At the end of last year, I decided to start running photography workshops for beginners. I’d been thinking about doing this for sometime, mainly because of the number of people I speak to who have high-end digital SLRs and just use them on Auto – which is a bit like using a state-of-the-art oven just to boil eggs.
One of my first considerations was to find a suitable venue that wasn’t just a dull and uninispiring conference room at a business centre. It also had to be near some attractive local scenery so that I could take delegates outside for some practice.
So last November I held my first Picture Perfect Photography workshop at the brilliant Bar des Arts in Guildford; as well as serving fabulous coffee and delicious pastries, the whole place has such a fantastic atmosphere, with its quirky decor, art exhibitions and last, but not least, its wonderful, friendly and enthusiastic staff.
I must admit that I was a little nervous as to whether anyone would book; not having done anything like this before, I was also worried that I wouldn’t have enough material to last for 3 hours, and so I ended up writing pages and pages, just in case!
Well, I’m pleased to say that the morning was a great success and the positive feedback I received from everyone was proof that people do benefit from practical instruction, rather than just sitting down and wading through a thick, off-putting manual.
I’ve since run two further workshops and am planning on holding others throughout the year on different subjects. It’s been hugely gratifying to have people say how much they’ve enjoyed having me go through things with them, and that they feel more confident about using the different settings on their camera.
Here are some shots of everyone working away intently at one of my spring workshops, and some of the comments I received on my feedback forms:-
“Very good. Very relevant to complete beginners who were handled with patience! Clearly explained.”
“I have learnt SO much. Excellent. I came with no knowledge and came away with lots of knowledge. Would love a follow up and critique of photos.”
“5-star. Easy to understand. The right pace. Good balance of presenting/answering questions. Excellent pastries and coffee too!”
“Knowing things that seem simple, like how to let more light in in an indoor situation, helped enormously. Having a go and being able to ask about the shots I’d taken really helped too. Excellent. You’re really calm and don’t use the dreaded ‘no stupid questions’ phrase, which allowed an ease to the class. It was a fabulous morning – thank you.”
“I felt the way the course was conducted was clear and concise and focused. There were good working examples shown, and the course provided everything that I had hoped to gain.”