Arrive Monday, April 2 and depart Monday, April 9, 2012 — Semana Santa, Holy Week in Oaxaca, Mexico — 8 Days, 7 Nights
Creating a great portrait requires a combination of recognizing good light, applying technical skill and aesthetic judgment, and communicating with your subject. Here in Oaxaca, Mexico, we will gather on location with photographer/instructor Matt Nager to build upon the basics behind conceiving, developing, and creating powerful portraits. We offer a particularly rich visual experience since our program is held during Holy Week or Semana Santa just before Easter.
Using an ethnographic approach, participants will photograph local subjects to create natural and expressive images. This cultural immersion travel photography experience brings you in contact with indigenous people in their own communities who are celebrating centuries old traditions.
Portrait photography doesn’t need to be complicated and often will create lasting memories for both the photographer and the person being photographed. This workshop will teach you all the skills needed to simplify the portrait process and make it fun!
Who should attend? The workshop is for amateurs as well as intermediate and advanced photographers who are new to portraiture and who want to know more about lighting. Our approach demystifies the portrait by simplifying both natural and artificial lighting situations. We strip down often overly complicated conditions to bring the photographer face-to-face with the subject.
- Practicing your portraiture skills through daily assignments
- Using natural light and responding to different lighting situations
- Directing your subject through varying body positions
- Orchestrating on-location lighting setups
- Identifying your own photographic style
- Finding and executing portraits “on the fly”
- Marketing and developing your business to build a clientele
- Coaching sessions one-on-one with the instructor
Each day we will discuss different techniques and review the images you have shot. There will be plenty of time for discussion, feedback, and sharing of ideas and experiences. We will address topics such as: How do you stay inspired? What do you say and do to sustain authentic connection with your subject? How do you prepare yourself to stay open, interested, and flexible?
We will devote one session to marketing and creating a successful portrait photography business. Matt will share his methods for reaching potential clients and marketing photography. Business development strategies will include how to create effective websites, email campaigns, stock sales, and developing a marketing calendar.
At the end of our week together, we will select our best portraits and hold a group show and reception, inviting local guests. It is an extraordinary gift and cultural exchange.
A complete itinerary and daily schedule will be provided after you register.
A word about equipment and experience: We will offer a list of “what to bring” after you register! All levels are welcome, from beginner to advanced. The techniques learned in this workshop can be applied to any camera and format. However, for the best experience, we suggest that each participant bring a digital SLR camera and laptop computer or iPad for editing images, and an external flash.
Students should know how to use their cameras beyond the automatic setting (we are happy to send you resources on request) and be able to import photos onto a computer. Our class will focus on subject interaction and lighting and not on basic camera use. Of course, Matt will be available for any technical questions about camera use and lighting equipment. If you have any questions about your skill level, please contact us and we will be happy to discuss this with you, offering support to get you ready to participate with us.
Your Workshop Leader is Matt Nager
Matt Nager is a Denver, Colorado, based portrait and editorial photographer. His love for nature and the outdoors, as well as his interest in people and culture, is central to his photography. Matt has over 10 years of photography experience. Before starting his own photography business, Matt worked with several newspapers including the Dallas Morning News and the Rocky Mountain News. In addition to photography, Matt also regularly shoots video and recently completed his first documentary titled: Campania In-Felix (unhappy country) which looks into the rise of health issues in Southern Italy as a result of illegal waste disposal. His clients include: DISCOVER Magazine, Fast Company Magazine, Mother Jones Magazine, The New York Times, Smithsonian Magazine, and the Wall Street Journal. Matt speaks English and Spanish, and is learning Italian. His work is at: www.mattnager.com
- 7 nights lodging
- 7 breakfasts
- 4 group lunches
- 3 group dinners
- group transportation when part of itinerary
- guided visits to local markets, artisan workshops
- 18+ hours of instruction
- one 45-minute personal coaching session
Lodging/Accommodations and Cost
We will spend the first three nights in Oaxaca City and the last four nights in the Zapotec rug weaving village of Teotitlan del Valle. To keep this program affordable, we have selected clean and basic accommodations in Oaxaca City and in Teotitlan del Valle. In Teotitlan, you will stay at a bed and breakfast inn that is part of the family compound. We offer you delicious local meals made from scratch. If you desire upscale accommodations in Oaxaca City, let me know and we can arrange this for a premium. No luxury lodging is available in the village.
