I feel life is there for living, for trying new things, for taking risks and for learning from your mistakes and triumphs. Always eager to practice what I preach I hence decided to take the plunge and teach my first food photography, styling and social media workshop abroad. It felt like a risk because the people that follow me on social media and visit my blog mainly live in the UK (and the US), but I was eager to test the waters and see what would happen if I hosted a photography workshop in Madrid. I must say, I'm delighted that I did because I got to work with a LOVELY group of creative women, whom I may never otherwise have had a chance to spend time with. But before I tell you all about who they were, want to hear what happened over the 2.5 days of the workshop? Cool, because that's what today's blog post is all about!
WORKSHOP DAY 1 - SOCIAL MEDIA AND BLOGGING
On Thursday evening, the rather special people over at Delish Vegan Doughnuts opened their doors exclusively to me and my students and - after we tucked into our complementary doughnuts (SO good!) - we spend the evening talking about all things food blogging, social media and SEO. The group was small (but perfectly formed), which allowed for a friendly, intimate atmosphere where everyone felt able to ask questions and talk in depth about their particular struggles with social media platforms such as instagram and facebook. I focused the session mainly on instagram growth strategies, branding, mailing list building and SEO. It was a really fun session and I can't wait to do it all again on March 15th right here in London!
WORKSHOP DAY 2 - FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY AND STYLING FOUNDATION
The aim of the second workshop day was to teach students the basics of good food photography. This meant that we spend the morning looking closely at camera basics from shutter speed, ISO and aperture to exploring working with light and shadow. We also talked about the importance of prop and background selection in food photography as well as the art of composition and styling.
Students were then able to put their learning to good use by constructing their own breakfast scene and talking through their creative process with me, untangling what was working well and what could be improved.
After a little comfort break, we looked at how to use the principles of composition, light and shadow to style and photograph 'difficult food'. Students were given little tricks and tips on how to make brown and gloopy food look delicious and inviting.
Next up was lunch which was spend at a cute Middle Eastern restaurant where we shared stories of how we started blogging and what we did before we got obsessed with food photography.
In the afternoon we focused on cake decoration and styling and explored different ways to photograph our creation. Students had a chance to delve into darker and moodier photography as the sun went down and the early winter evening started to creepy in. All in all, we had lots of fun and students didn't just leave with a little gift, but also with loads of food for thought!
WORKSHOP DAY 3 - VISUAL STORYTELLING
On day 3, the final day of my Madrid food photography and food styling workshop, we focused on visual story telling and jointly put together a moodboard to guide our photography and styling efforts for the day. The students really wanted the shoot to have a dark and moody feeling and hence props and backdrops were selected accordingly.
During the shoot I taught my students how to capture movement in food photography and create a coherent and visually interesting photographic storyline. You can see some of the scenes we created in today's blog post. I hope you like them.
After all our hard work in the morning, lunch at a local Italian restaurant offered a much needed break and - feeling more comfortable around one another - we really had a chance to get to know each other even better and share our hopes, wishes, dreams and fears more openly.
We returned to our workshop location with full bellies and students were able to complete the visual story by shooting the last few scenes. Then we sat down for some Delish vegan doughnuts and our final session during which we looked at editing in photoshop.
Though the logistics of teaching a 2.5 day food photography, styling and social media workshop abroad were a tiny bit tricky (think: how do you transport ceramics plates on an airplane without breaking them?!), I LOVED every single minute I had a chance to work with Sisi, Ayako, Cecilia, Anna and last but most certainly not least Evrim. Thank you all so much for being AWESOME students; I look forward to seeing how you continue to grow your following and build your blog into the space you want it to be!
Before I leave you with some more info about what to do if you'd like to attend one of my workshops in 2018 or want my help to start a blog and grow your instagram, I want to give a massive big shout out to our partners: We could NOT have done this without you.
- DELISH VEGAN DOUGHNUTS for allowing us to take over your lovely space on Thursday evening and for making us such delicious doughnuts which kept us going thoughout the workshop!
- FACTURED GOODS for making the loveliest honey dippers on the planet.
- YAEL YANIC for giving us food photography backdrops. Thank you so much!
- WOLF AND SCOTT for giving us vegan pancake mixtures as a gift for the students.
WANT TO ATTEND A FOOD STYLING AND FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP IN 2018?
Then please sign up to the mailing list below to get the dates the moment I release them and before they go live on the blog. Also, feel free to check out my current workshop schedule by clicking here.
WANT TO GET FREE FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY AND FOOD STYLING TIPS?
Then head to this brand new section of the blog to find all the info you're after.