Create: Elena Dorfman Interview & Workshop

As many of you know, in 2019 I ventured to Albania to take a workshop from visual artist Elena Dorfman. Elena and I have been friends for many years but had never crossed paths, so to speak, in the field. She had been venturing to Albania since the country opened up in the early 1990s and I knew she would provide me an opportunity to learn and explore. The workshop, my first in nearly twenty years, was eye-opening as well as educational and was my first real field foray in many years. After the class, we began discussing the idea of working together on an upcoming workshop. Then came C19 and the world took a moment to pause. However, as we learn more about the virus and how to take precautions we are, once again, planning our Albania venture. In addition, she and I have pitched an online class to the Santa Fe Workshops. (Stay tuned for more information on this.) Elena has had a very interesting career. She and I have a similar background in linear, reportage style photography, but she has gone on to adapt and evolve in many ways I did not. From this, we can all learn a thing or two. This is one of the best interviews I’ve done in regard to learning about how this industry works, how someone can and should adapt and evolve, and how one person has overcome the demands of the industry to blaze a personal path of singular vision.

6 Comments on “Create: Elena Dorfman Interview & Workshop”

  1. Loved the interview Daniel, very intriguing. My first thoughts were that Elena had left photojournalism / documentary photography behind because the market for such work (thanks in part to the cult of celebrity) has almost disappeared. I was going to ask Elena (and you) if you would both have continued to work within the photojournalism genre if it were financially viable – but then I looked at Elena’s website – and I understood the attraction.

    I especially love both the Paper Series, and Sublime: LA River. They are, to my mind, storytelling without the constraints of photojournalism.

    1. Mike,
      That is a great take. The short answer is “maybe.” I can’t speak for Elena but for me it was time to move on although doing LONG term projects has never left my imagination. But now, thanks to folks like Elena, I see this work in a new light.

Leave a Reply