This is a new venture tailoring Marrakesh photography workshops for photographic enthusiasts who are beyond beginner level. It’s geared toward those that have already taken a course in Essaouira and others yet to visit Morocco but have an understanding of how to use their camera and want to improve their composition and develop their portfolio. The week’s itinerary will be entirely flexible to suit guests with the emphasis on workflow from shooting through to processing on computer, theme development and critiquing. Genres include landscapes, seascapes and the urban environment.
Begin to excel in our masterclass Marrakesh photography workshops
There are few places where you can travel 3.5 hours from northern Europe and attain instant inspiration allied with a healthy dose of sunshine. Morocco’s exotic appeal has historically drawn writers, artists and to a lesser extent photographers who have produced an exceptional and in-depth portfolio here. Rather than focus on different workshop genres, we’ll look at developing techniques and approaches relating to street photography, building towards your own way of interpreting the environment. The week’s itinerary also includes a substantial amount of post-processing and the kinds of adjustments I recommend during a typical workflow.
Nature in detail
I’ve been running Morocco photo workshops for over 10 years and during that time and have come to develop an understanding of how to improve knowledge and develop the ability of a range of photographers with different interests. I’m also a practising photographer and continually updating my skills and approach to subjects here. Unlike other tour providers, I’m not in a rush to get my own images during your week as I’m based in the region. Consequently, I can focus on your photo opportunities whilst we are out and about.
The week will run according to your needs and will run with no more than 2 guests to facilitate this. Tuition will run across 5 days encompassing a mix of shooting, post-production review and critiquing. Some of your photography will be outside the medina and will include landscapes and architecture in the region of Essaouira. The final day will be set aside for final editing, post-work and presentation. During your stay, we’ll also take a look at book design with suggestions for theme and layout development, with your Morocco images in mind.
Step to the next level
It goes without saying that the week will be all about your photographic development. One just one other guest you’ll get the input you want so come prepared with a checklist of questions and desires for improving your photography. One to one tutorials are an integral part of the week as part of that we’ll take a look at your photography to date and build both a plan to improve as well as building in new things to try whilst you are here. With well-located accommodation and friendly staff, you’ll feel at home. Our classroom is based in the Riad.
Seeing beyond the exotic and finding imagery
Whilst Morocco holds adventure as one of its cards, society really functions in a similar way to European cultures, it’s just the dress, architecture and infrastructure are different. Granted the spectacle of a country market can be exotic and full of potential imagery, but it helps to break down the location into a photographic essence and to think about what makes an interesting image as opposed to an interesting scene to the eye. The two are very distinct. During the week we will continually refer to this. We’ll also look at post-processing and in particular the relationship between reality, our perception of it and the final photograph. How much processing is the right amount. Too much saturation or contrast? Also once you’ve completed your masterclass we’ll keep in touch. I’m happy to offer feedback on your future photos.
Using exposure creatively
The correct exposure is often seen as an immovable beast. The camera sets it and we as the operator look to control over or underexposure based on the histogram. That’s pretty much it. In many cases that works for a representative look for the photograph but in brighter locations the camera’s average metering reveals the dominance of bright areas and the selection of subjects can be more difficult to attain. Instead, we should think about underexposing, which adds another interpretation of the location and one which develops a mood. Take a look at the gallery link below for photos taken with this in mind. It’s a technique which we can work on during your week.
Finding your composition
We’ll go beyond the rules of composition to look at good framing which is often the process of simplification. It’s no surprise that the best photographers give a nod and wink to abstract imagery and we’ll look at the best examples. As part of the Marrakesh photography workshops, during the week we’ll look at different kinds of approaches to composition from the instant impact frame, to the slow burn. We’ll look at many photographers who approach scenes in different ways, using DOF, camera angle and lens choice. We’ll also take a look at topographic photography and the urban landscape, finding beauty in the everyday.
Developing themes and style
One of the most difficult aspects of photography is finding locations which absorb your interest. This is something we can discuss during the week, discussing potential places for when you are back home. We’ll also take a look at black and white photography and what makes selecting this option a better alternative on bright sunny days. If your camera is capable of more than one exposure; i.e. multi-exposure then we can look at techniques and examples of in-camera layering. Most importantly during the week, we will look to develop your own personal style by drawing out potential themes from your gallery or portfolio of images.
In camera layering
Your hotel Riad
You’re booked to stay in one of Essaouira’s most famous Riads, Maison Du Sud. Built-in the 18th Century it’s been beautifully renovated and furnished in keeping with the location. Usually, my guests are assigned a rooftop terrace room, perfect for privacy and catching a bit of sun. All rooms are all en-suite whilst there are no single supplements. Marrakesh photography workshops are inclusive of private airport transfers, teaching your en-suite room and breakfast. For evening dining I’ll recommend several restaurants which the Riad can book for you. The Riad has wifi and a restaurant. For your week I can also organise other activities such as yoga, cooking classes and visiting a Hammam.
Weeks are available upon request
Updates for this week are now available at Creative Camera and can include a split of 7 days between Essaouira and Marrakesh. The price starts at £1485 based for two people and is inclusive of 7 nights’ accommodation and airport transfers from Essaouira airport. An addition to the masterclass series is a week at a luxury retreat south of Marrakesh with two top photographers, Paul Hill and Nick Hannes. To find out about this event visit: Documentary Photography Workshops.