For the Love of Photography: Jeffrey Martz on the Amateur Spirit

Willamette Valley Jeffrey Martz

Of all the eras and styles in the medium’s history, art historian and photographer Jeffrey Martz is most drawn to the 19th-century amateur pictorial photographers such as Lewis Carroll, Clementina (Lady Hawarden), and Julia Margaret Cameron.

“An amateur photographer was a clearly-defined category of maker in the 19th century, someone who pursued photography seriously but not professionally. They weren’t in a studio trying to please a client, and because of this, they were free to make the best possible pictures in whatever style they wished. They did their work literally for the Latin root of the word—amore—or love,” Jeffery explained.

Non-Stop Action at Our Slow Food Workshop in Umbria

photography workshop italy umbria

Jeff Zaruba and I arrived in Umbria a few days before the workshop began to scout locations with our Italian assistant Lorenzo. Those first couple of days were busy, but they were nothing compared to the non-stop action once the workshop began.

We had 10 students in the group and one of the students brought along his wife. On our first day of shooting, we went to a bed and breakfast we’d scouted a year ago. The location is extremely picturesque and Eleanora was all ready for us: The kitchen was set up for us to shoot while she prepared lunch, and she’d planned a wonderful menu.

slow food umbria assisi

Getting to the Heart of Slow Food in Umbria

slow food umbria assisi

Stuart Schwartz recently spent three days with his family in Umbria, Italy, as part of a scouting trip for a new workshop next summer focused on the Slow Food movement and the local Italian lifestyle.

“My goal is to create a workshop in which we’ll create an accurate portrait of Umbria—the people, lifestyle, landscape, and architecture—but also get an intimate experience of what it’s like to actually live in Umbria, if even for only a short time,” writes Stuart.

Tips for night photography from expert shooter Hendrik Paul

5 Tips for Taking Amazing Photographs at Night

Tips for night photography from expert shooter Hendrik Paul

Fine art photographer Hendrik Paul is best known for his surreal black and white landscapes of the Marin Headlands, but he also likes to venture out at night to take ethereal images in both urban and rural settings.

Here our most accomplished night shooter shares his tips for night photography, from the best equipment to use to the best time to shoot, so you can start taking beautiful photos at night!

Photography in Cuba, photographing Cuba

Photographing Cuba: Beyond Expectations

Photography in Cuba, photographing Cuba

The Image Flow is back from our second (perhaps annual) workshops in Cuba. There were new experiences, old friends, and of course a night at the Tropicana. The group came home exhilarated and stimulated and with a portfolio of work even beyond our own expectations. Stuart Schwartz fills us in.

We wanted to build on the success of our first photography workshop in Cuba in April 2015, and this past February organized two more back to back, Cuba: Behind Closed Doors and The Havana Highway: Rum, Cars & Cigars. It was particularly satisfying to us as organizers that all six participants from last April signed up again, and we added to that some great new faces, including two old friends of mine who joined us all the way from Switzerland.

Both sessions turned out to be just ideal, from student participation to the variety of shooting opportunities. Of course there were glitches, as there will be when organizing a group of people—especially in Cuba—but it’s a testament to both our local guides Ramses and Alex and the go-with-the-flow attitude of the group that no matter what came up, we made the best of it. Ramses Batista, a renowned photographer in his own right, was our man on the ground; he’d make a call, and all of a sudden we were in a private apartment shooting portraits of a fascinating individual. Often, those little glitches served to make our experience even more authentic and unique.

Burnt palms near Salton Sea, 2015. Photo © Ted Orland.

7 Inspiring Photography Subjects Near California’s Salton Sea

Burnt palms near Salton Sea, 2015. Photo © Ted Orland.

Ted Orland is one of The Image Flow’s favorite wandering photographers, with a love of photography and life that is truly infectious.

He began his career as a young graphic artist working for famed designer Charles Eames and later served as photographer Ansel Adams’s assistant. Now a celebrated landscape photographer himself, Ted’s portfolio spans classical black and white photography, hand-colored photographs, and one-of-a-kind multi-image panoramas. He also co-authored the best-selling artists’ survival guide book Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking.

This spring, Ted will lead a new landscape and travel photography workshop to California’s Salton Sea and Joshua Tree National Park along with Brian Taylor, artistic director of the Center for Photographic Art.

In his own words, Ted shares seven of his favorite photography subjects throughout in this unique region of California.

