Last week saw a childhood dream come true when I presented three short features for ITV’s breakfast show ‘Good Morning Britain’, with my pieces broadcast last Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
I’ve uploaded each minute segment, and the full version at 3 1/2 minutes which you can watch below.
…I’d presented a film show for BBC2 and was a judge on the televised BBC Film Festival a few years ago but this was my ITV debut and it was an utterly awesome experience.
The slots focused on me helping the nation get ‘back to school’ ready, and were filmed a few weeks before transmission, at my home in Leeds.
It all started when I received a phone call from one of the producer/directors Beth who said she’d come across a my blog, loved my on camera page and hoped to feature on the show.
Don’t you just love the democracy of the internet? That your platform, voice and online brand can be discovered with the click of a button, and incredible opportunities offered.
I am so incredibly grateful to this, and still feel amazed every time something like this occurs, almost 5 years blogging
…Now call it fate, but during the call Beth also mentioned she was researching financial experts too and when I recommended Vanessa Cameron my friend and client, the founder of genius kids digital piggy bank Qwiddle, she said she’d already discovered her, and wanted to use her on the show too.
How utterly amazing, and no more so as Vanessa and I had sat together in my very kitchen, the one incidentally we both filmed in for the show, just six months earlier, discussing our dreams and how we hoped to make it on breakfast TV one day.
We dreamt it, we did it. There’s something so wonderful about sharing your dreams, getting them out into the universe and striving to make it a reality, working hard, honing your talent and somehow the world comes together to bring things to fruition.
Don’t laugh but at the start of the year I regularly mentioned to my Mum, my rock, that my aim was to try and get more on camera work on TV, to reach a bigger audience and share my passion for presenting and commentary.
I would often ask the universe, mostly while driving (go figure) to make it happen. Yes it sounds hippyish but it worked. Try it for yourself!
Any back to pre-production-Beth emailed over lots of questions asking me how I personally prepare my kids in getting back into a routine again pre-term time along with favourite family meals and recipe ideas. Soon after, I heard they liked my input and a whole day of filming was scheduled.
Beth was sadly unwell on the filming day but Oliver, another fabulous producer/director was on duty along with super cameraman Mark Hampshire whom we found out later in the day, was in fact friends with some of my relatives in Manchester. Talk about a small world!
On the morning of the shoot I was given scripts of my own words as emailed that would fit the timing of the shoot, which I had to learn before each piece. I’d booked a blow dry the day before in my local salon and I did my own make up, going for my usual day look. Then it was lights, camera, action!
It was the first time I’d cooked on national TV and the first set up was me making and flipping pancakes!
Nigella eat your heart out hey! 😉
As a director, I think my experience, made life easier and the shoot quicker as I knew which shots they needed and having spent years drawing performances out of actors and presenters from the behind the camera, had a good idea on how to present myself and hopefully appear as natural as possible while delivering my lines.
I must say remembering lines, sounding natural and walking on and off camera or cooking, is not to be underestimated-it needs to be timed, the sound must be right, the shot perfect and it’s a real thrill when it goes well.
I improvised a few parts too but as long as they were timed to fit the one minute segments we were fine.
I adored the challenge and every single minute of shoot day.
I love that Beth, on editing the pieces cut them to truly reflect my personality, keeping in my cheeky smiles to camera and the sweet moments between my kids.
All who know me, said I was exactly as I am in real life, on camera too which was rather lovely.
I was totally myself too and being a dress girl, everyday, I donned some of my favourite bold frocks in bright red and blue with pretty black cropped cardigans and statement jewellery by Yosa whom I’m an ambassador for.
Glam mum on the school run indeed but this is me and as you know I’m an honest mum so wanted to be myself!
…It was quite a day working with my own kids too who are used to my husband Peter and I filming them for our little fun YouTube films, but they really were well behaved during filming and made me proud.
They impressed me hugely with their dedication on the day, and listened (mostly) when asked to draw, put on uniform, and pretend-sleep on demand (well done Alexander). My little stars.
My youngest, Xander was nicknamed baby James Dean as he took direction like a dream and relished all the attention, so much so that when the camera wasn’t on him, he kept asking to be filmed! Hmm. Wonder who he’s taken after!
Oliver was so excited to share a name with the director, he drew a sweet picture of him which Oliver kindly took back to London with him and said he’d always keep.
Oli’s sweet nature made the shoot a true joy from start to finish. The atmosphere was calm, relaxed with such a positive vibe!
It really was a family affair too as my folks were on hand to help with the kids while I filmed as was Peter on his lunch break, and of course my parents’ supplied a delicious Greek lunch from one of their award winning restaurants nearby The Olive Tree, for us all.
What a day!
It was such a joy to present for GMB, stimulating, enjoyable and a career highlight for me. I would love to do more and really hope they hire me again!