"I wanted to thank you both for being such great hosts! Also, I was truly impressed with Leonid's work and attention to detail in every dress. The stylists (hair and make up) were amazing too. The models were incredible and so tireless on what had to be an exhaustive experience for them. Such a fantastic job by all!"
"'A love letter': I wanted to follow up on my experience at the Water Mill Villa. I can't express how phenomenal the weekend felt to me. It was exactly the setting I needed to experiment with taking my skills to the next level. As an amateur, it took me out of my comfort zone and really forced me to have confidence in my skills. What a rush. It was more valuable than any seminar or photography class. Before the workshop I never felt shy about experimenting, but now I'm psyched to take bigger risks with my work.
"I recognise these workshops for you are not a big money-maker but a labour of love and I appreciate all the sweat and stress you two (and your staff) put into the workshop. It was a welcome escape from the normal day to day of running a company.
Matt: I can't begin to express my gratitude for our conversations and help for improving my shots in the moment. Your attitude is brilliant. I didn't use my light meter once and I got better exposures than I've ever had, totally worth the extra 30-60 seconds.
"Nat: I love your creativity. It's inspiring. I'm looking forward to the edited videos because I'd love more insight into how you work. You're one of my photography heroes.
"Okay, now I'm turning off the praise because you're normal, down to earth people. I'm looking forward to the next workshop!"
"It was great meeting you, and thank you again for a setting up such an amazing shoot. I had a wonderful time and it was truly a pleasure photographing with you! Hope to shoot with you guys again!
Thank you - what an incredible experience yesterday!!!! it was magical and i've learned tremendously from you as well as the other participants. So now, am a follower no doubt. Please keep me on the list of your upcoming events as would love to sign up soon for another!
Thanks so much Nat & Matt, Im still buzzing from the shoot!!! Such a fantastic experience. The models were stunning and Leonid's creations were so inspired, loved our day with the Tim Burton-esque designs and cannot wait to see the dresses from Saturday's event. Glad to have made it. And now looking forward to finally sitting down and getting immersed with my pics. I fully intend and cant wait to join you again.
"What an amazing experience it was for me to attend Natalie & Matt's Fashion Shoot Experience & Workshop in LA this past October. This opportunity afforded me the chance to work with a full team including a stylist, hair and makeup designers, and several models not to mention the grand location.
"The structure of the event ensures that the images you capture will be uniquely yours. They set up everything and let you enjoy the fun of creating without the pressure of 20 other photographers next to you vying for the same shot. This 2:1 ratio is brilliant and well worth paying for.
"Not only was this a great event but it also allows you the chance to invest in your own portfolio of work. What better investment can you make than in yourself? This is truly a sincere testimonial. I really appreciate all the hard work that you and Matt put into your workshops and can't wait to attend another one."
"We would like to thank you for organising such a nice shooting event. Everything was excellent: the models, the location and your hospitality. I have gone through the pictures and I feel satisfied with the general results. This was a very inspiring experience, exactly what I was expecting and I hope to be able to repeat it again in the future."
"Attending the event has been a great highlight of my photographic journey. The location was dreamy and
beyond anything I could have imagined. The attendees were all so kind and
thoughtful, not at all aggressive or overbearing, as is often the case
at photo shoot-outs. The models were professionally and cooperative and
beautiful, as well! I learned a lot, practiced a lot and allowed myself
time to experiment and, consequently discovered all sorts of new things
about posing and working with a model that I could never have learned
without the extensive amount of preparation Natalie and Matt had put into
coordinating the make-up, hair, styling, location, and talent.
"I also enjoyed the editing movies afterwards, watching you edit the photos you took at the Brooklyn event. Although I know many of the technique you showed, it was such a pleasure listening to your thought process as you added or subtracted, blurred or clarified, and determined the strengths of the photos you chose to edit. And I'm sure I picked up a trick or two along the way!"
"I want to thank you for a most enjoyable day. Everything about it was
first class. Sure I will spend the next month photo editing - and
smiling. Keep me informed when you come back to New York City."
