Thanks for resting your eyeballs here for a moment.(They are resting, right?) If you rest them a little longer, you may learn some interesting,(hopefully)entertaining, and, yes, ocassionally BIZARRE things about French Country life. (more…)
Bicycle Gourmet’s 2014 French Photo Course Workshop – Too late to sign up? Well, that depends on what you want to sign up for – dunnit? The good news is that there are still a few spots available. The bad news is just what you’d expect – they’re filling up faster than a politican can kiss a baby.
But there remains a ray of hope if one (or more) of DA BG’s workshops you lusted after is complete. That ray being: cancellations. They can and do happen. For a variety of reasons: Vacation schedule changes. Unexpected deadline at work. Illness. You win the lottery and decide to go a’ snappin’ in Africa with Trey Ratcliffe.($20,000 @person)
And voila! – a spot (or two) opens up. So don’t be depressed,discouraged, dejected or, heaven forbid, downtrodden if your dream French Photo BG Workshop is locked down. Get on the “notify me if someone cancels list.”
This is the best plan o’ action seein’ that availabilities, like the weather be constantly changin.’ For that reason best just to review the whole nine yards of 2014 Photography Workshops in France with the Bicycle Gourmet and put your “John Henry”(or Henrietta) on da dotted line. Then you’ll have the best possible chance of being a happy French Photo Workshop camper.
Not to pour cold water on your French dreams, but having a more balanced view of the realities of this here land, will enable you to have a “mo beddah” experience.
Reality One : Strikes can, and do happen without much/any advance notice. Particularly with trains. Then there are the mini-strikes that we call “work stoppages” or “work to rule” (in the UK) Translation: The service you want and need is not available today.
Reality Two: While it cannot technically be considered a “strike” or “work stoppage”, just as irritatingly inconvenient is the “Fermenture Exceptionnell.” (translation: “exceptional closing”) You will find this sign on the window of whatever shop whose goods/services you absolutely, desperately want/need and will probably die without. But, sniff,sniff, they’ve decided , for whatever reason, or no reason at all, not to be open today.
Reality Three : Although there are approximately 30,000 words we have in common with those (usually)loveable latins, they ARE pronounced differently. For instance, our “fragile” is “Fraa- geeel.” so prepare your ears.
And also, prepare a few essential phrases. like “yes, no”, thank you” and the absolutely critical “where’s the toilet?” That said, you will find that most Frenchies do understand more “eengleesh” than they speak. But if you make the effort, they meet you more than halfway.
Reality Four : Da Wine! While French Wineis justly famed Worldwide, there is another(and for me) more interesting aspect of Froggie grapedom. That being the “cave co-operative.” A Wine Co-op offering a grog from growers in the local area. Sold “en vrac” (Translation: you bring an empty litre container (a “Bidon”) and “fill ‘er up.)
The advantages of buying from a local cave-co-operative are many. First of all: Convenience. Second: Quality/price ratio. Always under 2 euro@litre. Third: Because the caves are outside the government A.O.C. wine classification system, they can blend the best grapes they have available. With no worries about the “correct varieties.”
Reality Five : French Food. Is good and priced reasonably in the (non high traffic) countryside. Cities are just what you’d expect. (Cannes, more. and worse -trust me -” been there – done that”)
Reality Six: Impossible to get a bad cup of coffee in France. They know their joe!
Reality Seven: The French Countryside is MORE fantastic than any/all photos you’ve seen. That’s what makes it such a “must do” destination for Landscape Photography.
Reality Eight: After 10 plus years(and counting!) of an Endless Tour de France – I can (and will) Absolutely make sure you taste the land and the people as well as the food and wine – plus go home with some awesome images, great memories, and (more often than not) a few new friends.
Why Take A French Photo Workshop Course in 2014? Well..first of all it can’t help but be a lotta fun right? (and isn’t that one of the best reasons for doing anything?) But beyond that, the other obvious dividend is that you will retrun home with incredible images you would otherwise not have snagged. And , by doing so, you would surely have improved your photography. n’est ce pas?
But another, less obvious benefit of a making 2014 your French Photo Workshop Year, is a Cultural one. To take a great picture, you first have to have great knowledge of the subject.
What profession were most top Wildlife Photographers in before they became top Wildlife photographers? That’s right – Biology. And those that weren’t “bio-savvy” had to get that way. Otherwise they wouldn’t be getting any “animal Kodak Moments.” Getting my drift? Got to know the habits of those marvy wild creatures if you want to snap ‘em in their tracks.
Now obviously a direct parallel with France is not really kosher. Landscapes and Lavender don’t roam around too much. Ok – lavender and trees may dance a little in the wind – but those hilltop villages – they won’t be foraging around anytime soon – will they?
But – and here’s the big take-away – the more you know about ‘em – the better your images reflecting them will be!
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harvey..AND an excellent example of WHY anyone who love photography and france should be hooking up with DA BG! sheila watson | 10Mar14 | More
i'd like to second the comment about the castle in the wineglass picture. truly a fine example of your photographic … harvey dempster | 10Mar14 | More