Photography, writing and relaxation at New Norcia

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New Norcia is Australia’s only monastic city and is located here in Washington state, just an hour and a half drive northeast of Perth. It was founded in 1847 by Rosendo Salvado, a former member of the Spanish Benedictine monastery of Saint Martin in Compostela. There are still a small number of Benedictine monks, who will remain in residence because the order keeps the buildings but sells land around.

But think of the old convent which houses a superb art gallery, museum and gift shop. The majestic inn, built in 1927 and recently regained its former function after operating as a hotel since the 1950s.

The Colleges of St Gertrude and St Ildephonsus, with their spectacular chapels adorned with ornate wood carvings and restored Baroque-style paintings and frescoes. The atmospheric cemetery. The education center containing the European Space Agency Interpretation Center and the historic Abbey Press.

The monastery and its guest house and chapels. The splendid abbey church. The old flour mill and Interpretation Center at Mission Cottages. Further southeast, a marked walk along the Moore River. A truck stop with a surprisingly good menu.

So much to see. So much to do. And the perfect location for our annual weekend of New Norcia photography and writing workshops.

Camera iconStephen Scourfield and Will Yeoman give a recital of lyrics and music at New Norcia Abbey Church. Credit: Mogens johansen/West Australian

NEW NORCIA 2021

In April of this year, 50 of our readers joined Travel team members Stephen Scourfield, Mogens Johansen, Will Yeoman and their friends for a weekend of photography and writing tutorials and workshops, tables rounds, musical and oral performances, joint drinks, meals – and good fun.

But for those of us who attended the workshop weekend, it became something more intense. More consistent. More spiritual, even. Those of us who arrived as strangers parted ways as friends. Those of us who arrived as friends parted ways as brothers and sisters.

Indeed, Saturday evening, after a long day of learning the ins and outs of composition, light, color and subject or grammar, style, field notes and become a good observer, we have collectively submitted to the ministries of Father Jean and his restorative cocktails. at the hostel bar, before a happy barbecue dinner.

The atmosphere was amazing. We were drunk with friendliness, hospitality. Saint Benedict would have approved.

Then hear Father Robert Nixon on the piano and organ of the abbey church – Debussy! Satisfied ! – was not just the icing on the cake. It was happiness.

And to think that there was still Sunday to come …

New Norcia high view by Laura Gray, 2021 workshop participant.
Camera iconNew Norcia high view by Laura Gray, 2021 workshop participant. Credit: Laura Gray/Provided

the new norcia 2021 writing workshops

“While waiting for order and symmetry in the Australian bush, we walk at sunrise to wonder if the architecture crosses the landscape because it would never blend? However, the sunrise experience is more of a chorus of magpies with pink and gray galahs howling at every turn of the flowering gums. Thinking about the reasons why the cemetery occupies the heights and offers the best views of the city, we identify the simple white crosses of the aborigines while the crosses for the Benedictines were the subject of a recent project to recast the crosses. made of metal that present order and symmetry. ” Malcolm waugh

“An oscillating sprinkler sprays a misty arc over the manicured lawns, much to the noisy dive finches’ delight. Everywhere, bursts of bright color in a matrix of flower beds, terracotta pots and hanging baskets. Here is the beating heart of the place. Here there is love, and the loved one. It is not a place for the criticism of the visitor or the voyeur, but a place for those who have been called, to live an industrious but simple monastic life dedicated to the saint, unaware of the congruence of time and setting. Here is a sanctuary. Sheila lunn

“By observing the fusion of historic buildings of character and the practical aspects of modern life, the mind begins to renovate, restore and remove. Once the home of many, now almost abandoned with no maintenance work, character and history dwindling in much needed repairs. Is this the last time to repair the slowly deteriorating foundations? It is peaceful here, so very little sign of life but from inside the walls of the abbey church, feigned music resonates softly, while outside a single red rose rises above the carefully trimmed hedge reminding us all that roses will bloom again, this is not the last time. ” Jeanie Waugh

New Norcia scene by Michael Kitney, 2021 workshop participant.
Camera iconNew Norcia scene by Michael Kitney, 2021 workshop participant. Credit: Michael kitney/Provided

NEW NORCIA 2022

Some of us love photography. Some of us like to write. But maybe this time around some are just looking for a good weekend. That’s why we offer you three choices:

Just come for the weekend, meet the team, hang out with like-minded people, explore, rest a bit and come to our concert.

Learn skills and techniques during our travel writing sessions.

Photowalk with professionals and refine your image creation. This year, the focus (!) Will be on using the cameras on your cell phones.

