Individual photography workshop with Justyna Mielnikiewicz


It is a week-long, one-to-one workshop with award winning photojournalist Justyna Mielnikiewicz. Its goal is to take your photography to a quality storytelling level, which is when true documentary photography begins.

The location is one of the best you can imagine. A cosmopolitan hub of South Caucasus, the far east edge of Europe, the capital city of a fairytale country. Tbilisi, Georgia, with its cultural diversity, magnificent landscapes and historical heritage is full of extraordinary stories that will make your work an adventure. But this is just a bonus.

The essence is the individual, exclusive guidance by Justyna. As an experienced, successful and passionate photographic storyteller, she will help you find your own voice and become a conscious, careful photographer whose work has real impact on international audience.


Place: Tbilisi, Georgia
Duration: 6 days
Number of participants: individual workshop
Tuition: 2000 EUR

Date: to be arranged


Justyna Mielnikiewicz is an independent photographer based in Tbilisi, Georgia. Part of her work is represented by Getty Reportage.

Throughout the years spent in the region she has become an expert on the former Soviet Union’s republics. Her photographs has appeared in numerous international publications, including The New York Times, Newsweek, Le Monde and National Geographic.

Between 2001 and 2013 she worked on a complex project about the South Caucasus and its conflicts. The result was published in a self-designed book titled Woman with a Monkey – Caucasus in Short Notes and Photographs that won POYi’s Publication of the Year 2014 second award. This long-term work was supported with grants and awards from the Open Society Foundation, Magnum Foundation, Canon Female Photojournalist Prize and the Aftermath Project. In 2010, Justyna started exploring women, sexuality and gender issues in the former Soviet space, adding an another dimension to her work about the region.

Eventually, her stories transformed into a larger scale project, titled A Diverging Frontier: Russia and its Neighbors, which explores the long-term social implications of the former Soviet Empire’s collapse in 1991 and the following shift of borders. For this ongoing work Justyna was awarded the W. E. Smith Memorial Fund’s grant in humanistic photography in 2016, a prestigious prize for photographers who show highest commitment, passion and perseverance in documenting human stories, report upon aspects of the contemporary world that are of significant importance, and who are working against the fashions and economics of modern publishing.

Justyna also won the World Press Photo second prize in People in the News (stories) category in 2008.


The main goal of the workshop is to give you an opportunity to work in real-life conditions with enough time to complete a thoughtful photographic assignment and therefore gain an in-depth insight into the documentary photography process. The guidance of Justyna Mielnikiewicz will ensure the right direction of your development.

You will begin discussing your assignment with Justyna after your participation has been confirmed, ahead of time of the workshop. We encourage you to propose your own researched subject. This should be a story that is both appropriate to your skills and exciting for you. If you do not have your own subject in mind, please clearly detail your fields of interest and photographic needs in order that Justyna can find one that suits you best. In following e-mail conversation, she will decide on particular goals you should achieve and hence define the final shape of your assignment.

During the six workshop days you will photograph on your own, developing your assignment story according to Justyna’s directions. This combination of intensive practice and live mentoring is the core of the learning process. You will meet daily for evaluation and editing at Justyna’s home studio which is located in the center of Tbilisi, near the Rustaveli subway station. On selected occasions, Justyna will be available to travel with you to locations, evaluate the way you are photographing your subjects, and provide on-hand advice at the time of shooting.

The meetings will be supplemented by Justyna’s lectures on her own work and issues regarding photojournalism, ethics and important skills like research, project writing (financing), story editing, use of social networks in extending the audience and photographic career management.

You will discuss the full particulars of the program and schedule with Justyna. In case you have questions now, feel free to contact us.


Application is made by e-mail: In the message subject please state “Tbilisi Unseen application”.

Please include: full name, billing address, phone number and a link to your personal website (body of work). If you don’t have a website, please attach a zip file with 12-20 photographs (800px wide jpg images) and a personal statement. The application should also contain a proposed date of the workshop.

Applicants will be accepted on the basis of their portfolio quality.

IMPORTANT: By applying you agree to the workshop regulations.