So Tania of Indo Bay Textiles tagged ... Rebecca of The Ardent Sparrow who tagged ... me! It appears i haven't been the only one having issues about who to "tag" since paper n stitch has so many fabulous artists but since right now i am loving all things paper, stationary & the rest my final decision wasn't a tough one.
So the fabulous Boudoir Divas (i may have mentioned them before) asked me to write a review of their workshop to be submitted to "The Photography Parlour", a website where people can learn, & meet other photographers & well really it's all things photographic. & naturally i am super duper whoop whoop happy dance (maybe two dances on this one) to have my review posted!
i have also been blogged about over here ... & here ... yes it is a wonderful day in blog land for me!
Paper n stitch ... a blog i was introduced to & wow did i fall in love. It helps that Brittni Wood the founder is such a wonderful fabulous lady. But her blog is amazing. Completely down to earth & full (some might chocka block full) of gorgeousness from fashion to photography to home decor ... she really does have a wonderful eye. I love that she keeps everything she does simple, there's no distracting from the items in front of us & as a big lover of pictures (though admittedly i love to read) when it comes to blogs the pictures are what draws me in. I love blogs, love hearing about other peoples lives & loves & wants & dreams but sometimes i don't want to wade through lots of words before i realize it's not i care about ... here we have big shiny colourful pictures to keep my simple brain happy.
& throw in the wonderful community Brittni has created for sellers of handmade items, when she asked me to join it wasn't a surprise that i jumped at the chance. This sight is small, but everything in here is gorgeous & so much variety. I admire the dedication people can put into their projects & this is one. Writing blogs & running websites are something i have major issues with on a daily basis (i really need to start writing my blogs in advance) but here is someone who does both with ease (well seemingly) & even manages to write some guests over on other sites. Oh & did i mention she has two etsy shops as well? talk about multi talented.
Well within the paper n stitch community there are a group of us playing a game of "tag". An idea put together but Tania Welch of Indo Bay Textiles, a group of us are tagging each other on a daily basis, writing blogs & show casing the work of individual sellers on paper n stitch. & so far i have discovered so many new pretty & shiny stores that i love. & tomorrow it is my turn to tag so all i can say is (& yes it's a cliche) watch this space ...!
ps. yes i changed my font ... i got bored, it happens ... maybe it's getting close to time for me to revamp the whole page!
So skipping back to my Boudoir Diva's workshop in Paris i forgot to mention our final day ... well with an early start we headed out onto the streets of Paris with one of the models & Ashley, the Diva's assistant who well should be a model. Not only is she stunning but (& yes we're going to go with a cliche here) the camera loved her. Not to mention that dress ... & the shoes ... & well everything. Ashley had the whole thing down & did an amazing job. It reminded me of Sex in the City & Carrie.
I feel like it really was the perfect end to our workshop & what a setting. The Diva's flat, where we had been working the previous couple of days was just down the road (we're talking literally a hop skip & a jump) from the Arc de Triomphe which may for a wonderful backdrop, not to mention the stereotypical streets that couldn't be anywhere but Paris.
& again this was something completely new to me ... fashion has never been something i have been interested in (getting me to wear something other than jeans & a tee takes a whole lot of effort) but here i was wandering the city, with a group of photographers & our models who in any other city would have stood out a mile off but here in Paris it felt completely right.
Here again it was our job to direct the model, help produce that perfect image & again i learnt so much. Directing is something i still honestly have a hard time with. With my fine art there's no talking to anyone, i see something & i photograph it or i have an idea in my head & set it up in a way & if it doesn't work i try something else. I don't have to factor another individual into the equation. But here, as with the boudoir shoots i have to see every tiny little detail as it's happening & interpret & react to what the person in front of me is doing so the final image is perfect.
It was a wonderful experience though. & i was again surprised at how much i enjoyed it. I found there was much more freedom with a model, you're not looking for the family moment or a couple in love but anything goes kind of thing. & i liked that, in a sense there was less pressure for me & i found it easier & less nerve racking to ask the model to do something. & here again i have been able to put the thing's i've learnt into practice & hopefully as time goes by you'll all be able to see an improvement in my work.
Once again i want to say a big thank you ...
to Kimberlee & Marissa ... the fabulous Divas for putting together this workshop, sharing everything they know & helping me no end.
to Ashley ... who was not only a wonderful model for the day but coordinated so much, has organizational skills i can't even begin to comprehend, & has provided all other kinds of help.
to the models for being so understanding & helping us as we tried to bring out the best in them.
& to the other photographers who have taught me all kinds of new things as well as becoming friend.
If you ever have a chance to take part in a Diva's workshop ... go for it ... it was an experience i will never forget & hopefully it will help me to achieve my dreams.
A few weeks back, as part of the Miss Match project i was par of this triptych with Helene Smith & Violet Bella. Both amazing photographers but from here i somehow stumbled across Violet Bella's blog & did i discover there is so much more to her.
