for an internship as part of your Uni program, your first higher level interview can be an intimidating task.  In the elexu office we have all done our fair share of interviews including the one for Elexu. Here are 4 tips for interviewing that you should increase your chances.

Tip Number 1: Prepare!!

If the position really matters to you then you should have no lack of motivation to spend some time before the interview researching and preparing. For example if you are going for an interview for graphic design then why not design a few things in the image of the company to show off what you can do. Extra credit goes along way and will no doubt give you an edge against the people who didn’t bring anything. Same for marketing, why not draft up an event strategy with budget and social media campaign  for your interviewer. These sorts of actions show off your dedicated personality and innovating skills.

Also read about the company and what is does, look at their social media and what they have done in the past. If you can bring up the research that you have done to the interviewer then they will no doubt be impressed.

Come on! You have  a degree you should no trouble looking at a computer for hours.  Remember the interview is not really about you its about the company!

Tip Number 2: Would you like some syrup with your waffle?

Just to be clear Waffle is a slang term when someone is speaking…and just carries on speaking but does not really say anything meaningful. Waffle is deadly to your chances of getting that position. The interviewer asks a question and you talk so much that they get bored or say nothing meaningful…deadly.

When the interviewer asks you a question take your time and think, don’t just start talking. Formulate your answer first and if you think up a good answer to a old question don’t be afraid to say “may I just add to the previous question”.  Giving well thought out answers  make the difference between being the number one candidate or number two.

Tip Number 3:  Yes we know about your experience.

Some interview processes involve a task such as writing a cover letter or marketing campaign. What is key when doing any sort of task is not to focus on writing about  your experience, yes maybe reference it but don’t focus on this because the company already knows about what you have done because of your CV. Instead focus on coming up with new ideas and actual content the company could use or would want to ask you about further. This type of content is much more valuable and the people in charge can get a taste of the ideas they will get if they take you on.

Tip Number 4: Don’t do this..

 

 

Top Free Games for Students

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012|Advice, Elexu Team Posts|by Sam Watson|No Comments

As a gamer a free game is a good game as long as its a good game to play. Got it? Well anyway it’s coming up to Xmas and you may not have the money to go out and buy that new game you wanted, so I thought I would use my bast knowledge to hook up the elexu community with free games to download and play.


1) Slender; This is a free to play game the will make you feel fear, maybe even real fear. It’s a horror game created by Parsec Production based on a faceless character called Slender. His aim is to get you, no one really knows what happens to once he gets his long pale hands you but it can’t be good. Your job is wonder round the dark woods and simply find 8 pages stuck on various object. Easy right? Noooooo! Slender tries to get you and the more pages you get the scarier the game gets. One of reasons its scary is because you are not allowed to look at slender for more then a second…s you are not allowed to look at the thing chasing you. Play if you dare.

2) Gotham City Imposers:  This game you have to download steam to play… which ok because its free. Steam is just a gaming client that you can buy games from. It’s easy and totally safe. Then download this beaut of a free to play game. Based on Batman you basically take part in the Gotham Gang war between Batman vigilantes and Jokers mad maniacs.  It has a twisted humor, fast paced action, loads of crazy weapons and power ups. Play it and you will be hooked.

3) Planetside 2: Again is a steam game (most of the best games can be found on steam). Planetside 2 is a massive multiplayer online first person shooter. However matches aren’t between hundreds but between thousands of people fighting across open fields to urban city centers. Fight by land, sea and air to achieve victory. Again this a quality game for free so you really can’t complain.

4) No time to explain developed by tingBuildGames: This game is simply bad ass and can be played on newgrounds (soon to be on steam). Its a platforming game that requires an unnamed male character to chase his future captured self though different levels and time. YES!!. Time Travel! Play it and see what all the fuss is about.

5) Strong Hold Kingdoms: This is a bit of a slower paced game than the others of the list, buts its a pretty good strategy MMO developed by Firefly Studios. Your jobs is to go from bumpkin to baron to king by diplomacy or by the sword. This is also a social network so you play this game with other people trying to do the same. Build alliances, build the perfect village or try to conquer the world, its up to you.

So here is my little list of free games to play. Have a great xmas and if you fancy a game of Gotham City Impostor’s then add my steam account sam0nfire. The o in the name is zero.

Elexu Interns Top Ten Tips for Studying Abroad in London

Wednesday, December 12th, 2012|Advice, Elexu Team Posts|by Sam Watson|1 Comment

At Elexu we pride ourselves with sharing our knowledge with the wider community. In the Elexu office we have a number of interns that are currently studying abroad at a London university. We though it would be a good idea to write a few tips for the wider community that are inspired by the  lessons they have learnt while being in London.

1) Learn the transport system! Before you come over to London just know that there are many forms of transport in London and that there are so many ticket options it is ridiculous. You may end up buying a ticket and not be able to go through the barriers. Try and find out about getting a travel card while your over here which gives you discounts on many tickets, oysters cards are great if you plan on using the tube a lot. Take you time buying tickets and don’t be afraid to ask the staff, they are there to help. Also if your planning a big trip round London then get a travel card since it covers train, tube and bus. Try to never buy single tickets.

2) English humour: English humour is hard to explain. However if you come over to England and make some English friends expect to have the fun taken out you, it’s just part of the English way. We are sarcastic in the workplace, outside of a work and every other situation. You will just have to get use to it and not take it to heart, also you will have to work out whether people are making fun or being rude because most of the time English people are extremely dry, the difference between happy and average can be small.

3) While you should look up the tourist places such as Leicester square and of course most of the museums are free including the Tate. We recommend that you head to Camden Market with it’s alternative market, Soho with its  vintage music and clothing stores. Don’t be afraid to get lost but if you are going to get lost then do it in Shoreditch, Brixton, Hoxton, Southbank and Hackey which have  a unique side of London to offer. Another little sub tip is to buy a local newspaper or magazine and look in the events section for places to go.

4) Get out of London, London isn’t the only place in England. You can head up to Manchester for some great and cheap partying in the city center, to Brighton for its great night life, Wales for is beautiful scenery and mountains, Cornwall for its surfing and Surrey for Thorpe Park one of the best theme parks in the World. There is so much to see and do, so don’t be afraid to leave the city. If you are really ambitious  then pop on the eurostar and have a look round Paris because its not that far away.

5) The last tip is about finding a house. We recommend that you don’t go through an agency because you run the risk of getting ripped off (some people in the Elexu office have had to deal with this). We recommend websites like Gumtree & Moveflat, just make sure you inspect all areas of the house, don’t rush into anything, read through any bits of paper carefully and always get your deposit back. If a person gives off a strange vibe or won’t let you into a secret room or basement it might be best to look somewhere else.