I had the pleasure of being invited by fellow forum member Ian Griffiths of Event Photos, to attend an event photography training day at an equestrian event, deep in the Northampton (UK) countryside.
I had never been to an equestrian event before, either as a visitor or a photographer, so did not really know what to expect. The day got off to the usual start of everyone introducing themselves with a brief rundown of their photographic experience. Most of the people attending were working professionals specialising in black tie events, with a couple who were new to any type of event photography.
My expectation was to be sitting around for a couple of hours learning about the type of shots that sell and how to captues them, but within no time Ian had us all out in the field. We spent about an hour trying (in my case in vain) to capture a saleble image. During this time Ian gave us all a few pointers to what we were doing wrong, and come the end of that hour when we were putting camera cards into computers, everyone had something close to a money shot.
A few more tips and insights later, and we were all back out there again. To my suprise during this session about half of my shots were coming up to standard, although there were a few that just had to be deleted before my cf card came anywhere near a card reader. As before, Ian and his team were on hand to give criteque and advice.
The whole approach of the training was "hands-on, in-the-field", which myself and all the other photographers who attended agreed, was so much more informative and easy to progress through, than the "classroom & teacher" approach that is the norm for most training seminars imho.
As well as passing on the knowledge of what sells and how to get it, Ian was very forthcoming with facts regarding the business end of things. His openness on his companies approach to sales & marketing was well worth the attendance fee alone.
Not only was Ian offering the information needed to get an event photography business off the ground, he also offered something you rarely get at a seminar, paying work. Event Photos currently turn down as much work as they actually cover, and are activly looking for freelance event photography teams to cover some of this work. Just contact Ian for full details.
To sum up, a great day working with great people who know their stuff and are willing to share.
The information passed on was worth much much more than the attendance fee. Thanks Ian.
Prophotohome Moderator and owner of Cosmic Photography.
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