Practice English Speaking&Listening with: This Is My Magic Hour

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The magic hour for me means that time between night and morning...

say like you're on the way back from a night out or something,

and you go to another party, you're with friends and you're all kind of haggered.

But you're in it all together, sharing this experience together.

It's quite sentimental to me.

To me, the magic hour can show you the city in a new light.

It can show interesting colours, or shadows, or contrasts.

It brings it alive in an interesting way,

that you're not used to seeing.

It's normally quite intense because you're aware...

this is going to last for an x amount of time...

and you definitely know when it's started and when it's ended.

Around the ages of your early twenties...

you've left that point where you're controlled by your parents.

And you're entering into that time where you're sort of finding yourself,

exploring different things, having freedom.

One thing's ended, the other thing hasn't started.

You could use that as a parallel to the magic hour.

It's that small window where the next thing is about to kick in.

I'm 47.

I don't think about being young or old at all.

So if I see the people we were working with, the artists, over the past few days...

I'm aware that I'm not young.

When you see other people's youth you're like:

oh, that's what youth is!

You can see it in their skin, their eyes,

the way they're talking to each other.

You remember a bit of it from yourself, and you're like: oh yeah, yeah.

Having fun is really important to me.

Trying to do fun things all the time,

just like really force it in, nonstop.

So even if I'm exhausted,

and someone's like: "oh we're gonna go bowling,"

I'll just go bowling.

Beause I don't wanna miss out or anything like that.

Being young, you have less commitments and you can go and do things...

that you don't have to think so much about.

You don't have so many ties.

I guess at their age I was thinking:

how do you make money as a photographer?

I knew I wanted to do that and I didn't have a plan B.

So listening to those guys, they seem to have a clearer idea about...

how to survive and turn their interests into a way of paying for their life.

I'm driven by progression.

I like to feel like I've achieved something everyday with my work.

I'm ambitious. A lot of us have dreams...

and ambitions and hopes.

I wish I just didn't need as much sleep, I wish you could just take a pill,

and you could just work all day.

Or have fun all day.

Just make the most of the day,

in as many ways as possible.

we are relatively free...

to be able to express ourselves creatively.

I think that there are many freedoms open to us,

that throughout history wouldn't have been available.

And we're very lucky.

If you go into a creative field, you're looking for some kind of adventure,

some kind of journey, aren't you?

You're hoping to be paid by people...

to do some kind of interesting thing with your life.

And the reality is that there are so many people chasing that,

and you need to get a consistent workload and get clients,

and it's actually super competitive.

When I see one of my friends doing well, it's like:

yeah, good on them. That sort of thing.

But it pushes me, it's like: Shit, I better pull my thumb out of my arse,

and make a move.

Working with some of my friends is probably putting us more on the right track,

working with other people, I think it helps you succeed easier.

It's vital to be around other people,

and to have some sort of support system.

So yeah, my friends are really important to me,

and they are one of my biggest motivations.

Back in Sheffield there are people that would be into stuff that I do,

but not as much of an audience and...

so it'd be more difficult to find that movitation, whereas down here...

I get a lot of support from friends and people who like my work so...

being surrounded by creativity definitely cultivates...

what I do.

The experience changed for me, when I moved to London, quite a lot,

because you're more immersed in art.

There's a lot more going on in terms of galleries and exhibitions.

so it's easily accessible.

Artist talks as well, which don't really exist where I'm from.

So it definitely makes you think a lot more.

London inspires me because of the people.

Every day you see things that are a source of comedy or humour.

And then also things that are really tragic and dark,

and in my work personally I like to put those two things together,

to try and make light out of the sinister.

London is really beautiful from a high up perspective,

seeing the sun rising, or going down, does alter it.

The ideal magic hour to me would be being up high,

a good view of the city, not too much pollution,

having 30, 40 minutes where the colour temperatures are changing...

quite quickly, sometimes quite surprising.

And then...bang! It's over.

I suppose it allows me to appreciate the different parts of the city,

that would normally be congested.

You see different things that you didn't see before,

when there's the regular hustle and bustle.

For me, magic hour is hopeful in one way:

it's a window of opportunities, isn't it?

It's finite, you can't stretch that out or play with it. It is what it is.

The Description of This Is My Magic Hour