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Whether we want it or not, we come across Photo-Graphy, either as viewers and/or makers, in a more or less conscious way in public, professional and private spaces. The visual language of photography not only tells a story, by enabling the story’s understanding, but also shapes the world of images which, as a socially preferred carrier of information, are nowadays (more than) a parallel mode of communication to writing. As a Hungarian painter, photographer, and designer, László Moholy-Nagy, said in 1936: “The illiterate of the future will be the people ignorant of the use of a camera as well as a pen.”

During our workshop, co-organized by SWPS University’s Department of Graphic in Wrocław, we will focus on photography as a socially engaged medium that can shape views and attitudes.

Application deadline: February 10, 2021. Number of places limited.

Main photo: © Grzegorz Lityński

February 21-27, 2022
Oerlinghausen, Germany

About the workshop

The goal of the workshop is to teach visual langauge competencies. We will focus on explaining the alphabet of photography, exploring its meanings, coding and decoding the world of images and images of the world. Everything will revolve around taking photos, but with the goal of using them as socially critical expressions and attitudes. We are interested in the potential of socially engaged photography as a medium for both dialogue and protest, at the same time. Fundamentally, we are not (only) interested in taking photos, but mostly in observing, revealing, discussing, showing, and manifesting.


  • Photography basics: image framing, lights and shadows, lines, format, color, composition, and exposition
  • Single photos vs. a series of photos – storytelling in photography
  • Visual storytelling: telling socially relative stories through images
    development of socially engaged photo projects
  • Photography as a protest and dialogue (social differences, crisis situations and their consequences – the so-called ‘aftermath photography’, social non-normativity, accord between nations) 
  • Esthetic photo manipulation in documentary photography: a debate about the perception, truth, objectivity, and authenticity
  • Cultural contexts of photography: images as carriers of information and communication medium in culturally diverse contexts, in particular in the Polish-German context

Foto workshop

Photos: © Grzegorz Lityński

Litynski war


  • Monday, February 21st
    • Arrival and check-in: Monday, February 21, 2022, at noon
    • 12:00-15:00 Meet and mingle
    • 17:00 Welcome
    • 18:00 Dinner and introductions
  • Tuesday, February 22nd, 9:30: Workshop begins 
  • Saturday, February 26th, 16:00: Workshop ends
  • Sunday, February 27th: Check-out by 10:00 

Who should attend?

The workshop is addressed to students, up to 27 years of age, living in Poland or Germany, interested in international exchange, socially engaged photography, and intercultural communication.

The workshop offers an opportunity to work, learn, and develop photography skills in intercultural teams, through participation in engaging and practical exercises.

The workshops will be conducted in English, German and Polish.

Application deadline: February 10, 2022. Number of places limited.

Apply now »

Date and location

February 21-27, 2022
Location: Villa Welchen, Am Lehmstich 15, Oerlinghausen (villawelschen.de)


  • EUR 80, including accommodation, food, and the workshop
  • Travel costs will be reimbursed up to PLN 200.00, after the completion of the project.

The workshop is subsidized by the Polish-German Youth Cooperation organization and Distrikt 1900 Rotary International in collaboration with the Rotary Club in Lübbecke


Dr. Dorota Płuchowska
e-mail: dpluchowska@swps.edu.pl


  • Dorota Płuchowska, Ph.D. – is a lecturer at the Department of Graphic Design at SWPS University in Wrocław. Professionally, she is interested in theory and practice of social systems, in particular interactive systems in the Systems Theory Paradigm. She specializes in developing project management methodologies, designing communication processes, and facilitating small groups and teams, including interdisciplinary and intercultural teams.
  • Grzegorz Lityński – is a photographer, academic teacher, and Head of the “Travel and Documentary Photography” postgraduate program at the University of Technology in Katowice. Author of numerous long-term documentary, socially-engaged projects, including his own and those commissioned by international NGOs (https://litynski.com), photographed in Poland and around the world, in countries, such as Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Laos, etc...


  • Nadine Klocke – is a social educator and system advisor, who cooperates with Heimvolkshochschule St. Hedwigs-Haus e.V., a non-profit educational organization operated by the Institute for Migration and Resettlement Issues.


Department of Graphic Design at SWPS University in Wrocław »

Institute for Migration and Resettlement Issues »

Polsko-Niemiecka Współpraca Młodzieży (Polish-German Youth Cooperation organization) » 


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