Empowering portraiture: a magical Berlin retreat

empowering portraits, female photographer, Berlin portraits, Berlin retreat, creative exchange, empowered womenAmong many other wonderful accolades, Lisa Witter is a magical networker – a network creator and nurturer who brings brilliant people together for good. In her day job, Lisa is the co-founder of the Apolitical Foundation, a community devoted to making our governments work better for 21st century citizens. ‘Off duty’, she loves to host one-of-a-kind gatherings. So, when she asked me on board as an empowering portrait photographer for a retreat, at her beautiful country house near Berlin, it was an automatic yes!

We gathered, walked, cooked, shared, and listened – and, of course, we had a lot of fun together. Some of us already knew each other very well, some didn’t.

And we all shared, openly and candidly, exactly where we are at professionally, in order to best support one another and to share our individual expertise with the group.

empowering portraits, female photographer, Berlin portraits, Berlin retreat, creative exchange, empowered womenEach and every one of the women gathered at Lisa’s retreat were very special and we developed immediate bonds. We discovered and unravelled so many crossovers between us and stories to tell. It felt like pure magic. And it felt like the beginning of new, shared stories and adventures – which is, so far, precisely what has been happening to me ever since! But more on that when it’s time…

Over the course of our two days together, I took empowering portraits of seven of the women on Lisa’s retreat. Using our beautiful, rural location as our studio just happened naturally.

I wanted to try and capture some of the changes in the air and to contribute to the participants’ upcoming personal developments, such as starting work in new positions.

And the whole process was one of fluid exchange. With one of the women, we had been sharing our insecurities about our singing voices with each other, then, once I put my camera down, we began a healing voice session. Together, we were able to free something, to break down a blockage. I really do believe that one thing always leads to another.

The empowering portraits I captured over these wonderful days at Lisa’s retreat show something really special. In them I see beautiful, vulnerable, super strong women who do amazing work for us – as a society and on this planet.

Each one excels in her own field of expertise and power. Our retreat is over but, already, I look forward to taking their portraits in the future in my Berlin studio.


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