Jo Blackwell

Writer & Photographer - Inspiration Station

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WELCOME to my Inspiration Station! This is where all my projects come together and where collaborations are born.

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Searching for Jack

Jack, 1939

My grandfather, Jack, spent 3 years as a POW of the Japanese in Singapore. When he signed up, he was a 10 ½ stone, Welterweight, amateur boxing champion. On repatriation he weighed 5 ½ stone. That he survived at all was a testament to his toughness, both physical and mental. He died, in his fifties, when […]

Julie Newmar – On ageing

Julie Newmar on ageing

Julie Newmar – Catwoman from the 1966 movie – has this to say on growing older: ON BEING 80 by Julie Newmar It’s time to rewrite the rules It was only two years ago that youth left me. Hate me or not, middle age didn’t happen to me; a privilege undeserved, or unobserved. In August of […]


to do list

My name is Jo Blackwell, and I am one of life’s jugglers. We all are, of course, to some extent. Especially parents of young children. But I am not one of those any more. Now, I am a juggler of ideas, concepts, dreams and projects. And I am an expert dropper of balls. Juggling is […]

Firmly in La-La Land

Northamptonshire Portrait Photographer

I have been quieter on here than usual leading up the launch of my latest business, Wings and Whimsy Enchanted Portraits. A collaborative project between yours truly, International stylist, Lisa Pocklington and blogger, Sally Selwood, it has seen me chasing fairies through secret pathways, dodging torrential rain, shopping for fabulous fabrics and shooting a unicorn. Yes, […]


It’s Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK – that’s a three day weekend, which gives all time to kick back and relax. Buy a paper. Put the kettle on. Because a cup of tea is as essential to us as cawfee to a New Yorker. The sand to our beach. The fuel for our day. […]

Find your Why

Female Portrait Photographer

It doesn’t matter what we do in life, there’s little satisfaction to be had unless we know why we’re doing it. If we’re in business, it’s easy to define what we do, and even how we do it, but the why we do it is the key to success. Writers are good with “whys”. We […]

Beauty in Decay


A recent trip to Paris saw me queuing a little uncomfortably to descend into the Catacombs. I knew nothing about the site and was unprepared for the moving sights that awaited below ground. Originally a quarry, the “Municipal Ossuary” was chosen in the late 18th Century as a site to receive the remains excavated from […]

The Future of Professional Photography

Jo Blackwell Photography

This is an interesting view on the future – actually, the present – of Commercial Photography. Artist Rep, Maren Levinson, explains how the currency is no longer necessarily photographic skill, but brand and vision. Remembering the days when media had a “blank space to fill” and would reach out to a professional to provide an […]

The Gift and Curse of a Creative Mind

Portrait Phtography Northamptonshire

As a writer and photographer it seems that I have little chance of being what the world calls “normal”. Swedish researchers report that writers have a higher risk of anxiety and bipolar disorders, schizophrenia, unipolar depression, and substance abuse and are almost twice as likely as the general population to kill themselves. Dancers and photographers are […]

Relentlessly Helpful

Tim Grahl Out:think

So you’ve written a book. Maybe you’ve been picked up by a publisher, or you’ve leapt feet-first down the self-publishing route. Either way, this is only the beginning. For it’s now up to you to make sure people hear about – and buy! – your magnum opus. And this, friends, is where so many authors stumble […]