Join Stella Johnson + Georgia Matsamaki on a journey of image-making, discovery and The Sardine Festival in Crete, Greece!

Dates:
Aug 31, 2023 - Sep 5, 2023

Levels: Intermediate, Advanced,
Workshop Fee: $2850
Class Size: 12

Crete, Greece 1 - By Georgia Matsamaki
By Georgia Matsamaki

Join Greek-American photographer Stella Johnson and Greek photographer Georgia Matsamaki on a journey of image making, storytelling and discovery on the Island of Crete. Stella has been photographing in Crete since 2007. Georgia was born and raised in Crete, and although educated in England, she lives in Chania now and has deep understanding of the island. Georgia photographs the insignificant and non-human, transforming it into something significant. Stella photographs people and culture, thus they illustrate multiple ways of seeing and photographing in the same environments. 

Participants learn how to approach the incredibly welcoming Greeks for a storytelling project or learn how to make a set of disparate images work together to form a narrative that chronicles the students’ week- think culture, light, color, or whatever strikes you! 

By Stella Johnson

Stella and Georgia teach how to foster a personal style of photography, see and use all sources of light, abstract the details, and make strong compositions. They assist students in determining and defining their interests and ideas while learning how to make compelling images that tell a story.

Participants are out each day photographing an area, a segment of culture, or a person, depending on individual interests. Stella and Georgia meet privately and in class for daily critique as they review images, share their professional experiences working on stories, and explore what it takes to develop the strong relationships or ideas necessary to work on long-term projects. This is the lead-up to the annual SARDINE FESTIVAL that happens annually at Nea Chora beach, where most of us will be staying. It is an annual event and visually very special, not just about the Sardines, although they are grilled to perfection and free!

The class works with Greek teaching assistants who photograph with the group and act as translators and guides, adding an essential local flavor to the experience with an insider’s perspective of the culture.

The class is open to all students who love photography, learning about new cultures, and want to hone their visual skills. Students at any level of photographic experience are welcome, from using iPhones to DSLRs, but must know how to download their images for critique.

By Stella Johnson

Past student work:

View on Facebook  or on Stella’s website

Crete, Greece 5 - By Stella Johnson
Photo by Stella Johnson.

Workshop Information

Getting there and home:

Arrival: Plan to arrive in Chania by Thursday, August 31st. The workshop begins that evening with a group dinner and introductions. The first day of classes is Friday, September 1.

Departures:  The workshop ends Tuesday, September 5th with a group dinner and presentation of all participants’ work. Departure is the following day, Wednesday, September 6th or you can remain on to explore more of Crete.

Technology:

This workshop is conducted using digital cameras and iPhones. If you wish to photograph with film, you may so do, but we suggest that you take it home for processing.

What to Bring:

Besides your SLR and Point-and-Shoot digital cameras, bring a body of your creative work with you to share—a portfolio or a thumb drive of visually cohesive images. Bring a notebook or journal, a small tape recorder or iPod with mic to record the discussions along with ambient music and sound effects can be useful but are optional.

Camera Gear:

Digital SLR and Point-and-Shoot digital cameras are suggested. Two bodies are recommended, along with lenses from 28mm to 50 mm. Bring at least 5 extra cards (1 Gig each), extra batteries, a battery charger, and a laptop with image management software. Make sure you have a backup system on which to download each day’s work onto your laptop. This can be an external hard drive like LaCie. 

iPhones are welcome!

Research and preparation  

Research and preparation are important parts of any adventure. The more research completed before the workshop, the more effective the time in the country.

Accommodations  

Stella stays in the beach town of Nea Chora near the Danoas Hotel, which is right on the water. Classes will be conducted at the Danaos.  Students are responsible for booking their own rooms here or elsewhere. Stella has rooms on reserve so students need to identify themselves as one of her students.  Limited availability. Pricing includes a large continental breakfast.

http://www.danaoshotel.gr/ email [email protected]

A new boutique hotel also on the beach and close to the Danaos Hotel is the Chania Flair.  https://corissia.com/hotels/en/flair

Nea Chora Beach is 10 minutes walking distance outside of the Venetian port town of Chania and there are numerous hotels there.

Meals

The first and last meals are included in the cost of the workshop. You will be a guest of the workshop for a group opening dinner on Thursday, August 31st, and for the final dinner on Tuesday, September 5th. Aside from the two group meals, breakfasts, lunches, and dinners are independent; students are encouraged to join each other in local restaurants and cafes and will be joined by Stella and Georgia. Expect to be paying around $50 a day on meals.

Seeing Crete sunset - Stella Johnson
Photo by Stella Johnson.

Itinerary:

Thursday, August 31, 2023

  • Welcome Dinner and Introductions

Friday, September 1, 2023

  • 7:00 am-11:00am breakfast and free time to photograph on your own o
  • 11:00 am- 1:00pm critique at Danaos Hotel. 
  • 1:00-2:30 pm lunch with the class or on your own.
  • 2:30-4:30 pm free time (siesta in Greece) It is too hot and the light too harsh to photograph.
  • 5:00 pm-8:00 pm photographing at the beaches, in tavernas, cafes, the Venetian architecture in Chania, the port, the people, the light with Stella and Georgia and assistants to help with translations and getting around.
  • 8:00 pm dinner as a group or individually.

