How to Teach Your Own Photography Workshops
Photography workshops are how many people learn photography techniques or even the business of photography. If you are a professional photographer, these workshops are also a great way to meet new people and get your name out there. But, before you jump in to teaching a photography workshop, you need to ensure that you are prepared to work with the public, and you need the proper space.
Step 1: Prepare Yourself
Teaching is not as easy as it looks. You need to know how to connect with people, and you need to know what you are talking about. While you may have been a photographer for years, it may help to read through a few photography basics books before you begin. While you may intuitively know how to change manual settings, you need to help your students understand the steps.
Step 2: Create a Lesson Plan
You need to lay out what you will be discussing with your students. So, write an outline of the things that you want to go over, and then think about supplies that will go along with this lesson plan. If you are taking landscape photography, then have your students go outside if your workshop is near a park or other scenic area. If you are concentrating on animal photography, then bring a dog or cat in for the occasion.
Step 3: Find Your Location
If you are doing this workshop on your own, then you need to find a location for it. A workshop classroom needs to be big enough to fit everyone coming so your home may not be the answer. Many museums, colleges and community centers offer rooms for rent, and these are usually of substantial size.
But, you will have to pay for these, usually by the hour. So, you need to consider your budget. If you are charging students for the workshop, then you can just add that to the fees. If not, then you may want to consider setting up in a park or similar open space area. Not only will it save you a few dollars, it will also stimulate the students’ senses.
Step 4: Teaching the Class
Always pass out any materials at the beginning of the workshop so that you don’t have to stop mid-way through it. Teach a particular lesson, and then allow your students the opportunity to try it out. You should encourage your students to bring their cameras for the occasion so that it’s more like a hands-on lesson.
Walk around, and help individual students with the photography techniques. Look at their photographs, and offer specific suggestions about how they can make things better.
Step 5: Encourage Interaction
If possible, allow the students to show their pictures to each other. You may want to bring a computer and download the pictures. This will allow the students to see each others photographs. Remind them that everyone is at a different skill level.
If it’s a one day workshop, encourage them to try the techniques on their own. If it’s more than one day, make the students take a few pictures for the next day of the workshop.