Workshops

A workshop can provide a productive laboratory for a photographer who is interested in exploring a particular aspect of their practice. This is the main idea behind the workshops I'm offering. They each cover a specific topic or a part of a photographer's practice. During a workshop, participants will produce new work, which is then being discussed by the group. At the same time, there will be discussions around the workshop's focus that look into relevant pieces or photography/art and/or writing. Unless otherwise noted (please see details below), the workshops will be held online in groups of 6 to 8 participants. Workshops are strictly limited to a relatively small number of participants to maximise the time and attention available for them.

The Workshop of Boredom

I’m living in this movie, but it doesn’t move me.
(from: The Buzzcocks — Boredom)

If you have no concept of time, you have no concept of boredom. You’re bored because the flow of time appears to be in conflict with what you expect to be happening. If you think about it this way, boredom, possibly the most underappreciated state to be in, opens up a vast field of possibilities. Boredom is not an external fact; it is not something you are subjected to by outside forces. Instead, it’s the outcome of a mismatch between the external world and the internal one.

“The contemporary terror of boredom, which testifies to its apparent inevitability,” Elizabeth Goodstein wrote in 2005, “is saturated with the post-Romantic resignation to a world in which neither work nor leisure can bring happiness to subjects who no longer hope for divine restitution in the next.” Eight decades earlier, while exploring the idea of boredom Siegfried Kracauer concluded that “[i]f […] one has the patience, the sort of patience specific to legitimate boredom, then one experiences a kind of bliss that is almost unearthly.”

The above provides the broad outlines of this workshop. Over the course of four weeks, its participants and I will explore what boredom actually means in the context of photography. We will study how the patience Kracauer mentioned can lead to an expansion of what might be considered an interesting photograph. To this end, we will discuss a number of texts, and we will set out to produce new work. In a nutshell, the idea is to make “boring” pictures in order to understand how useless such a descriptor actually is when thinking or talking about photography.

Each meeting will consist of a mix of conversations. Each week, there will be a text to discuss (which include both Goodstein’s and Kracauer’s essays). There will be examples of photography or other art to look at and discuss (participants are encouraged to share something that have come across as well). And there will be discussions of the work the workshop participants have produced since the last meeting. Given the short time spans between sessions, participants are strongly encouraged to use a digital camera or smartphone to take pictures.

Four weeks
20, 27 August, 3, 10 September 2022
Saturdays 12:00pm-2:00pm, 2:30pm-4:30pm EST
Open to all ages; intermediate to advanced levels; limited to 6-8 participants
$400

Text and Image — Image and Text

The idea of the workshop is to serve as a laboratory where image-text relationships can be explored. Participants will experiment with text and develop a deeper understanding of what can be done when images are combined with text. Every participant will develop their own image-text piece. Given the laboratory nature of the workshop, it is not intended for artists who already have a lot of text and want to refine it.

In order to be able to participate, artists need to have a fully developed photography project (or set of pictures) that can serve as the basis of an image-text exercise. The project’s original idea does not need to contain the inclusion of text. But it should be complete enough so that participants can focus their time on developing text and pairing it with images in whatever way possible. Previous experience with image-text pieces is not necessary.

After an introduction and general discussion of possibilities in the first meeting, each following meeting will consist of a mix of conversations around the results produced by participants since the previous meet up. In addition, there will be examples of text-image pieces looked at and discussed. Participants are encouraged to share something that have come across as well.

Six weeks
21, 28 August, 4, 11, 18, 25 September 2022
Sundays 12:00pm-2:00pm, 2:30pm-4:30pm EST
Open to all ages and levels; limited to 6-8 participants
$600

How To Sign Up

Send an email jmcolberg@gmail.com, and we'll arrange all the details.

Also, email any questions you might have.