I am constantly in awe of people who are talented at a range of things ... me i can take pretty pictures but that's about it (although i want to learn many many other arts), but etsy is full of artists who can work across all kinds of mediums producing textiles, jewelry, paintings & much much more. Here is one such person & through her blog you learn so much more about her. Oh & i should probably mention she has amazing style too (go figure right).
To me it seems that everything she has to offer in both her shops is incredible unique & i imagine totally her. She loves to reuse items, & everything has this wonderful whimsical quality to it, not to mention one of a kind. The ideas, the time & the imagination that much go into all that she produces (not to mention the skill) are something else. It's a wonderful ability to take someone else's "trash" & turn it into something new & pretty & shiny, & Violet Bella definately has it.
So moving on from her clothing & jewelry to her photography & wow is it breath taking! The detail that goes into pictures is wonderful, from the tiny things you see out of the corner of your eye to the focal points that catch your attention immediately. I always admire those who can take photography to the next level, produce images particular self portraits that draw you as the viewer in.
Oh & this is my favourite ... so unique, simple & styalish. I am always looking for new ways to show off my photography, & there are so many options available especially as far as jewelry is concerned but this is totally different, full of gorgeous colours & then there is off course the stunning photographs on display. Oh & naturally she will custom make then using your favourite photographs from her shop.
So i've been putting off writing this blog ... not because i don't want to write it but because there is so much i want to write about & i'm not sure where to start but the beginning is usually a good place. I was lucky enough to take part in a workshop put together by the fabulous (& we are talking seriously fabulous here) Boudoir Divas. Now first i should probably explain who these wonderful ladies are ... well they are a group of girls based in San Diego who brought "back" boudoir photography & made it something new & pretty & shiny.
Marissa & Kimberlee the owners put on these workshops to help teach other photographers everything they know about the business (& we're talking literally everything) & wow did i learn a lot! I mean seriously i have learnt more than i ever thought i would. I knew the workshop would be a wonderful experience for me but i forgot how much i missed having people to talk with about the small, stupid & random stuff of photography. People who could answer questions & help show me the way.
We started out day one by talking through shooting boudoir photography, looking at the various poses, lighting & simple basic tricks that help bring out the most in the client. The Boudoir Divas strive to give their client's the ultimate super model experience, allowing them to feel glamourous & confident in themselves. Small things such as by slightly over exposing the subject it will help clean up their skin, examples of affordable lighting equipment that you or i could buy & the knowledge that you don't need a fancy studio to start out.
For the shooting we had 3 stunning models, all very different but equally gorgeous & as photographers it was our job to bring out the best in them. I'm trying to find the words to describe how hard the actual shooting was. From the perspective of an on looker everything appeared so easy but these are things that come from practice & time & more learning. We had two fast one on one shoots & one longer more continuous shoot. It took me a while to find me feet, so i found the one on one shoots incredible difficult, i couldn't get into them because i was so unsure of what i was doing. Not good but being as we only had half an hour & it was my first time i will let myself off. But in the continuous shooting i found myself getting more into it, understanding & seeing more as i went along & actually feeling comfortable directing. Ok i will admit it ... i'm pretty proud of the outcome!
Well i can honestly say, compared to day one day two was a breeze ... all business. But they provided us with so much information, everything from starting out & working out of a home based studio to creating a studio based business. From lightroom & editing, to money, pricing & marketing. & it was all things that could be applied to any photographic or even arts based business. & they were so open about it all, no holding back which is what made everything that bit more special. These are two successful business ladies willing to share everything they've learnt with us a small group of photographers from around the globe, from all warps of life & ranging in levels. I felt priveledged to be amongst them.
So what can i say i've walked away with ...
a much greater knowledge of all things photographic ...
a larger understanding on how i need to go about setting up my own business ...
equipment suggestions within my price range ...
the idea that it can be something small, & unique to me ...
there is no set way to go about all this but an idea to start from & a direction to head.
The workshop gave me so much, was worth every little penny & has left me more secure in the knowledge that photography is my future & that i can succeed. It won't be easy or especially pretty at times but it's what i want & what i love. Oh & i met some wonderful people a long the way who made the whole experience just a little more special! & there is so much more i want to write but really i don't know how to go about it but i imagine there may be another couple of posts out there about my experience.
Miss Match is one of the diptych projects i am currently taking part in. It's a collaboration between many of the members of the fPoe (female photographers of etsy), & every week we are put into pairs (or occasionally trios) & given a theme. So far it has been a wonderful experience, pushing my boundaries photographically plus getting to work with such talented individuals every week.
Back in february the fabulous Bonnie over at Going Home to Roost blogged about lil ol'me. Now this was kinda a big deal because well she has a wonderful blog & it was a total surprise. & yes naturally there was a whoop whoop happy dance going on. Well now i am doing a giveaway on said wonderful blog for the chance to win any 10x8" or 8x8" from my shop. The giveaway runs from now until Sunday night & all you do is head over to her blog & leave a comment saying which photo(s) are your favourite. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!