If you have an interest in photography, then join one of the scheduled photo walks, where you'll pick up lots of tips from a professional photographer. It doesn't matter what camera you have. You don't need the latest SLR camera – our group had a range of SLR, compact digital, old trusty canon and also mobile phones. Our tutor seemed able to move around the group and help everyone individually and didn't seem phased that we were all working with different types of camera.
We joined the Burleigh Heads walk, which ran between 4.30 and 6.30pm when the light was beautiful for
capturing images on the coast. The venue was also buzzing with lots of people out on and near the beach, with the ocean and Surfers Paradise in the background.
I received a new camera for Christmas, so was delighted with the opportunity to explore more of its features. I was fascinated with the comparison of images of the same scene when using different settings, many of which I hadn't yet discovered.
We had fun playing with trick photography, placing children in your hand, so it looks like you're holding them. It encouraged us to think of different locations we could use the technique in. The Leaning Tower of Pisa would be a good one for placing your foot "on" the side of the structure to "push" 'it over (if you place your foot accurately in the photo). We also altered shutter speed and took photos where we wanted the moving subject to be in focus, with a blurred background – very useful if you want to photograph runners in a race for instance.
Don't worry about what kind of camera you have, the important thing is just to be able to get the best you can, out of what you have. The only way to accomplish that, is to listen to someone who knows more than you do and take the time to play around to see what results you can achieve.
We enjoyed the session so much, we booked for the next one at Evandale, at the lake behind the Arts Centre. It was an evening session this time (advertised as a Night Photo Walk).
We had a fun session with ghost photography and made use of light boxes, sparklers and torches to create various after dark effects. The kids in the group had a great time being the ghosts and zombies required for the trick photography. It was a good family friendly session for those with kids. If you have a child with an interest in photography then I'd definitely suggest you take them along. It's also a cool way to cultivate a common interest as your kids hit the teen years. Although my digital camera made a valiant effort to produce the effects I was asking of it, this session would be of more benefit to those who already own an SLR camera. There were a number of tripods available for those who didn't bring with on the night walk, which was helpful, as they were necessary for the long exposures.
Callan runs the free sessions through the GCCC Active & Healthy Holiday program, so look out for these photo walk entries in upcoming holiday programs. You can also book sessions privately with Callan (there will be a cost) and if you have a family group or a group of friends who want a session together, then contact Callan on: firstname.lastname@example.org, 0407222543 or visit the Random Act Photography website. He can also offer photography sessions to school groups, which could be used as a P & C fundraiser.