Joy of Seeing – Cortijo Romero
Mindful Photography at Cortijo Romero
Cortijo Romero is one of the best respected centres for personal development holidays in Europe and it is an honour to present our “Joy of Seeing” workshops there. Cortijo Romero Website
Like our core workshops, Cortijo Romero is also situated on the edge or Órgiva in Las Alpujarras. Read more about Las Alpujarras
“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.” – William Blake
This photography week with a difference is a wonderful way to bring ourselves into the present moment, to experience fully and to rediscover the beauty in everyday things around us. By being mindful and immersing ourselves in our surroundings, photographs will flow to us naturally.
Ken’s approach helps re-connect you to the joy of seeing, using mindfulness to create a fresh way of being behind a camera. During the week’s holiday, Ken you will be inspired to see the world around you in the present moment, and as a result, you will find a whole new way to create images that delight and are wholly you.
We will learn to notice when we see something, to ask “what stopped me” and to REALLY see what is there for what it is, without judgement. Making the photograph is just the final step.
If you would like to share a week exploring mindful photography with like-minded people, sharing fabulous vegetarian meals, relaxing in beautiful gardens amongst ancient olives, surrounded by stunning mountains, under a radiant blue sky … this could be the holiday for you!
The weather in the Alpujarras will be warm, and included in the holiday will be a trip into the surrounding mountains to visit the unspoilt villages that sit in white clusters, nestled amid the deep gorges of the region. Take in far-reaching views across the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and down to the sea. Treat yourself to a truly soulful, restful week and go home with new photography skills to play with. And perhaps, a whole new view of life!
The practice of photography can be a joyful and therapeutic pastime in itself, allowing us to express ourselves and ideas in new and individual ways.
Some of the ideas we work with include:
- putting aside our preconceptions about what makes for “good” photography
- being mindful and in the moment
- letting go – learning to see without judgement
- understanding core principles of visual design, which help us to arrange our subject matter
- taking part in exercises and assignments, some as a group and others designed uniquely for you as an individual
- uncovering blocks and unhelpful self-talk that prevent us from expressing ourselves fully
- sharing, talking, laughing, relaxing: creating the right conditions for good creative flow
Do look at the ethos of Cortijo Romero to see the values and principles of the place. Cortijo Romero offers wellbeing and personal-development holidays that are light of touch and nurturing.
If you like what you see of the place, you will like our photography workshop.You will be investing in your approach to our wonderful artform of photography and in yourself.
For a wider exploration of Las Alpujarras as a region you might consider our core workshops based in La Estrellita.
These workshops are suitable for photographers of all levels of experience.
If you are a beginner then it will be very helpful to be familiar with the important features of your camera camera and to have some knowledge of the core principles of exposure, and depth of field.
If you are a seasoned enthusiast, then maybe a change of scenery and a fresh outlook could be the catalyst for a whole new phase in your creative work. Our “ rediscover the joy of seeing” approach could be just the perfect creative tonic.
We will be encouraging spontaneity and lightness, and learning how to perfect your hand-holding. To that end you may find that a compact camera gives you the freedom to travel and work light.
If you bring an SLR camera, prime or zoom lenses in the 18-55mm (28-70mm) range will be most useful. The more you are weighed down by equipment and choices, the less mindful your photography is likely to be.
You are very welcome to use a camera-phone too, but we will be encouraging you to see directly rather than through apps, and it would be beneficial if the phone is not your only option.
- Storage cards and spare batteries
- Your camera manual – !Important
- Your charger and plug adapters
- Tripod – but see above re spontaneity
In order that we can share work with each other, it would be very helpful to bring a laptop or tablet device with you, including the means to transfer images from your camera to your device and from your device to a USB stick.
Please note, however, this is not a course in post production using Adobe Photoshop or other editors. Our main concern is good camerawork, so you should expect to share work that is straight out of camera.
Cortijo Romero also has a “screen-free” policy, so you should expect to use your device only for image sharing. If you need further advice, please get in touch with us.
We will not be mountaineering! There is one optional walk included in the course itinerary, led by an experienced local guide. Other than that, walks will be local to the centre and no more than 5 miles on easy tracks.
Do bring walking shoes and a day rucksack that will hold your photography kit and a few essentials.
The back streets in the hill villages can also be very steep if you explore away from the village centre. Please do ask if you you have any mobility difficulties.
This course is based at Cortijo Romero. We will walk from the centre, except on the day’s excursion when transport is provided.
The climate in the Alpujarras is very agreeable. Temperatures in the spring are beginning to move into the twenties during the day, so come prepared for sunshine with comfortable clothing for walking and working on warm days, including sunglasses, sunhat and sun protection lotion.
Evenings can be cool, so you will definitely not regret bringing a warm fleece.
Rain is infrequent but often heavy when it arrives. A packable rain jacket will be useful, as will a travel umbrella that you could use when working. Yes we will work in most weathers!
Other than that, you will know what you like to take away with you. Again more information and advice is available on the Cortijo Romero website.
- 7 nights’ accommodation
- All meals
- Photography coaching on six days
- Tai chi or yoga, dance, walking, swimming, Spanish lessons
- One full day excursion and other walks