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The ability to photograph attractive portraits is one of the fastest routes to making new friends.
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Grassroutes - Photography Workshop with Girish Menon


  • Grassroutes Portrait Photography with Girish 29-30 November 2014

    Weekend Portrait Photography Workshop + Travel + Accommodation and all vegetarian Meals

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    INR 10500
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About The Event



NOVEMBER 29-30, 2014


The ability to photograph attractive portraits is one of the fastest routes to making new friends.

When I ask my students, “What do you like to photograph” – “People” is often the first answer. We indeed photograph people more than any other subject.

I find that amateur photographers simply look to “capture expressions” rather than “work the light”. There’s an old saying, "Amateurs worry about equipment, professionals worry about money, masters worry about light.”

I believe that this weekend workshop will be the most enjoyable workshop that I have facilitated so far.


Topics covered:

Saturday morning – working the camera in the Manual or M mode

  • LOSE the dependence on AUTO and PROGRAMME MODES. Use the MANUAL MODE instead
  • Set the ISO, APERTURE and SHUTTER SPEED depending on the available light and subject
  • Improve the quality of the photographs that you make in LOW LIGHT by using the above settings to your advantage
  • Choose a relevant DEPTH OF FIELD for every photograph that you make
  • COMPOSE powerful photographs
  • Understand the role of WHITE, GOLD and SILVER reflectors in photography
  • Making portraits in NATURAL LIGHT (outdoor and indoor)


Saturday afternoon – introduction to flash photography

  • Understand the different types of FLASH available
  • Use the flash in the MANUAL mode to control the exposure of the photo
  • Understand what makes a GOOD PORTRAIT
  • BLEND flash light with natural light


Saturday evening – using off camera flash

  • Understand how to use the flash off-camera using WIRELESS TRIGGERS
  • Understand and use LIGHT METERS
  • Understanding LIGHT MODIFIERS
  • Making PORTRAITS DURING SUNSET using natural light and reflectors
  • Making portraits during sunset using FILL FLASH and reflectors
  • Photograph portraits using SIDE LIGHT, BACK LIGHT, and THREE-FOURTHS LIGHT etc.


Sunday morning – Getting serious

  • The 6 LIGHTING TECHNIQUES used in portrait photography
  • Working the lighting techniques in natural and flash light

Sunday afternoon – recap and pack up

  • Recap of everything that has been done during the two days
  • Leave the village by 2:00 pm


Key takeaways

  • USE THE CAMERA IN THE MANUAL MODE Understanding the manual mode will help you maximise the potential of your camera – this will be the foundation of all your photography endeavours
  • WORK THE LIGHT You will understand how to observe ambient light and create stunning portraits with or without the need for any additional accessories
  • REFLECTORS Add magic to portraits made using natural light or flash
  • USE THE FLASH IN THE MANUAL MODE This knowledge will help you create stunning portraits indoors as well as outdoors
  • FLASH MODIFIERS Understand how to modify flash light using modifiers such as soft-boxes, umbrellas and snoots etc.
  • AFFORDABILITY The accessories used during this workshop are available in the market at affordable prices. For example you can set up a 3-point lighting system (3 flashes and all the additional accessories involved) at your home or office or any small space for less than Rs. 20,000.

Photography FAQ

  • Our off-camera flash system is compatible with Canon and Nikon DSLR cameras. If you do not own a Canon/Nikon DSLR camera, we will have one spare DSLR camera that you can use
  • Alternatively, if you have a DSLR camera of a different brand or a bridge or mirrorless camera, please email Girish Menon on to check for compatibility or to offer a solution  
  • Yes, you will be comfortable at this workshop even if you have no prior knowledge or experience of working with cameras; even if you’re using a camera for the first time – it has been designed in such a manner!
  • Please carry a fully charged camera battery and a spare camera battery if possible. Electricity at the village is erratic but please carry your battery charger. You can recharge your battery when possible
  • If you have more than one lens, please carry all of them!
  • If you are carrying your own flash, please carry adequate spare batteries. If you need assistance with purchasing a flash, please email Girish Menon on


"The recent weekend photo class with Girish at the Purushwadi Village was an amazing experience with regard to the fusion of learning about photography and gaining insights into life and cultural of a rural Indian village. Girish literally teaches "on-the-shot" which makes the learning lots of fun and rewards immediately with great pictures. Combined with Girish's knowledge about the local villages, the people, agriculture and nature it is even more interesting to search through the lense for interesting persectives. Having had my SLR as good company on many trips around the world, Girish definitely helped me a lot to gain more fundamental know-how of how to get the camera settings right, how to approach the individual shot and how to play with light, scenes and space. All in all a great experience and I am looking forward to a next outdoors photo workshop with Girish soon to come." Tobi Bauer

