In October of 2008, National Geographic photographer and anthropologist Martin Gray will host two photography workshops in beautiful Sedona, Arizona. The workshops are scheduled for the days of October 4-7 and October 18-21. Each of the workshops will have four full days but they may also be taken as two-day events (October 4 & 5, October 18 & 19).
The purpose of these workshops is for participants to learn and practice the techniques and art of image construction (composure and exposure). It is expected that participants will be familiar with the use of their cameras. The workshops are suitable for amateur photographers as well as experienced professionals.
The workshops will begin the morning of Saturday and will continue on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. For people desiring to only take two days of the workshops those days will be Saturday and Sunday. Each of the days will include instruction, time for photographic practice, and critique of each participant's photographs when the entire group comes together in the evenings. The first two hours of Saturday morning will be for an orientation and also an opportunity for participants to meet with one another.
For the mornings of each day participants are encouraged to go wherever they want in the Sedona area and take photographs. During this morning period participants are not limited to photographing the rocks, forests and streams around Sedona but may also photograph the buildings and roads of the town. The purpose of the workshops is for participants to learn and practice techniques of image composition and not to limit themselves to photographing a particular subject — in fact it is suggested that they photograph subjects other than those they would normally choose.
For the afternoons of each day participants will gather for four hours at a particular place in the landscape of Sedona. The first hour will be for a discussion by Martin Gray concerning the construction of photographic images. The next three hours will be a time for each participant to explore and photograph the area where that day's class is being held. Participants may take as many photographs as they wish, with the understanding that they will then select ten of the photographs they made during the entire day to be shown at the group meeting that evening.
In the evenings, following dinner, the group will assemble to view everyone's photographs and listen to Martin's critique of those photographs. Each of the following days will be a repeat of the structure of the first day but different locations for making photographs will be used. Different approaches to image construction will be taught and practiced each day.
The critique periods by Martin Gray are not periods of criticism but rather opportunities for Martin to observe each participant's photographs, analyze them and present that analysis to the assembled group — with the expectation that each participant will learn things from viewing of all the other participants' photographs.
Participants need to use 35 mm digital cameras, not film cameras, so that their images may be downloaded onto the workshop computer that will be used to project the photographs each evening. It will be helpful if each participant brings their own laptop and a Data Key with a USB connection, in order to facilitate the downloading of their images to their own laptop. With their own laptop it will be possible to quickly select the ten images they will show each evening. The ten selected images will be organized and highlighted on their Data Key and consequently downloaded to the workshop computer that will be connected to the digital projector. If any participants do not have their own laptops please let us know so that we may make arrangements for the selection and transfer of your images to the workshop computer.