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Nature Photography Workshops: Getting Your Money's Worth

A nature photography workshop taught by a qualified teacher can take years off the learning curve and help you realize your goal of making pleasing photographs much sooner than otherwise possible. Here are a few suggestions to help you pick a workshop and then make it a great learning experience.

Pick a teacher who has a style you enjoy and would like to emulate.

When you are considering a workshop, look at the prospective teacher’s work, are they images of subjects you would like to photograph in locations you would enjoy taking pictures? Are the images well composed, sharp, and exposed properly. Can you say, I would like to make images like those?

Choose small workshop sizes.

All things being equal you will get better attention in smaller workshops.

A teacher who knows more than just photography?

Many workshop leaders are exceptional photographers and qualified teachers. And a few, in addition to having the above mention qualities may have special knowledge that you will find useful. Such as a native to the area that you are shooting, who can share in the history of the area, or who just knows the best locations. Or perhaps a naturalist who can help you understand your subject and how to use that knowledge to make better images.

Know your equipment.

To get the most bang for your buck, the workshop is no place to learn the functions of your camera, lenses or flash. You should know how to override the DX coding, and at the very least, know how the exposure modes, metering modes and exposure compensation functions work on your camera. You can learn camera function from a manual, and that is free.

Location, Location, Location.

This is very important. Pick a workshop where it is possible to make the kind of images you want to make. A location where you can comfortably make those images. Florida in the winter and spring is the best place in the world to make images of beautiful birds, awesome sunrise and sunsets and many other subjects. But if you love photographing majestic mountain ranges it is the wrong place for you. Or if you think August is the month to come to Florida, you will be far from comfortable.

Ask the workshop leader questions.

Don’t be shy, you are paying for knowledge, if you don’t understand, did not hear, or a subject you are interested in was not covered, ask!

Stay close to the instructor.

I have been on nature photography workshops when the students seem to scatter. I still don’t understand that. You can learn much just by watching and imitating your instructor. Also, if you need personal attention no time is wasted tracking down the instructor.

Bring Images.

Bring images for critique. Many times an instructor can find problems or areas that may need a little improvement just by looking at your images.

Have fun and take lots of pictures!

Bring plenty of film, batteries and /or digital storage. And when you get home, share (show off) your new found skills and beautiful pictures with your friends and families.

To view a full list of our current nature photography workshops, click here.

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Nature photography workshops and guided photo tours
Nature photography, wildlife photography of Florida's natural places