Winter Workshops – Carnival of Darkness Conceptual Portraits

For me, Winter is the height of the workshop season, as it is cold and wet and people prefer to be inside, my long anticipated Conceptual Workshop for this season was finally here. Sold out, of course. Beautiful Jess was our model and we played predominately with lighting, posing and direction, with an emphasis on dramatic. I like to keep my workshops small and very hands-on, with a personal touch. We had a few key poses and each participant got time to explore their own creativity, with a little help from me. We did not move onto the next element until everyone as happy with their images.

I actually had a quick run through with Moth and my Assistant for the day, Sue, before the others arrived, generally, I do not shoot during the workshop, way too busy.

The running shot, with smoke, blowing hair, and dressing floating through the air was a huge success and loads of laughs, as was the floating mirror


I adore it when my participants are put on the spot and at first no-one wants to shoot first, but by the end they are all, “just one more shot” and “I’m next, I have an idea” or “I just thought of something – can we try _____?”. When they proudly display their images, it makes my heart almost burst with pride, they are announcing “I did that” – in mind head I am saying I created them. Sure I taught them some technique, posing, direction, lighting and such, but I also taught them confidence in their abilities and self.

I often laugh when they say that they are worried they will look silly because they do not know what they are doing, each and everyone, in turn, I gently chide them and tell them that is WHY they are doing the class, to learn, they are all beginners. By the end of the class they all realise they had the same fears, laugh and note that they are all learning the same, some quicker and some slower, I am patient with each of them. It gives me great joy, many tell me I am a very good educator and come back again and again.

~ Julz, xo