Barrett and Coe Seminar 2

Yesterday was the second of my seven training days with Barrett & Coe, and, although it was a long day, it was worthwhile.  It was an early start to get to Ware by nine o’clock, but I didn’t have as early as a start as some.  The first part of the day was a visit to the studio of award winning photographer David MacDonald.  I thought his studio was on the High Street, but actually it was an old workshop down a side alley off the High Street.  The High Street site is just a shop window to promote his art (good idea, no. 1 filed away for reference).  In his workshop of approximately 2,000 square feet he has a reception area, decorated with all his diplomas and awards, then 2 studios and two viewing rooms, some storage and a workshop for editing, mounting and framing.  The studios aren’t that big, but are functional working areas, with one wall set up for highlight photography, the opposite wall is patterned, and he has a small black background area.  There are some rolls of coloured paper for those  customers that request it.  The floor is plain hardwood, no cyc background here.  The viewing rooms were much more tidy and homely than the studios.  I picked up some good ideas from that, and Dave was a really nice friendly guy, who didn’t mind sharing his knowledge at all.

Then it was back to the hotel for more photography practice.  First we repeated some the previous seminars work; a single sitter, and a pair of sitters.  It was good to go over the same stuff again, just to drill it into my brain!

Then we got onto the harder stuff – first, a three some.  This was reasonably straight forward – start with a pair then insert your third sitter to make a pleasing triangle shape.

Then it got harder, a group of four sitters, then eight or more sitters.  In the afternoon we did a large group that must have been about 18 people.

Again, we got sent away with some home work, to re-inforce the points we have learned; so I have to take portraits of groups of 3,4, 6 & 8 people.  I will have to think up another plan of taking these large a groups, as I have never seen 8 people walking up my High Street together before.  Sounds like a good excuse to go to the pub!  To find some sitters of course!


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