the art of storytelling

I Wish I Could Write: The Art of Storytelling

the art of storytelling

Dear Lovers of Story, in my desire to learn the art of storytelling, I remember saying out aloud ‘I wish I could write’ way back in 2001 when I had the opportunity to have some of my photos of Naples published in Marie Claire Australia but I needed a story to go with the images. I rang a journalist friend of mine begging her to do the story for me; instead, she pointed me in the direction of a writing course that she once took that opened her life to words.

I was desperate, I wanted those images published so badly. Not only would having my photos published in a magazine be the most exciting thing to happen to me in the past twenty years but it was a lifebuoy that was being thrown in my direction to a new life as a photographer living in Italy and that my friends knew was a life I wanted more than life itself.

‘Word constipation’ would have been the way I described my prior ability to get anything down on paper; words were trapped deep down in my stomach, lodged in my throat, and they would go around and around in my head but when it came time to put them on paper, they popped out like little pebbles of ‘sheep poo’. I could never pass the one-sentence mark let alone master the art of storytelling before walking away in shame. I had no education in English grammar, how to form a sentence and I still don’t!! The kind folks who have been reading my blog for many years have been forever sending me corrections (love you) and feedback.

the art of storytelling
My first published book, Italian Joy.

I took the course and a whole new world opened up to me, a world that was stored inside me without knowing. There were wisps of memories, the pungent scent of jasmine and garbage mixed together in a street I walked down in Bali in 1990, the exact shade of watermelon red of my favourite top when I was sixteen, the tightening of my stomach of my last heartbreak before I kissed Sydney goodbye, and the body language of the man that delivered it. All this could be accessed from an unlocatable database just waiting to be called upon whenever I gave myself the space to sit down and engage in this other dimension.

Henri Cartier Bresson once said about photography, ‘It is putting one’s head, one’s eye and one’s heart on the same axis,’ and for me writing is a similar version: ‘It’s putting your heart, your conscious & your subconscious minds and your pen on the same axis!

Another one of my published books, Chasing A Dream.

Alchemy happens when I sit down with a blank canvas in front of me, thoughts and details flow out of a part of me that aren’t present in my daily life if I don’t give myself the space and time. I love the quietness of writing which is very different from the intense physical and emotional energy I need to take the kind of photos I love that feel alive. Sitting down to write is a way to get to know myself and the world around me and I have a lot I want to share.

This June 6-10, if the planets align, I am mixing all of my favourite ingredients together, walking the back streets of Florence, sipping caramel coloured Cappuccinos, friendship and sisterhood, history and writing, and attending Lisa Clifford’s ‘Art of Writing’ retreat. I want to learn the art of storytelling from Lisa, to hear how experts do it and if I dared to, how I would put a book together (a proper book without photos). What could I incorporate to improve my process at the same time giving myself the gift of taking the time out to write?

lisa clifford, the art of writing retreat
Photos from Lisa Clifford's Art of Writing retreat in Florence. Image Credit: Lisa Clifford

I believe we all have a story to tell, and our stories are important; they are the transmission of the way we do things from one generation to another from person to person. If you are curious like me, love learning, and want to learn to tell better stories, you may be interested in Lisa’s Art of Writing course. You can check out the full details here.

As a special gift, as you are a valued member of my community, Lisa is extending a 10% discount on any of her coming Art of Writing retreats. Please note this is for you as you are on my list and will not be published anywhere else. When you go to book, simply use the subject heading, “Carla’s friend”.

Your story is important.


Light and love,

Carla xx

photography series

Sell Your Photography or Art Online – Group Coaching Program

Dearest Friends,

Recently I gave a free workshop on how to sell your art photography online and I had an overwhelming response from people after the presentation wanting to know more.

In fact, I had many people write to me asking whether I could create a course to coach people through the process to make their shop a sure fire winner.

When I created my shop in 2016, I had a dream to make it work for many reasons; one was to create the work I love and sell it but there was another part of me that also did it for you. I wanted to prove that creatives could do the work they love and make it a sustainable online business. Within 3 years, I managed to grow my sales 10x!!

So my loves, if you would like to know more about how you can do the work you love and sell it successfully online, come and take a peek at my new baby, ‘Walls of Love’ – a private group coaching program with all the bells and whistles to support you in the process of creating the work you love and selling it.


Carla xx

free live only photography workshop


free live only photography workshop

Dear friends around the world,

Let’s have some fun this weekend and take our minds of ‘you know what’!!!

It seems almost all of us are on lockdown. So to pass some gorgeous creative time LIVE together,  I’ m giving a FREE PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP (about 1.5 hours) this weekend where I will share some portrait tips and some funny stories of how I get some of my pics.

