Creative Photography & Art Retreat

Women only retreat


20th - 27th November 2021

Discovering a Sense of Possibility

A week-long all-inclusive retreat providing you with the space and the quiet to delve into your passions and find your creative path through immersion in nature and the arts. Margaret Soraya from Quiet Landscapes and Wild at Art Director Ute Amann-Seidel have teamed up to lead this women-only winter retreat for you in the breathtaking landscape of Orkney.


Many of us arrive at a time or place in our lives only to discover we have lost ourselves. We, your hosts, have been there ourselves and it is our desire is to help others find their new possibilities. Creativity and quiet places are an ideal combination to provide a space for you to delve into your passions. Spend time experimenting with your creative side through immersion in the landscape and the arts for a week.

We’ll have lots of creative things on offer for you to try and experiment with – everything’s optional of course. We will be there as facilitators rather than tutors. Slow down and find what calls to you creatively. Try:

  • Journaling & creative writing
  • Sketching outdoors
  • Cyanotype printing
  • Using your phone for mindful photography within the landscapes
  • Using Snapseed and other apps to create blended images with an artistic edge, then print your favourite images into Polaroid-style mini prints
  • Photography: intimate landscapes – teaching based around either small details within nature or ICM, multiple exposure and other artistic style landscape photography methods
  • Create with objects found in nature
  • Mixed media intuitive painting
  • Collage

Think about spending a week with like-minded women to feel that special creative flow and also take in the wonders of Orkney’s breathtaking nature.

The Location: Orkney

The breathtaking, natural beauty of the wild and rugged Orkney Isles stays with you forever. The inspiring landscapes are filled with towering cliffs, deep caves and giant sandstone sea stacks. 

The unpredictable, wild weather is invigorating and the big open skies, rounded hills and incredibly beautiful beaches offer the artist an ideal location for inspiration and reflection.

Orkney is also notoriously rich in archaeological remains such as the Italian Chapel, Scapa Flow and the Standing Stones of Stennes.

Our base for the retreat is in Stromness which retains its original maritime charm with narrow winding streets, terraces of houses and steep passageways all leading to the waterfront and harbour where we will be staying.


Price & inclusions

Duration: 7 nights /  6 days

Location : Stromness, Orkney

Hosts: Margaret Soraya & Ute Amman–Seidel

Activities : Creative journaling, photography, drawing, painting & other creative treats

No previous experience required

Cost : £1980 ( no single supplement)

The retreat includes:

7 nights accommodation in one of the 4-star seafront cottages (single occupancy/most rooms are en-suite)

Daily programme of walks, talks and creative things

Welcome drinks and nibbles on arrival

7 breakfasts
6 lunches
7 evening meals with wine

Minibus transport when travelling as a group while on the islands

All creative materials including a sketchbook journal

Studio hire fees

Wild at Art canvas bag

Detailed pre-travel information by email.

The cost of this trip is £1980 per person. There is no single supplement. A non-refundable deposit of £400 is required at the time of booking, the rest is due 8 weeks before the start date.

Flights and travel to and from Orkney are not included. Personal travel insurance is required.

We will collect you from Kirkwall airport. Flights depart from Edinburgh, Glasgow or Inverness and connections can be made from Manchester and London.

Alternatively, we will collect you from Northlink Stromness ferry terminal sailing from Scrabster to Stromness. It is possible to leave your car at the ferry terminal in Scrabster if you wish.


We aim for a good balance between exploring the islands and time to get creative. And, of course, time to do nothing, just be and relax. Weather permitting, we’re likely to visit:

The tidal island of the Brough of Birsay

Marwick Head RSPB reserve with breathtaking views along the coastline

The Standing Stones of Stenness near neolithic monuments

The Old Man of Hoy, a 449 sea stack (weather permitting). One of the tallest stacks in Britain.

The Italian Chapel and the Scapa Flow wrecks

The sea stacks, cliffs, and wild seas of Yesnaby


We’ve secured a series of 4-star cottages along Stromness harbour, all with access to a pier with beautiful sea views. Every guest will have their own room and there is no single supplement. All except two rooms have their own bathrooms – en-suite bedrooms will be allocated on a first come first-served basis.

Set in Stromness, the cottages will be our base, “play area” as well as accommodation. In addition, we will hire a space at the nearby Pier Arts Centre for some of the time. The cottages are within minutes walk from all local amenities, including the Pier Arts Centre, the Stromness Museum, cafes, deli, bakery, shops and chemist. It’s the perfect base to explore and photograph the wild and historic landscape of the Orkney Isles.

Both Margaret and Ute are incredibly passionate about inspiring others. Drawing on many years experience of all things creative and powered by their love of Scotland they create inspiring feel-good experiences for guests from all over the world.


workshop leader ute Originally from the south west of Germany, I fell in love with Scotland on my very first visit as a student. Scotland has now been my home since 1997 and its beauty and spirit never cease to amaze me. I’ve always loved being creative, and in 2012 I co-founded Wild at Art to create opportunities for visitors from all over the world to connect with our beautiful locations and heritage through art holidays and retreats.

The sudden death of my life partner a few years later threw me into a major life crisis, which made me question everything and get rid of things that had lost their meaning. Including my day job as senior management consultant which I packed in to focus on Wild at Art, back then with no income to speak of. I also set up a second business, Fire & Rain, to create self-care retreats in Scotland for people who lost their life partner.


margaret sorayaI specialise in photographing some of Scotland’s most remote and wild places. Spending considerable time on the Outer Hebrides and exploring other equally remote areas. I adore the beauty in remote landscapes and being based in the Highlands of Scotland, it is relatively easy for me to get wild and beautiful places.

I have been photographing landscapes for 23 years since relocating to the Highlands of Scotland. My work has been printed widely and I have exhibited at The Bosham Gallery.

In the past 8 years, I have been commissioned to travel to photograph in countries such as Italy, America, Iceland, the Azores, Swaziland and Croatia. However, my main interest always comes back to the beautiful wild landscapes of the North of Scotland and the Scottish Isles.