I know these two really amazing women, who just happen to be two really amazing florists; Lotte, of Lotte and Bloom in Glasgow and Miss Pickering of Miss Pickering (rumour has it she has a first name, but I could neither confirm nor deny such gossip) in Lincolnshire. And they just happen to know each other and well, they got together to form The Floral Coalition and to host a class at Miss P's shop in the Shires.
When I heard that they were hosting a class I immediately knew I wanted to go, partly because I like flowers but mostly because Lotte and Miss P make me laugh. In the midst of deliberating over whether or not I could afford to pay them to make me laugh I remembered something brilliant; I can take photos. And they might need photos. I could probably get in on this action without paying anything at all. And so I offered to photograph their Flower School in exchange for lunch and the time of day from The Hound.
They took me up on my offer and so on Monday I spent the day in Stamford, photographing The Masters impart their wisdom. It was a lovely way to spend a day, a brief lull in the sadness and noise of life. Miss P's shop is a cool, dark, quiet cave. Scented with masses of roses and peonies (natch), it's easy on all of the senses. And yes, Miss P and Lotte made me laugh. Which was nice. The Hound wasn't exactly generous with his affections but he let me pat him on the head, which I'll take.
It was really amazing to watch these ladies work. They are both absolute artists so it was like magic seeing them weave flowers effortlessly into bouquets and arrangements and buttonholes while simultaneously chatting about methods and making cups of tea and fielding customers and giving the dog a pigs' ear, all while retaining a mysterious air of calm. Then the students were set free in a shop filled to bursting with the most beautiful flowers imaginable to create their own arrangements. There was also tea, coffee, diet coke and biscuits on tap; florist fuel. I loved it.
If you're interested in learning more about floristry I can't recommend their next class (date tbc) highly enough. Sign up for the mailing list here. Probably best to get in there while they're still charging pennies, before they realise how stupidly good at this they are.
Aside; I'm hoping to branch out into more lifestyle-ish photography, artists and craftsmen and designers at work. So let me know if you know anyone who is after that (this) sort of thing. Ideally I'd like to aim towards getting paid in real money for my work, but I'm also fond of biscuits and a nice red wine.