01 May 2021

Moving from Left Brain to Right Brain Education...

When I was a young student I made a promise, if ever given the opportunity, I will educate / train others for the rest of my life.” ― Vernon Chalmers

Vernon Chalmers Labour Relations Training SAS Simonsberg Simon's Town Photo Credit: SA Navy
Labour Relations Training SAS Simonsberg Simon's Town, Cape Town Photo Credit: SA Navy

Image 1: South African Navy
 Students and me (I’m back row on the left) from my first ever self-designed training course (on Labour Relations) - as a young training officer / labour relations consultant (responsible for Military Leadership / Military Management / Labour Relations Strategy and Consulting) for the SA Navy at the Military Training School, SAS Simonsberg, Simon’s Town and the SA Naval Staff College (for Naval Officer Training) in Muizenberg during the early 1990’s.

Moving from left brain to right brain education / training…
In-between Image 1 and Image 2 was quite a journey. During these years I had the privilege of lecturing (and designing many training courses) at various business schools, universities and private training institutions in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban in subjects such as Strategic Management, Financial Management, Human Resource Management, Training Management, Marketing Management, Industrial Psychology, Corporate Communications, Economics, Accountancy, Project Management, Information Systems Integration, E-Commerce Strategy, Internet Marketing and Social Media Strategy & Marketing.

I never had a favourite or preferred subject. The privilege to contribute to so many careers and lives came with an enormous sense of responsibility and motivation during the entire left brain lecturing / facilitation period. I have very fond memories of lecturing at the SA Navy's Military Training School / Naval Staff College. I enjoyed the discipline, military organisational structure and the close-knit social environment. One thing I did not really enjoy after leaving the SA Navy was the endless driving between university campuses during the week and many Saturday mornings, but always with the same objectives of being prepared and never to be a minute late (albeit with the same privilege and motivation).

Since 2010 I started with a complete paradigm shift, transitioning from the above to photography. I transformed my photography hobby into an educational, training and support system by first educating myself with a thorough academic understanding of the art and science of photography, followed by application through the research, design, development and facilitation of various Canon EOS Camera & Photography Workshops and currently, one-on-one Training Programmes (Birds in Flight / Landscape / Macro / Speedlite Flash / Lightroom Post-Processing) at my training studio apartment (opposite Woodbridge Island).

My friend and former business partner, Joseph Inns, played an extraordinary role in assisting me with my transition into photography. He's knowledge, experience and personal qualities guided me in more ways he would ever know. Joseph unfortunately passed away in 2021. I dearly miss my friend, but will never forget the impact he has made on my career and life. Grieving the loss of my friend, Joseph Inns

Delegates during a Vernon Chalmers Landscape Practical Session on Milnerton Beach
Delegates during a Landscape Practical Session Milnerton Beach, Cape Town : Photo Credit: Steve Williams

Image 2: Vernon Chalmers Photography Students during a recent Landscape / Seascape Photography Workshop at Milnerton Beach. Theory (settings / composition) was presented at Intaka Island and practical sessions for Canon and Nikon photographers were facilitated around Woodbridge Island and Milnerton Beach.  About everything during the years stayed the same (although I have completely changed subjects). I have the same intensity and interest in the development and training of people. 

Photography is probably more creative than any of the left brain subjects I facilitated, but the personal responsibility, research, preparation, support and ultimately the privilege is the same (for me).

Hybrid Mode: CFD Trading on the JSE
What I did retain form my more analytical 'left brain days' is my Contract for Difference (CFD) trading on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). This is an effective way of keeping my mind sharp and it provides for my only 'set' daily schedule - the JSE is open Monday to Friday between 09:00 - 17:00. I live every week day with these 'office hours' in the back of my mind. Even if I don't trade and walk around Woodbridge Island or Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden doing my photography, I'm always aware of the JSE trading schedule. I trade only for myself therefore the research, decision-making and management of my own portfolio is a challenging 'strategy, application and risk management exercise' for stimulating the left brain. 



From Darkness into Light... My thoughts on Loss: Love vs Fear

Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - for Joseph Inns

Reflections of My Life Hou Bay Harbour Art & Crafts For Joseph Inns Copyright Vernon Chalmers
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched — they must be felt with the heart.” — Helen Keller

On Wednesday morning (28 April 2021) Karen Donaldson and I – both friends of the late Joseph Inns, went to Hout Bay Harbour, Cape Town, to reminisce and grieve our relationship with our very special friend.

I’ve captured many images of Hout Bay Harbour before, with its 'picture-perfect' fishing boats, fresh fish for sale, impressive flotilla of yachts and glorious surrounding mountains. But for Joseph, I wanted something different.

For this post I selected four vibrant colour images for my friend that will best represent his love for Africa, Art, Colour and Simplicity. That they were all captured from the exquisite craftmanship from African artists and crafters next to the blue waters of the Cape Peninsula coast made it that more special for me.

Joseph taught me to see the light, he taught me composition, but above all, he taught me patience… with respect and sincere gratitude. 

Although he was a more experienced photographer (as lecturer and professional) he never wilfully tried to teach me anything specific about photography and / or composition. He respected my technical camera / exposure knowledge, but always patiently listened to my many, many questions and answered each with confidence, insight, experience and example - with the wisdom of a true master and teacher.

All four Hout Bay Harbour, Cape Town Artist and Crafter images are dedicated to our very special friend, Joseph Inns.

Photographed and published with permission from the Hout Bay Harbour, Cape Town Artists and Crafters.

Hout Bay Harbour Cape Town African Art & Textiles : Images © Vernon Chalmers

Table Mountain & Township - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - For Joseph Inns Image Copyright Vernon Chalmers
Table Mountain & Township - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles, Cape Town - For Joseph Inns

Vibrant Colours - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - For Joseph Inns Image Copyright Vernon Chalmers
Vibrant Colours - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles, Cape Town - For Joseph Inns

Vibrant Colours - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - For Joseph Inns Image Copyright Vernon Chalmers
Vibrant Colours - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles, Cape Town - For Joseph Inns

Soul of Africa - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - For Joseph Inns Image Copyright Vernon Chalmers
Soul of Africa - Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles, Cape Town - For Joseph Inns



African Art & Craft Market - Boulders Beach, Simon's Town, Cape Town

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