HIS WORK has featured on Julia Bradbury's blog, on the BBC and in the Times newspaper.

But six years ago life was very different for Verwood man and photographer Trevor Parsons, as he battled to recover from a nervous breakdown.

"It was my second breakdown and caused by stress and overwork," he said. "I was actually off work for 10 weeks and in St Ann's Hospital which was very kind and caring but when I left I just didn't want to go out."

He visited his doctor who knew of his love of wildlife and photography and persuaded him to set a timer on his smartphone, walk out for five minutes and take a picture of the nearby gardens.

"I was living in Bournemouth at the time and managed to get some images and by doing this, extended my time away from the house," he said. "Eventually I felt well enough to walk to the beach."

His second breakthrough was when he met the wildlife photographer and film-maker Simon King at a talk in Lyndhurst.

"I plucked up the courage to ask him how to get your photography out there and he said to try social media and said 'if it happens it happens'."

Simon signed his book for Trevor with the words: "Keep passionate and follow your dreams."

Trevor was deeply moved and it was the motivation he needed to press on taking images, gathering more than 100,000 Facebook likes as well as being followed by the photographers Jessops and the RSPB on Twitter.

He's also managed to get his work featured in The Times, on Julia Bradbury's blog, BBC South Today and on Getty.

And he's been asked to give talks on his battle against mental illness and how photography helped pull him away from it.

"I am always keen to try and help other people and explain to them how photography has helped me," he said.

*See more of Trevor's pictures at @sonsrap10