The Sydney Morning Herald - In the eye of the beholder

A picnic lunch awaits us at the end of the pass, and when we’re done we jump into four cool- looking ex-Russian military vans – our transport for the next 10 days – and travel for a bumpy five hours across dozens of kilometres of steppe. En route we stop to photograph romantic vistas dotted with wild horses, herds of sheep and goats, and Bactrian camels with comically flaccid humps.

17 Oct 2015

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Marie Claire – People Watching in Paris

I wasn't sure what to expect from the course, and admit that I was dreading being bogged down with techno talk, and feeling out of my depth in shutter speed speak. (Memories of A-level photography creeping back) But I shouldn't have worried. After hopping on the Eurostar and meeting my group of likeminded happy snappies (just 10 of us), I realised my fears were unfounded.

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The Guardian – Picture the scene: learning to paint in Italy

Trying to do justice to the Italian landscape is a big ask for the most experienced of artists. So how would I, a keen but inept beginner, fare? I am here for five days on an all-inclusive holiday, aptly titled Painting for the Petrified.

15 Jan 2011

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Time Out – Happy snappers

The routine was set for the rest of the holiday: a mix of photography tutorials and mini projects, local food and wine, with extra activities laid on – including a truffle hunt (Abruzzo is famous for both the black and white varieties), a pasta-making demonstration and a performance by a local choir (more fun than it sounds). We visited the hilltop towns of Gessopalena and Roccascalegna, met the mayor, and were served good local cuisine in two of the region’s agriturismos, the farm-ranch-hotels rural Italy specialises in. We took as many photos as our memory cards could hold, consumed as many truffles, cheeses and local delicacies as our stomachs would stretch to, and imbibed as much wine as our livers would tolerate. Photography was the focus of the holiday, but our tutors’ good relations with the locals meant that wherever we went we received a warm Abruzzese welcome.

21 July 2010

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The Green – Snap Happy

After an hour and 20 minutes of taking shots of church steeples, ancient cobblestones, patterns of light and shade, I'm more than ready for lunch and we head for the heart of the Majella National Park for a picnic lunch. It's like an enchanted forest, and as if by magic, Villa Danilo's head chef is waiting for us with a barbecue smoking, a large pot of spaghetti and a sizzling dish beside it of olive oil, garlic and chilli. In the mountain stream, bottles of lager are chilling, waiting for thirsty photographers. We tuck into frittata, Italian sausage and bread. The pasta is amazing and the barbecued lamb is tender and moist.

20 August 2009

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Prima – Our Top 5 Favourite Learning Breaks

Try a specialist photography, painting and gastronomy Frui break in Istanbul, Crotia, Abruzzo or Marrakech

31 July 2009

The Times – A photography course in Abruzzo

That first lesson, conducted around the pool of a lovely rural hotel, the Villa Danilo in Gamberale, was a revelation. It had also trounced a lot of my prejudices about photography courses.

4 July 2009

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BBC Olive

Frui courses are excellent for independent travellers as there's no single supplement and no shared rooms. You'll learn first about the white and black truffles found in the park, plus fresh pasta and pizza, then – with the move to the coast – the emphasis will shift to seafood.

1 May 2009

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Metro London

We are here, high in the Abruzzo mountains and deep in the Gran Sasso National Park, exploring the ruined castle and its surrounds through the lenses of our digital SLR cameras. Our group of nine are on a photography holiday, which gives us the chance to focus on our skills with two professional photographers, sample some local cuisine and take a break among some awe-inspiring scenery.

22 August 2008

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The Guardian – Room with a viewfinder

On a camomile lawn in the walled garden of a baronial mansion in the village of San Martino Sulla Marrucina, I'm learning about shutter speeds. Beyond the walls, vineyards stretch down undulating hills. Beyond them, the snow-dusted peaks of the Appenine mountains, the backbone of Italy, rise majestically to meet a bright blue sky. Within the walls, and less majestically, photography tutors Selwyn, Emily and James are doing star jumps as my fellow students and I learn how to capture moving subjects. It's the fourth day of my photography course and I feel as if my skills have come on in leaps and bounds. And indeed star jumps.

19 July 2008

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The Times – The best trips in North Africa

See Marrakesh from a different perspective on Point 101's eight-night photography holiday offering expert tuition for snappers of every level. As well as shooting in the medieval medina, there will be excursions to the Yves Saint-Laurent gardens, the Koutoubia mosque and minaret, and El Badi Palace, as well as two days in the Atlas mountains.

23 February 2008

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Daily Express – Getting snap happy in a land where nature poses

The next day, the oceans of deceptively soft red wine that we quaffed so willingly had not dulled our enthusiasm and we set off for Rocca Calascio. This is another striking hilltop ruin that in a certain light resembles a mini Machu Picchu.

20 January 2008

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The Times – The best learning holiday ideas

Point 101 photography holidays aim to provide a fun few days in unspoilt Italy - lots of local red wine and communal pasta suppers - with a gentle introduction to digital SLR photography. This is more for people looking to improve the quality of their holiday snaps than those keen to shoot a cover for Dazed & Confused magazine. The course takes place in Abruzzo, a refreshingly unspoilt and less touristy region of Italy, meaning that the coach trips around the countryside - timed to coincide with sunsets or particular times of day - are easy and stress-free.

5 January 2008

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Italy Magazine – Pretty As A Picture

The food played a major part in this holiday. At every stop we were greeted with true Italian hospitality. Be it the restaurant owner, hotelier or gracious local family that refuelled us, the traditional Italian cuisine never failed to satisfy. Delicious cured meats, local cheeses, perfect pasta and umpteen varieties of cake - dieting was not on the agenda!

May 2007

Courtesy of Homes World Wide

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The Sunday Times – Italy captured on canvas

Young, cool, funny and enthusiastic tutor and organiser James Lockett does not resemble the disappointed art teacher of my worried dreams. For one thing, he is wearing a blue vest and the kind of straw hat that looks endearing on Pete Doherty. His partner in artistic persuasion is Selwyn Leamy - ruddy, and blond as a chick, with a big blue Celtic Cross tattooed on one shoulder. They bounce with enthusiasm at all times, but are also both experienced art teachers, academics and artists themselves. Many would quail at the idea of taking a disparate group of people - nearly all older than themselves - to a wild and unknown place, and then exhorting them to do much much better, while telling some very silly jokes.

12 April 2007

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The Times – The best travel photography holidays

[Frui] uses the mountainous beauty of Italy's Abruzzo region as its canvas. Classes concentrate on getting the most out of your digital SLR camera. Students are encouraged to bring their own equipment, but Point 101 can provide rental DSLR's at an additional cost. The courses are within the reach of every level of experience, catering to the needs of both beginners and more advanced photographers. All the important aspects of photography, such as composition, exposure, perspective, subject matter and lighting, are covered. The goal is for students to come away being a more experienced and confident photographer.

30 March 2007

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