The Power Of Food

Carla Coulson Loc Boyle small

Me at Bondi in Sydney by Loc Boyle

I promised myself I wouldn’t turn this blog into a food/health/auto-immune blog but couldn’t resist sharing a little update with you.

You may remember from this post that I was diagnosed with Graves Disease (which is an auto-immune disease) in December and at the same time found a bald spot  (Alopecia Areata) in the back of my hair. Oh and there is another one at the other end of my body called Lichen Sclerosus that begs you too scratch all day!!

The doctors wanted to kick this under the carpet as ‘hereditary’. My mum and all her sisters have vitiligo, my uncle had Psoriasis another Uncle has Sarcoidosis,  my sister has vitiligo and my cousin has had Alopecia since she was in her 20′s.

Well, it is almost 2 months now that I have been on a Paleo Diet, no grains, legumes, milk products, no sugar or processed food. No coffee, alcohol or stimulants.. Just good old veges, fruit, nuts and seeds and protein..

A couple of weeks ago I checked in with my French doctor (always an interesting experience). There was a lot of head shaking (you need to take drugs), whipping out of the prescription pad and ‘non non non’ this natural thing is no good.

But I don’t have any symptions I insisted. My acupuncturist had been working on my gut and my head (think of woody the woodpecker and his beak knocking on my bald spot) and my hair is starting to sprout and the itchiness in my nether regions has subsided.

I begged her to let me take another blood test and then we would talk about it.

Begrudgingly she  agreed.

On weigh in day (cause that’s what it felt like) I was doing  ‘Oh what a feeling’ Toyota jumps (the Aussie’s will know what this is)  all the way down Rue du Rivoli hugging my results to my chest.

Fruit-and-vegetables-for-sale-_MG_5203_Carla-Coulson

Fruit for sale in Puglia by Carla Coulson

Not only had 2 out of 3 Thyroid values entered the ‘normal range’ but they were buried right down there in the middle smug as can be no longer teetering on the outside. But the big news was my auto-immune antibodies had almost halved.

Reading blood results are like reading the deep sea scrolls for the uninitiated but in French they are extra tricky so I thought I better check with my doctor.

More head shaking, she couldn’t believe the results. I secretly think she thinks I am taking medication and not telling her. She has given me another months ‘leave of absence’ before she threatens to bring out the prescription pad.

I walked out of that doctor’s office feeling Round 1 to the organic farmers..

As well as changing my diet I am changing the way I do things. No instagramming, Facebooking in bed! Nothing happens before my morning walk and 20 mins of meditation and yes Carla you can actually take a lunch break.

I have dragged my sore and sorry body to Yoga for the past 2 months and enjoyed the experience of going slow and realised how broken my body is after all these year of carrying camera gear on my back for hours and days at a time.

But most of all ‘hail’ to the human body that after decades of battering responds to kindess so quickly.

Some links you may like:

My favourite books Practical Paleo and Nourishing Traditions Natural Treatment Solutions for Hyperthyroidism and Graves Disease

Websites I enjoy Mr Paleo himself Loren Cordain at The Paleo Diet  Rob Wolf Sarah Wilson Paleo Mom Dr Amy Myers

Sending my deepest love and thanks for all your well wishes each and every day.

Stay tuned for more photography..

“If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.” Hippocrates

signature

 

 

Please feel free to share with anyone this may help. xx

Live The Life You Love + Cat Stevens + Marie Forleo

Cat Stevens Marie Forleo I have just arrived home from an inspiring week shooting in Italy! The minute I cross that border champagne bubbles in my blood and I am singing and dancing my way down cobbled streets…

Lately I have been reflecting on life and how we live it.

Just before I left for Italy I was cuddled up on the couch with super hubby and Avedon watching La Festival di San Remo when one of my childhood heroes appeared, Yusuf Cat Stevens.

The music of Cat Stevens was a soundtrack of a certain part of my childhood as important as vegemite sandwiches and my skinny legs hanging out the bottom of a checked school uniform. I distinctly remember singing at the top of my voice with my sister Jan ‘remember the days of the old schoolyard’ on a holiday.

