Again, we face the difficulty to word something beyond description. Well, let’s give it a try…
When we worked out our idea for the Rustic & Raw Workshop concept we realized pretty fast that it would be the best opportunity to bring our participants closer to photography in an authentic and very intensive way. Even if we already can share our knowledge during our Homeschool Workshop, we miss the personal part which is crucial for our photography. Lots of new ideas sprout in personal conversations, for which you need time and ease. And a cozy bonfire, as we learned. An inspiriting environment, the possibility to try out new culinary things and a ragtag group of participants made this workshop unforgettable. We are super happy that we gathered people who were ready to leave their comfort zone and to get involved in this adventure with us. It really means a lot to us. To live with unfamiliar people in a house for four days, sharing everything with each other, cooking together, run into someone with undone hair in the morning and talking about more than theory of photography…this is not for everyone. But it worked and it showed us, how deeply photography can connect people. Again we noticed what you can achieve with your very personal imagery. How you can communicate solely with photos and that it is possible to evoke just the same feeling in somebody else you felt yourself when the photo was made. We still find this really interesting, even if we got to know each other just this way 11 years ago: through our photography.
Apart from the sentimentalism (one of us already has teary eyes, guess who) we want to talk about the workshop, of course. Here are the facts!
You may know the “Alte Schule“ in Rensow from our last stories. We love the house because of its very own and special atmosphere, and the gorgeous light. It was just the perfect place for the Rustic & Raw Workshop. You don’t need to set up a photo set because the whole house is one. In every corner you find objects with special structures for which we painstakingly look for on flea markets for years. Every time we are there we are enchanted anew and can’t put away our camera.
This was our idea exactly! The whole environment should be involved in the workshop and be as inspiring as possible. The workshop should start the moment the participants enter the house.
Of course, there were theory sessions as well in which we talked about our photography technique, editing, and food styling, but a lot arose spontaneously in the moment. This is what appealed to us. The participants could watch us creating a new recipe and cooking it for the first time. Nothing was rehearsed, done ten times and planned out into every detail. This way, we could voice our thoughts perfectly the moment we had them while styling our food, in search of the most beautiful light and the right setting for our photos.
Beside the photographic part it was important to us to get together with everyone to cook and try out new culinary things. For example, we invited Olaf Schnelle (Schnelles Grünzeug) as an expert for fermentation, and we were dying to savor our carrot-elderflower-ferment! The carrots were excellent already when freshly pulled from the earth.
Cooking at “Alte Schule” is not as easy since it is equipped completely with woodstoves. Actually, we really like that, and during our last visit in winter it was nice to fire the ovens. But in summer? When it is hot already and one prefers to do everything outside? This is exactly what we did and prepared the food mainly on open fire. This is a new way to cook for us, too, which we could test a bit during our Scotland road trip.
For example, we had burgers, grilled topped flatbread with a sauce of roasted peppers, and hay kippered asparagus with backed potatoes and smoked nut butter. Yannic was completely in his element as grill master and would preferably cook only on open fire forever. What would our neighbors say if we set up an open fire pit on our balcony? It’s worth a try to find out.
There is so much more to tell about these four days we spent with great people. However, as said in the beginning, we prefer to communicate through our photos. And again, there are a lot of them.