Lushfest 2012

Like last year the annual big meeting of Lush people from around the world was a mixture of meeting and festival. Again the wonderful site of Holton Lee welcomed us for 5 days.

Unlike last year, where it was really, really cold especially during the nights, it was warmer, but we all faced a new challenge – heavy rain and the subsequent mud. But this didn’t keep us from having fun and enjoying the whole 5 days. Very much like last year, the first two days were dedicated to training sessions and product launches (a bit more about this a bit later in this post), and the last two days were the festival days open to the public with lots of bands, workshops, making our own products, and of course – lots of rain and mud (did I tell you this before? I just keep telling because I didn’t take that many pictures of the actual muddiness so it doesn’t really show on my pictures, as it was partly too wet even for my Leica).

So, basically this is my selection of my favourite pictures I took during those 5 days.

First signs of mud. It had rained heavily for days and days before we came to the site at Holton Lee in Poole, Dorset, so the ground was already very soft. It didn’t take long to turn large areas into deep mud.

Snapshots during the training day.

Taking notes.

More notes.

A chunk of soap to take home.

Wellies – our best friends during these days.

But we had two lovely, sunny days as well.

Fighting Animal Testing in Korean (at least I think this is what the writing says).

Heading to the Set in Stone stone circle, where a new range of Gorilla Perfumes was about to be launched. The stones in the circle were scented with the new frangrances, and a set of music composed for the fragrances by Simon Richmond and  John Metcalfe was performed life. To read more about the new fragrances, go and visit the Gorilla Perume blog.

It was really crowded, so for me the whole atomsphere and the music was a bit difficult to enjoy, still I liked the way how the fragrances were launched. The stone circle stayed there anyways, so I came back a few days later to experience the whole site on my own. And to take pictures, of course! I saw the site and felt it needed to be in colour, so scroll down a bit to see those impressions as well.

Life performance of the set of music especially composed for the six fragrances.

I switched to colour, just had to. Lush is a colourful company after all…

Our tents in the evening.

We had a ferris wheel on the site (of which I didn’t take a picture, don’t ask me why), but I took a ride, and this is how the muddiness looked from above. But this is still looking quite nice, compared to two days later!

My wellies.

Mixing their own lipsticks.

Wet.

Inside my tent.

Jackie Oates on stage.

Well, beer and a broken chair. Obvisously.

So here we go… Mud… In heavy rain.

But luckily there were gigs like The Dhol Foundation who had us dance until we felt warm and dry again!

Even the flamingoes liked it!

And after one day and night of heavy rain, this is how it looked the next morning! Unbelieveable!

Some tents had suffered quite a lot…

Holton Lee is right at the sea, so we went down to the beach to enjoy a little bit of sun and the sea breeze.

Catching shrimps – the were set free again immediately after we had had a look, don’t worry!

The camping village.

Exhausted. It was even muddy inside the tents…

A rainbow in the afternoon.

I went back to the stone circle to experience it on my own – the rainbow was still there!

That dead tree was so impressive, especially in the evening light, just beautiful.

The light, the light… Love it…

Self.

Evening sun. And mud.

Even the rainbow was a bit muddy. Yes, that’s soap btw.

Best food ever – the guys from Wholefood Heaven did amazing food, which helped keeping me warm and happy. Thanks so much! Having good food makes such a difference! 🙂 If you ever find them somewhere around London or on a festival, try the Buddha Bowl, you won’t regret it, I promise!

Fun (thanks, Nora, for the idea!).

Mud.

English mud in my shower back home.

Despite the rain and the mud I have to say I really enjoyed those 5 days, the concerts were great, and meeting so many wonderful people was a lovely experience!

Thanks for all the work that went into organising Lushfest, guys! If you could switch off the rain next time, that would be great, but hey, we had a real British experience that way!

Nevertheless, being back home in my bed was nice too… 🙂

Films: Kodak TriX 400 in Xtol 1+1 & Portra 400.

Lushfest

Last week I spent my time on a huge camping site in the South of England, more precisely in Holton Lee, which is in Dorset.

