Celebration Week: Day 4 (photography retreat recap)

I've been walking around, doing my chores, making art….all the while carrying around the good memories from the first ever Photography Rosy Retreat.  It was last Saturday and simply couldn't have been more perfect.  The day started out as a tricky mixture of sun and rain.  I could tell though, the day was going to be beautiful.  

I had everything prepared ahead of time so after enjoying some time with my girls I took them to their Nana's and got ready to meet everyone! 
There were five ladies who attended the retreat and the number was just perfect!  Some were gals I was meeting for the first time, others knew me ahead of time.  Whatever the case, I was delighted and honored to have them spend the day on the farm, soaking up inspiration and stories to take home with them. 

We started off the morning with "hello's" and coffee and homemade bread.  We got to the heart of the matter before jumping into much of anything else.  That's what it is all about to me-the heart of photography.  My neighbor asked me just this week what my class was about, if I could sum it up in one line.  I quickly said "it's about learning to tell your story, through pictures." 

We went page by page through the workbook I wrote, with plenty of time for questions in-between. 

From rifling through stacks of inspiring books to tears and laughter, we definitely did some soul-searching that was valuable and much needed in order to tell our stories well.  

My amazing group! :) 
Next, after a quick lesson on props, we headed to the farm cabin for Mason Jar salads and crackers!  I especially liked this part of the day because it was so laid-back and relaxed.  We ate on the screened in porch and just took our time.  Usually there was conversation flowing but even the silence that occurred a few times felt like a treat.  We were together, just being. 

One of the biggest messages I preached throughout the retreat was to practice, practice, practice.  I told one of the gals I hoped she left with 700 photos so she could discover at least 20-30 she really, truly loved. :)  

Our salads had garden lettuce, peas, olives, grilled chicken, cheese, boiled eggs, peppers, radishes, and homemade vinegar dressing! Yummy!

We ended the day with SUCH FUN! We took some props and headed over the farm for free time!  Each lady was free to roam the farm (watching out for the bull, fallen down barn, and skunk, lol) and click to their heart's content.  And that's just what they did!  

This was a treat for me too because I got to put some ideas into action I'd been thinking about…like hanging these paper lanterns I bought from Natalie Creates booth at the 410 Vintage Market in Fayetteville.  

It was so EXCITING (yes, like all caps exciting) for me to watch each gal set up a shot with their props and capture it from all different angles. I just loved seeing them wander and roam and stop to click along the way.  It was like watching creativity in motion and was beautiful to me. 

We had a little chat about how books can be used for story-telling, not just reading! 
My particular book's title-Out of our Past. 

I like that. 

And this is actually how the morning started.
You guys, I was so nervous before this retreat.  One of the ladies opened up during the morning session and said she felt like she kept hearing that voice telling her "you don't belong".  I quickly responded that I'd had the same voice trying to beat me up all week!  Telling me that I don't belong or am not qualified to teach a class because of ________________.  I don't believe those voices are the truth for us.  They're just stumbling blocks. 
I was praying the morning of the retreat and happened to look outside.  I saw this.  The most beautiful rainbow I've ever seen.  I ran outside with Anna Ruth and we talked about how God keeps His promises and sends us signs to show us how much He loves us.  This was a HUGE sign of encouragement to me. 

And you know what? The day ended up being perfect.  Just perfect.  I don't say that about very many days, but this one truly was.  Each lady left feeling empowered and inspired.  It was so much fun to spend the day on the farm with other creative gals.  It was just perfect. 

I'll be back tomorrow to share some of the pictures the girls took! :)


  1. I am so glad you all had an amazing experience!!

  2. It sounds and looks like a wonderful retreat. Congratulations! I am certain everyone had a great time and took away many lessons they will be able to put into action. I can't wait for your next post about it. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  3. ... Oh! Sara ... wish I was there ... what wonderful shots ... especially enjoyed the Black and White ... Thank you for sharing ... and Congratulations, looking forward to reading more ... ps. came across you via aliciaburke ... and have been close by now for the past six months or so ... bye for now Simone


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