THE RETREAT is approaching. We look forward to meeting you. This is the information you will need for your travel as well as your work preparation.

You can always log onto this private page wherever you are so try to keep it handy during your travel. I have sent you a pdf version also if you prefer (which you can print at 65%).

Password: participants


1/ARLES: Meeting Point: Saturday, July 9th at 1:00 pm, Brasserie Le France, 6, rue de La Martine, Arles, 30120

For those of you going to Les Rencontres d'Arles the week before.

This meeting point is within walking distance of the center of Arles on Saturday, July 11th at 1:00 pm at Brasserie Le France, 6, rue de La Martine, Arles, 30120. It is in the direction of the station, near the Rhone river. 
Bring your luggage.
For the drivers, there is parking in Le Parking Lamartine as it is a big circular piazza or probably just outside the Brasserie if you do not stay too long.
We thought it was a nice coincidence to meet at Brasserie Le France. The Brasserie is called Le France and the street name is La Martine!! Easy to remember.

Brasserie Le France: click for google map

Brasserie Le France: click for google map

Brasserie le France, 6 Place La Martine, Arles: click for google map

Brasserie le France, 6 Place La Martine, Arles: click for google map



Theo Zierock- The Photography Master Retreat Assistant- will be waiting for you at the outside tables of the Brasserie Le France as of 12:45 pm and will coordinate the car pool, with the luggage.

You are 5 participants leaving from Arles and there are 3 cars. We are organizing this car pool as a courtesy. Each participant should give 20 euros to his/her driver. 
Theo has a Break and can take 4 people comfortably and I will order taxis for the other participants who will meet at the same Brasserie ( price for taxi will vary in fiction of the number of participants: from 50 to 70 euros)

Please do not be late. In case you are late (or have an emergency) to be at Brasserie le France,you can reach Theo at +39 3475501543 and his email is:








 Nimes Train Station (TGV) FROM PARIS at 13:05.

 Montpellier Airport at around 13:00

I would send a taxi from Le Vigan to pick you up. It is likely that the taxis at Nimes and Montpellier might not want to take you so far. I have your travel arrangements and I will send a taxi at your location. Week of June 15th -20, we would give you all that information. You will pay the taxi driver directly. He will know the way. Depending on the number you are, it will be 150 euros if you are alone, and around 50 euros if you are pooling.



3/ ARRIVALS DIRECTLY AT THE RETREAT: You may want to arrive by car directly to The Retreat.

For those of you arriving directly, the address is: Hameau d'Esparon, Bez-et-Esparon, 30120, France.

The telephone number on the premises is: 04-67-81-29-39.

The Mentors will be at La Bastide d'Esparon already. Any emergency, you can also call on the land line at La Bastide d'Esparon: 





Many of you are leaving from Nimes or Montpellier or even Marseilles, so there will be no problem for car pools. 
We will define this precisely upon your arrival.


You will want to bring complete portfolios of your work so that the mentors can look at the totality of the body of work/bodies of work. Bring as much work on these projects as you feel is relevant. If you need feedback, we encourage you to bring more than what you have edited down, as the mentors might review the edits and choices or comment on possible opportunities.

We recommend bringing digital files, having them organized and the photos flattened so that they can be viewed easily.

Do bring your computer with perhaps an external hard drive with the full projects you wish to work on as well as past projects you mighty want the Mentors to consider. Please bring large edits of your projects, as the Mentors will want to see the full scope of the project.

If you have prints, please bring them, but in a small format.which might be relevant to our understanding of your work and trajectory.

We know prints are heavy so we do not want you to be overburdened. If you have books or Book mock ups or catalogues or exhibition shows, please bring those. We can also look at them via the internet if you so wish or as a pdf format.

There will be 2 shooting exercises, so please bring a camera. It does not have to be of the best quality.


1/ A laptop computer (with Bridge or Lightroom preferably).

2/ An external hard drive and flash drive for extra space and back ups for your work in progress.
Bring at least a flash drive with your presentation on it so that we can download it easily onto one main computer.

3/At least one complete portfolio/project on which you will be focusing. Please bring a very large edit of the main portfolio/portfolios you will want to work on, as the Mentors will want to see the toto scope of the project.

4/ Bring a camera. For our purposes, it does to need to be your best camera. A simple point and shoot might suffice (even an i phone).

5/ An international outlet converter for France as well as a multiple plug adapter if you have several devices to charge.



We will be asking each participant you on the first day to make a 20 minute presentation followed by10 minutes of Q & A:

1/Presentation of yourself and your trajectory: 4 minutes

2/Presentation of your project/projects: 15 minutes

3/Presentation of the goals you have for this retreat: 1 minute

4/Q & A: 10 minutes

Please have your presentation ready on an external flash drive with the photographs in a pdf or in a portfolio to look at in bridge/Lightroom, sequenced as you would wish in a resolution which is not too small as it will be projected on a screen. We suggest 1200 pixels on longest side as a jpg.




It is full sumer at that time in Esparon so the days are warm but never too humid or damp.

Esparon is located at 700 meters high, so the nights can be cooler, which is nice because we do not need air conditioning. But do bring summer clothes as well as a wind breaker and a sweater and scarf. Also bring your bathing suit and good walking shoes for the hikes.