Maui Haleakala Flow Photography Tips

5 Tips on How to Photograph a Usual Place in an Unusual Way

Maui Haleakala Flow Photography Tips

Ever get up at the crack of dawn and haul out of the hotel/condo/AirBnb with a cup of coffee and camera and haul down to a beautiful beach or center of a quaint Eastern European city ready to take the perfect sunrise photography, only to be overcome with the feeling that it’s already been done? Here, travel photographer Jeff Zaruba offers five tips for turning the ordinary into extraordinary.

© barbara hazen weekend photography workshop big sur The Image Flow

An Action-Packed Weekend of Landscapes & Nudes in Big Sur

© barbara hazen weekend photography workshop big sur The Image Flow

The Image Flow headed down to Big Sur for an all-inclusive weekend photography workshop shooting nude models and the rugged California coast, not to mention a tour of Ansel Adams’ private darkroom and a behind-the-scenes look at the Edward Weston estate. Stuart Schwartz offers a few words:

This is the first time we’ve held Big Sur Landscapes & Nudes, and you never know how a new workshop is going to go, so there’s always a bit of apprehension. But as soon as we got to the Center for Photographic Art in Carmel, CA, on Thursday, for a presentation of work by instructors Michelle Magdalena and Ken Parker and a motivational talk with Artistic Director Brian Taylor, it was pretty obvious it would a special weekend.

Grizzly with Salmon © Mary D'Agostino nature & landscape photographer

Mary D’Agostino: Seeking Beauty in Nature’s Fleeting Moments

Grizzly with Salmon © Mary D'Agostino nature & landscape photographer

Emerging nature and landscape photographer Mary D’Agostino is as homegrown as much of her work. A busy executive by day, Mary used to spend her vacations painting wildlife, but in recent years, she has developed a passion for photography. She put herself through a “school of photography” taking workshops and classes at The Image Flow and started working one-on-one with Stuart. “I was doing projects and shooting a lot, and I would routinely bring my work in for critique from Stuart.”

Mary has also sought critiques from experts in the field of nature photography, which have been met with increasing success. “I’m fearless when it comes to finding people in the field of photography to evaluate my photographs,” she says.

film photography Zac Mosher processes his black and white images at The Image Flow

Growing Up In the Digital Age, Zac Mosher Loves to Shoot Film

film photography Zac Mosher processes his black and white images at The Image Flow

Zac Mosher, a 14-year-old student at Mill Valley Middle School, has been spending several hours per week in the darkroom at The Image Flow for the past six months processing and printing his black and white images.

“I actually started shooting film after I started with digital, but I wasn’t super into photography at the time,” he says. Later, he discovered his mom’s old cameras while going through a storage unit with his parents. “I thought they were really cool. So I got the cameras and went out and got some film. That’s what really sparked my interest.”

Jens Closer Hendrik Paul landscape photographer

Landscape Photographer Hendrik Paul Straddles the Old and New

Jens Closer Hendrik Paul landscape photographer

Hendrik Paul straddles two worlds: He grew up in Mill Valley, CA, where he took his first photography class in eighth grade. He spent his free time hiking on Mount Tamalpais and soaking up the northern California landscape, but his roots are firmly planted on a 500-year-old farm in Germany.

“It’s such a different life from how we live, this small farming community, living off the land. The men went out and did the field work and the women did the cooking. It’s still quite antiquated compared to California or America,” says Hendrik.

Matt Black Former cotton migrant at home Teviston, CA

Matt Black: Documenting the Social Implications of Modern Farming

Matt Black Former cotton migrant at home Teviston, CA

From southern Mexico to rural California, Matt Black documents the social issues of modern farming and the effects of one of the most severe droughts in recorded history.

Matt Black began photographing the small towns and expansive farmlands of California’s Central Valley for nearly 20 years. A native of that vast agricultural area that runs nearly the entire length of the state, Matt says he began to notice a shift in the people working the fields around his home town.

Discussion with Gary Yost: Photographing Bowling Ball Beach

The Image Flow sat down with Gary Yost to discuss his experience trekking up to Pt. Arena in Mendocino County to photograph the unusual shaped rocks that reveal themselves only at certain tides. What inspired you to photograph Bowling Ball Beach in Mendocino’s Pt. Arena? I was at the Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival in Sept 2010 and met an exhibitor Fred Mertz, a landscape photographer who mainly works in Northern California. We tried to make a plan to shoot …