Category Archives: workshops

Puglia – Masseria Cimino

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 Ancient Olives Trees Puglia Copyright Carla Coulson

Long before you arrive at Masseria Cimino you are struck by the sight of ancient olive trees that resemble sculptures, twisted over hundreds of years with winds, run and the scorching sun.

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 Olive Trees Puglia Copyright Carla Coulson

These ancient olive trees have always been one of my favourite things about Puglia, a reminder of how old this land is and how deeply ingrained the olive tree is in the culture and history.

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 Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

I decided to make Masseria Cimino a part of the first Caravan Travel Photography Workshop for a couple of reasons. I loved it’s exquisite make-over, not too flashy and not too rustic, somewhere in between.

And I knew it would make the perfect setting for the photographers to take interior and exterior shots and as a background to shoot food.

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 The sun beds copyright Carla Coulson

Masseria Cimino is an exquisite palette of white broken only by the local vegetation of cactus trees, olives and rosemary and the soft blue they have chosen for the doors, windows and furniture.

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 Entrance Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

There is one original red wall and we all went mad shooting it.

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And Masseria Cimino has the coolest uniforms.. beautiful Viviana in her gorgeous uniform.

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The Bar Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

The furniture in the interior of the bar has been constructed of concrete in the simple way they do in the Greek Islands and a clever interior designer has added lovely soft furnishings in white and beige. Cactus leaves hang as decoration in the main room. I learnt later on the trip this was a traditional custom, the Pugliese do this to conserve the fruit that grows on this plant so they can eat it fresh for months to come.

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 Details of the Cactus leaves Copyright Carla Coulson

I was a little bit excited about the cactus leaves!

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Rooms Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

Although I was teaching and didn’t have a lot of time to shoot it was such a graphic exterior to shoot I couldn’t help but grab a couple of shots on the hop.

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 Rooms Masseria Copyright Carla Coulson

I adore the textures of traditional stone paving, white walls dotted with blue and a grapevine for shelter. Divine colour palette..

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Athalee Brown and a stone wall Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

Workshop organiser Athalee Brown’s caftan matched the stone wall and cactus and I couldn’t resist a pic..

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 Dining Room Masseria Cimino Copyright Carla Coulson

Masseria Ciminio has respected many traditional ways and incorporated them into the decor, design and food. Tomatoes hang in the dining room, food is served on locally made ceramic plates with beautiful white linen and the menu is ladened with local products.

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Tomatoes Hang in the dining room Masseria Cimino copyright Carla Coulson

I hoped you enjoyed a little glimpse into this beautiful space in Puglia. I loved staying here and if you are visiting Puglia you might like it too! You can check out their website here.

“There is a single thread of attitude, a single direction of flow, that joins our present time to its early burgeoning in Mediterranean civilization.Arthur Erickson

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PS: We are getting ready to announce plans for the Caravan Travel Photography Workshop in June 2015. If you would like to be the first on the lists please get in touch with workshop organiser Athalee Brown at info@carlacoulson.com

Are Your Photos of Movement a Disaster?

Kerrie Hess Carla Coulson

Kerrie Hess shot at 1/640 second on F4 copyright Carla Coulson

Do you love photos of movement but struggle with the technical side? Are your images too blurry when you don’t want them to be? Out of focus? Too frozen or there is too much camera shake?

I too love shooting movement especially people. It’s a big part of how I take portraits and create emotion so today I want to share a couple of tips.

1.  Depth of Field – So once you get someone moving such as walking or running they are generally moving in a range from a couple of metres to who knows where! To make sure they will be within your depth of field (the distance in focus as the camera sees it) choose an F-Stop such as F-11 or F16 (the higher the numbers the more depth of field).. This will give you a really wide depth of field from your focal point to infinity (i.e. lots of distance in focus). You will see in the above shot the F-Stop is F4, I wouldn’t recommend this if you are just starting out as the depth of field is very shallow. You can read more about depth of field here

2. Shutter Speed – This is your creative choice.  Your choice of shutter speed will depend on how fast your subject is moving,  whether you want a little movement blur or the movement to be absolutely frozen. In the above shot I have chosen a fast speed of 1/640 second as I wanted the movement frozen but as she was running I still have a little movement blur which I love. If I had wanted no movement blur I could have chosen a shutter speed of 1/2000 second. The slower the shutter speed i.e. 1/30 second the more movement blur, the higher the shutter speed such as 1/2000 second the more your movement will be frozen. More on shutter speeds here