Attire will be casual and we will have one formal dinner -relaxed cocktail- at the opening and closing of the Retreat.

We ware looking forward to meeting you in person. have a safe trip.




Directions to get to La Bastide d'Esparon for those driving:

If you are coming from Nimes or Montepellier, to get to Esparon, it is 8 kilometers from LE VIGAN. So you must find directions to LE VIGAN and follow them.

You will see directions to Millau at the entrance of Le Vigan, so you avoid going into town, follow that road for some 2 kilometers (an old railroad track). At one point you will see an Intermarche supermarket  to your right and an old bridge, pass that also. Pass Cavailhac. 800 meters later, you will see a roundabout in the road. You will want to make a sharp right turn towards Molieres. After 800 meters, you will want to make another very sharp turn left turn in direction of Molieres/Route de Molieres

Then you will be going uphill for 5 kilometers. Do not go into the village of Molieres, just continue up to Esparon with the road in front of you going slightly to to the right, leaving the village of Molieres to your left. Go all the way uphill on a narrow road for 3 kilometers.. be cautious, it is a two way road which is narrow. Honk when you do not have any visibility. Drive slowly.

Once on the piazza of Esparon, you will see a fountain. Keep going up. You will see on your right an alley, keep going you are almost there. You will see an indent to the right with lavendars and a little garden in espaliers, and a staircase going up.this is your parking spot  with many pink hydrangeas (when in bloom). You park here.

You have arrived. Go up the stairs and you enter by a big blue gate which is to the right. This is the entrance to the house.


BEST OPTION: TRAVEL FROM PARIS to NIMES BY TRAIN-TGV: Aim at arriving at around 1:00-1:30 pm to benefit from the car pool.

Best option: travel from Paris to Nimes by train-TGV:the closest city where you have a fast bullet train (TGV) from Paris Charles de Gaulle,  Roissy international airport is Nimes: it is a 3:35 minutes TGV direct train ride from Charles de Gaulle.
Nimes is 1 hour and a half from Le Vigan by car, taxi or bus. Le Vigan is is 7 minutes from La Bastide d'Esparon.

I would advise all the participants to plan on arriving in Nimes at around 1:00-1:30 pm so they can benefit from car/taxi pools and arrive at 3:00 pm at La Bastide d'Esparon.

1/ComIng from Paris-Charles de Gaulle-Roissy TGV:
We would advise you to book your train reservations quickly. There is a 9:58 am train on July 11th from Charles de Gaulle-Roissy 2 arriving in Nimes at 13:32 pm. if quite a few of you take this train, we would recommend sharing a cab if no one is renting a car.

2/Coming from Paris-center of the city-gars de Lyon-TGV:
If you are leaving from Paris, Gare de Lyon TGV, it will take you 3 hours, try to take the 10:07 am train which arrives in Nimes at 13:05.  If quite a few of you take this train, we would recommend sharing a cab if no one is renting a car

Map of Nimes to Le Vigan and then 7 kilometers from La Bastide d'Esparon:

GOOD OPTION: TRAVEL FROM PARIS to MONTPELLIER BY PLANE: Aim at arriving at around 1:00 pm to benefit from the car pool.
If you want to take the plane from Paris, you can land in Montpellier. You have direct flights from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Montpellier. Air France has a flight leaving at 12:35 arriving in Montpellier at 1:20 pm.

If quite a few of you take this plane, we would recommend sharing a cab if no one is renting a car.

Screen Shot 2015-04-08 at 6.31.38 PM.png

Map of Montpellier to Le Vigan and then 7 kilometers from La Bastide d'Esparon:


If you are coming from Arles, and attending Les Rencontres d'Arles, we can organize a car pool which would leaves Arles at around 1:00 pm. It will cost 50 euros if you are 3 or more, 150 euros if you are alone ( which is unlikely).

Map from Arles to Nimes 

2/ RETURN on Saturday July 16th, 2016

Return from La Bastide d'Esparon to either Nimes Train Station or Montpellier Airport.

That way it will be easier for you to share car/taxi :

We would recommend the TGV 13:55 pm from Nimes arriving in Paris-Gare de Lyon at 16:45.

We would recommend a flight leaving from Montpellier at around 13-14:00 pm to Paris-Orly.



If you taxi pool from Nimes Train Station or Montpellier International airport, if you are 3 minimum and up to 7 people, it will cost you between 30 and 50 euros maximum, depending on the number of participants who share (from 3 to 7).
If you are alone, it will cost you 150 euros.




9:00-12:45: WORK SESSION. Sometimes full sessions, sometimes one-to-one with each mentor.


2:15-5:00: WORK SESSION. Sometimes full sessions, sometimes one-to-one with each mentor.

5:30-6:30: WALK (optional)


7:30 PM- 8:30 PM: DINNER

8:30-9:45 PM: LECTURE/DISCUSSIONS lead by MENTORS followed by Q & A



Susan Sontag: On Photography

Roland Barthes: Camera Lucida

John Berger: Another Way of Telling

David Hurn In Conversation with Bill Jay: On Being a Photographer

Charlotte Cotton: The Photograph as Contemporary Art


Download a pdf of this page: FOR PARTICIPANTS_ Arrivals_FinalPreparation_THE PHOTOGRAPHY MASTER RETREAT