"This was one of the greatest experiences of my life. I felt it was well organized and the creative team chosen was perfect. Natalie and Matthew really created something unique, intimate and memorable. Knowing that it was their first international event was surprising. It was wonderful to meet so many new people from all over the world and build my portfolio with images that are much different from my current work. Also, really appreciated the warmth and hospitality. I would definitely do it all over again!"
"Thanks again for such a great Shoot Experience. I've been to other workshops before but none like this, the day really went by fast! The models were great, the dresses beautiful and I think the stylists did a great job. I also think it works very well to split people in pairs: that way, when my partnering photographer was shooting, I had a chance to review my pictures and think about what I wanted to do next. Everything was very well organised, and you guys did great in the face of unexpected obstacles. I'm so happy I had the chance to attend. I'm already working on my photos - they will be a great addition to my portfolio."
"A huge thanks to Natalie, Matthew and the team for a fantastic day. It was brilliant and the whole fashion shoot experience is a fabulous idea. I hope we get to see each other again at another shoot."
"Just to say thank you so much for such a rich day. Like most people I came home full to the brim of good things, went to sleep late after looking at the feast of pictures, so much to look at, so much to think about. The models were amazing and location superb. It did everything it says on the tin... and more..."
"Wow! What a fantastic day at Dalston Heights. I was so impressed with all the admin before the day, the organisation of the shoot on the day and the superb support team. Also a special thanks to Matt, for his invaluable help with the lighting. I can't stop thinking about my first Fashion Shoot Experience and can't wait to join you on another one very soon!"
"Thanks for a great day. I liked the warm-up session where we just chatted about the day and people's experiences to date; the models, make-up and styling; the assistants and even the bonus opportunity to shoot 2 models!
"Like it says on the tin, the whole exercise is an opportunity to take photos in an environment and with resources that would take a huge amount of effort and cost to coordinate on an individual basis. I can see me doing this once a quarter and that would be my fashion shooting for the year - this is strictly fun for me.
"This was my second Shoot Experience, during which I actually thought about getting a shot that would be used in a composite rather than as an "as you see it" image - this is a first for me and a huge step forward in being able to think beyond what is in front of me."
"I have been meaning to write for some time to say thanks again for hosting the MC Motors shoot last year. At the time I saw the instant, tangible benefits in terms of getting some experience, working with models and getting some greats shots for my portfolio, but I don't think I realised the more longer-term, lasting influence it would have on me.
"Since attending that day I have had the confidence to arrange my own shoots with models and creative teams where as previously I would not have had even considered it (also having some great shots in my portfolio from your shoot experience certainly helped). I feel that I have begun to find a style of my own which had its 'birth' back in that London warehouse. I recently organised a shoot at a local castle hotel with a great team and we were able to create some great images (in my humble opinion!) none of which I would have had the confidence to even start thinking about if it wasn't for attending your event. So a big, heartfelt thanks to you both!"
"Phew! What a weekend. Thank you so much for constructing such a great photographic experience. The information received beforehand was very clear and helpful. At the beginning of the day I felt very nervous at the thought of what lay ahead but yourself and Matt soon made me feel very much at home with your down-to-earth approach towards the shoot. On starting with the first set, Matt's guidance on your lighting system soon made me forget about nerves and the adrenalin kicked in for the task at hand combined with being very excited to produce some interesting shots.
"The day absolutely flew by with lots of mixed emotions some which included frustration, happiness, excitement, contentment, but huge enjoyment combined with the challenge of fast-paced thinking on your feet with how to get the best from the models combined with the cool backdrops and props. I absolutely loved the quirkiness of the location [Dalston Heights] combined with the varied assortment of unusual props, which really made for getting the creative juices going. I am a member of two photographic societies, have listened to lectures, been on a few courses, but none of which have fulfilled my own thinking and creativity such as this experience to which I really thank you both.
“When I first read up on your Experience day I knew it this was an event I was desperate to get onto. When I finally did come on the day, it did not disappoint! It lived up to and met all my expectations; I thought the location [The Roost] was great, the variety of models fantastic, Matt was hugely supportive and the whole day was very well structured.
