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changed through photography

Contact Elizabeth Opalenik for info about wholesale information, and general enquiries.

From the preface by Elizabeth Opalenik


Each teacher was asked to tell a workshop story that influenced or inspired them personally—involving colleagues, peers, or students—whether funny, poignant, profound, or sad. These authentic stories are universal, and in them we find ourselves. More broadly, the goal of this book is not only to preserve memorable workshop experiences, but also to share the varied and unique images of the photographers who contributed their talents and expertise to these institutions. 


I am honored and humbled by how the connections and threads of workshops were spun to create a community that shared, laughed and learned together. People were hungry for knowledge in the early days of workshops. There may have been masters and students, but there were no divides when it came to sharing. 


The first request on Valentine’s Day 2020 soon became a tenacious undertaking in the middle of a pandemic as everyone’s life became upended. 


Who knew how quickly our world would change? Perhaps it was symbolic of the way workshops often altered people’s lives in the course of a single week.


As a visitor to this site, you may have been a student of one of these teachers and were inspired and changed by the experience! We hope that you will decide to include this volume in your personal collection and consider it as a gift for friends and family. 

GHesiler-Spread copy.jpg

Over one hundred layouts with photographs 

“Teaching at The Workshops has been like training wheels for my current full-time professorship.
Jay Maisel told me that after a workshop he ‘feels like a lemon that’s been sucked dry by a
900-pound gorilla.’”
“It was an invaluable incubator for ideas and an intense crucible for crafting them.” 

Gregory Heisler 

Publication date, Spring 2021

First Edition Hardbound, 10 x 12 inches, 230 pages 

Foreword:  Jay Maisel

Publisher: True North Editions

Edit/Design: Elizabeth Opalenik

Printed in China by Artron Printing America San Rafael, CA

From Some of the Workshop Stories


“Summers were the stage set for steamy hot workshops, photography plus sex. You weren’t just going to learn about F-stops, you also went to meet interesting people who were passionate about photography.” 

Judy Dater 


“A lot of complaining went on, but I don’t think I ever met a student or a teacher who said they were not coming back. They all knew they had grown.”

Jay Maisel


“Use your feet to zoom in or out, because the less you carry, the more you will see. And the more you see the more photographs you’ll make. A role model was forming...”

Arthur Meyerson

about his work with Ernst Haas in Japan


“Ruth had collected pine cones and needles, seeds, moss, lichen, pebbles, feathers, and arranged them all neatly on the dashboard. It was amazing to see her excitement as we rounded each bend in the road. A favorite Ruth Bernhard quote is, ‘There are no unworthy subjects; there are only unwilling photographers.’”

John Sexton


“He opened my box of black-and-white prints mounted on acid-filled boards. He flipped through my twenty photographs in twenty seconds and said, ‘you need this place.’ And he was off, and he was right. The abrupt beginning and ending of that day in early April 1976 changed my life.”

Reid Callanan


"The suitcase I was carrying was a white Samsonite overnight case with red sateen lining I’d gotten for my twelfth birthday. I had been inordinately proud of it then, but now I was embarrassed by its childish appearance, although it did a great job of protecting the ancient 5x7 camera inside."

Sally Mann

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