Even though it may sound strange, it was in fact a business meeting, consisting of two days for meetings, presentations and workshops, and one festival day, where we all could listen to several bands (including Afro Celt Sound System, Jackie Oates, The Imagined Village, to only mention a few), have a look at how different departments work, meet and talk to campaigning/activist groups and lots more. As there was so much going on, I only managed to snap some picture on the go – this is my final selection.

At the airport, just before we boarded the plane to London.

Animals on the plane…

More than just one…

Arrived at Heathrow airport, we had to wait for about 3hrs for our coach that would take us to the camping site.

Met our lovely Swiss colleagues, who were eagerly playing with their iPhones.

Fast forward to the camping site – this is how it looked like:

Color version:

Never travel without a good amount of Manner wafers!

On the site there were a lot of different tents, where different departments showcased their work – in this one you could get your hands dirty and have a go at making products yourself.

This is how Comforter Bubble Bar is made – a big strudel, and then slices are cut off (should have shot this in colour, as the swirls are bright pink and white).

More Comforter Bubble Bar slices.

My colleague having a go at making a Ballistic.

It’s not as easy as you would think it is!

Yeah, made it!

My boss.

Camera, lighter, cigarettes.

The light was gorgeous that evening…

Apart from the wonderful evening light – this is how the site looked like with all the different tents and gazebos.

More of that sunset light – just couldn’t get enough of it.

Even though you can’t tell from the pictures or the light – it got very, very cold as soon as then sun had set, as you can tell from the next two pictures. I was so glad I took my snowboard jacket with me, one night the temperature went down to 4°C – so we all basically wore all clothes we could put on at once. Right now as I’m writing this, it’s over 30°C outside, hard to imagine that I wore a winter jacket, a beanie hat, fleece jacket and several clothes layers at once just a few days ago.

The cold didn’t stop us from having fun though – this is how you look after drinking vodka mixed with fizzy candy (Pop Rocks)!

Other fun stuff: Posing with a giant Toothy Tab and a living toothbrush.

Breakfast.

Even though it doesn’t look like it – this was taken around 9am (of course these were leftovers from the night before)!

During the week there were several bands playing on different stages for the real festival feeling – this was Jackie Oates.

During the Imagined Village gig.

More fun stuff – the football match. Or as I should say – after the football match!

Food was great – sorry, only empty plates!

And lots of booze – Bulmers mainly.

I don’t want to suggest this sign had something to do with the booze, but I thought the picture would best fit here! 🙂

Silent disco – I you have never been to a silent disco – try it, it’s fun!

I have to admit, I’m not that big a fan of camping – but thanks to the fact that I had invested quite an amount of money for a really, really warm sleeping bag, which meant I was one of the few not freezing during the night and actually sleep quite well – I really enjoyed this meeting/fest. It was great fun, I met a lot of inspiring people, enjoyed really good concerts, and realized once more how crazy (in a really good way) and unique a company I work for.

Back home I wanted to take a few pictures of the stuff I brought back home or used most during the week, but as I had changed films so often, I completely lost track of how many frames I already had taken on which film (stupid, I know), so I ended up with a few double exposures. So this is a collection of things I brought back, doubled up with a frame I took during the Afro Celt Sound System gig. Stupid mistake, but looks quite nice.

My three most important items – very warm sleeping bag, Maglite torch and Sea Shepherd beanie hat. And no, I didn’t have an illuminated sleeping bag – it’s again the lights of the Afro Celt Sound System gig.

Films: Kodak Portra 160NC, Kodak Portra 400VC, Kodak TriX 400 & TriX 400@3200, Agfa APX 100 – b/w developed in Rodinal 1+50.

Preparing for Christmas

I’ll post some pictures I took back in September at work during a meeting. We had all our Austrian shop manangers and trainees come together in Vienna to plan and prepare for Christmas. One part of the meeting was a workshop on merchandising. As we all were already playing around with the new Christmas product range I couldn’t post the pictures back then, as they hadn’t been launched in the shops yet.

I hadn’t planned to take pictures, but as I saw them all busy and playing with products I couldn’t resist to take a few snapshots – perfect opportunity, as most of the time they all were so busy that they didn’t notice me taking pictures. Unfortunately you can’t smell the gorgeous scent of all the products!

Drinks in the evening – a must!

Film: TriX 400 in Rodinal 1+50