We asked Jo O'Kelly for a paragraph of testimonial on the workshop experience she shared with us in Daylesford, and this is what she wrote :)
April 2016, Daylesford Food Photography Workshop
I had very little experience photographing food prior to attending this workshop, but it was something that I had been admiring and had begun to feel intensely drawn to. From the moment I google searched "food photography workshops" and visited the link detailing Shellie and Ewen's workshop experience, I had fire in my belly like I hadn't ever remembered feeling. I read their document detailing the workshop at least twenty times in a day, admired their photography with so much envy and sat wondering if the experience would be a "good fit" for me and my photographic journey.
Well, I continue to be lost for words months on. Words seem almost inadequate to describe the effect the four days away with Shellie and Ewen had on both my mind and my heart.
It truly was unforgettable and the use of this term seems an understatement. The experience was so much more than exploring food photography and styling. It was about people, passion, life and the love that so many of us share for the art of photography and the joy that sitting around a table sharing food brings to so many.
Aghadoe Estate was such a perfect location to share the experience with other like mind minded individuals. The environment always felt relaxed and warm and allowed us to connect as people first and photographers second.
Connecting as people first and photographers second is what I reflect on most from the experience. Shellie and Ewen did just that and so much more. I hadn't stopped to consider the friendships that were possible within and after this workshop. I attended only reflecting on the photographic knowledge I could potentially gain and not the people that I would meet. Fortunately for me, I was able to meet four amazingly beautiful women in addition to Ewen and Shellie, who also share a love of photography and for whom I truly hope I continue sharing life with for many years to come.
As for the creative duo, I couldn't feel more grateful to Shellie and Ewen for all that they offered me personally throughout the four days. Shellie is delightful! Her smile always lit up a room. She cooked the most delicious food for us and styled it to perfection, often in my opinion, perhaps so unaware of her exceptional talent with food and particularly behind her camera. Ewen, was a wealth of knowledge and so genuinely kind. Clearly as is Shellie, an exceptionally talented photographer. He shared so much knowledge with us and did so with modesty and patience. No question was ever too difficult or frowned upon. He willingly shared his knowledge and celebrated with us when we felt moments of success as did Shellie. Together they allow for the most perfect experience.
I will never every regret investing in Shellie and Ewen's workshop. It was worth every dollar and so much more. It was so very much more than about photography for me. The stories that come with photography are the reasons why images can be so powerful and the reason I love photography the way I do. The imagery I captured over the four days are honestly the images I am most proud of and the ones I choose to share with others who are considering if I am a good fit photographer for them. They will always be cherished and will always evoke warmth in my heart.
What a privilege it was to have been able to meet Shellie, Ewen and the amazing ladies who too chose to attend the workshop. It truly was incredible, unforgettable, inspiring and challenging. It will always hold a special place in my heart and I thank Ewen and Shellie with so much sincerity for sharing their passion, skill and knowledge with the world.
Meet Jo :)
Ewen Bell's other website is called "Photography for Travellers", an online guide rich in features both practical and philosophical. Field guides to wonderful locations, insights into techniques plus inspiring idea to help you think differently about the art of photography.
Photography for Travellers
Ewen's guiding principles are simple...
"Go slow. Get closer. Look for the light."
All photography on this site by Ewen Bell
"Photography is about showing other people how to see, to share the beauty of life. It's not a job, it's a lifestyle. We only get one lifetime, one chance to add some light into the world. Photography competitions are mostly silly. Cats are excellent."