Marrakech Has My Heart

Monday, February 27, 2012

When the opportunity arose for me to teach an instant photography workshop in Morocco, I was of course thrilled and excited, but there was a part of me that was a little apprehensive about going to Africa on my own. Travel and exploration is deep rooted within my heart and is the reason I’m a photographer. I love to explore and discover new things, so getting the chance to shoot, teach and travel in a vibrant place like Marrakech was a dream come true. But there was a part of me that was unsure of what to expect, and I wasn’t even sure it would be somewhere I would even like.

My first few days in Marrakech were an explosion. I had never set foot in a place so loud, so chaotic and so very, very vibrant. I was on sensory overload and at first glance, I wasn’t sure Marrakech and I would get along. My first morning, I awoke to the sounds of distant chanting- a sound to which my jetlagged mind wasn’t able to decipher. It wasn’t until a chance moment on a rooftop terrace overlooking the medina, that my heart was captured. The sun was blanketing the pink brick of Djemaa el Fna when voices called out from speakers across the entire square. It felt as though the calls were coming from every corner of the city all echoing in on top of one another. The girls and I stood there sinking it all in as the sun went down across the Atlas Mountains knowing that we were experiencing something special. It was a moment I will never forget for the rest of my life.

Marrakech hits you hard at first and then slowly draws you in…the people, the light, the architecture, the call and the absolute contrast of it all. There has never been a place that has existed like it in my life. Morocco has crept into my soul and I’m happy for it to stay there for the rest of my days.

There are lots more Polaroids, instant and film photos to come!

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19 comments

  • Andrea

    Love the photos! Morocco is such a place of contrasts, surprises and unexpected beauty. So glad you loved it! I haven’t been to Marrakech but other parts of Morocco are just as wonderful:)

  • Daniella

    Glad to hear you had a great time! Love the photo with the pot, the light is gorgeous!

  • Mary

    These photos are magical :)

  • Lizzie

    ooo I’m glad you liked it! I have been wanting to go for years and when I read about your retreat, I felt inspired to go, but wanted my husband to go too, so we went last October as a late summer/anniversary holiday.
    After coming back I meant to write you little tips and things, but never got round to it, sorry!

    I loved it so much! I really want to go back again.

    Here are some photos I took. I have lost my polaroids, but I think they will turn up!
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lizzie-staley/sets/72157628365772173/

    We went to Marrakech, Atlas mountains and various valleys and gorges, Zagora (Sahara Desert) and Essaouira.

    Where did you visit?
    What were your favourite parts?

    Thankyou for being that extra motivation to go :)
    xx

    • Amanda

      Oh, that warms my heart, Lizzie.
      We were mostly in Marrakech and had one day in Essaouria which I LOVED! It’s such a gorgeous town and was nice to get away from the crazy of Marrakech for a day.
      I will share lots more photos and blog about it more in the weeks to come. Off to check out your pics.

  • allyn

    the photos are fantastic. travel adventures teach you so much about yourself/land/space/people. been following your instagrams + really enjoyed seeing the trip that way.

  • Helen

    These are so beautiful! I think I will be adding Marrakech to my ‘places to go to next’ list. I love the idea of a culture shock ‘explosion’! Can’t wait to see the rest!

  • Elizabeth

    Such bliss to see your lovely photos of Marrakesh where we lived for two years.
    Magic place, magic photos.
    I rather long to go back and live there again and your achingly lovely images bring it all rushing over me.
    We are now in NY.

  • jackie

    Oh my goodness, these are so beautiful! Can’t wait to see more photos!

  • Hannah

    This sounds like such an incredible experience! A friend of mine who is a photographer as well just returned from there, I would love to visit someday!

  • Hannah

    on second glance I see you were there with Jen I think! I just saw your link to Instant Love & saw the bit in your post about the workshop! really lovely work!

    • Amanda

      lol yes, Jen and I co wrote our book together and were in Morocco teaching a workshop to coincide with our book release. Thanks for stopping by. :)

  • Mariella

    I have been waiting for your picture of Morocco Amanda, I and I was sure you would have been enchanted by the place, these photos are gorgeous

  • Tracey

    You know I’m totally jealous of you, but you’ve worked hard and deserve all of this good stuff so I’m also gonna say I’m so proud of you!!!! xx

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