11 Oct Safehouse Workshop: NYC ~ Winnipeg Boudoir Photography
So…did September even happen? It was pretty much a whirlwind for me. My first adventure found me in Jersey City, Brooklyn, and Time Square X 3 times in the span of 5 days while I hung out with some of the best people in the world. When I first found out about the Safehouse Workshop: NYC through the Babetown Collective (an amazing group of photographers on Facebook/internets) I knew that without a doubt I needed to get there. So, I contacted Babetown’s fearless leader Lola Gilbert and I told her that I would do whatever I could do to come play in New York, so she hooked me up with a teaching job for the workshop.
I was beyond ecstatic and actually recall screaming the good news while I was in a hotel room in Vancouver in April! While I knew this week was going to be epic beyond measure, what I didn’t expect was meeting SO MANY incredible, talented, passionate, and inspiring people from all over. The coolest thing about Babetown is that it is not specific to one genre of photography, so this workshop was unlike any I had attended before. We had instructors for headshots (#chadshots), self portraits, silhouettes, intimate male portraits, family portraits, maternity sessions, engagement, same sex couples and intimate storytelling, and plus size boudoir by yours truly. So, when I wasn’t instructing I was able to partake in the other instructors’ classes and at first I was like, “that’s silly…I don’t shoot X,Y,Z, so maybe I should just hang back”….but quickly I realized just how awesome it was to be a noob at different genres of photography. I’m not saying I know everything about boudoir, but if I’m teaching on the subject, I best be somewhat of a specialist on the topic….but I definitely was not a subject matter expert in the other genres. It was awesome to take little bits from each instructor and see how I can apply it to boudoir. In fact, I have noticed that my work since attending the Safehouse Workshop has been a bit more playful, intriguing and exciting…pulling from the inspiration of those amazing people I met in NYC.
While I am thankful for the opportunities that have come out of this workshop, I am mostly thankful for the amazing friendships that I have made in a relatively competitive industry. I have people I can message on FB, strike up a ZOOM chat, or just send random voice notes to in an effort to make mine and their days better. Since coming back from this Babetown workshop, I am already signed up to instruct at the next 2 Babetown workshops in Idaho and Maine in 2018 and I am so beyond blessed for these experiences. I am so incredibly excited to meet up with my buddies and help inspire and educate other photographers to do the things that make their soul happy.
On the last day, I was watching my new friend Jessica teaching her course on Self-Portraiture (while sitting in a copper tub, mind you) and I was moved to tears. It is such an honor to be able to see people speak with such passion about their lives. It made me happy to be surrounded by people who are just as motivated as I am to never settle for the status quo. The coolest thing was, that almost all of the instructors spoke about their journey to their niche in photography and what set them apart and it was the fact that they were able to see the good in the struggles of their lives. I like to reference it as turning their kryptonite into their superpower….because it’s in their vulnerability of sharing themselves and their passion for working through “the mud” and sharing this with their communities that they have become successful and well known in their industry. It has nothing to do with their camera equipment, the amount of $$$ they bring in with their business, or how long they have been doing photography…it has everything to do with the fact that each instructor literally throws their whole being, heart, and soul into their work and into inspiring and helping others in the industry. I am beyond privileged to be part of this Babetown crew.
In addition to all the inspiration, photography, and creativity, there was A LOT of play time. We did a Facebook Live for the Babetown crew where we had to ask each other questions, but it really only resulted in Chad and I deciding we need to have our own podcast, we got lost LITERALLY every time we drove home from the studios (but in doing so had the privilege of seeing the NYC skyline and Time Square multiple times), I got to eat some chicken and waffles, I photographed my babely instructor friends (their shoots to come later!), and of course, we learned that maaaaybe you shouldn’t host a mixer the night before the first day of teaching and instead, perhaps should leave it until the last night to avoid epic hangovers and regret.
I always say the sign of a good workshop is when I come home with laryngitis and a sore stomach from laughing so hard, and Babetown DEFINITELY delivered both of those! Is it April or May yet??? I will stop babbling now and inundate you with photos from the amazingness that was The Safehouse Workshop. If you are a photographer and want to get in on this amazingness, you can check out the other Safehouse Workshops here and come see me in Maine or Idaho (or both, heh heh heh).