I have been evolving and developing the workshops I run for over Twenty years. The workshops are tailored to the environment of those who commission me, the audience, the time-scale and the fees which they can pay. 

For the re-enactment phototherapy workshop - 5 days. 
I can work within a minimum of 4 (long) days. 
In order to make the workshop possible for those with full-time jobs, other options are for 2 weekends or 3 evenings and one weekend.
The best workshops I ran were for 5 days, this is my preferred length,
but I do understand that it is necessary to negotiate the most appropriate length (I always request feedback, and the recurrent theme of that feedback is a request for more time.....)

 I can also offer the 'family album' workshop as a one-and-a half or two day workshop, looking at the therapeutic and autobiographical uses of participants existing old family album photos.

I can offer a lecture to a wide audience about this work.


Since 1986 I have been developing a range of workshops, tailored to the specific needs of different audiences:- galleries, arts centres,
colleges of further and higher education, community centres and specific groups (e.g. working in schools, therapeutic communities, prisons etc.).

There are two main models.

1. 'Opening up the family album', a workshop, in which participants work with their existing family albums, expanding the possible readings.  (suggested length 1.5 or 2 days)

2. 'Re-enactment phototherapy - memory and identity', 
a workshop, which incorporates and builds on from (1). In this participants learn the methodology of and experience re-enactment phototherapy for themselves.

Working in pairs, the participants will each experience a re-enactment phototherapy session, both as sitter/director and as photographer/therapist. Using the photographs generated, which make visible aspects and parts of the selves that remain hidden in the 'everyday', they will create new narratives, new outcomes and transformations. By working together in pairs and in the whole group, they will emotionally process the material opened up.
(suggested length 5 days. If not possible 2 weekends, or 3-4 evenings
and one weekend.)

Please note:- Access to a one-hour photo processors is required to
process and print a selection from the photographs produced in this workshop.

I also offer themed workshops - for example on overcoming creative
blocks, and a basic introduction to the therapeutic uses of photographs

3. Introduction to Phototherapy.
This workshop includes working with existing family album photographs, and self portraiture. The use of found photographs, as fictions introduces participants to the notions of using images as a route to unconscious processes. This workshop has been developed as an introduction to the uses of photography as a therapeutic tool for BA and MA students.


The workshop will concentrate on the working processes and practices
which were evolved by Rosy Martin and Jo Spence since 1983.
Rosy Martin will share techniques for using photographs to recall long-forgotten or buried memories and explain the methodology of re-enactment phototherapy. Participants will work with their chosen existing family album photographs to open up the absences and silences hidden by nostalgia.

Participants are requested to bring with them a small selection of
family album photographs that have particular significance for them.
Also to bring an object that represents some aspects of who they are, as a means of introducing themselves within the group.

Outline Plan:

Introduction, ground rules and map of the workshop - Rosy.
Introduction - each member of the group, including their fears and
(can cover fears and expectations in a pairs exercise)
Bring in objects which represent aspects of who you are - use these
objects to introduce yourself to the group.
Ground rules

A context for the family album. 
Video - 'Framing the family' to introduce ideas about the family album 
15 mins

Slides and discussion with exercises in the group and in pairs.
What's there, what's left out?
What images do we chose to keep, and why? What can we learn from these, what new readings can we find? What can we read off, what conjecture, what changes over time (loss/bereavement), what is known only to the person in the picture, what happened before/after? 

Memory work, self-reflection and autobiographical writing exercises.
Free association memory work - small groups.
The use of found photographs to explore the notion of fictions,
storytelling and autobiographical resonance.
Work in pairs.

Techniques and ideas for counselling using old family album photographs
as a starting point.

A description of the methodology of re-enactment phototherapy - 
using slides to illustrate the practice, and a range of different ways
of working.  The style will be interactive, and responsive to
participants needs. Feelings that come up will be worked through.

