Our guide to photography workshop

Our guide to photography workshop

First published date January 29 2014 Amended date March 12 2015

Whether you have just bought the most advanced digital single lens reflection (DSLR) camera and you think you’re  going to need a few sessions to get to grips with seemingly complicated contraption or whether you are interested in pursuing a career in the photography industry then maybe a photography workshop is for you. Workshops and courses in photography will help you shoot photos – be it friends, landmarks or events – to a high standard so your snapping skills become far more technical than the basic ‘point and shoot’ approach with your camera set to auto. The world of photography can be a beautiful and addictive thing and capturing that perfect photo will be made all the easier if you’re clued up on how to use your camera. So whether you just want to make sure you get the best snaps from your holiday or capture the radiant bride at a wedding, there will be a workshop that suits your needs.


Types of workshops available

Workshops range from crash course beginner sessions to more advanced courses that are spread over a few weeks. You have the choice to specify in areas varying from wedding photography to photographing objects under studio lighting. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or an experienced snapper looking to learn the latest technology or skills, there are numerous options available for you to choose from. Bear in mind, which ever pathway you’re thinking of going down, most workshops or courses will require you to bring your own camera with you as well as memory cards and other accessories.   


What will I learn?

Beginner sessions will get you out of the habit of using the faithful old auto setting on your camera and edging you towards shooting in manual. Why is taking pictures in auto mode not ideal? The simple fact you have no control over all the parameters of photography means creativity and quality can be compromised. Take the flash on a camera for example, in automatic it senses the light readings around you and determines whether flash is needed accordingly. However, there are times when photos are ruined by the flash and can often overexpose an image, making it seem drowned by light. Learning not to rely on the flash and instead playing around with other settings like shutter speeds will give you a more professional, crisp looking photograph. Shutter speeds, amongst other technical photographic jargon like aperture, depth of field and the ISO settings all effect how an image will turn out. For example a high shutter speed will almost freeze an image, good for capturing sports or fast moving events where as a low setting creates a kind of motion blur which is good for giving off the idea of movement. The technical side of the camera and the jargon and theory involved is something you will be accustomed to over any workshop you take.  


How can a photography workshop benefit me?

Workshops are a bit more of a fun, relaxed experience as opposed to a full on photography course, more for hobbyists than career seekers (it could lead to a career opportunity, you never know.) If you have just spent good money on the latest, very high-spec DSLR but the instruction manual daunts and confuses you, then to be shown in person by a trained professional on how to use your new camera will help you get the most out of your investment.  While a workshop may not lead you to becoming the next Don McCullin or Robert Capa, it may entice you to delve further into the industry with a degree or a more formal course with a qualification at the end of it.

If you have a once in a lifetime holiday coming up or a wedding, then a photography workshop can help you with that too. With workshops in wedding photography, you can shoot the best images on the big day without worrying whether your images will come out well or not because the old church was too dark and because of the help you’ve had you can compose the bride and groom together properly on their perfect day too for an image they will have with them for the rest of their life. If you’re one of the lucky ones heading on a holiday, the training you have had on your photography workshop will allow you to shoot images in all kinds of situations. Whether you’re shooting the Pyramids in the super sunny Egypt or the Eifel Tower on a cloudy Parisian evening, the new skills you have learnt will allow you to take photographs professionally, uncompromised by your surroundings. Photography is a vibrant and exciting medium and is a great skill for anyone to have, whether it is recreationally or professionally.