“As someone who is at the infancy of his photographic education, the experience was wholly relevant, enjoyable and moreover, I learnt more in one day than I did in a whole year attending a various workshops. If I had to quibble about something, it would be that the day ended too quickly!”
“The Shoot Experience was totally unique! Always wondered what it would be like to work with a team of professionals and boy did it deliver tenfold! It’s an incredible insight into a style of photography outside the reach of 99% of photographers and I’ve left feeling humbled, inspired, and all I’m thinking about everyday is when I can do it all again!!!”
“I have just returned from a very exciting weekend in London where I took part in one of Miss Aniela’s Fashion Shoot Experiences.
“Unlike structured training days you’re pretty much left to your own devices on the shoot which is great because it allows you to be in control of your own work. There is a team of people waiting in the wings if you need any advice on lighting etc so you’re certainly not left struggling!
“Whilst ensuring everyone has the opportunity to shoot everything they wish, the whole day seems to flow effortlessly which is entirely thanks to the great amount of time and effort Natalie and Matt put into organising the shoots. They do a fantastic job and you feel like they really do put in a huge amount of effort.
“So a whole day shooting and a ton of images which I could never have managed on my own, not to mention all the fun had and the new friends made. Would I recommend it? Absolutely! And if there’s another one in the future I’ll be the first to sign up. This is hands down one of the best days of photography I have ever had and was far better than I could ever have imagined.”
“I can happily say that this shoot MASSIVELY improved my portfolio of model shots and moved it into fashion. I’ve produced some of my best ever work at this photoshoot. I’ve sorely needed a boost of confidence and to get out there again especially since I hadn’t picked up my camera for a long while due to being stretched too far. Travelling two hours each way to get to my day job can do that! However with redundancy looming and become more certain each week, this was an opportunity too good to miss to refresh and get new material.
“The shoot itself was a full day’s shoot and at the end all of my muscles were quivering and the next day I was hobbling instead of walking. If anyone is hesitating about group photoshoot opportunities like this with Miss Aniela, I wouldn’t even blink, just book!”
“My photography can easily be divided into before and after the Miss Aniela Fashion Shoot Experience.
“Natalie and her team made sure all the ingredients for magic were there. But then photographers were basically on their own.
“Matt did check in once or twice on every set, and Natalie offered some general suggestions before we got started, but we were left to our devices during shooting, this forced me to push hard both technically and creatively. Once able to digest it all, I realised I had learned so much.
"It was as if I walked right into a dream, except the next morning, my portfolio was full of photos that proved the magic really did happen.”
“I saw the day I recently spent with Natalie and Matt and their team of professionals at the Dalston Heights in East London as providing me with a fantastic opportunity to build on my portfolio of fashion images. In no way was I disappointed; with the range of costumes and facilities on offer, plus some stunning models, it would have been impossible to come away without a great and varied set of photographs. A full on day which was extremely rewarding.”
“I signed up on a bit of an extravagant whim. In terms of return-on-investment I was admittedly apprehensive about paying handsomely for a ‘non-workshop’ where there was no teaching, no on-a-plate lighting setups, no retouching tutorials and no need for notebooks and powerpoints.
"But therein lies the beauty of the Fashion Shoot Experience. If one chooses to go skydiving, learning the technicalities of nylon parachute construction is irrelevant – jumping out of the plane in the exhilarating hope of learning something on the way down is arguably the way to go; and so with Miss Aniela’s expertly organised photographic adventures. I wanted to say ‘expertly crafted’ but crucially it’s the attendees who craft. The Aniela team organise exquisitely and then evaporate into a role of background assistance that borders on the omniscient, leaving you to weave a collection of potentially portfolio-changing, bar-raising imagery. All in one day.
“The Experience isn’t for you if you need to learn how to light. This isn’t Strobist 101, 102 or even 103. It won’t necessarily teach you anything technical, nor does it profess to. There is a strong chance though, that you will learn more about yourself in the fashion shooting environment in 8 hours here than 8 months anywhere else. The sheer scope for personal development is as awe-inspiring as it is mesmerising, knowing as soon as you get home that you’ll need to do it again and again.
