Tuesday, January 31, 2012

i have an idea

I know, I know, you are really wanting me to get back to the cookbook shoot...and I will! I promise. The next post will be all about that.
But I had an idea last night and I wanted to throw it out there.

I get inquiries all the time about my farm to table classes. I have to be honest-- while those classes are some of my very favorite ones to teach, they are the hardest to schedule.

First, we are dealing with the Northwest, which means the best time to schedule any kind of farm visitation is in the summer or early fall. The problem is that the farmers are working 7 days a week at that time of year, and it's nearly impossible to find a time for students to visit their property, particularly if they are a small operation.

Second, most farms are outside of the city. This, of course, makes total sense and makes for a lovely road trip. But it means arranging transportation for 7-10 people and spending a large part of the day in the car. It also limits which farms we can go to because many of them are too far away.

Lastly, the natural-light-food-photography component of the class can't happen unless there is a space to teach it. Meaning, not only do I need to find a farm (or two or three) where I can bring students, I also need a space filled with natural light where we can prepare food, hook up computers, and practice food photography. Most farms don't have the space for this type of thing.

That all being said, these are surmountable obstacles. The conclusion I have come to, however, is that the class should be a few days and not just one. That way, one day can be spent visiting and documenting farms and another can be focused on food photography. Distance becomes less of an issue if the class is a few days long and not just 8 hours.

That all being said, I am thinking about planning a 2 day, 3-night workshop in early fall. At this point, I am fairly set on Whidbey Island because there are several great farms out there, and I know of a perfect place I can rent that can accommodate a number of people overnight, has a great kitchen and ample natural light, and is in a lovely location. A couple farms have already expressed interest and my husband has volunteered to do all the meal preparation for the entire time, (he's a keeper.)

So, what are your thoughts? Would this be interesting to you?
I would love to hear feedback before I move forward.

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Lynn said...

I'd love to do this Claire. And I'm sure others will jump at the chance too. It seems like it would be a lot more practical as a multi-day class.

Unknown said...

Oh I would LOVE THIS!! I am in northern Alberta and a 2-3 day workshop in the upper northwest would be much easier for me to attend.....I'd be all over this if you went ahead with it :)

Emma Galloway said...

I would be SO KEEN! If only I didn't live in Australia :-(

Elise said...

Sounds like a brilliant idea Clare. I would seriously consider it. I can't wait for your workshop this Sunday!

katie said...

Hi Clare! I just love what you do! I would definitely be interested in a workshop that would lead me in the right direction as far as taking my love of food, farms & photography from personal work to working with others! I'll be keeping my eye out for your multi-day workshop, I am in Northern CA and love to travel! Beautiful blog, thank you for sharing your world =)