Beer Emergency Gallery
Salvador de Bahia, Brazil 2015
® Colin Steel
I think it’s always incredibly challenging to learn something intangible and personal like expressing yourself through photography, there are no formulas to learn or techniques to master because all of the answers lie within yourself – that is the undoubted frustration of it all for me.
Yet every time I take a workshop with Ernesto, I create at least a precious handful of the photos that I am after and I think that is entirely down to his ability to intuitively and instinctively find and attract situations and people that enable a creative environment, and the results follow.
Ernesto makes no attempt to shoehorn anyone into a ‘right’ way of photographing. Beginner and experienced photographers alike learn from him and from each other and it’s always a delight to watch everyone build on their work over the period of the workshop. It goes without saying that the environment of these workshops goes way, way beyond taking photographs and in a strange way I think that it is the conversations and interactions with Ernesto and all of the other students that expand your thinking with the clear benefit of creating new artistic possibility for yourself.
These were my fourth and fifth workshops with Ernesto and they won’t be the last. I see these events as an essential part of my growth as a photographer and I fully intend to build again on the steps forward that I made here in wonderful, mystical Bahia.
® Geralyn Shukwit
Half awake with my mind still in Bahia, it’s hard to get moving again. The city is covered in grey, the air so cold, I prefer to stay still and remember the last few weeks: the warmth, the colors, the land and the people – highlighted with new and old friends, filled with laughter and stories I will hold dear to my heart. I know this feeling well as it follows me after each adventure with Ernesto.
This workshop, where each day brought something new – plan A turned into plan B until it was sideswiped by plan C. We went with the flow, finding visual pieces to our journey along the way. Forever thankful for the guidance and conversations that opened my mind and broadened my vision towards my photography. I struggle to focus on my project, but through the time and thoughtfulness that was put into discussing and editing my work I am starting to see it come together.
As we know, these workshops are about so much more then the act of taking a photo: they are about experiencing life, seeing, listening and sharing. Tammy, Romain, Colin, Marcy, Santiago, and Ernesto – here’s to another unforgettable workshop! For every bump, truck and flattened frog… emergency regulations and caipirinhas… our edits were amazing and everyone’s images are truly inspiring. I wish you were all here… love
It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see. — Henry David Thoreau
® Marcy Cohen
The best experiences in life are sometimes best lived in the before and after. The hopeful anticipation, and the joy of reminiscence. As photographers we are blessed with tokens of remembrance in the photographs we are given. The experiences we shared this February in Bahia were poignant and wonderful while we lived them but grow stronger as time goes on. Just today seeing on FB Santiago’s wonderful capture of King Ernesto being hugged by the “Queen” of Maragogipe and Ernesto proudly holding the mock-up of Willard’s Animals brings a wide smile to my face and reminds me how fantastic an experience and great and diverse group we had in Cachoeira. The ten days we spent there were intense and intimate, like a dream – we worked hard and learned a lot.
I am grateful to Ernesto for sharing with us his intimate knowledge of Bahia – this was not a “drive-by” workshop but rather an opportunity to get beneath the surface of things by visiting with people and places Ernesto has known for years. The situations were not necessarily easy but rich with intimacy and mystery once you opened your eyes and heart.
My first workshop with Ernesto in Sicily 9 years ago changed my photography like no other experience. This latest trip is sure to be another turning point. Thank you Ernesto, Colin, Tammy, G, Santiago and Roman for 10 wonderful days and nights. Looking forward to the next time.