A few weeks ago, I had the immense pleasure of spending the day/having a workshop with the extremely talented
Meg Bitton. If you have not heard of her, run, don’t walk to her website. You will be in love with her work as much as I am!
I had first heard of Meg through a photography forum that I frequent. I was immediately drawn to her work. It was personal, soulful, and nothing short of mind blowing. She has the innate talent to capture moments in time and details in such a manner that draw you in and paint a picture. She is a true artist in every sense of the word.
The night before the workshop, I could not sleep. I felt like a kid on the night before Christmas. I was giddy with excitement. I knew that the next day would bring an incredible journey- a journey that I was fortunate enough to be taking with 2 of my best photogra-friends, Jen from
Lightful Photography and Shira from
Shira Z Photography. Meg’s philosophy is that we all learn from each other- so I was thrilled to do the workshop with them since I love and respect them so much.
We arrived at Meg’s gorgeous house in the morning amped with excitement and nervousness (at least I know that I was nervous!) Meg was waiting to greet us, which I thought was such a nice touch- and instantly calmed me. We immediately sat down at Meg’s dining room table and started to chat. We presented her with a few of our images for her to critique. Meg did not sugar coat anything and was brutally honest, which I appreciated. I have to admit, even though I love Shira and Jen, it was a little intimidating for me to have my work critiqued in front of them. In the end, it ended up to be fine- I survived. As my friend Jen said in her review- you must be open to this. It is not easy to hear criticism about your images, since in one way or another, you are emotionally attached to them- but it definitely helped me see my images in a new light and hear what I could have done to make them stronger.
After the critique, we headed out to lunch. We chatted about various business topics- and it was so refreshing to chat with someone who knows the challenges and rewards of this business. After lunch, we grabbed our gear and got ready to shoot! Meg took us to one of her “go-to” spots to shoot. We had a gorgeous model. Meg went through her in-shoot workflow, and then took us individually aside to shoot by ourselves with the model. We were able to direct her by ourselves with Meg’s guidance and reassurance. When Shira and Jen were shooting with Meg, I had a chance to sneak a peek at the images I had just taken. I was blown away. I loved what I saw.
After we each had our own turn with Meg and the model, we shot as a group.
We were done with this location and then hustled to pick up Meg’s daughter and go to our next location. Yes, that’s right- I said Meg’s daughter. A girl who probably has no less than a billion AMAZING pictures of her. It was nearing sunset and the light was so beautiful.
We then headed back to Meg’s house to go over her processing workflow. I’ve neve been a major post-shoot editor (Of course I do edit, but I up until now, it hasn’t been terribly extensive.) It was eye opening to see how she transformed her SOOC (straight of of the camera) images into gorgeous works of art.
We ended the night by having dinner together and chatted more about our day, how we felt, etc. I didn’t want the day to end. I felt inspired and transformed. I wanted to let go and shoot what I wanted to shoot- the things that I always loved to shoot- the details, the small things, the moments you don’t want to forget. The moments where you look at an image years later and all of the emotions and feelings come flooding back to you like it was yesterday. The moments that grab your heart and don’t let go. Relationships. Love. I am forever indebted to Meg for this inspiration and reminder of why I love photography to begin with- for reminding me that I had it in me to do what I always wanted to do.
For days after the workshop, I felt this weird feeling. It wasn’t necessarily a bad feeling- but I felt as if I was on the verge of something. I couldn’t sleep well- and no, it wasn’t because I had too much coffee. I liken it the restlessness that infants and toddlers exhibit right before they have a vocabulary explosion or hit a major phyical milestone. I am evolving.
If you are a photographer and have been thinking about taking a workshop, I could not suggest Meg’s workshop enough. It was small and intimate- and I feel that it is so important to participate with workshops that speak to you on a personal level. I’m not knocking those workshops where hundreds of people attend at one time- because maybe that speaks to you. I know for me, I need/want/like/respond well to one on one and small groups in just about every aspect of my life. Do it. I promise, you won’t regret it.