Last Week’s Instagram

Once a week—or every so often—I will display one of my photos captured and/or processed with Instagram over the last week (this photo is actually more than a week old, but I haven’t posted any new material the last week). It’s a way for me to show photography that usually is quite different from my regular work. Except for the technical details beneath the pictures are displayed without any comments, hoping they will stand on their own. But I still very much appreciate any comments you may have.

Facts about the photo: The photo was taken with a Canon Eos 5D with a 24-105 lens set at 24 mm. Shutter speed: 1/100 of a second. Aperture: f/7.1. The photo was transferred to my cell phone and processed with the Snapseed app with various adjustments and filters as well as the Ludwig filter in Instagram.

Posted in Personal Work, Photography, Travel Photography | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Students Facing Their Fears

© Nina Ramberg

© Kari Anne Kvam

© Jan-Morten Bjørnbakk

© Jan Holm

© Berit Roald

© Anders Øystein Gimse

I am always amazed by the work students come back with during any of my photo workshop. During this year’s Cuba workshop we had participants with quite different photographic skills and knowledge, but not matter their background they were all able to produce some outstanding photos.

Personally for me, that is one of the most rewarding aspects of teaching a workshop. I believe I always learn just as much as the participants from their different perspectives and their different ways of shooting that they bring into a workshop. Yes, we as workshop teachers push them to grow and expand, but they all come with their own photographic voice, whether refined or still in the making.

Likewise for the participants, I think being push from teachers with a different perspective than themselves is what makes attending a workshop so worthwhile. When participants let them be move into new ways of seeing and are willing to go outside their usual box, that’s when they will experience tremendous growth and development during a workshop.

During this year’s Cuba workshop, all the participants did exactly that. Yes, some of them felt vulnerable when we pushed hard, which is something we experience in all workshops we teach, but they also came out on the other side with a new photographic confidence and a stronger sense of their photographic voice.

Shooting on the street is difficult for anyone who is not used to it. Particularly approaching strangers on the street with the intention of capturing photos of them can be challenging. It takes a lot of practice to be at ease when walking over to a complete stranger—even for a seasoned photographer used to shooting on the street. Even more so for participants who have never done anything like this before. But again, the participants of this year’s photo workshop ended up getting into any situation by the end of the workshop, yes, they equally easily entered houses of strangers and kept shooting inside their homes.

I think this willingness to face up to the task was what made their work so outstanding. This post gives a little sample of photos by the participants.

Posted in Photo Workshop, Photography, Travel Photography | Tagged , , , | 45 Comments

Last Week’s Instagram

Once a week—or every so often—I will display one of my photos captured and/or processed with Instagram over the last week (this photo is actually more than a week old, but I haven’t posted any new material the last week). It’s a way for me to show photography that usually is quite different from my regular work. Except for the technical details beneath the pictures are displayed without any comments, hoping they will stand on their own. But I still very much appreciate any comments you may have.

Facts about the photo: The photo was taken with a Canon Eos 5D with a 24-105 lens set at 24 mm. Shutter speed: 1/80 of a second. Aperture: f/6.3. The photo was transferred to my cell phone and processed with the Snapseed app with various adjustments and filters.

Posted in Personal Work, Photography, Travel Photography | Tagged , , | 56 Comments

Cuba Photo Workshop

Back from Cuba again and trying to absorb the impressions from both the photo workshop I taught and my own work I had time to pursue the last week of my stay there. The latter I will writer more about later. Here and now, I just want to convey my immediate thoughts on the workshop, which took place during the first week of my stay in Cuba.

We—the two teachers, my friend and colleague Sven Creutzmann and me—had a enthusiastic and devoted group of workshop participants in this workshop we have taught on and off since 2007. Our goal is to push every one of the participants to perform and develop as much as possible during the week the workshop lasts.

Sometimes we might be pushing too hard—at least for some—but for us it’s important that each and every participant returns with strong imagery from Cuba as well as with a feeling they have taken some major step forward in their photography. I believe everyone did exactly that, although a few in the beginning had a hard time adjusting to the pace and the frustration of not getting immediate results. As with everything that matters in life, it takes time and work to improve and develop. In a later post, I will show some of the amazing imagery the participants came up with.

