Morocco: It’s All in the Details

I’ve only just arrived in Morocco and internet here is fairly spotty, with upload speeds slow enough that I’ve been unable to update the blog thus far. For a first post, I wanted to highlight some photos from what has struck me since I set foot into this colourful, mystical country – the details. From the ornate carvings on the walls of mosques and madrassas to the bags upon bags of spices and grains, each piled almost casually atop the other but forming a beautiful symmetry as a whole, to the doorknobs and brass statues I’ve seen thus far.

There are plenty of traditionally compelling photos from this country, and I’m sure I’ll post more of those later. But for the moment what stands out above all else is the craftsmanship and detailing in the myriad of parts that make up the whole, even those details that we see in nature as we wind our way through the country. And I really like the fact that is the aggregate of all those small, special things thatmade the biggest first impression overall. Given that they all stood out in my mind, I wanted to share them here with you.

Morocco Photography: Details Aplenty

Ceramic tagines at the pottery village in Fez, Morocco
Ceramic taginieres at the pottery village in Fez
Doorknob on the Palace doors in Fez, Morocco
Doorknob on the Palace doors in Fez at the entrance to the Medina
Kettle at a Berber kitchen tent on the drive to Merzouga, Morocco
Kettle at a Berber kitchen tent on the drive to Merzouga
Leather shoes for sale in the Fez Medina
Colourful, hand-stitched leather shoes for sale in the Fez Medina at their oldest tannery
Meknes, Morocco
Writing on the wall at a mosque in Meknes
Tiled floor in Fez' oldest madrassa, Morocco
Tiled floor in Fez’ oldest madrassa contrasted against our city guide’s tan leather shoes.
Beautiful doorknob in the winding alleyways of Fez' medina
Beautiful doorknob in the winding alleyways of Fez’ Medina
Silver lockets for sale at the medina in Meknes, Morocco
Silver and brass lockets for sale at the Medina in Meknes
Dried chilli in the spice souqs of Meknes, Morocco
Dried chilli in the spice markets of Meknes
Cottonball clouds on the long drive from Fez to Zaita and into the Sahara
Cottonball clouds on the long drive from Fez to the Sahara.
Small acorns for sale in the Meknes spice market
Dried poppy seed heads for sale in the Meknes spice market
Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail in Meknes, Morocco
Tiled walls at the Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail in Meknes

A note about these photos: they are taken with my new camera, the first one I’ve bought in years. It’s an Olympus E-P3, with a pancake (aspheric) f/1.7 20mm lens. I’m still really getting used to it – I find myself focusing on the wrong things or getting far too close to the subject as I’m used to my little S90 point and shoot. But it’s been great fun to learn how the camera works and what it’s capable of. I’m very happy I chose to get a Micro 4/3ds and not a DSLR; it’s great not to have a big camera to lug through the medinas.

I’ll also be posting about my ridiculous long-haul flight to Casablanca and plenty of photos from the foods I’ve eaten on the trip. As the internet is quite unreliable, I’ll be adding pictures one by one (and more frequently) on the Legal Nomads fan page.

More to come soon!


A reminder that I was sent to India to document my journey as part of G Adventures’ Wanderers in Residence Programme. Flights and tour costs were thus absorbed by them.

79 thoughts on “Morocco: It’s All in the Details”

  1. Beautiful shots! Naturally I am insanely jealous of anyone who actually owns and it traveling with any kind of DSLR. I may have to stop looking at travel photos altogether (until I’m able to replace my Nikon).
    Enjoy Morocco!

  2. Nice. It looks like your photography is taking off now. I agree with “it’s great not to have a big camera to lug”. We like our DSLR, but it’s a pain to lug around crowded areas where we want to get those cool photos.

  3. Jodi–These are really wonderful photos–you are obviously getting the hang of the new camera. Thanks for the post, and have a great week.


  4. Ah Fez… truly no place on the globe like it! Among the many highlights for me there, was going to a traditional hammam – I was the only westerner lass!

    Great pics (esp. your skill with depth of field.)

  5. These are beautiful! I love all the details on the mosques and similar buildings I have been to in Egypt. I am always struck by how intricate every single detail is and how symmetric many things turn out to be – even if it doesn’t seem like it at first.

