Open-access pro photography studio opens at Manarat Al Saadiyat

A new publicly-accessible Photography Studio opens at Manarat Al Saadiyat on 3 October, with facilities for photographers, workshops and exhibitions.

The services available include a studio available for rent, a digital lab, classrooms, and a large workspace including a makeup room and dressing room. We’re also promised “a vibrant annual programme” including exhibitions, workshops and masterclasses. Rather than a mere studio, this sounds more like a full-blown photography arts centre.

There’s no word yet about pricing for the facilities, but a series of courses have been announced:

Photography for All Daily classes for all levels of skill. Mondays, 10-12pm; AED 300

Basic Photography (Arabic/English) tutor Tariq Hijjawi One-month course covering the basic concepts and practices of digital photography, including aesthetic principles as they relate to composition, space, exposure, light, and colour. Mondays and Thursdays, 6-8pm; AED 600

Basic Studio Lighting tutor Abdulla Al Hashemi One-month course on the use of lighting in controlling an image. Tuesdays 4-6pm, AED 800

Photo-Editing (Retouching Portraits & Landscapes) tutor Wissam Zein One-month in-depth course specifically on editing landscapes and portrait images. Sundays and Wednesdays 4-6pm; AED 800

Intermediate/Advanced Photography tutor Phil Burgess One-month course intended for participants who have a basic knowledge in photography and are interested in furthering their knowledge and skills through analogue photography and digital techniques. Sundays and Wednesdays, 6-8pm; AED 800

Portrait Lighting Workshop tutor Mansoor Al Mannaee A workshop on the art of bringing out the essence of an individual—identifying the person’s personality and facial features, and coming up with a lighting scheme that will synchronize with them. 12 Oct 1-6pm, 13 Oct 10am-3pm; AED 800

Macro Photography Workshop tutor Yousef Al Habshi The class will teach participants about photographing objects that are very close to the lens to reveal details not visible with the naked eye. 26 Oct 1-6pm, 27 Oct 10am-3pm; AED 800

Master Class with Jassim Al Awadhi Two-day course for enthusiasts and specialists with a selection of high-profile photographers who will be leading the classes.
Day One: creating artistic portraits by using scanners and smartphones. Day Two: Experiments in painting with light. 5 and 6 October, AED 2,000

Also available are one-hour Portfolio Reviews (every other Thursday between 10am and midday: fee AED 500) and One-to-One sessions for individuals who wish to learn in private and seek advice regarding their photographic skills (every Thursday, 10am to midday; fees range between AED 1,000 and AED 4,000).

There will also be free Photography Meet-ups for open-ended chat and mutual assessment; there will be on Wednesday evenings, 6-8pm.

The studio’s exhibition space launches with a solo exhibition for Emirati photographer Jassim Al Awadhi under the title The Presence of Absence. He’ll also give a talk about his journey as a pioneer photographer in the UAE.

Alia Khalid Al Qassimi, Head of Manarat Al Saadiyat, noted that fostering the professional growth of artistic talent in Abu Dhabi “and beyond” is one of the mandates for the centre. “The new Photography Studio … will promote photography as a form of art, cultivate the capabilities and skills in our talented photographers, and will ultimately present artists with an exceptional opportunity to expand their creative methods, sustain their sources of inspiration, and further deepen their knowledge and unique characteristics in photography.”

More here.

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