It seemed apt at the time as my parents where doing up an old schoolhouse on Magnetic Island where our great uncle once lived so we had school on our mind. We were jus skinny kids running wild in the sunshine without a care in the world and Cat’s music mirrored our freedom and happiness.

There was so many songs I loved, Peace Train, Father and Son, The Cats in the Cradle, Wild World, Another Saturday night and Morning Has Broken. God love the teacher in our music class in Port Macquarie Primary School who taught us Morning Has Broken and I still almost know the words off by heart. My Italian hubby was a little jealous of the cool choice of songs at our school.

father-cat-stevens-590x350

We were all in love with Cat!! And then poof just like that he disappeared from our lives and left a big gaping hole and it seemed never to return. But his music soothed our souls throughout the years.

Cat was looking for bigger things in life and found it in Islam. In 1977 he auctioned his guitars for charity and devoted his time to philanthropy, education and peace.

So there I was after all these years watching San Remo when Yusuf Cat Stevens came onto the stage to standing applause and started to sing. I burst into sobs not tears. I wasn’t the only one, many people in the crowd were moved to tears to hear his songs after so many years.

I couldn’t control myself (as it happens with my emotions round here) and with his magical words and voice I thought what a joy it must be to be able to sing like Yusuf Cat Stevens and create and give so much joy and love to others. I thought ‘what an incredible way to live your life’. Doing what love when you want, moving onto to other things and coming back to music when it felt right.

It got me thinking about the many ways we can live our lives and how there are many ways to live yours.

One of the things I love about my life is that I don’t have to go to an office at the same time each day week after week.

Wow, there it is I said it.. Of course I love doing something creative, meeting new people everyday and having the personal reward of doing something I love but more than anything I love creating my own routine and not getting ground by someone else’s.

Marie Forleo

So what does this have to do with Yusuf Cat Stevens? A lot.

Well, one of the great courses I did last year that helped me clarify where to go (cause sometimes there are too many options) was the fabulous Marie Forleo’s B-School and it could just help a budding Yusuf Cat Stevens or caftan designer!

Yes the gorgeous Marie Forleo sings a lot of the same songs as Yusuf Cat, about peace, love and doing what you love and the universe will look after the rest.

I have always believed the same thing but Marie’s B-School helps you find out what it is you want to do and then tells you how to do it fabulously online.. I, like many people was lost in the internet world of blogs, Facebook, Pinterest and all the questions that come along with that, like where should i put my subscriber box and what should I call my business and who is my client??

Marie cuts out the white noise and tells you straight how to do it along with some of the big guns out there doing great things.

B-School closes on Wednesday 5th, yep that’s tomorrow and if you need the tool to make the next move you might just love B-Schoool.. You willl love Marie Forleo.. you can’t help but adore her infectious enthusiasm.

BTW I am NOT getting a kick-back from this recommendation just sending the love your way.

So if you want to be siting on a stage singing one day, selling caftans online or have a successful blog or business online check out Marie Forleo. She’s the biz!

“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.” Rumi

signature

 

 

PS: Please share the love

Backstage Get Published 2013

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

All Images by Dee Gerlach

I have been wanting share these images of the behind the scenes from the Get Published Workshop in Sydney last December taken by the fabulous Dee Gerlach since I arrived back in Paris.

Dee is a gorgeous gal, fab photographer with a brilliant eye.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Get Published was held in the ever so groovy ‘The School’ run by super stylist Megan Morton and her husband Giles.