“So, come not to be taught but to push yourself and to further your craft; to learn to perform at the top of your personal game so that it may be higher next time. But most importantly, come as you are (only an SLR and tripod required) and leave enriched, confident and changed. My sincere thanks for a wonderful day.”
“The May Shoot Experience with Miss Aniela was beyond words – flat out Amazing! I was walking to the site and spotted someone with a tripod – the dead giveaway – who actually admitted this was his second shooting experience with Natalie at the same location. I was wondering – wow, why would someone do this again? And by the time the day was done, I wasn’t wondering anymore.
“Not only are the models remarkably professional, and the location [MC Motors] is both inspiring and liberating, but also the whole event is brilliantly organised! I didn’t have much experience using studio flash before – not a problem! All my questions were answered and I was really happy with the shots I gathered from the day.
“All of the participants were so friendly, and the pairing system for the models worked very well too, since we could each feed off of the other’s creativity. Overall it was a brilliant merge of shutter clicks, flashes and laughs. Thank you for such a fantastic day.”
Selene Alexia Christodoulou
“Meeting and working with Natalie has been very inspiring. She shows that if you want something and do all it takes to get there, you will create amazing results for yourself and your audience.
“I encourage photographers, both amateur and professional, interested in portraiture and fashion to have this one day experience. I’ve been in photography for 20 years but I certainly have learnt a thing or two. I was introduced to the Photoflex constant lighting softboxes. This works amazingly well and I immediately ordered a kit when I got back home. I believe we all had a great day, good lunch too!
“By the way; order the book Self-Portrait Photography to get a feel for Natalie’s commitment to sharing ideas and concepts. It’s fun to read and worth every penny, even if you don’t focus on self-portraiture. Above all, it tells the story of a young artist that helps to place Photography on the world map of the great arts. Keep up the great work Miss Aniela.”
“Firstly, I would like to thank you for another wonderful Shoot Experience. I think it’s time for another testimonial.
“There is not much I can add to the eloquent descriptions of these amazing photo-shooting experiences. However, as a ‘repeat offender’ I would like to take the chance to tell you why I keep on coming back for more. I have been to three events, two of which took place at MC Motors and the most recent at Dalston Heights. The first was my debut working with models and a full range of lighting equipment; I knew my way round a camera and I’d been quite happy with my previous images since taking up photography as a hobby about four years ago. I took so many photos that my battery ran out near the end of the day. So many of the images were great in concept, but not so great in their execution… nevertheless, I was happy with a number of my photos and found that I could easily develop a good rapport with models. At the second shoot, I became more experienced with lighting and gathered a greater number of ‘good’ images. It was time to experiment with post processing, multiplicity images and use the hints and tips provided by Natalie and fellow photographers. Indeed, friends and people whose work I had admired started to refer to me as a ‘photographer’. I was seriously chuffed. An off-shoot (literally) of this experience is the network of likeminded people with whom you remain in contact on flickr and Facebook. It is great to see how many people are using their new portfolios in their careers.
“So, two weeks ago I left Dalston Heights exhausted and very happy with fewer images, the vast majority of which I am very happy with. The pleasure continues with my choice of those to edit and display. One of the models has said that she would like to work with me again soon and MUAs, designers and hair-stylists have asked if they can use my work in their portfolios. People whom I admire say nice things about my work and I have made a number of friends I would not otherwise have encountered. I cannot recommend these shoot experiences highly enough.”
“Meeting and working with all of you was a great pleasure and experience! It was my first time ever to work with pro models, stylists and photographers in such an amazing location like MC Motors! To be honest I was really overwhelmed, but everyone around me was really helpful and encouraging. I can never forget how the assistants were around to help and make sure that I get the results I wanted, and their motivational words always pushed me to keep trying and shooting in high spirit. Of course having Natalie and Matt around was really inspiring.
"The choice of models was perfect since there was diversity in looks and cultures which gave each picture a different mood, especially with the great makeup and hair styling. The entire experience was unforgettable and one of a kind. I would love to be part of future experiences next time I’m in London!”