In other words, there is a package deal for everyone on New Norcia Weekend Away on Saturday May 30 and Sunday April 1, staying in a grand, renovated building, and with all meals included. We have limited numbers.

travel club experience with stephen scourfield (12 places)

Come meet the team and other like-minded readers, visit New Norcia, join us for an evening lyrics and music concert and panel discussion – and take time to sleep, sit on the veranda and read a bit too.

Saturday

  • 9 a.m. Arrival and registration.
  • 9:30 am Welcome & morning tea “in company”.
  • 11 am Guided tour of the monastery, via the reception center.
  • 12:30 pm Lunch “in company”.
  • Free afternoon (museum and art gallery pass included).
  • 3:30 pm Afternoon tea “in company”.
  • 5 p.m. Open bar (purchase of drinks).
  • 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Abbey Church Performance with Stephen Scourfield and guests.
  • 7.15 p.m. Dinner.
  • 9 p.m. Bach and a bedtime book with Will Yeoman.

Sunday

  • Breakfast “in company”.
  • 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Travel team panel session with Stephen Scourfield, Will Yeoman and Mogens Johansen.
  • 10:30 am to noon free.
  • 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Lunch and farewell.

Price: $ 400

writing workshop package with will yeoman (12 places)

Saturday

  • 9 a.m. Arrival and registration.
  • 9:30 am Welcome & morning tea “in company”.
  • 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. How good is the grammar ?! – Tools of the trade.
  • 11 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Stretch break.
  • 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. From the parrot to the poet – Imitating the masters.
  • 12:30 pm Lunch “in company”.
  • 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The Art of Travel Writing – A Conversation with Stephen Scourfield.
  • 3:30 pm Afternoon tea “in company”.
  • 4 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. The Lie of the Earth – Creative non-fiction.
  • 5 p.m. Open bar (purchase of drinks).
  • 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Abbey Church Performance with Stephen Scourfield and guests.
  • 7.15 p.m. Dinner.
  • 9 p.m. Bach and a bedtime book with Will Yeoman

Sunday

  • 6.30 to 8 a.m. Field Notes – Outdoor writing experience.
  • 8 am to 9 am Breakfast “in company”.
  • 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Travel team panel session with Stephen Scourfield, Will Yeoman and Mogens Johansen.
  • 10:30 a.m. to noon Get It Together – Writing, creating and meaning your notes.
  • 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Lunch and goodbye.

Price: $ 450

photography workshop package with mogens johansen (12 places)

Saturday

  • 9 a.m. Arrival and registration.
  • 9:30 am Welcome & morning tea “in company”.
  • 10:00 am to 11:00 am See images – Show & Tell screen session. With Mogens Johansen and Stephen Scourfield.
  • 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Photowalk – Create a story in pictures of New Norcia.
  • 12:30 pm Lunch “in company”.
  • 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Photo session – Management of low light inside the Sainte-Gertrude chapel.
  • 3:30 pm Afternoon tea “in company”.
  • 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Participants select and submit photos for the review session on Sunday.
  • 5 p.m. Open bar (purchase of drinks).
  • 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Abbey Church Performance with Stephen Scourfield and guests.
  • 7.15 p.m. Dinner.
  • 9 p.m. Photowalk – Astrophotography.
  • (or 9 p.m. Bach & a bedtime book with Will Yeoman)

Sunday

  • 6.30 a.m. to 8 a.m. Photowalk – Early Light. With an introduction to drone photography and a demonstration.
  • 8 am to 9 am Breakfast “in company”.
  • 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Travel team panel session with Stephen Scourfield, Will Yeoman and Mogens Johansen.
  • 10:30 am to noon View and critique the photos of the participants.
  • 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Lunch and goodbye.

Price: $ 450

(Times and content may change.)

The big old New Norcia Hostel.
Camera iconThe big old New Norcia Hostel. Credit: Stephen scourfield/West Australian

ACCOMMODATION

  • Our new Norcia weekend is Saturday April 30 and Sunday May 1, 2022. We have a limited number (12 each for the writing and photography packages, plus 12 guests for the weekend package).
  • New Norcia is 115 km north of Midland, but easily accessible via the Tonkin highway. It is 50 km north of Bindoon.
  • All accommodation will be in comfortable and modern rooms. No bedroom has an en-suite bathroom, but the bathrooms are updated and sparkling clean. Once the New Norcia Hostel is full, guests will receive rooms in the renovated Convent.
  • All meals are included in the price and dietary needs will be taken into account. If the arrangements are affected by unforeseen COVID-19 restrictions, we will propose an alternate date. If it doesn’t fit, customers will receive a refund.

RESERVATIONS

westtravelclub.com.au/events or call 1 800 429 000, Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

To learn more about New Norcia, visit newnorcia.wa.edu.au.


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