A large photography studio seemed the perfect place for a bunch of wonderful photographers to find out how they could have their images published in books and magazines.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

That’s me talking about photographic style and vision and the wonderful group of guys and gals. The morning was devoted to magazines and how they work from every possible angle including my ‘coal face’ experiences working with magazines for 12 years.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Morning tea ready and waiting.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Sharon Misko Creative Director of Inside out joined us again this year and walked the photographers through many topics from the magazines point of view including how to present a portfolio, do’s and don’ts, creating a user friendly website for Art Directors, creating a great story, essential images in a photographic story and how to present to an Art Director.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Sharon Misko Creative Director of Inside Out talks about what makes a story standout.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

 Sharon Misko Creative Director of Inside Out critiques some of the participants work for the benefit of everyone.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Listening intently to what Sharon Misko has to say.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

 Lunch was catered by Mike’s Kitchen.. Heavenly

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop- Yummmm by Mike’s Kitchen

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

A big afternoon on book publishing and how to have your images or a book idea published.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Waiting for our special guest Katie Quinn Davies of What Katie Ate.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Katie Generously shared her story from self taught food photographer, to winner of the James Beard Award and an International best selling book with What Katie Ate.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Katie chatting with the girls at the end of the workshop

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

Some of my published work on the pinboards.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

A huge thanks to the gorgeous group who participated. It was such a fabulous experience to meet so many wonderful people and to have the opportunity to see their work and hear their dreams.

Carla-Coulson--Get-Published-Workshop-

All images by Dee Gerlach

A little ‘Get Published Booklet’ signing!!

I can’t wait to hear what happens for these photographers this year and I am sure there will be many beautiful stories and books published just like last year.

Athalee Brown and her team did an extraordinary job running the event, heartfelt thanks for all the hard work and delish food.

Many people have asked me whether Get Published will be taught online and it’s in the pipeline for next year so if you would like to get on the workshop list and be the first to be notified you can sign up here.

“I appreciate simplicity, true beauty that lasts over time, and a little wit and eclecticism that make life more fun.” Elliott Erwitt

signature

 

 

Please feel free to share

How To Shoot The Blue Hour

Carla Coulson Blue hour

Florence by Carla Coulson taken in winter

Have you ever wondered how to shoot the blue hour – that magic twilight when the sun has set but the night is yet to fully descend?

I shot the blue hour over and over again and used it as a ‘get out of jail’ card when I was shooting travel stories for magazines and needed a good shot of a city with atmosphere or wanted to have a little fun like with Christmas decorations in Place Vendome (see below).

I even used this technique on miserable, rainy winter days in Europe because even the blue hour works under these conditions – love the blue hour.

What is the blue hour?

The blue hour isn’t actually an hour, it should be called the blue fifteen minutes instead!! After the sun has set and the pink in the sky fades, the colour temperature cools as the sun has gone. This cooling of the colour temperature produces a beautiful blue and it lasts between 10 and 15 minutes before the balance is overridden with the black of the night.

Carla Coulson Blue hour 2

Florence by Carla Coulson taken in Winter

When does it work best?

I find there needs to be a good balance of city and street lights to achieve this result. If you want to shoot a building or city to create this effect they need to be sufficiently lit otherwise you will have a lot of dark areas and bright points. When the city or building is well lit you have more of a balance in the image.

I tried this once on a private home in Provence and too make sure it was lit well enough we turned on all the inside lights, all the outside lights and added lanterns for more points of light.

Most cities turn their street and monuments lights on right around the blue hour. I have stood waiting in the cold throughout the years begging those lights to come on before the blue was gone and nearly every city turned them on in time  (thanks guys).

ChristmasPlaceVendome Carla Coulson

Christmas Place Vendome My French Life Copyright by Carla Coulson

How to do it:

1. Check the time the sunsets where you want to shoot with a program like this

2. Go at least 30 mins before the sunsets and set up your tripod and find your frame because once the light fades you gotta be quick.

3. Work out your focus point before the light fades as it can be tricky once the sun has set.. Technically dark for autofocus and for your eyes if you haven’t got great eyesight.

4. Work on a low ISO of around 400 will still give you room to move with F-Stops..I find working on ISO of 100 gives you little choice with the F-Stops and depth of field.

5. Start checking the light meter once the sun has gone because you are about to lose stops of light quickly.

6. Do a test and check focus whilst there is still light

7. Set your camera on self timer or use a remote shutter release so you aren’t touching the shutter when the photo is being taken. You will be working on long shutter speeds so any movement can blur the photo.

