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The Contemplative Landscape: Death Valley and Lone Pine, California
with George DeWolfe
February 18 - February 24, 2012

This workshop has already begun or is a past workshop.

Throughout history, people have gone to the desert hoping to see life, themselves, and their surroundings anew. As photographers, we strive to create images that capture the underlying mystery of a seemingly ordinary place. The goal of this workshop is to learn to observe more deeply, and to find and capture such images in the desert landscape through a combination of intuition and perception.

“The Contemplative Landscape” begins with awareness exercises in photography that we have developed over the past 40 years. The awareness skills include sitting, standing and walking mindfulness that put you in the moment. Perceptual skills offer primary access to the actual visual working of the human eye-brain system, the tool with which we create our images. The perceptual exercises pull you away from the defeating process of copying landscape images made by others and help you concentrate on what you see. Exercises in negative space, seeing through and hidden wholeness are some of the main visual skills covered.

For the first part of the week we are based in Lone Pine and the second part of the workshop is based at Stovepipe Wells, letting us explore a variety of locations in and around Death Valley. We visit the Eureka Dunes, Death Valley Dunes, Zabriski Point, and elsewhere as we photograph each day, subject to weather and road conditions.

On a typical day in the early morning we’ photograph dawn light on the desert. After breakfast comes a lecture on various aspects of landscape photography technique, history, and ideas. Later in the afternoon we pick another location for evening light photography. We combine the contemplative exercises with landscape photography practice from both Western and Eastern ideas of landscape composition.

The workshop includes opportunities to view one another’s work and to talk individually about your images with the instructors. Throughout the week, our emphasis is on the contemplative process of making images rather than on technical details or typical photographic locations.

Includes tuition only. Travel and lodging arrangements should be made by each individual. Lodging will be at Dow Villa Motel in Lone Pine and at Stovepipe Wells in Death Valley. Because of the individual nature of the workshop enrollment is limited to 15 people. For complete information call (207) 266-0379. Please mention that you learned about this opportunity through Santa Fe Photographic Workshops.

George DeWolfe: George DeWolfe is an award-winning photographer whose career spans more than 40 years. A student of Ansel Adams and Minor Whi...

© Lydia Goetze
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