I was in Venice to attend the Summer Academy of Fine Arts & Media, a three week programme of intensive master classes to stretch the creative soul. Lecturers were either university professors from throughout Europe or established artists with the desire to share their secrets. The first week I stretched my photography boundaries with Miro Svolik, a visiting professor from the University of Prague and an imaginative fine art photographer. The programme was very loose to cater for varying student abilities and interests, with Miro setting a theme which we were to explore and present for critique. Self-portraiture was the first task, and I began what would be three days of self-timer merriment, in the elaborate Baroque Mirror Room at Palazzo Zenobio. Nothing like a bit of semi-naked twirling to awaken the artistic spirit.