Base Cost: $1395 per person double occupancy with shared bath facilities. Single rooms are available with a single supplement. A limited number of double occupancy rooms with private bath, and single occupancy with private bath are available. Please indicate your preference below.
[ ] Option 1: I will share a room, double occupancy with shared bath, $1395 per person.
[ ] Option 2: I prefer a single room with shared bath for a total of $1495 per person.
[ ] Optional 3: I will share a room, double occupancy, with private bath for a total of $1495.
[ ] Option 4: I prefer a single room with private bath for a total of $1695.
[ ] Option A: 5-hour Zapotec cooking class, includes local market shopping tour and lunch, on April 9. Add $110 (includes class, three meals, one night lodging on April 9, departing on Tuesday, April 10).
[ ] Option B: Arrive Sunday, April 1 — add-on $150 (one extra night, includes breakfast), with meals on your own
[ ] Option C: Arrive Saturday, March 30 — add-on $300 (two extra nights, includes 2 breakfasts), with meals on your own
Most travel workshops of this type and length cost more than twice as much!
The trip does NOT include airfare, taxes, gratuities, travel insurance, liquor or alcoholic beverages, some meals, and local transportation to and from Oaxaca city.
Reservations and Cancellations
A 50% deposit based on your preferred options is required to guarantee your spot. The final payment for the balance due (including any additional costs) shall be postmarked by January 1, 2012. We prefer payment with PayPal. We will be send you an itemized invoice upon receipt of your registration form.
We strongly recommend that you take out trip cancellation, baggage, emergency evacuation and medical insurance before you begin your trip, since unforeseen circumstances are possible.
To get your questions answered and to register, contact: email@example.com
This retreat is produced by Norma Hawthorne, Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC. We reserve the right to make itinerary changes and substitutions as necessary.
2015 Day of the Dead Photography Workshop in Oaxaca, Mexico
Oaxaca, Mexico, is the place to be for Day of the Dead and you will capture it with your camera: parades, cemeteries, family traditions, special food and decor, markets, fiestas and faces. Follow the copal incense and marigold trail. Starts Sunday morning, October 30 and ends Thursday night, November 3.
Cost: $995 per person. Price includes all instruction, feedback sessions, personal coaching and transportation to and from Xoxocotlan and Teotitlan del Valle cemeteries. Does not include food or lodging. We will provide you with a list of hotels and B&B’s to choose the level of accommodation you prefer after you register. Then, make your own reservations directly. Come early or stay later, too. We will recommend sightseeing and other activities!
This is a hands-on photography workshop for learning and improving technique while you experience Oaxaca’s famed Day of the Dead rituals. By the end of the week, you will better use your camera for visual storytelling, photojournalism, portraiture and cultural discovery.
Your Workshop Leader is Matt Nager
Matt Nager is a Denver, Colorado, based portrait and editorial photographer. We invited him back to teach this workshop after rave reviews for teaching the People of Oaxaca Portrait Photography Workshop.
His clients include: DISCOVER Magazine, Fast Company Magazine, Mother Jones Magazine, The New York Times, Smithsonian Magazine, and the Wall Street Journal. Matt speaks English and Spanish. His work is at: www.mattnager.com
His love for nature and the outdoors, as well as his interest in people and culture, is central to his photography. Before starting his own photography business, Matt worked with the Dallas Morning News and the Rocky Mountain News.
In addition to photography, Matt also regularly shoots video and recently completed his first documentary titled: Campania In-Felix (Unhappy Country) which looks into the rise of health issues in Southern Italy as a result of illegal waste disposal.
This cultural immersion workshop tour offers you a deeper appreciation for the food, religious symbols, rituals and family celebrations both in Oaxaca city and in the rural Zapotec village of Teotitlan del Valle.
You will learn to:
During our week together, we will review each other’s work, give feedback, and offer supportive critiques. The workshop includes a mix of class instruction and being out on the streets to capture the action.
