A graphic designer and photographer has managed to boost his business thanks to a social media network.
South Charlton-based Andy Gray joined Google+ when it launched in 2011.
Being a graphic designer, Andy wanted to make sure he was up to date with all the latest outlets for his clients.
He found that there was a great community of photographers setting up camp there.
Spending time interacting with people from all over the world, both known and unknown, seeing the incredible work they produced day in, day out, and getting favourable comments on his own images inspired Andy to take his photography much more seriously.
And now thanks to Google+ one of his images has been reproduced in a book that will be sold to raise money for charity.
Google+ has helped Andy hone his skills which in turn creates more business.
He said: “I now spend most of my spare time refining my skills, trying new techniques, and taking an active part in the Google+ photography community activities and discussions.
“Google+ has certainly changed my outlook on life having made many talented friends in places worldwide like Tennessee, Florida, Germany, Greece, Canada, Australia and many more places in between.
“I no longer feel cut off from the tech and creative hubs of places such as New York and San Francisco, while operating from the tranquil Northumbrian countryside.
“Since joining the network, my photography has improved thanks to a feeling that I am rubbing shoulders with some of the world’s best and most influential photographers.”
Andy’s image, Let Fly the Wild Horses, taken at Seahouses is one of 200 images in The Plus One Collection 2012, which will raise money for The Kilgoris Project in Kenya.
Join Andy on Google+ at https://plus.google.com/111835024921462866899/posts or visit www.andrewsgray.com