Tag Archives: cultural

Oaxaca Photography Workshop–Best of the Week

Woman with Blue Apron, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

For the last evening of our Oaxaca Photography Expedition: Market Towns and Artisan Villages, instructors Sam and Tom Robbins asked participants to choose 10 to 12 of their best photographs of the week.


Considering that some of us took up to 400 digital photos per day, that was a lot of shots to cull through and make decisions about!  What we each discovered …

Lace Hem, Tlacolula Market, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

was that we had made significant improvements in our technical and aesthetic skill during the six days we were together.

Weighing beans, Teotitlan del Valle Market copyright Norma Hawthorne 2011

I think I had taken a total of over 2,000 photographs that I was able to pare down to 1,500 mas o menos.

Plastic Woven Baskets, Ocotlan, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Fortunately, throughout the week we had periodic mini-shows of our best work so each of us could go back through those to make the final selection.

Worktable Altar, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

First I chose the best 65 shots.  Then, I took it down to 22 photos.  That was not so easy!

Tortillas Still Life, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Braids, Tlacolula, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Then, I managed to select 12 photos that for me represented my best work of the week.

Ocotlan Portrait, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Chandelier, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

We are planning to repeat this workshop next summer and I am taking a waiting list (no dates set yet).  Let me know if you are interested!  Email normahawthorne@mac.com

Funeral Bouquet, Ocotlan, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Emily, copyright 2011 Norma Hawthorne

Oaxaca Photo Expedition Day Two: June 30, 2011

Today was a walking tour of Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca, Mexico and definitely a cultural immersion experience. We started out with a return to the village market where daily commerce and social connection is played out. Next, we walked down the cobbled streets to the Bii Dauu weaving cooperative where Rafaela showed us the cultivation of cochineal on the prickly pear cactus. Her seventeen year old son was dressing the loom, tying the warp threads onto the heddles. After that, we walked across town to the home and studio of painter Pantaleon Ruiz Martinez to learn about how he uses natural dye pigments and beeswax in his paint. Everything is in micro-detail because Sam and Tom are teaching the group how to shoot close and move our feet. Here are my photos of Day Two to share with you.

Our next expedition is over Day of the Dead. Don’t miss it!

Oaxaca Photography in Teotitlan del Valle

What an incredible photography and cooking class day with Reyna Mendoza Ruiz at her family home. El Sabor Zapoteco is the cooking class program. And we did so much — photographing each other doing the food preparation in the traditional ancient Zapotec way, making mole rojo, the traditional fiesta mole of Teotitlan. The photography expedition is an extraordinary cultural immersion experience. Sam and Tom Robbins robbinsx2.com provide great coaching and instruction.