karohemd: self portrait (photo 85mm)
On Sunday I took part in an alternative fashion photography workshop run by Allan Amato at 4 Princelet St., an amazing Edwardian house.

The morning consisted of a demonstration of various lighting techniques (fill lights, key lights, one, two or three sources, with/without additional reflectors/diffusers etc.).
In the afternoon we split into three groups, each picking a room with a different lighting setup first rotating models, then rotating photographers so everyone got to shoot with everyone in each setup. The venue is absolutely amazing with a large number of rooms, many of them with big windows, creaky floorboards, even creakier stairs and lots of really old furniture and paraphernalia.

The models were fantastic, too, all with different styles and personalities: Nina Kate, Ulorin Vex and Viktoria Modesta.

Equally different were the attending photographers, reaching from photography student to older than me and both amateurs, semi-pros and pros. I got along really well with everyone and we already vaguely planned a group outing to Houghton House (if/when we're doing it, I'll be asking for people to model for me so keep your eyes peeled).

And last but not least, Allan Amato was cool, too. Nice guy, happy to answer questions and give suggestions. Definitely someone I wouldn't mind getting to know better over a couple of pints.

Let's start with Nina Kate:

karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Master Yoga)
That's pretty much how the Tai Chi workshop I returned from an hour ago could be summarised.
The workshop was run by one of the first-generation instructors and firstgen pupils of Master Moy, meaning he started this over 35 years ago so someone who is as close to Master Moy's style as possible.
So, during the workshop he taught us rather advanced versions of a number of common moves. So advanced in fact that it was the first time for even the senior GB instructors who were there (people doing this for 15 years or more). People who usually smile and do things over and over again without breaking a sweat were huffing and puffing, the sweat running down their bodies.
I discovered parts of my body I didn't know existed and probably learned more about Tai Chi than in the last 3 and a half years so it was worth it. I'm really glad my first workshop (the International one two years ago) wasn't like this or it would have put me off workshops right away. This was my main criticism of the event, usually things were such that everyone, from someone just having started their reguar class to those with 10 and more years experience. This was exceptionally hard if not impossible for beginners and still hard for the veterans. Still, we survived and managed to come away wiser, fitter and with a better idea of how Tai Chi works and what it does to our bodies.

The drive home (via A12/Ipswich/A14) was good and far less crowded than last time via the M11. The sunset was absolutely gorgeous. While you couldn't actually see the sun because it was too hazy the haze diffused the deep orange light so much that it looked like the whole horizon was on fire. Beautiful.

April 2016

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