  6. As long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to go to Morocco–and your photos just brought rushing back all of that desire! It seems like such a beautiful, mysterious place–gorgeous photos, and looking forward to hearing more!

  7. Love these pics, Jodi and awesome to see what your new camera can do. Especially like the short depth of field shots (nice that you can go f1.7!). These sort of pics tell me more about Morocco than the big picture/traditional shots, so glad you started with this set. We didn’t get a chance to talk much photography on our recent Radio Enso chat, so glad to read about your new gear. Have a great trip!

  8. Glad to see that camera is working out. You’ve also got a distinct eye for composition+perspective. These are beautiful shots!! Tell me when you’re in seagull country.

  9. Needless to say, I am in love with all of these and cannot wait to hear the accompanying stories. I love the tea kettle, the acorns for sale and the lockets — such telling parts of life in North Africa. Enjoy your journey!

  10. Quite happy to see the new camera working out so well for you after all our debate as to which one you should purchase! Then again, I know that the true beauty of these images is not the camera, but the photographer behind the lens.

    Just stunning Jodi!! xoxo

  11. Good Morning from Palm Springs! Your photos take my breath away! They are just BEAUTIFUL and I’ve already shared some with the Pinterest World. You’re so talented and you’ve truly captured the small details. Thank you!

  12. Magnifique Jodi! I love the details you picked up. Your picture of the shoes (babouches) reminded me when I was carrying Emily, 10 months old, on my back in the Marrakech souk. After walking away a few stalls, I noticed that she was chewing on a tiny blue leather babouche, “stolen” from some merchant. We still keep it as a souvenir…

    1. Oh Isa, I can only imagine your face (and Marco’s!) when you figured out where the babouche came from. That’s hilarious. Thank you for reading and glad the photos brought back some memories.

  13. Beautiful shots – looks like you are having fun with your new camera. I love the details, and Morroco is full of them. So many of my favorite pictures are from Morroco. I can’t wait to see and read more…

  14. I really enjoyed these. I’ve always been fascinated by the calligraphy and tile patterns found in North Africa, but I haven’t been to Morocco. Your beautiful photos make me want to go even more!

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  16. I was so entranced by that very first photo of the deep cobalt blue on the vases, and in that instant was wondering what camera you use. Thanks for sharing. :)
    Today a man on the street actually pulled my friend aside and suggested that she put her DSLR in her bag. So it sounds like you made a good choice to go for the smaller option. Happy clicking!

  17. Lovely captures, Jodi! And exciting to know there are more people out there like me who aren’t enamored with the idea of lugging around a DSLR. These photos are perfect examples that it’s more about the eye of the photographer than the equipment used.

    Can’t wait to see more!

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  19. Gorgeous photos capturing all of the amazing crafts and colors that are so representative of Morocco…
    You’ve truly have an artist’s eye for capturing the beauty of the most simple yet powerful imagery.

  20. Morocco is such a beautiful country! Jodi, you definitely captured alot of it’s beauty in your pics. I was just showing my mother in-law (who is visiting from Morocco and doesn’t have access to internet). She was amazed and very proud :). I haven’t visited the Imperial cities yet, but I definitely will now with this glimpse! I highly recommend you sample the snail soup (from street vendors) in Casablanca, it’s absolutely delicious, that is if you’re still there!

    1. Hi Kim, thank you for the kind words and I’m thrilled to hear that your mother-in-law thought I represented her country well. I did try the snail soup (both in Casa and Marrakesh). Currently in Turkey and missing tagine!

  21. Nice post! I just arrived in Japan to help with the disaster relief and I want to blog about my time here! I was looking up travel blogs and ran across yours. I love all the pictures in your post that tell a story of the place itself. Unfortunately, my camera is not as nice as yours. I just have a point-and-shoot digital. But maybe I can make it work :)

    1. Hi Rachel, thanks for the comment and good luck in Japan. I used a point and shoot for all my photos on the site other than this post (and subsequent ones from Morocco) so I have no doubt you’ll do just fine with a point and shoot as well. It’s not the camera, it’s your eye as a photographer that matters in the end. The camera, while important, isn’t going to make a bad picture better :)

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