Explanation of how to use family album photographs to explore hidden or repressed distresses and traumas.
Working in pairs, with their own photos, participants begin to open up
old, hidden feelings, submerged memories and explore their personal
Explanation of routes towards making these feelings visible, and finding a transformative goal.
Further working in pairs.

Closing circle -
 each has a candle, and lights it when they speak - to create a focus of
energy and contemplation
Sharing in the group, the insights gained. Validations.
Close group.


Re-enactment phototherapy is a collaborative process of making
photographic images that re-enact past experiences and re-vision current issues. Participants in the process use props, clothes, family album photographs and different photographic conventions to make visible the absences and silences hidden by nostalgia.

Outline Plan

This section of the workshop incorporates many of the ideas outlined in 'opening up the family album', (see above) with the intention of
preparing participants for the practical re-enactment phototherapy
A series of exercises takes each participant through the methodology of re-enactment phototherapy, whilst also developing their therapeutic skills and a sense of safety and cohesion within the group.
Ground rules
Working on 'found images' as a source for projections and story-telling
What is re-enactment phototherapy and lots of ideas on how to do it -
illustrated talk.
Working on participants' existing family album pictures in pairs, to
delve behind the "screen memories", and identify areas to work on.
Identifying transformative goals.
Sharing what we have learnt.
Establishing a working relationship.
Working on ways of making feelings, issues and ideas visible, including
identifying and seeking out appropriate props and clothes.
(Option to view video 'Putting Ourselves in the Picture' a film produced for BBC Arena series on the work of Jo Spence, particularly phototherapy.50 mins) 

Being subject and object of the gaze, 
what does it mean to collaborate?
Getting into roles.
Practical phototherapy in pairs.

Viewing the photographs created. 
Working therapeutically with what has
 been made visible - in pairs and
 individually with me offering therapeutic
 containment, within the safety of the
Validations and celebrations.
Identifying ways of continuing with
 this kind of personal exploration
for ourselves.
Close group -  evaluation sheets.


A lead-time is necessary to give the participants in the workshop the
opportunity to relax, open up and begin to look at personal issues,
initially through talking these through in pairs and in the group,
before any practical phototherapy can take place.  A sense of safety and trust is the main thing to achieve, before any 'productive photographic work' can take place.  It is also necessary to help participants, who do not have experience of counselling and therapy, to refine their listening skills. I carefully go through all the counselling techniques that are required for this work, always emphasising the skills that participants already have, so that they have the confidence to proceed.
The 'work' itself is about process rather than product, about using
photography to explore personal issues and to begin to tell one's own
story, from one's own point of view.
I enclose detailed information about the workshop, which I have
developed by working in Britain, Canada, Eire, Finland, and in the USA.
I am, open to suggestions, feedback and alterations in the programme. I  also include information about the space, and things that the
participants will need to bring. I also outline the information which
will need to be given to the participants closer to the date.

Each meeting with the group will start with an introduction from me,
including mapping out the ground rules and input from each member of the group.

Each session, each block of time, also has a definite sense of closure.
I allocate time for validations and sharing in the group, and for
grounding - for leaving behind any distressful feelings or painful
memories which may have been brought up, in doing the work. 

Techniques for opening up memories and trust exercises, to create a
sense of safety are built into the workshop, at regular intervals to
keep the energy flowing. I spend time on group processing, since group dynamics are an important aspect of these workshops.

The re-enactment phototherapy workshop divides into two parts - 
Part one: the explanation of phototherapy and experience of opening up memory in pairs and sharing with the group and for exploring how to make the feelings and issues visible, including searching for props and clothes.(2 days, first weekend, or if not available - three/four
Part two: the practical re-enactment phototherapy and processing the
images - talking through in pairs and a therapeutic exploration led by me, within the group as a safe and containing place for the emotions  that arise, to make new meanings and integrate the work done emotionally (2 days minimum, 3 better). 

To view a film, which offers an introduction to my ways of working-- Phototherapy workshop - Look at me! Representing self, representing ageing.
this research work was based at Sheffield University