ASCEND workshop

March 1, 2020

Last spring, I was invited to photograph Ascend, a workshop hosted by Sharon Kopko of Pressed Paper. Sharon’s dream of Ascend was to gather together with like-minded creatives to discover new things about business and implement them in order to elevate your business. There were AMAZING speakers lined up for this 3 day brand + marketing event for creative small business owners, including amazing graphic designer Michelle Brown of Mishku Studio, stylist extraordinaire Sandra Chau, brilliant film photographer Anna Peters, and marketing specialist D’Arcy Benincosa. The speakers did an amazing job organizing a schedule and a presentation to educate the attendees.

The workshop was held at Sharon’s casita, which was designed entirely by her + her husband John. They worked for months nearly nonstop to erect this new addition to their home which would be the future site of Pressed Paper, along with a space for workshops like Ascend. Just in time for the spring workshop, the casita was built, filled with essentials, and decorated just in time! John is multi-talented and does all of the landscaping for their home + casita by himself, engineers tools specially for Sharon + her homemade paper-making business, and he is also a chef. What a guy! He and his daughter Sarah made all of the delicious meals during the entire workshop from scratch.

When it wasn’t a schedule class time or small group discussion time, there were styled shoots happening. It was so refreshing to be able to creatively play with these amazing women who flew in from around the WORLD (looking at you lovely Aussies, Michelle and Sandra). I am so grateful for my time spent photographing Ascend. I learned so much. I made new friends and got to visit with old ones. All of the photos taken truly represent the community that was formed, the creativity that was pulsing throughout the casita, and the learning environment that these amazing speakers cultivated.

The incredible vendor team for the workshop: Pressed Paper, Mishku Studio, Sandra Chau, Anna Peters, D’Arcy Benincosa, Clementine Botanical Art

Attendees: Suzzanne Gamboa, Natalie Whearley, Silbia Ro, Mackenzie Reiter, Brittany Newman, Stella Throop, Kiley Evans

All photos: Lightbulb League

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