8. I normally take photos throughout the 15 mins to see which effect I like. You will need to keep changing the exposure based on the light dropping. Often in the early shots the sky is more cyan blue and then towards the end a little more deeper royal blue.

9. Note on clear blue sky days the blue is more prominent that on grey cloudy days.

10. Once the ‘fifteen minutes’ are up the sky becomes black and the streets lights give a very strong golden cast. The ‘blur hour’  has passed.

I hope this helps you have a little fun taking shots of a place or special thing you love.

“There is one spectacle grander than the sea, that is the sky; there is one spectacle grander than the sky, that is the interior of the soul.” Victor Hugo

signature

 

 

Please share the love! x

Photographing Your First Book

Books Carla Coulson  Some of my books rubbing up against my heroes..

Nothing like a new start, a new week and a New Year that brings so many new projects and hope.

I love hope!

I have been preparing images and a presentation for the upcoming Caravan Travel Photography Workshop in Puglia and going through 12 years of images. This is such a wonderful process in itself, like looking through a visual diary of your life, moments in time, familiar faces and ones you have forgotten.

Grandfather Naples Carla Couls

I like to think I remember every photo but even I found some lovely surprises.

Trawling back through the images from now to the beginning of photography school, through projects such as Naples A Way Of Love, Paris Tango and and all the way to Italian Joy I had a thought that may just help you shoot your first book.

Carla Coulson Italian Joy

When you are at the beginning of anything you have ‘things’ that money can’t buy – endless oodles of enthusiasm, no expectations,  the joy at looking at the world as though you have just seen and ‘felt’ it for the first time and shooting what you love.

Sunbaker Carla Coulson Italian Joy

The cameras I invested in in the early years were like new toys for me and I couldn’t get enough of them. My underwater camera meant even at the beach I could explore photography from a new angle.

Carla Coulson Italian Joy

The photos that ended up in Italian Joy were a product of innate curiosity of life, the burning desire to take photos that said or made you feel something, sheer unadulterated happiness and untiring enthusiasm that would have me out in the rain, the wind, the snow… asking fishermen (that I didn’t know) to board their boats and shoot them.. holding my breath and shooting ladies underwater.. treading water whilst kids jumped off the rocks one after the other waiting for that perfect moment ….and stalking lovers in train stations.

Italian Joy Carla Coulson

The photos I took in those early years are still some of my favourites because they were taken for sheer pleasure and love of photography with no end use in mind. They were photos born of freedom.

And this my dear friends is your advantage when shooting for a ‘probable’ first book.

Carla Coulson Italian Joy

Some things I notice in my photos looking back:

1. I shot ‘my’ world, the people around me, people who would give me access, my friends, family, Florentines and Popi

2. I was obsessed with movement, I shot vespas over and over again

3. I was also obsessed with religious iconography in Italy and drawn to every tabernacle on a street corner, statues of Madonna’s in churches and religious art (I have thousands of images).

4. I loved the innate elegance of Italians and would stop well-dressed people in the street and ask if I could take a photo (yep I was obsessed).

5. I loved shooting love in all it’s expressions…

6. I shot things that made me laugh (still do)..

7. I shot almost exclusively in the early years in black and white…(and I never felt the pressure to shoot in colour)

Made in Italy Carla Coulson Italian joy

 All Photos Copyright Carla Coulson Italian Joy

So here are are some tips if you are at the beginning of your photography career and hope one day to shoot/write a book.

1. Shoot what you love and don’t question it.

2. Shoot what is accessible and don’t ask yourself where it will fit?

3. The world needs original books so if you think it isn’t mainstream enough.. Keep shooting you are probably onto something.

4. If you are shooting a well known subject put your spin on it.

5. Take the photos you love and trust your inner ‘photographer’s voice’.

I hope this little insight helps you on your path.

“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” Elliott Erwitt
signature

 

 

Please share if It may help someone starting out..

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...