The workshop started up with a couple of days in Havana. Among other events, the participants would cover the May First parade, the international workers’ day, which is a big festivity in Cuba. Of course there were plenty of street shooting in the bustling capital. After three days in Havana, we took off for Trinidad, a beautiful, old city situated almost in the middle of Cuba along the southern coast. The pace is slower and gentler and the participants were finally able to devote all their time to their personal project, which they had picked for the workshop.

This was when the participants really started to produce outstanding work. The picture critique every day was both fun and inspiring for that same reason. And of course, Sven and I kept pushing for more. If this workshop is not a boot camp, it’s still not a holiday, at least for those who choose to get as much out of it as possible. All the better that we staid at a hotel right on the Anchon beach so both we and the participants could cool off in the emerald green Caribbean sea in between the battles.

I think it is safe to say that everybody, by the end a week ago, had had a tremendous experience and not the least could look back on a week of great photography and personal development. Already now, Sven and I have scheduled the next workshop in Cuba. It will take place from May 6th to May 12th 2018. Maybe something to consider? Then take note of the date and set time aside.

On a different note, I must apologies for not having been able to follow up comments and notes on my blog while I was in Cuba. Internet access is so bad everywhere in Cuba it’s virtually impossible to do anything but answer emails. I promise I will get back to each and every one of you over the next weeks.

Posted in Creativity, Photo Workshop, Photography, Travel Photography | Tagged , , , | 59 Comments

Subdued Simplicity

Over the eight weeks that Phil Vaughn attended the online photo workshop «Finding Your Photographic Voice», I noticed a significant development in his photography. By the end of the workshop, Phil was both clearer in his approach and were able to express his vision with more strength.

I think this is quite evident in the personal photo project he worked on during the last four weeks of the workshop. The theme for the project was something so everyday-like as a park, but the photos has a personal touch and transcend the peacefulness and quiet that many parks represents for its urban users.

Phil photographed the airy Engler Park, Farmington, Missouri with a subdued sensibility. The photos radiate this tranquil approach in both composition and the photos’ colour palette. The colours are a strange combination of being muted as well as subtle. There is a simplicity over his work that strengthens the expression and underlines the serene feeling of the park.

During the four weeks, Phil worked on the project he returned to the park during all times of the day. He photographed the visitors of the park, their activity as well as the more deserted areas of the park. The photo project comes together as a visual essay that tells the story of life and environment in a pleasant park.

Later in the spring I will start up another round of the online workshop, more specifically May 22nd. If you are interested, you will find more information about «Finding Your Photographic Voice» on the web site of Blue Hour Photo Workshops.

Posted in Photo Workshop, Photography | Tagged , , , | 33 Comments

Teaching a Workshop in Cuba

© Otto von Münchow

© Sven Creutzmann

© Sven Creutzmann

© Sven Creutzmann

© Otto von Münchow

© Sven Creutzmann

Since the weekend, I am back in Cuba again, teaching another photo workshop here. I actually don’t known how many times I have taught the workshop, but it’s always such a joy to meet with new students and photographers. And not the least to be able to talk about and do what I burn for. Don’t we all burn for photography—at least most of you reading this blog?

So far, we have been photographing in Havana, but in a couple of days, we move on to the beautiful colonial city of Trinidad.

This post has actually been written before I left, since internet access is almost none existing in Cuba. I hope to be able to post more over the next week or two, but often I find it impossible. Particularly uploading any kind of photos is quite a trial to one’s patience. Thus, I cannot promise any photos or reports before I am back in Norway again, but I will do my best.

The pictures posted here are from the previous photo workshop I taught in Cuba. Like all Cuba workshops, I teach this together with my friend and colleague Sven Creutzmann.

Posted in Photo Workshop, Photography | Tagged , , , | 42 Comments

Last Week’s Instagram

Once a week—or every so often—I will display one of my photos captured and/or processed with Instagram over the last week (this photo is actually more than a week old, but I haven’t posted any new material the last week). It’s a way for me to show photography that usually is quite different from my regular work. Except for the technical details beneath the pictures are displayed without any comments, hoping they will stand on their own. But I still very much appreciate any comments you may have.

Facts about the photo: The photo was taken with a Panasonic Lumix LX-100 with the lens set at 34 mm (the equivalent of a 75 mm for a full frame camera). Shutter speed: 1/1000 of a second. Aperture: f/5.6. The photo was transferred to my cell phone and processed with the Snapseed app.

Posted in Creativity | 37 Comments