3. ISO – Ok now you need to select an ISO that matches your above requirements. Dial up or down depending on your light conditions. The above shot was taken in mid-winter in Paris on a really low lit day. I had to go up to an ISO of 2000 to allow for a high shutter speed and that’s why I ended up using an F4 as I didn’t want to go any higher. As I mentioned above I recommend more depth of field when starting out. You can read more about ISO here

As movement is one of the key elements I use to create emotion in images and it is a technique I use everyday in my photography it will be a big subject at my Picture This Workshop along with many other of my shooting techniques and secrets.

If you feel blocked with how you are currently taking portraits, want to get out from behind the desk and get behind the camera or take steps forward to making photography a career you might like to join me and a great group of photographers at the Picture This Workshop in Sydney January 5,6,7,8 2015. It’s going to be a hoot! Last Places left..

If you have any questions about shooting movement leave me a message in the comments below and I will be sure to get back to you.

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” Steve Jobs

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Please share with others struggling with blurry pics!

What is your dream photography job?… Check out one of mine..

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All photos copyright Carla Coulson for Harper’s Bazaar

Gawd… After sunshine and blue skies on a Greek Island it’s hard to fly back into Paris to rain and 22 degrees but coming home to this story published in this months Australian Harper’s Bazaar made it all ok.

Have you ever asked yourself what your dream photography job (or one of them) would be? What ingredients you would throw into the recipe to make it just the way you wanted? Would it be fashion? Would it be portraiture? Would it be travel or a fabulous interior? Would their be dancing dogs and fairy floss?

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All photos copyright Carla Coulson for Harper’s Bazaar

I have asked myself this question often. Recently the phone rang with a fairy on the end of it (Harper’s Bazaar) and asked me whether I wanted to do one of my dream jobs?? I figured they must have hacked into my mind’s c-drive and pulled out all those delicious ingredients I had dreamed of, rolled them all together to form Carla’s dream job.

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All photos copyright Carla Coulson for Harper’s Bazaar

There would be a ramshackled Chateau, crumbling with paint peeling and faded ballrooms. A gorgeous woman and handsome hubby, there would be a stunning daughter and super cute son and BIG FROCKS with tulle and stuff! And there would be fashion pics and portraiture, interiors and exteriors and kookiness if I wanted it.

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All photos copyright Carla Coulson for Harper’s Bazaar

The reality turned out to be just like the dream. Everything they promised was there. The gorgeous Karina Waters of Chateau Gudanes  is not only a beauty but one of the nicest women I know and giggles a lot (bonus).  She and her hubby fell in love with this gorgeous pile in the midi-pyrenees and are in the process of renovating it.

Peeling wall paper still clings to the walls, hand-painted frescoes and beautiful balustrades guard the stairs and the music room is still adorned with gold. There were old tapestries waiting to go on the walls one day, glamorous French beds and pretty pink chairs.

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All photos copyright Carla Coulson for Harper’s Bazaar

So although I have been spoilt with jobs through out the years including many fashion jobs I truly loved with the heavenly Marta Innocenti Ciulli, this was another one to pop in my favourite memories hat. A favourite because I had the chance to use all the skills I have learnt throughout the years in fashion and interiors. Kind of like gobbling a whole box of Laduree macaroons out the front of the shop.

Another of my dream jobs will be sharing the skills I have learnt in fashion and portraiture this January 5,6,7,8  in Sydney at the Picture This Workshop where I will show you how to create emotion packed portraits with a fashion twist just like on these pages. All details here .

So if you are feeling stuck, trapped in a job you don’t like and want to acquire the skills to take your portraiture to the next step this workshop is designed to do exactly that.

What would your dream photography job be? What ingredients would you stir into it if you had the choice? I would love to hear your thoughts and dreams..

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” Harriet Tubman

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PS: Please share with other dreamers

Puglia – Heavenly White Villages

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View from outside our classroom of beautiful Martina Franca

I was bewitched by Martina Franca and her white village cousins on my first trip to the Valle D’Itria years ago. So taken with it that I made it our base for the first four days of the Caravan Travel Photography Workshop this June.

