There's no need to spend all your hard-earned dollars on a fancy camera in order to take a decent photograph. In fact, you probably already have everything you need in your back pocket. All it really takes to achieve great quality, professional looking images is your smartphone and a two hour workshop.
During the Photoh Smartphone Photography Course not only will you learn more about your phone's camera and how to maximise its capabilities, but the workshop also covers basic photography concepts that are essential to taking a picture you'll be proud to put your name to – look out Instagram!
The small group of budding nature photographers meet at the entrance of the Adelaide Botanic Garden on North Terrace at 10 am before gathering around an undercover picnic table inside the garden for an introduction to smartphone photography. Our friendly host this Saturday morning, Heidi, explains the features of the cameras on our different phones and how to access them.
The lesson extends to fundamental photography techniques and later, when the sun nears noon and phone batteries are in the red, the course ends where it began. The discussion this time is about the best of the free phone apps available to download and use to edit and enhance our photos.
This might all seem straightforward, and it's certainly nothing advanced, but for beginners or those unfamiliar with their phone, there's quite a lot to comprehend. Only when it's put into practice does the theory begin to make sense and it's not long until the process feels close to second nature.
There's no better place to practice than the beautiful botanic garden and we shot in two different but equally inspiring locations – the Palm House and the Garden of Health. Heidi is always on hand to provide guidance, an encouraging word, and advise on improvements. She's keen to share her knowledge and experience and on the odd occasion she's unable to solve a problem related to the functioning of a phone, she offers to research the model.
Heidi's enthusiasm is catching and soon everything becomes a photo opportunity, so it's imperative to begin the day with a fully charged battery and ample memory space. Other than that, there's nothing else required for this course and its simplicity is a huge part of its appeal. It's a fun and relaxing morning wandering around the botanic garden and you'll have some impressive photos and new skills to take home.
The course is conducted in small groups, which allows for a personalised learning experience and one-on-one time to review photos and get feedback from Heidi. It caters towards the novice, but is suitable for anyone with a smartphone and attracts an assortment of attendees.
On this day, for example, my HTC and I were joined by an English couple in town for only a few days. They were looking forward to seeing the sights of Adelaide as well as the chance to learn how to operate and capture some nice images of the botanic garden with their brand new Motorola.
The smartphone photography course is held on a fortnightly basis and costs $60 per person. It's very easy to sign up, simply visit the Photoh website to check for available dates, book a spot, and make your payment. The website is the place to go to find more information, other photography courses that may be of interest, and even purchase gift vouchers. Follow Photoh on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates and special offers.