The idea to spend a few days with people I don't know, in places I've never been, it's quite a challenge. I am actually shy, and being in a group of talented and experienced people in a field I'm just crawling can be intimidate. But I'm ready, I'm ready to challenge myself, to be pushed out of my comfort zone and follow my heart.
I was lucky to finally snag one of the tickets for a workshop organized by Ritchie Ace Camps. I had tried it before, twice to tell you the truth, or I was late, the tickets are sold out fast, or some requirements I did not have, well, this may be a subject for another post...
It helped my confidence that I had already attended a food styling and photography workshop held by Béa Peltre in Ingland last year, which was such an unforgettable experience. This time I went to Portugal to spend time learning from the talented photographer, food stylist and cook Aran Goyoaga of Aran Goyoaga from Cannelle et Vanille. I've been inspired by Aran's talent to tell a story through food and beautiful photography for quite a while.
Aran talked to us about her process for styling, photographing and editing her photos. We spent time photographing food made and stylished by her, then we styled food ourselves and spent more time photographing them.
Everybody was so motivated and full of energy. I felt lucky to be in this worshop with Aran, Angela and such talented people
The workshop was held in Melides, in the region of Grândola. Melides is a typical small Alentejo village, where the houses keep the traditional white and blue look, which reminded me of the historic towns in Minas Gerais.
Early morning walks in the summer are such a bliss, and that was my routine in Melides. Some days I would walk toward the small village, some days toward the beach.
In a hot and bright afternoon, we headed to the beach to style and photograph a picnic. To me it was a challenge to photograph in those extreme light conditions. Such an amazing learning experience.
On our last night , we all dined out in a restaurant by the Praia do Pêgo, where we were blessed by this amazing sunset.
The next day, I left the Portuguese countryside heading to Lisbon, where I stay for a couple of days with a special friend, a friend I had just met the day I arrived in Portugal.
You might ask "how can you call a person you've just met a friend?" Well, Rosa, from the blog Le Paquet, and I were online friends for some time, and when I was certain I was going to Portugal I wrote her an email.
I hesitate when she invited me to stay at her home, but I'm glad I accepted. When I arrived at the airport she was there waiting for me. I felt I already knew her for a long time, and thank to her my two days in Lisbon were intense and special.
A few participants of the workshop joined Rosa and I to wander the streets of this culturally rich and charming city, a city of colors, tiles, and stone streets. It was lovely to have their company.
I returned home feeling inspired, met wonderful people, made new friends.
Goodbye Portugal, thanks for the experience and memories!