“The event still has me reeling and not just because I came away with so many great shots! I felt the event was well organised and presented; the close-knit atmosphere with the others in attendance was an unexpected treat that has continued even though the weekend has passed and the boost to my portfolio was invaluable. The inspiration from work created will last far into the future.
“I want to thank you again for the work you put into this affair from start to finish. I imagine there was a lot of leg-work done in making all the arrangements. Plus the fact that, during the event, you and Matt tirelessly moved through the spaces offering bits of advice at often just the right time. And even afterwards, you are putting together videos and addendum to the event and thus, continuing to impress me with your efforts.
“I look forward to doing this again soon. I’d love to fly back and do it again.”
“I can’t rave enough about how glad I am that I took the plunge and participated in such an amazing event. I walked into MC Motors nervous, unsure, and, to be honest, a little overwhelmed at the prospect of shooting for five straight hours. But at the end of the day, I left the location more confident as a photographer, and with the feeling that I didn’t want to leave yet! There was so much more I wanted to photograph! But I had memory cards full of images and a smile on my face; it would be an understatement to say I got my money’s worth. And if I weren’t in the process of moving back to America, I would attend Miss Aniela’s other planned workshops in a heartbeat!”
“I signed up as soon as I saw the announcement, came all the way from Paris, and I’m so happy I did. I’m just starting my business and needed to build up and diversify my portfolio, so this was the perfect opportunity. Being able to photograph five completely styled models (who all looked very different) in one single day was exactly what I needed, and it would have been quite difficult to achieve on my own. It also was an extremely valuable learning experience (technically and creatively) during the day itself, but also afterwards when working and reflecting on my own pictures and seeing other participants’ pictures. On my next photoshoot I will be more comfortable thanks to what I learnt here!
“Everything was greatly organised and went smoothly. Natalie, Matthew and everyone who was there was extremely kind, helpful and enthusiastic! I will definitely take part in another workshop or shoot experience as soon as possible!”
“I had never tried fashion photography before and my portraits extended as far as friends and family. I’d not really shot in RAW before, for goodness’ sake! I was made to feel so very welcome by Miss Aniela, Matt and their team. Five sets, loads of different lighting set-ups; filter coffee; water; fruit and pains-au-chocolate, with nine of us photographers (never called myself that before this) on the day. Such an amazing opportunity! So much effort was put into the organisation of this event and i cannot recommend it highly enough. Miss Aniela and Matt are passionate photographers that want to share their passion… and it shows.”
“I have got to say that the shoot was an incredibly worthwhile experience for me. I am saying this from the perspective of someone who shoots amateur TFCD (Time for CD) almost weekly. Today, I used combinations of light sources that I would never normally dare to use, but have got some beautiful results!!!
“Thanks again to you, Matthew, and the ever-smiling helpers who would happily hold our reflectors for hours, I also saw it as an opportunity for the inexperienced to gain valuable experience by just looking around.”
“Thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience from the marvelous settings and costumes through to the friendly, attentive and helpful team you put in place.”
“I’d been struggling with how to give myself a complete portfolio overhaul, something like five incredible models, professionally styled and made-up and all available in a location providing a neverending supply of settings, props and inspiration. How to do that without spending ten grand? I’d be a fool not to attend Miss Aniela’s Shoot Experience… so I did!
“First the bad – I had to get up at 5am and drive across the country and through central London in order to be there on time! Erm… that’s it really. But after meeting other attendees who’d travelled from Paris, Berlin, Spain, Malta and Canada, I was put to shame!
“As for the good, this could go on but I’ll try to be succinct. Five models, brilliantly styled and made-up by a fantastic team of creatives, available to shoot in slots of one hour each in a location so amazing and inspiring that many of my photographer friends have since grabbed me by the collars (which hurts when you’re wearing a vest) and demanded to know where it is!
“I came home with a haul of close to a thousand images. Many of them, an entire portfolio’s worth, the best work I’ve ever done! If you want to transform your portfolio in one fell swoop, keep an eye out to attend the next one. You’ll be thanking me, and you’ll definitely be thanking Natalie, Matt and their team!”