Technical topics covered include natural light, exposure, manual camera settings and night photography. We will offer optional editing sessions using Lightroom photo editing software.
Preliminary Itinerary (subject to change)
Day of the Dead Workshop Expedition 2015
Day 1, Saturday, October 30: Meet after breakfast at a central location in Oaxaca City where we will have a welcome and learning session, with a review of camera settings, exposure and using natural light. Then, we’ll hit the streets and local markets! Option is to meet up for a group dinner at your own expense.
Day 2, Sunday, October 31: We meet after breakfast. After showing your best work of Day 1, with review and feedback, we will have a learning session on night photography. At 3:30 p.m. we depart for the famed Xoxocotlan cemetery for an extraordinary Day of the Dead extravaganza. Matt is with us every step of the way for coaching and technical support. This could be a late night, so be prepared! We will stay until at least 10 p.m., maybe later! Includes transportation to/from Xoxocotlan.
Day 3, Monday, November 1: You will have the morning on your own to prepare your best of the Xoxocotlan cemetery. We will meet midday to share our work with a feedback and learning session, then get back on the streets to catch the calendas and other processions. Some may want to share an optional taxi to San Pablo Villa de Mitla for their Day of the Dead festivities that start mid-afternoon
Day 4, Tuesday, November 2: We leave for an afternoon and evening in Teotitlan del Valle after our morning learning and photo feedback session. You are paired with another workshop participant to share a traditional meal with a local host family and go with them to the village cemetery. To be embedded with a local family is an amazing cultural immersion experience to learn more about indigenous customs and traditions. We return to Oaxaca city mid-evening. Includes transportation and lunch.
Day 5, Wednesday, November 3: We meet after breakfast to share experiences and photos of the day. You’ll have the rest of the day on your own to meander and prepare your Best of Week photo presentation. We get together in early evening for a Best of Week photo presentation followed by goodbyes. Please feel free to invite guests! Then, we’ll meet for an optional group supper (expense on your own).
What You Should Bring
(Before the workshop starts, we will send you a complete packet and information guide with suggested packing list, and other useful information.)
Cost: $995 USD. Deposit to reserve your space is $500. Workshop includes:
Not Included: The expedition does NOT include lodging, meals that are not specified in the itinerary, airfare, taxes, tips/gratuities, travel insurance, liquor/alcoholic beverages and optional transportation.
About Recommended Accommodations: We will be based in Oaxaca city for this workshop. We will recommend several outstanding hotels and B&B’s where you may choose to stay, complete with contact information and estimated pricing. You can also check TripAdvisor and BookingDotCom. All reservations for lodging will be made and paid for by you directly with the hotel. You are free to choose any accommodation you prefer, from luxury to basic hostel. We will send you a list of recommended hotels after you register and make your deposit.
Reservations and Cancellations
A 50% deposit will reserve your space. The final payment for the balance due shall be made on or before August 1, 2014. We accept PayPal for payment only. We will send you an invoice for your deposit to reserve when you tell us you are ready to register.
If cancellation is necessary, please notify us in writing by email. After August 1, no refunds are possible; however, we will make every effort to fill your reserved space or you may send a substitute. If you cancel on or before August 1, we will refund 50% of your deposit.
We require that you take out trip cancellation, baggage, and at least $50,000 USD of emergency evacuation and medical insurance before you begin your trip. We know unforeseen circumstances are possible.
To register, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org We accept payment with PayPal only. Thank you.
This workshop is produced by Norma H-Shafer, Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC. We reserve the right to alter the itinerary and substitute instructors without notice.
Don’t let this workshop pass you by!
Posted in Cultural Commentary, Oaxaca Mexico art and culture, Photography, Teotitlan del Valle, Travel & Tourism, Workshops and Retreats
Tagged 2015, Camera, class, course, cultural immersion, day of the dead, dia de los muertos, digital, DSLR, ethnographic, iPhone, Matt Nager, Mexico, muertos, Oaxaca, photography, photojournalism, point-and-shoot, portraiture, tourism, tours, workshop