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Atitlan Photography Center's workshops

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An unforgetable experience

7 days: 950$ US

From November to April


NOVEMBER  6  &  20
DECEMBER  4  &  18 (Christmas Week) 
JANUARY  8  &  22 
FEBRUARY  5  &  19
MARCH  4  &  18 (Holy Week)

One-week Workshop fee: $950 US (includes $200 US non-refundable registration deposit, tuition, hotel fees with breakfast)

Optional Two-week program: $1675 US 
For those who would like to extend their Guatemala photography experience for one more week an additional $825 you can make it two-week experience.

Enrollment: 6 (maximum) participants. (minimum of 3)

You must reserve by sending an email to:

Instructions will follow concerning registration and payment.  Registrations are accepted on a first-come first-serve basis and confirmed only when deposit payment has been received. 

Workshop participants are primarily housed at the Mikaso Hotel, in San Pedro la Laguna. The climate is temperate (yearly average of 75˚F or 24˚C), happily, no air-conditioning is required; even better, there are no mosquitos at the altitude of 1500 meters so no vaccinations are necessary, not mentioning all the pleasant evenings outside.

The Mikaso Hotel is built in the colonial style, surrounded by a beautiful garden. Situated at the edge of the lake, the hotel and restaurant offers one of the best views of Lake Atitlan. 
The hotel has 16 rooms, each room has a private bathroom with shower and hot water.
The restaurant/bar is open from 7 am to 10 pm. There is a conference room, free Wi-Fi Internet, a communal kitchen, terrace with jacuzzi, sun loungers and pool table. 

Due to extremely variable air fares ( from 600 to 900 dollars) we suggest that participants book their own plane tickets. Mondays, Tuesdays or Wednesdays are best days of departure as the fares are usually cheaper, spending a day or two in Antigua is highly suggested, I will meet you there.

If you arrive on Thursday we can arrange transportation from Guatemala City to Lake Atitlan: a private taxi costs 100$, if possible that fee can be shared with other participants.

Recommended Gear List:
Temperatures at Lake Atitlan (altitude 1500m/5000 feet) are dry and warm during the day and cool at night.
Sweater or light jacket for possible cool early morning and evening shoots. Sandals and a pair of good walking shoes.
Flashlight or a headlamp (one of those flashlights that goes around your forehead)

Camera Equipment:
At a minimum I suggest you bring a digital SLR or mirrorless camera and one general-purpose zoom lens. Please call or email me for advice about equipment if you are unsure what to bring or purchase.

Camera manual - paper version, or download it to your laptop.

Camera batteries, at least 2, plus a charger (voltage is the same as Canada and USA)

Compact Flash or SD memory cards (2 or 3 cards), 4 gb, 8gb or 16gb.  Some people like to avoid using large cards, 16 gb and above, in case the card fails. If a smaller card failed you would lose a lot less data. Bring a card reader if this is not integrated to your laptop.

Laptop and Portable hard drives, for backing up from your laptop. Redundancy is prudent. 

Computer Software: Photoshop or Lightroom, or other photo editing softwares.

You can bring a tripod and circular polarizing filter, although not absolutely essential you will get better images overall if you use them, it is also required for certain types of photographs.

Camera Bag. I always “Carry On” my camera and computer equipment. Carry on anything you cannot easily replace and anything you consider essential. You never know when luggage may get lost.

Besides your SLR digital cameras, students are asked to bring along some of their creative work to share, it can be prints or digital images. The workshop will have an LCD projector, and there will be a final show of the best images of the students work during the final session.


Rene de Carufel, a well known international photographer and teacher, is pleased to announce a unique opportunity to visit and photograph the magnificent vistas of lake Atitlan and the daily life of the Maya people of Guatemala. If you are interested, you will want to register as soon as possible to reserve a spot for this photo adventure of a lifetime. Each of the seven day workshops are limited to 6 participants max and are intended for experienced photographers, photography students and anyone seriously interested in photography. 

‘The Art of Seeing’ workshops with René de Carufel are designed to teach and instill the ability to tell a story through pictures. You will learn tips and techniques while participating in an exciting mix of activities, as a group or off on your own personal assignments. You will travel by boat to many of the fascinating villages that border Lake Atitlan, visit colourful markets and witness traditional Maya life. Assisted by local guides and translators, the workshops offer unique insight into the Mayan world; the opportunity to transform a vacation in Guatemala into a creative learning experience. 

As a participant, you will explore techniques, lighting, composition, and the creative use of the camera and lens. Under René’s guidance, you will learn to clarify your own personal vision and photographic language as you respond visually to the world around you. At the end of each day, the group will get together to share each other’s best pictures and the stories behind them. 

You will have the opportunity to learn and practice with a recognized professional photographer. Feedback will be based on constructive criticism, and the perspectives offered by occasional critiques of the group's work will be an important keystone in the development process of each individual's learning.

The schedule of each field trip is fluid, so please prepare to be flexible and open to new experiences. Your willingness to embrace the moment is vital. Rene's approach is based on training your eye to analyze light, composition and the uniqueness of the situation, and it is this experience that this workshop is focused on - an invaluable resource that could never be taught in a classroom.