Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Photo Camp 2011..... I cannot believe its over!

Wow, where did the time go! This time last week I had butterflies constantly and now, looking back its all a little bit of a blur....not just because of the alcohol I might add!
So... Photo Camp, it started as an idea from a previous workshop I did where a bunch of Photographers just enjoyed being together, sharing ideas and techniques.... the Walkabouts then just grew and grew and when I listened to the feedback from the days there seemed to be a need for something more and so the idea of a residential weekend ended up being just for the girls and I am not even starting to justify the reasons why but I did enjoy reading the comments from my male photography friends.... they seemed far too keen to wear a dress just so that they could come along, Chris, John, Warren and Paul.... I am concerned about all of you!

I wanted the weekend to be aimed at women who were starting out in business, to come along and get inspired, learn from others and gain confidence, this was not a teaching workshop- I certainly do not count myself as a Photography tutor but I think I have got the hang of organising and facilitating.
I was lucky enough to be able to use waterside Lodge Scout headquartes, a great location by the Marine lake, right by the sea, usually its Cubs and Scouts that have sleepovers there , not a bunch of slighly excitable photographers all trying to get the top bunk! I was even luckier to have Mike and Craig do the catering for me, but they did more than that..... they managed to keep me calm in the run up to the weekend and regular hugs from Mike through the weekend were very welcome! I also had tons of help from Lindsay who has a background in events management and came up with fantastic ideas to make the weekend extra special - she was also resposible for the gorgous cupcakes and Claires suprise birthday cake - thank you Lindsay for all your help - pop along to her lovely Blog all about her scrummy baking Totally Baked.

So on a rather grey Saturday morning 16 photographers came along to Southport, many of them knew each other as 'virtual friends' on Facebook and Flickr and it was lovely to put names to faces and get to know everyone. The morning was spent discussing business and marketing and I was so very lucky to have Sarah Thomas who travelled from South Wales to be with us. She showed the most amazing generosity, sharing so much with the group, discussing how she started her business and also looking at branding and marketing. I have admired Sarah for a long time, her skills both as a photographer and as a businesswoman blow me away and I and want to say a Huge Thank you to her.

In the afternoon we had 3 amazing models, Kayleigh Jo, Holly Roberts and Gwenaelle Sanchez and Sian Faulkner was the fantastic Make up artist. The girls split into small groups and did a studio lighting workshop with Andy Schofield and a natural light shoot whilst dodging the raindrops! The evening soon came round and we headed off for 10 pin bowling - I never did hear who won- and plenty of Chinese food. The rest of the evening seemed to get more and more blurry so I will let the others fill in any gaps!

Sunday morning started with  a gorgous full English breakfast and then it was straight into shooting, Kayleigh Jo came back and was joined by Casey Allum and Jamie Spencer. Make up was provided by Angharad Trenear and Kelly Fairfield worked her usual hairstyling magic. The girls worked with all the models in the sand dunes, around Waterside Lodge and also indoors, trying some off camera flash techniques

 So now its over....... I loved it, I loved organising it and seeing lots of little ideas forming, I loved the fact that the models have said that they want to come back as its the best fun that they have had on photo shoots, I loved meeting people that I have only known on Facebook and Flickr and feeling that I have just made a new bunch of friends, I loved how much everyone was willing to share, I loved how all our sponsers were amazingly generous.... are you getting the idea that I had a good time???? Will I do it again.....thats a big fat yes!

 Ditzy Doll

 Florabella Collection 

Tiny Box Company    

Kristen Caldwell 

Pixel Lounge

Kori and Kate

MCP actions

Little Castle Designs

Isabelle lafrance

Melissa Davis


The Album Cafe

Photographers Wall Display Guides

Face Media Group

Easy as Pie

On the Spot Studio

Pop along to these fantastic sites...oh and would you mention that I sent you along????

My final thank you is to Claire Penn who managed to put this amazing list of sponsors together -thank you Claire - you are a wonderful friend xx

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Sara said...

I don't know what to say!!! It was a fantastic weekend, can't wait till the next one. Would thoroughly recommend it to anyone. Thanks Jo, and to everyone else who helped organise it, and to all the lovely ladies who were there. x

Warren Millar said...

I have got my dress for the next one ..... a nice little black number!! :-) ...... I knew if you had anything to do with it Jo it would be a fantastic weekend :-) .....Well done Ladies xx

Lisa Dearnley-Davison said...

I'll echo the sentiment that it was a fantastic weekend. I've never learnt so much in such a short space of time. Thank you, Jo, for making it all happen... and where do I sign up for the next one!?

Vic said...

Thank you so much Jo - it was an amazing weekend! It was obvious how much hard work went into it and you should be very proud!! I learned so much and made some lovely new friends... would highly recommend it to anyone starting out in this crazy business! xx

Andrea Ellison Photography said...

IT WAS FANTASTIC ......I had such a brilliant time...a whole weekend with a bunch of fab girls and the chance to just talk photography.
The venue, food (just gorgeous! thanks Mike and Craig), the organisation, everything.....
I would recommend one of these to anyone who just loves was so nice to see a group of people with different skill sets all sharing what they knew...inspiring...and Jo...I got so much more from this than you will ever inspire me daily x

and if anyone who reads this does want to book on any further courses that Jo organizes ..would you mind waiting until I have secured my place first...thanksmuchly

Lucy Woodrow said...

Thanks for the weekend Jo, the confidence boost it has given me is incredible. It honestly felt like I was meeting up with a group of old friends (well, not OLD-old but you know what I mean!) The atmosphere was superbly creative and inspirational. The venue was spot on and I can see that all the people involved in organising this put so much effort in and reaped the rewards in terms of seeing a group of creative people learn and grow in just two days. Well done Jo! Photo-holiday camp next step?!!!! The same 15 or so photographers in say... Barbados? Japan? Vegas?...

John LeFebvre said...

Ahhh... only slightly jealous that I couldn't join you - it looks like you all had the most wonderful time. I'm made up for you Jo, you are going from strength to strength, and fully deserve all of your successes!
John xxx

Katrin said...

It really sounds like you had loads of fun and I'm more than a tiny bit jealous that I'm a) not living near you and b) don't do a photography business so I think I won't qualify as a participant :o(
Great pictures as well!

Alexandra Andrews said...

It was a wonderful weekend and my confidence rose more than I thought possible in just 2 days, I've never taken photographs in front of another professional before, was it intimidating? - no way, would I do it again? - hell yes
I met lovely people and have had so much support and help from them both before and since the camp it's amazing.
It was lovely to be just with the girls too, no offence to you guys but I just get so intimidated, so for those of us less confident a girls only was just the ticket.
As for now, well I think I could brave it and do a shoot with the guys now too.
Thanks Jo x

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