Paula Smart – Photographer : Shooting With Soul Review

Why Shooting with Soul?

I chose Shooting with Soul essentially because I had stumbled across Clare Louise doing a talk at the Photography Show several years ago! I didn’t know who she was, but I immediately felt drawn to what she was saying and stayed until the end of the talk. Over the years I followed her creative journey via Facebook into coaching. When I saw that she was running this workshop I immediately knew I wanted to do it and signed up without hesitation.

I remember being frustrated because the exact date wasn’t set straightaway and I just wanted to get it IN THE DIARY!

What did you want out of the workshop?

In the last couple of years I had gradually fallen a little out of love with photography. Out of love with MY photography at least. I needed some space. Space away from anyone that told me I had to do it this way, or that I should do it that way, or that this was the right way to do it. And that included, perhaps more than any others, my own voice. I got that space. I wanted… needed… to be pushed and challenged. And I was. In an amazing way. Clare Louise is extremely good at reading the subtle difference between what people want and what people need.

Tell us about your experience of the day?

I met a group of people, photographers, make-up artists and models, who all came with open minds and hearts, ready to share a creative, soulful, experience. And by creative experience I don’t mean just the photography aspect of it. There were spiritual exercises in self-reflection, in recognising the power of collaboration and valuing the contributions that we all made to the creative experience and outcome. These exercises had great impact on me and us working together as a group.

What was the biggest value from the day?

It was having that space I talked about earlier, of learning how to recreate that space in my mind and in the physicality, for myself in the future. I came away feeling uplifted and hopeful. Something I hadn’t felt in a very long time. I felt I had overcome some self-imposed boundaries.

Whats changed for you since the workshop?

I have more respect for my own creative choices. Less afraid to experiment in case I fail.

How do you feel you have grown creatively?

I have a lot of creative growth ahead of me, the seeds for that new growth have been planted and it is up to me to nourish them and care for them to help them… me… to flourish.

How did the workshop empower you personally?

I feel more empowered to listen to and value myself, to trust my own judgements, both when shooting for or with clients or models.

What would you tell others about Clare Louise?

Clare Louise is an insightful, soulful, guide who will give you a space to explore those aspects of your creativity that you thought you had lost or that have been dormant for way too long.

Who would you recommend this workshop too and why?

I would recommend this workshop to people who feels they have been floundering creatively. It’s not a traditional photography workshop by any means. And its not a styled shoot/portfolio builder exercise. It’s a route to (re)discovering your neglected creative soul.

The last word :

Come with an open mind and an open heart. Be prepared to be open and honest. Be prepared to feel creatively uplifted and experience some freedom from things that have been shackling your creativity. Be prepared for challenges too!