A Few Shots from Lens & Larder 2014

Last October I had the opportunity to partake in Imen McDonnell's Lens & Larder Retreat. The magnificent Ballynahinch Castle & it's surrounding area was the location for our retreat. An ideal spot, as at every turn there was the opportunity to capture a perfectly beautiful photo. I've been meaning to share a few of those pics, but with cookery classes, columns & Christmas, I'm only now getting the chance to pop them on here for you to see. 
A retreat based around food styling & photography was the brainchild of the wonderfully talented Imen McDonnell. By her side were Cliodhna Prendergast of Breaking Eggs and her husband, Patrick O'Flaherty, the manager of the castle, and together they created the perfect food lovers retreat. Our teachers were Beth Kirby, of Local Milk fame, and Susan Spungen, who happens to be one of Hollywood's top food stylists. I learnt much from these ladies and thoroughly enjoyed simply being a part of their company for the few days. From mushroom foraging to candlelit dinners in the castle, we were truly spoilt. 

Susan demonstrating how to cook and style a galette. These delicious galettes were packed with mushrooms we had just foraged from the near-by woods.   

The Old School House, Inishlacken - our shoot location for day two of the retreat. 

Susan and Cliodhna preparing the lobsters for their photoshoot. 

Beth setting up one of our scenes for photographing. 
There were so many opportunities to photograph something pretty, but I loved the simplicity of the old stone walls of the school house, they made for a wonderful backdrop. 
Imen has indicated that there may be another retreat planned for the near future, so keep an eye on her blog for updates. Even three months on, I'm still mulling over all that I learnt on the retreat, naturally from Susan and Beth, who were ever generous with their teachings, but also through the conversations I had with my fellow Lens & Larder participants who each, in their own right, are inspiring creatives.