At the end of a busy wedding season I often go away with a few photographer friends to capture scenery of a different type. We’ve covered the Scottish Highands and Skye a few years running, enjoyed North Wales recently, but back in 2012 decided we needed a little more sunshine in our week away. So out of the blue, came the decision to go on a five day break in Marrakech. Apparently it’s vibrant colours and diverse culture would offer untold opportunities for a photographer to capture. Yeah right, if only the locals would oblige!
Perhaps you get used to taking photos at weddings and other similar events. At these kind of occasions guests are expecting you to be whizzing around with a camera in your hand capturing moments and details from the day. But Marrakech was the opposite side of the coin. Point your camera in someones direction here and you get a cold death stare. It’s not a culture that likes to be photographed.
This knocked the wind out of our sails on the first day but needless to say we soldiered on and captured some sense of Marrakech, if not all that we wanted. We ended up photographing each other more often than not, as light relief from the death stare given to us by locals.
The souks in Marrakech, Morocco.
Lunch at Cafe des epices and a quick check of the map.
The main square in Marrakech. Jemaa el-Fnaa.
You quickly run out of ideas when you have to keep photographing each other.
Inside Ben Youssef Mosque.
The mosque had amazing attention to detail with the tiles and shapes throughout.
“Yeah Chris, she’s seen you!”
After a few days in Marrakech, we headed to the coastal town of Essaouira.
One minute this cat was having a nice relaxing sit in the sun……
….next it was about to get run over by two kids on their way to school!
There are cats everywhere in Essaouira.
With the sun setting a walk on the beach was in order.
I then spotted these guys riding their horses (amazingly fast) through the shoreline and stopped for a chat. They asked about photography and wanted to capture their horses with all four hooves off the ground. Naturally I obliged, using the sun to create a dramatic silhouette. It’s strange how after several days in Marrakech my favourite photo of the week was of a horse on a beach. As they say, never have preconceptions about photography.
Although warmer than many of our adventures (Scotland & North wales!), Morocco and Marrakech didn’t quite live up to the hype I’d expected. Maybe it was the fact locals didn’t wish to be photographed, and when that’s the main purpose behind a holiday it kinda sucks! None the less it was a great place to experience and one more to cross off on my travel guide….onwards to the next destination ‘unknown’.