"I bought my camera long back and was using it as a point and shoot camera. After attending your class only my camera became a real SLR Camera. I was not aware of several settings of it. Thank you very much." Suresh Babu Nair

"Thanks a lot for a superb session. You helped us click pics in a new way and I have already started implementing it. Also helped interact with a bunch of very helpful friends. Look forward to more such sessions." Srinivas Rao

"Wasn't I in for a shock when I tried to take my first picture on automatic and the camera came up with an error message saying that the flash wouldn't work and wouldn't take a picture!!!!! However, I decided to try taking a picture on manual. I took a picture which came out too dark to fiddled around with the ISO and got the photo's with the correct lighting! I was so proud of myself and thankful for Girish's excellent teaching so that I was able to know what to do." Linda Rodman

"Clear and well structured instructions, enough time to practice, good pace of class, achieved what I wanted" Mitesh Daga

Grassroutes, our hosts

Grassroutes’ journeys are responsible holidays in India’s villages where-in the local village communities welcome you to partake in their life.  True essence of India; the richness of culture, abundance of nature, still preserved & practiced ancient traditions & knowledge systems and colourful & diverse lifestyles but most of all her welcoming & loving people.

Your Grassroutes Journey to Dehna

Dehna, the home of the most hospitable village community is both rejuvenating and refreshing. Located at 130km from Mumbai, Dehna falls in the highest rainfall region of Maharashtra. Embark on an adventure set in the midst of India’s heartland nature’s basket. Two days filled with an amazing blend of games, rural activities and rejuvenation, perfect for those looking for a holiday with a difference!

          This is a Community tourism project, and the guides are present only for your tour facilitation. They are innately hospitable and eager to help. Please treat them with respect.


Canvas Tents (maximum 3 adults or 2 adults 2 kids can be accommodated in 1 tent). Common bathrooms:




          The accommodation arrangement is in canvas tents. Each participant will be provided with Grassroutes standard issue mattress, pillow, bed-sheets & blankets. Western bathrooms have been constructed at the campsite. (Common bathrooms, not attached to tents)

          24-hour electricity and flowing water are all subject to availability. Charging of electronic items is not recommended due to high voltage fluctuation. If needed, your camera batteries can be charged in the village (please carry your charger) however; you are advised to carry a fully charged battery and a fully charged spare battery. Hot water for bath can be made available on advance notice basis.

          The surroundings and amenities are very rustic. Room service is not available. For any special requests please contact the Village guide or Grassroutes facilitator.


          Filtered water is part of the tour.

          Locally grown vegetarian food will be served.  Please indicate any special meal preferences 24 hours before. (Jain, Diabetic etc).

          Local snack packs / biscuits will be provided at teatime. Participants are free to carry any personal snacks / juices etc. However, all non-biodegradable waste must be packed up and carried back and disposed in Mumbai.

Personal Care

          Please carry personal toiletries, towel, torch, sunscreen, caps, sunglasses, mosquito repellent cream (coils not allowed), personal medicines, comfortable clothes (tracks / loose t-shirts) and comfortable walking shoes.

          Please avoid sleeveless tops, shorts and slippers.

          During monsoons: Umbrellas are available for use at a refundable deposit of Rs. 200 per-piece. We recommend you carry raincoats / jackets for protection.

          Solar powered lanterns will be made available to you at night.


General Information

          There is a strict policy of 'No Tips' to Villagers. This is simply to avoid disagreements between the locals.

          Mobile network coverage is very erratic. Please contact the village guide should you need to make an important call.

          There is locally produced tribal merchandise available for sale. Should anyone choose to buy any item, you can directly pay the Village Guide at the stall.


This weekend of portrait photography is priced at Rs. 10,500. It includes:

  • Travel from Mumbai to Dhena and back by air-conditioned car (there will be 3-4 pre-assigned pick-up and drop-off points in Mumbai)
  • Accommodation, all meals and mineral water
  • Services of local guides
  • Photography workshops through the weekend
  • All government taxes

It does not:

  • Any personal expenses
  • Anything not mentioned as included

Registration information

This workshop is limited to 10 participants so it is essential to register ahead of time to secure your seats. Please email Girish Menon on for the registration link. Using this link, you will be able to pay online or have the cash/cheque collected from your residence/office.

Cancellation policy

  • If cancelled on or before November 1 – no cancellation fee
  • If cancelled on or before November 7 – 15% cancellation fee
  • If cancelled on or before November 15 – 25% cancellation fee
  • If cancelled on November 16 or later – 50% cancellation fee

Additional information



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