Everyone is welcome, share this post with your friends so they can sign up and join us. You can sign up HERE

All are welcome, you will receive a reminder email a day before and another one an hour prior to the start  so you won’t miss it. You can send this email to your buddies all around the world and we can pass a little of our weekend together.

If you can’t make it LIVE,  you will receive a copy of the replay via email.

No catches, no upselling, Zip-a-dee-doo-dah of any BS, just pure joy of being together on the weekend and talking photography.

Love ya.

See you Saturday.

Carla xx

PS: thanks to the beautiful Erica for starring in this shot, you can follow here on Instagram HERE 

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And the Winners of the Yes, Yes, Yes Scholarship are…

Dear Ladies,

Thank you to everyone that applied for the scholarship and my apologies this is a day late. I had over 60 applicants and it took longer than I thought to watch the videos and read everyone’s story.

Everyone’s stories and dreams are valid, real and achievable. It has been one of the hardest decisions of my life to award 4 places and I was unable to do it, so I have created space for 7 scholarships.

There have been times in my career when people have reached out and helped me and maybe some of them didn’t know it at the time but they changed my life in some way. I hope this scholarship for the following women help them open a new chapter of their life and bring what’s in their heart to life.

So ladies, get ready for a happy dance…

Each of the following people has won a scholarship to the Yes, Yes, Yes Program:

  • Georgina Lee Jones
  • Kate Spanti
  • Julia Ferguson
  • Sarah Schaub
  • Meri Angelucci
  • Natalie Radalj
  • Loretta Horn


You will receive an email from me with all the instructions regarding Yes, Yes, Yes and the open date of our next round!!

For all the other ladies who APPLIED, THERE IS A SPECIAL EMAIL COMING YOUR WAY so look out for it and thanks for your time and stories and I hope our paths cross soon.

Big thanks and don’t give up on your dreams.


PS: If you want to start working on your dreams and projects today, you can download my REAWAKEN YOUR LUST FOR LIFE WORKBOOK HERE.

Belief Beginners’ Photography Workshop in Puglia, Italy

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It’s all razzle-dazzle here today as we are releasing for the first time ever BELIEF, a BEGINNER’S PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP in Puglia Italy, where we inspire and guide you through the basic elements of photography, taking you from ZERO TO HERO in  5 exciting days. We have organised a veritable ‘buffet’ of the best of Puglia including visits to Martina Franca, Oria, Bari and a once in a lifetime styled portrait shoot in Masseria Potenti to inspire you to create the best images possible.

I believe everyone is creative if you give yourself the time and my wish for you on this workshop is that you will walk away with a feeling of confidence and excitement about your photography and the BELIEF in yourself that you are a creative soul and always have been and know that photography and creativity can change and inspire the rest of your life (this is the bit where we need Aretha Franklin and her back-up singers).

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Imagine becoming really, really good at something that could start you on a new path and open your life to exciting creative possibilities, friendships, personal discovery, connection, a whole lot of fun and a greater connection to YOU.

After the wonderful Heartland Environmental Workshop in October 2018 at the exquisite Masseria Potenti, workshop co-ordinator Athalee Brown and I have the greatest pleasure in presenting another unique workshop in this heavenly location in Puglia, Italy.

Many people have asked me throughout the years to create a safe, fun environment to learn manual photography and that is exactly what we have done. Master Photographer Loc Boyle and myself will teach you the basics of composition, ISO, shutter speed and creating a great exposure so that you can start to bring your creative vision to the images you have always dreamed of creating. We will show you how to use light to create mood and emotion in your images and to take your photography to the next level. Then we’ll let you loose on the most beautiful streets of Martina Franca and Oria and let you test your skills on a very special styled portrait shoot in Masseria Potenti. As the grand finale, we’ll finish our workshop in the historical centre of Bari, photographing the ladies who make pasta and the daily street life.

bari doubles 2

We will take you from zero photography skills to feeling confident using your camera on manual and that feeling of achievement and excitement when you learn something new.

There will be classroom lessons each day in the gorgeous Masseria Potenti as we slowly build your skills, knowledge and love for photography and hands-on lessons. You will practice your newfound skills and creativity each day and learn to use light to create images of people, markets, and local architecture and culture.

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There will be daily critiquing of your images and we are confident you will walk away from this workshop taking fabulous photos with a skip in your step for YOUR newfound skills, creativity, for what YOU have achieved, and the photographic adventure you have been on and the experiences you have lived. Not to mention, the fabulous new tribe of creative pals you will count as friends.

All of this will be taught in a place close to heaven, the beautiful Masseria Potenti. A place that will nurture and inspire the soul and serve as the perfect backdrop to start mastering THE BASICS OF PHOTOGRAPHY, have BELIEF in your creativity, know how to use light and space, made easier in a supportive environment where you can push and challenge yourself to take those photos you dream of taking.