Photography and the Creative Mind



           The darkening of the light

                                    December 1 to 4, 2017


      photo Ruth Dunsby


'By becoming aware of the present moment, the ordinary can become extraordinary'


This is the fourth workshop in the series 'Photography and The Creative Mind', where the emphasis is less about the medium itself and more about what it is to be a photographer.


Do you know Venice? That most beautiful of cities that is embedded with history and atmosphere.

It is a city unlike any other, and our photographic adventure there in winter when the light prepares to leave us for a while, will throw us into its mysteries and leave us vulnerable to its beguiling charms and dark secrets. A weekend of submission to her low shifting light and haunted streets, where we tell and share our photographic stories of this jewel of a City, and for the briefest of moments, freezing time in its endless beauty.


It is a journey into a fascinating realm and also a journey into ourselves where we become mere sounding boards to the shapes, vibrance and splendid loneliness of this unique City


Our Photography Retreats are designed to excite you, awaken you, and to remind you that a camera is just a machine. And that photography is essentially about your mind; how you perceive yourself and the world outside of you.

 Michael Eldridge is a painter and a photographer who now lives, works and teaches in Italy.

In the 80's and 90's, together with his friend and colleague Tony Maestri, he established an extraordinary Photographic course in the School of photography at the Bournemouth College of

Art (now Arts University Bournemouth) which inspired, and transformed the lives of, a whole generation of student photographers.


Life has moved on of course and in this digital age of rapid information sharing there is little time to stand and stare, and it is this relationship with time that Michael wants to discuss and explore once more during this weekend. The challenge of this workshop is to take a fresh look at our understanding of creativity and what is required to construct a photographic image when sentient to one's surroundings. 


This workshop is open to everybody who has a fascination for photography and an adventurous spirit. You can bring any form whatever of digital photographic image making device.

It is the time of the darkening of the light when the City throws deepening shadows and reveals the secrets it has kept from the tourists who have thronged the streets and now are absent. It is a magical time.

Smartphones, pads, fixed lens or SRL's. ALSO bring your laptops if you can.

But the most important thing is to bring yourselves.


The Workshop is from Friday 5 pm to Monday lunchtime, December 1 to 4, 2017


How to book and travel

Flight possibilities: Ryanair flights from Stansted to Treviso then bus to Venice

EasyJet from Gatwick to Venice, Monarch also from Gatwick and many other options


Tuition E185, early bird E160 (by September 30)


To book on this workshop, a deposit of E50 is required; details about how pay from Michael, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. where you can also find out about the B&B at Ca della Corte  where you are invited to stay at a very reasonable cost, or you may wish to find your own B&B in town.


Contact details; Michael is SKYPE, spiker39, whatsapp + 39 3283535358, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    Early booking recommended as currently flights are cheap, B&B too


                        group size limited to twelve, so early booking recommended






My Weekend with Michael I drove to Brighton with two thoughts in my head. One, that the 5-day creative retreat in Assisi with Michael and Michelle had revealed to me talents that I hadn’t realised I possessed and, two, it couldn’t happen twice. Or could it? Would the weekend deliver? Would I find a creative photographer within? Could I create ‘beyond myself’? Well, the answer is yes to all of those questions and the reason for that is trust. Trust in Michael, trust in the process but, most important of all trust in oneself. I loved the weekend, Brighton, all of the others on the course, the new way of seeing and responding, Thank you Michael for opening my eyes on a wonderful world.'

Ruth Dunsby

31 August 2016




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