November 2nd, 2011
Back in January, Chris Hanley and I hatched a plan to revisit Tuscany and create a magical workshop experience. Getting the right balance of learning, fun and friendship was always important for us and after a bit of juggling we finally had the right delegates we needed for this momentous event. Here are 58 of my Tuscan portraits…
After some prolonged Internet searching Blaise, my PA came up with the perfect villa for us to rent. It is set high on a Tuscan hillside with commanding views overlooking the town of Borgo. The villa came with a chef and Peter the ever smiling fixer for whom nothing was ever too much trouble. Other key features were the wine cellar and the 17th c frescoes.
When Chris and I arrived the day before the delegates there were already three Lupo spotlights and their stands waiting for us kindly provided by Aldo Lupo himself. All the photography for the whole trip was lit with available or continuous lighting. Chris used a Panelite reflector and I used Lupos and a smaller oval reflector and holder. There was not a Speedlight or flash head in sight.
Continuous light really is the way forward for interior portraits with easy high key and low key capabilities available from a single spotlight. Both Chris Hanley and I own Lupos and use them all the time in our day to day shoots. If the weather was poor we could have both shot interiors with the Lupos, but the weather was fabulous and so Chris shot all his bridal and cocktail dress portraits out and about in the splendid gardens of the villa and the local village streets. That left me with our 13 bedroom mansion to shoot in.
Chris was shooting bridal portraits and cocktail dress portraits outside while I shot Lingerie, boudoir and Femme Fatale™ style portraits inside. I’ll blog Chris’ shots next. It’s great that we shot different genres in different locations with different models because we are so competitive. The delegates swapped tutors and models once in the morning and once in the afternoon and Chris and I repeated our sessions so that everyone had the chance to capture all the shots.
So there you have half the pictures from this most amazing photography experience. Chris Hanley’s set are simply sensational and I’ll be posting them next. The fun certainly didn’t finish at sundown. There was fine wine, fine food and fine company around the old oak table in the kitchen. The log fire and candles set the mood and there were times when we laughed so much it hurt. As life experiences go this week in Tuscany was priceless. If you want advanced notice of our next adventure please email Blaise to be sure you are on the list. These events sell out in hours.
A few of us went onto Pisa for a strret portrait shoot the following day and I’ll blog those very soon. Please feel free to comment on these pictures.