World’s Best Photographers to Visit UAE for GPP


Dates for the annual Gulf Photo Plus (GPP) event have been confirmed as 1st to 6th March 2010. The region’s only hands-on dedicated photography event where participants can learn from the best in the business is now in its sixth year and will be held at Dubai Knowledge Village with classes starting from AED 500.

“For 2010 we have re-confirmed seven photographers from last year and to keep the event fresh and exciting we have secured five new international names including fashion photographer Melissa Rodwell and documentary/photojournalist Steve Simon.” said Chief Organiser, Mr Mohamed Somji.

The annual event will kick off with an ’invitation only’ exhibition at Dubai Community Theatre and Arts Centre on 28th February at 7pm. The exhibition will feature selected works from the 12 visiting photographers including Joey Lawrence, David Nightingale, Robin Nichols, Bobbi Lane, Joe McNally, David Hobby and Zack Arias.

Gulf Photo Plus 2010 will offer more than 50 workshops as well as the extremely popular ’Photo Friday’ event which features lectures, workshops, product demonstrations, huge discounts and exclusive promotions. It is a not to be missed event for complete novices and professionals alike.

“One of the highlights for this year’s event is our 10 Steps to Becoming a Great Photographer programme presented by award-winning digital documentary photographer, lecturer and author Steve Simon. It is a transformational 10 step programme held over five days. My advice is to book time off from work now and clear the diary.” said Mr Mohamed Somji.

10 Steps to Becoming a Great Photographer is designed to be a fun and inspiring course. Participants will be taken through a clear and concise series of lectures and photographic exercises designed to expand their knowledge, maximise their talents and strengthen any photographic weaknesses. The workshops are complemented by engaging and encouraging critiques of their work, bringing each person closer to becoming the photographer they want to be.

Also new for 2010 is a Video SLR Workshop which will be presented by Vincent Laforet. According to Laforet, the world of still photography is rapidly converging with that of film, video and multi-media, and professional photographers need to acquire the skills to compete in this expanding market place.

“Vincent was one of the first to adopt the use of high- definition video using still cameras. The course he will present will help build a solid foundation in film and video for still photographers.” said Mr Somji.

Laforet’s Video workshop will address both technical issues as well as the creative power of new technology.

Fashion with Melissa Rodwell is a first for Gulf Photo Plus. Join Melissa for a two-day seminar where she will clearly illustrate all of the preparation that goes into a fashion shoot and the science behind it. Crew briefings, working with hair and make-up stylists, being able to take an attractive girl and turn her into a super model, the wardrobe and fabric selection, importance of accessories, lighting and post production.

“Melissa will demystify fashion photography at this year’s Gulf Photo Plus. Her course is a very comprehensive one, going through every step of the process right up to retouching and the finished product.” said Mr Somji.

Photoshop is always a crowd pleaser and one of the most popular courses at GPP according to the team at Gulf Photo Plus,

“We have secured some of the finest talent in the industry again this year including Matt Kloskowski who will visit Dubai for the first time to present some advanced photoshop classes. Many of the participants at Gulf Photo Plus have been with us from the start and have really taken themselves from beginners to a level where they need the best in the business in order to learn and master advanced techniques.” said Mr Somji.

Gulf Photo Plus has garnered the reputation as the best photography event in the region – a not to be missed week of learning for photographers of all standards.

“The team of photographers that we bring to Dubai each year to share their knowledge are the very best in their field. Rarely would you find all of these people teaching in one place, let alone socialising and sharing stories during the event.” said Mr Somji.

Gulf Photo Plus 2010 really does have an edge over other photography events.

“As a professional photographer myself, the only way to improve your skills is to learn the secrets and techniques, and ultimately get out there and take shots. Often this is easier said than done. In a nutshell, the GPP workshops give true-to-life experiences that would normally be difficult or impossible to create independently. It’s very special.” he added.

Workshops run for half days to 5 full days but for those who cannot afford the time for these can come along to the ’Photo Friday’ event on 5th March and top up on tips and techniques from a choice of 16 different lecture topics, mini-workshops and live demonstrations from instructing photographers and brand experts. Photo Friday features four sessions with prices starting from AED50 per session or AED 150 for a day pass.

Gulf Photo Plus aims to promote and nurture photography in the Middle East through training programmes, workshops, online support and the annual Gulf Photo Plus event. For more information about the course content, dates and bookings visit or telephone +971 4 360 2365.


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