The Immersive Workshop experience
Rome may be at the heart of Italy but Naples is its soul.
Naples is gritty and chaotic yet, at the same time, beautiful and authentic. It’s complicated and unapologetic; always buzzing, always alive. It’s here-and-now and yet it’s draped in 2,000 years of colourful, vibrant history – a mixture of different historical periods that pitch up in one intense, often decrepit melting pot. Which makes it the ideal location for our inaugural TravelLIGHT Immersive Workshop.
What is an immersive workshop?
The difference between a good shot and a great shot is narrative. How often have you looked at a photograph and asked, “How did the photographer see that?” Learning to see narrative – the story – is the most fundamental challenge in photography, yet it’s the thing we spend the least time learning. That’s why we devised Immersive Workshops – to show you, in three simple steps, how to see the world around you in a new, expanded light. We explain why starting with the narrative is so important, show you how to match equipment and settings to the story you want to tell, and reveal how composition is the glue that binds the story together. It’s what we call the Hand-Eye-Heart approach to photography – you need a good hand, an insightful eye and a creative heart, and, in this short-course workshop, we’ll teach you all three and change the way you think about photography forever.
Discovery and Visualisation
Helping with the immersive experience is our cultural guide, Sophia. Sophia graduated in History of Art and Italian at University College London and L’Orientale in Naples. She’s the go-to girl for the BBC, CNN and all the major broadsheet newspapers and quality life-style magazines. On your first full day in Napoli, she will expose you to the city’s raw and hidden beauty, its multi-faceted history, mythical cultures, mysterious secrets and intriguing daily life – all of which will help you to build your own mental pictures of this intriguing city and get you excited and inspired for the challenge ahead.
The 20-Frames Challenge
Do you remember the days of manual cameras and a roll of film? Photography is so complicated these days, with multi-functional bodies, never-ending menus and cards that hold a thousand frames and more. All of which is great but, in reality, more often than not, is simply a distraction from the real purpose of photography – capturing a compelling visual story. In the 20-Frames challenge, we change the digital mindset. With an adapted, fixed-lens camera, we take the distractions away. Left with the only two controls on a camera that make a difference to the look and feel of an image – lens aperture and shutter speed – you are able to concentrate on the subject. The fixed lens forces you to move around, opening your eyes and mind to the nuances of perspective. And with a maximum of 20-frames and no playback screen or delete button, you’re going to have to think first and shoot after. We’re turning photography upside down and inside out and what you discover will truly surprise you.
Inspiring Image Reviews
The very best way to learn about building a visual story is to look at the images you take and deconstruct them, identifying the visual elements and analysing what part they play in the bigger picture. That’s the purpose of our renowned image reviews. We ask the question, What’s the story, what was the visual intent? We then ask, Does the image tell that story? If it does, we identify how. If it doesn’t, we pose ideas on how the image could have been shot differently to help it work better. And because photography is subjective, the reviews are a group exercise in which everyone can offer their ideas and opinions. This shared experience means you come out of the session informed and inspired, ready to practice your new-found skills out on the street.
At your own pace
On the final full day in Naples, you have the opportunity to take all the knowledge and ideas gleaned over the past two days and put them into practice, using your own camera and without restriction. Chris and Simon will be available to give guidance and advice, and encourage you to keep thinking about photography “the right way round”. During the evening’s image review, you’ll have a chance to show your best shots and see how much you’ve changed the way you think about photography and marvel at how your photography has changed with it.