Saturday, September 2, 2023

  • 7:00 am- 8:00 am breakfast
  • 8:30-11:00am photographing at the farmer’s market with Stella and Georgia and assistants
  • 12:00- 2:00 critique at Danaos Hotel
  • 2:00- 3:30 lunch
  • 3:30-5:30 free time (siesta) 
  • 5:30- 8:00 photographing at the beaches, in tavernas, cafes, the Venetian architecture in Chania, the port, the people, the light with Stella and Georgia and assistants to help with translations and general getting around.
  • 8:00 pm dinner as a group or individually.

Sunday, September 3, 2023

  • 7:00 am-11:00am breakfast and free time to photograph on your own at the beach 
  • 11:00 am- 1:00pm critique at Danaos Hotel. 
  • 1:00-2:30 pm lunch with the class or on your own.
  • 2:30-5:00pm free time 
  • 5:00 pm-8:00 pm photographing at the beaches, in tavernas, cafes, the Venetian architecture in Chania, the port, the people, the light with Stella and Georgia and assistants to help with translations and general getting around.
  • 8:00 pm dinner with the class or on your own

Monday, September 4, 2023

  • Evening of the Sardine Festival at Nea Chora Beach in front of the Danaos Hotel and the Chania Flair Hotel.
  • 7:00 am-11:00am breakfast and free time to photograph on your own or download photos
  • 11:00 am- 1:00pm critique at Danaos Hotel. 
  • 1:00-2:30 pm lunch with the class or on your own.
  • 2:30-5:00pm free time
  • 5:00 pm- 10:00 pm:
    • The Sardine Festival at Nea Chora Beach
    • Photograph the preparations, the musicians, eat sardines on the beach etc. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

  • 7:00 am-11:00am breakfast and free time to photograph on your own or download photos
  • 11:00 am-1:00pm critique at Danaos Hotel. 
  • 1:00-2:30 pm lunch with the class or on your own.
  • 5:00 pm- 8:00 pm either photograph on your own or join in the editing and sequencing of the final slide show!
  • 8:00 pm-11:00 pm Slide show + Farewell Dinner

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

  • Departure or stay in Crete!
© Aris Kamarotos

Terms and Conditions for Travel Workshops
  • 1. Reservations & Payments
    • A deposit as indicated on the registration page is required to confirm your reservation for the workshop.  Final payment in full is due 45 days prior to the start date of your workshop unless stated differently in the course description..  Maine Media Workshops + College (“Maine Media”) reserves the right to cancel a reservation if full payment has not been received by the due date.
  • 2. Cancellations
  • 3. Basis of Rates
    • All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars; all payments must be made in U.S. dollars.
  • 4. Insurance
    • It is strongly advised that you purchase Trip Cancellation, Baggage, Emergency Medical Evacuation, and/or Accident and Sickness Insurance Protection. Camera equipment, computers, and baggage are carried entirely at the owner’s risk. Maine Media shall have no responsibility for any lost, damaged, or delayed property, or for an individual student’s medical needs, accidents, injuries, or illnesses. See our travel insurance recommendations here.
  • 5. Itinerary Changes
    • The itinerary for your workshop is subject to change without prior notification.
  • 6.  Passports and Visas
    • A valid passport is required for all international travel. You are required to notify Maine Media as to the nationality under which your passport is registered.  Participants are responsible for obtaining their passports and visas. To participate in the workshop, you must have a passport that is valid until at least six months after the date on which your trip is scheduled to be completed.
  • 7. Medical Issues
    • All participants must be in good health.   You must advise Maine Media of any health condition, physical condition, or emotional or mental condition that may require special attention or that may adversely impact the other participants in your workshop. All students are required to complete a “Waiver of Liability” form and submit it at the time of registration.  This document may be found on the course description page.
  • 8. Liability Waiver
    • Every participant is required to sign Maine Media’s Waiver of Liability before departure for their workshop.   Click here to download.
  • 9. Responsibility & Photography
    • To ensure a safe experience, you are required to obey local customs and be considerate when photographing people or sensitive locations.  The faculty member for your workshop has the right to expel any person from the workshop for behavior that is in violation of the law; that is disruptive; or that compromises the group’s safety or enjoyment.  No refunds will be made to any person expelled from a workshop. Maine Media shall have no obligation to pay any costs incurred by a person as a result of that person being expelled from a workshop.

Header Image Credit: Stella Johnson 

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Instructor: Stella Johnson

Stella Johnson is a photographer and educator known for her passionate and honest documentary projects. She received a Core Fulbright Scholar Grant to photograph in Mexico in 2003-2004, and Fulbright Specialist grants to teach in Mexico in 2006 and in Colombia in 2018. The University of Maine Press published her monograph, Al Sol: Photographs from Mexico, Cameroon and Nicaragua in 2008. Wild Greek Press published her second monograph, ZOI, in 2018. Johnson’s photographs have been widely exhibited in the United States and internationally. 

Georgia Matsamaki - Profile Picture

Instructor: Georgia Matsamaki

Georgia Matsamaki was born in Crete, Greece. She holds a BA in Graphic Design and Photography and she works in the area of Applied Arts. Along with professional assignments, she also concentrates on the creation of personal projects. Using photography, graphic design and collage as a medium, she seeks to spot the Invisible in everyday life, add value to insignificant objects and suggest new interpretations of what we take for granted. Emphasis on the insignificant and/or the apparent "nothing", is the basic element that characterizes her images.