ESCAPE: Photography Retreat 2019 • Cypress Hills

During our four day retreat in Cypress Hills we explored photography, mindfulness, nature and rest.

The fantastic group of women who participated took connection to a deeper level while providing space to ask for what they needed. We kept a loose but intentional schedule, allowing for people to explore the forest on their own or with the group. At the heart of this photography experience is retreat, which means “to temporarily leave behind the usual distractions we all face for a time long enough to allow relaxation and for an inner change to occur”. Our retreat participants were free to choose their activities to get the most from their authentic retreat time.

Our first evening of the retreat focused on creating great group dynamics. We started with a little ice-breaker, eating supper together. Getting to know one another is one of the most valuable aspects of our time together. After eating a delicious supper, we set out to enjoy the sunset over Bald Butte. We photographed nature, wildflowers, birds and many white tailed deer.

The second day we got in touch with nature and practising photography for the fun of it. We started with a mindful exercise, a guided nature walk (we were blessed with cloud cover - making for amazing soft photos), Our path took us through forest and meadows past streams and ponds with cattails.

Kristin taught a mini session on shooting in manual setting and everyone experimented with the exposure triangle surrounded by the majestic lodgepole pines. We finished the day with ice cream treats, and photographing horses trot into the pasture at golden light.

The third day was spent immersed in the forest to really be mindful and present in our photographic experience. Some of the women took a horse-trail-ride through the trees. We bonded and created emotional connection with this lovely group of women. It was an honour to meet them and get to know them while discussing the medium of photography and what it means to us. We closed our weekend with reminising about our new memories, photographic skills while sharing favourite images from the retreat amongst the group.

I just enjoyed a fabulous 3 days at Red Fox’s Photo Retreat with my daughter. Cypress Hills was a perfect location and Kristin and Kayla were fabulous hosts/leaders/teachers. I love their friendly down to earth approach and the way they share and teach photography with passion and enthusiasm. They kept enough flexibility built into our schedule that even my tired old body coped. I can not say enough positive about this event. Lots of learning and lots of fun!!!

RED FOX CREATIVE STUDIO is a creativity & wellness centre located in Regina, SK.

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