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Upcoming Photo workshop to India

India is a country of unmatched diversity, spiritually, geographically, culturally, linguistically and more which makes a favorite for photographers around the world. Of all the places I have visited India is definitely one of my favorites, which is why I am excited to announce this photography workshop in partnership with The Flat Planet Travel.

Sufi Muslims at Nizamuddin Dargah in New Delhi

On this photography workshop we will start out in New Delhi wandering through the neighborhoods, markets, mosques, shrines and temples of Old Delhi, Nizamuddin, Mehrauli and more. Next we will head to Jodhpur, The Blue City, where we will explore this wonderfully colorful city and the surrounding desert landscapes that are home to wonderful and beautiful people and cultures.

One of the stops on this Photography workshop will be Jodhpur, The Blue City.

From Jodhpur we will drive to Udaipur along a route that will take us through the incredible Aravalli mountain range, past the magnificent Ranakpur Temple, a beautifully and intricately carved Jain temple, as well as wild monkeys, Rajasthani camel herders, painted elephants and more; it is truly an amazing drive.

Udaipur is known as the “Venice of the East”

Once in Udaipur we will take our time as we explore the beautiful waterways, ghats, palaces and more. Additionally, we venture outside the city to the south to experience rural Rajasthani desert life. We will have the privilege of eating with locals, creating images of the beautiful rocky landscapes of Rajasthan and more. Finally we will make our way back to New Delhi, stopping for two days in Jaipur, The Pink City before we make our way home.

This workshop will be an unforgettable adventure and is designed for photographers who want to enhance their visual storytelling skills in a relaxed yet focused mentoring environment.

The exact dates and price will be announced soon so be looking for these details. Until then stop buying Starbucks, have a garage sale and do whatever else you need to do to find the money to join us because you will not want to miss this adventure of a lifetime!


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To Pay or not to pay: Should we pay to take someone’s picture?

If you have traveled probably almost anywhere in developing  countries as photographer you have probably been asked by someone for money to take their picture. If not, then you are either not being bold enough in approaching people or traveling in countries where they have never seen tourists!

Anyway, on my last trip to India I was asked by so many people who I approached to be paid! Having traveled through North India pretty extensively I have just made it a rule that I never give out money, for a picture or otherwise, except on rare occasions. While I have been swarmed by street kids and been chased by a kid who was trying to throw small boulders at me for not giving out money, I still don’t do it today.

Now, as I said there are rare exceptions to this. On my last day in India I was shopping for some family members and I saw an elderly gentleman without legs pulling himself along the street with a stick while he pushed his begging can ahead with one of his arms. As I watched this man for a few seconds, and then looked around to make sure there were no swarming packs of street kids with small boulders in their hands, I bent down and placed the 20 rupees in my hand into his can.

The other time I gave out money on this trip was actually for a photo, which was first for me. Now again as I said, I rarely do this and was even hesitant this time. The story is I was driving from Jodhpur to Udaipur in a taxi with two South Africans and the taxi driver agreed to stop so I could take a picture of this Rajasthani guy that was hanging out on the side of the road.

The Rajasthani shepherd who my taxi driver insisted I pay 10 rupees.

The taxi driver insisted on walking over with me and while we did, he told me I should give the guy 10 rupees. At first I told him I don’t do that and even if I did, I didn’t have 10 rupees. He insisted and even gave me 10 rupees to give the guy. As I walked up and talked the man with the little Hindi I speak, the taxi driver began talking over me, rapidly reeling off some Hindi, which I gathered by the way the man eyed the 10 rupees in my hand, was a push for the man to take the money.

At first the elderly gentleman denied, but finally at the pushing of the taxi driver and his friend, he took the money. I was still uneasy about the whole thing, but since we were out in the middle of no where, I did feel a little safer at least. Whether I should or should not have paid I don’t know, I will leave that to others to decide. Will I pay again in the future? Probably not except in very rare situations.

Should those who are more fortunate pay those who are less fortunate to take their pictures? I don’t know. My gut is that it is not going to make much of a difference in the lives of those who have very little and it could probably cause more problems. But I could be wrong!

I would like to hear what you think. Share some stories of times you paid and it was the right thing to do and times you paid for pictures and it worked out bad. I am just one voice and I would like to know what others out there are experiencing.