Notting Hill Workshop
The blue door. Meeting the woman who inspired me to begin my own food blog. Eating my heart out. Meeting like-minded new people. Getting to see how actual real food bloggers (because obviously I ain’t a real one) construct a scene. Learning so many new things that I’ve wanted to bring to the blog for ages. Street photography, flat lays, in-motion shots, how to photograph a building, etc. How to use some of the millions of (confusing) editing apps out there. There were heaps of reasons why I was looking forward to attending the Notting Hill Workshop, but no one could have told me how much I would gain from my time there.
To say that I died & went to blogging / Instagram heaven is an understatement. You know how in normal life when you want to take a picture of something? You want to get every little detail just right & it’s awkward because you’re with other people who want you to stop & pay attention to them? The workshop was basically the exact opposite of that. Everyone was taking pictures of everything, ever. The snapping only stopped for three reasons. a) eat more food. b) ask someone to artfully place their hand in the frame. c) seek help editing the shots. How amazing is that?
why i attended the notting hill workshop
The workshop was held by five fabulous different women: Joy, Mendy, Siobhan, Hannah, & Jessica. Each of these run wildly successful Instagram accounts with varying styles & subjects. My main aim of the workshop was to learn more about food photography & styling. That said, I was also very keen to learn more about street photography, & how to start introducing that into my feed. I needed help to figure it out, and I couldn’t have asked for a better bunch of people to point me in the right direction.
With eight eager attendees in tow, the ladies led us through a series of classes held in the heart of Notting Hill. One of my favourite aspects of the workshop were the photo-walks. Something I’d never done before, but since then I find myself staring at every building / lamp post / crooked fence, looking for hidden beauty. We also had food-styling lessons & photography classes, where we learned so many important things. Lighting, composition, editing, curating, product placement, content. Every single thing you can think of that’s related in any way to photography.
what i learned
Having kept a journal close at hand the entire weekend, I can honestly tell you that I had the time of my life during the workshop. I learned so many little tips about heaps of things that never crossed my mind before the workshop. Now, those things are so invaluable to me, the way I use my Instagram account, and my blog as a whole. The workshop literally changed the way I think about all things blog related. Looking through my Instagram feed now, it’s so obvious to pinpoint the exact moment when I started taking all of the advice on offer to me. The workshop took place over the course of a single weekend, and I genuinely feel like I’ve taken home a wealth of knowledge that’ll stick with me forever.
where we ate
The Tin Shed // I have a pastry problem, & this place spoke directly to my addiction. Their croissants are the best I’ve had in months, perfectly light & airy & crispy. Head downstairs to sneak a peak into the open baking area & sit outside on the beautiful patio.
The Chipping Forecast // apparently the best fish & chips in Notting Hill, but also does an awesome burger for those of us that don’t do fish. Added bonus: they have rose wine on tap!
where we drank
The Churchill Arms // one of the most bizarre pubs I’ve ever been in… and I’m Irish. The Churchill Arms is a great place to stop at just for the experience! There are chamber pots hanging from the ceiling, flags & decorations galore, trinkets hanging off every possible surface, & home to one major plant problem. Added bonus: there’s a secret Thai restaurant out the back that does a killer Pad Thai.
where we visited
St. Luke’s Mews // this was one of the stops on our walk led by Mendy & it was such a fascinatingly beautiful cubby in Notting Hill. Keep an eye out for the deservedly insta-famous homes: the perfect pink house, & the beautiful black house that’s being overtaken by everybody’s favourite tree.
Books for Cooks // I mean, what more could you ask for? This is my happy place.
Wild at Heart // a gorgeous little flower shop wedged into the busy streets of Notting Hill. They supplied the flowers for the workshop, so I can personally vouch for how beautiful their produce is.
Biscuiteers // one of those must-see buildings in Notting Hill. Quirky little shop selling the most perfectly decorated iced biscuits. However, the real attraction has to be the front of the building, which is covered in all sorts of imaginative doodles.
Lancaster Road // we all know that Notting Hill houses are wildly colourful, that’s part of its charm. While most of the houses are painted in light pastel colours, this is practically the opposite, the colour of the houses almost scream out at you.
where we tourist-ed
Leighton House Museum // we stopped in here for a bit of culture during our workshop. Previously home to Lord Leighton, the museum houses an amazing collection of sculpture & paintings. The real highlight for me was the jaw-dropping floor to ceiling blue tiles that decorate the entrance hall.