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The Caravan travel photography workshop started in the hillside town in the Valle D’Itra of Martina Franca. If you love Baroque architecture you will love Martina Franca. Every door, archway and facade has been carved in stone with loving care and as the local mayor explained to us, even the most humble doorway is baroque.

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A magical lampost, a blast of sunshine and a local.

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Blue doors, white stone and ornate door frames.

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I loved this window that I saw each day from my terrace just needed Sophia Loren to pop out of it.

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A little boy comes out to see what I was up to.

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This man is a local legend in Martina Franca. He runs the gorgeous Cafe Tripoli which is a historic cafe and at seventy something is up at 5am most days to serve coffee and charm his clientele. Love Vito!

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More baroque streets in Martina Franca.

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Whilst out scouting for the workshop I pulled into a beautiful Masseria above and found this handsome man working there.

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A fab archway in Martina Franca

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Ceglie Messapica getting ready for the big procession..

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The locals at Bar San Antonio in Ceglie Messapica..

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A flower lined street in the historic centre of Ceglie Messapica

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A corner of Ceglie Messapica and the lady that in lucky to live there.

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I adored this wall and the tea towel drying in the sun.

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The basilica of San Martino in Martina Franca.. A baroque feast.

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Hanging the washing out in Monopoli.

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Waiting for the procession in Ceglie Messapica

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I couldn’t resist these two.. All photos copyright Carla Coulson

Puglia was kind and gentle to us photographers, the locals opened their arms and hearts and showed us what true Southern Italian hospitality is all about.. Puglia Rocks!!

“Travelling is the ruin of all happiness! There is no looking at a building after seeing Italy.” Fanny Burney

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PS: We are getting ready to announce the 2nd edition of the Caravan Travel Photography Workshop. If you are interested and would like to be the first on the list for 2015 please get in touch with workshop organiser Athalee Brown at info@carlacoulson.com

Puglia – A Day At The Sea

 

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San Vito near Polignano A Mare

Hopefully by the time you read this I will be floating in the Greek equivalent of the water above!

I have been wanting to share some behind the scenes images of the recent Caravan Travel Photography Workshop in gorgeous Puglia so I figure the sea is not a bad place to start.

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I had one afternoon before the workshop started and I threw myself into the action at the local beach at Polignano A Mare with best buddy and workshop organiser Athalee Brown and Mr. Logistics Graham Seers (also known as super famous cyclist in his other life).

As you can see it was wall to wall flesh at the beach but hey people watching Olympics as a free bonus.

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Francesco has been telling me about the local delicacy for years, the Octopus panino.  It just so happened the day at the beach seemed to be octopus themed. This little guy caught his first ever octopus and I couldn’t resist a snap.

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Meanwhile on the other side of the cove and out the back of the fish shop the poor octopus is tenderised in a particularly brutal way. Not for vegetarians or animals (and octopus) lovers..

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Round 1 goes to the fisherman.

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Up the back of the beach in a little wooden shack is home to the local delicacy and Graham bravely lined up for his first Octopus panino.. Needless to say Francesco all the way from Paris glowed with pride..

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Ath considers taking a bite of hubby’s panino.

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Two lifeline friends who meet each day at the local beach in Monopoli. Ahh seems like the greatest of life’s rituals to me..

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Italy were playing the world cup so great to see a proud Italian supporting their team even at the beach.

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The old port in Monopoli, a beautiful boat and a rose patterned blanket.

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Monopoli early in the morning..

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Local fisherman preparing his lines, Dolce and Gabbana could certainly poach this guy for a new ad campaign.

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Where there is the sea and fisherman there is always a beautiful shrine (and Carla trying to sniff it out). One of my favourites in Monopoli.

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And where there are fishermen and fish there are bound to be sleepy cats with a tummy full of fish. Too tired to open his eyes..

Stay tuned for more posts on beautiful Puglia..

Wishing you a fabulous summer and hopefully you too are floating in transparent water.

“We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, whether it is to sail or to watch – we are going back from whence we came.”

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PS: We are getting ready to announce the 2nd edition of the Caravan Travel Photography Workshop. If you are interested and would like to be the first on the list for 2015 please get in touch with workshop organiser Athalee Brown at info@carlacoulson.com

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