What's in a Photowalk?

Click on box above for complete details.

Click on box above for complete details.

Let's hit the high note right away...registration for the September 19 Photo Walk-About in historic Frederick, MD., is now open.

 
Date: September 19, 2105 

Time:  8:00 a.m. to 12 noon 

Place:  Meet at The Artist Angle,124 South Carroll Street, Frederick, MD. 21701

Click on the box above for complete details!

What's in a photowalk?  The resource for "all knowledge", Wikipedia, defines a photowalk ...

Photowalking is the act of walking with a camera for the main purpose of taking pictures of things that the photographer may find interesting. (Well...duh!)
It is often a communal activity ...Often the aim is to practice and improve one's own photography skills rather than a specific focus on documentary photography.
While related to street photography, photowalking is differentiated by its impetus to photograph things of interest rather than people specifically. As with any walking that may go a few miles or kilometers, photowalking can also promote physical fitness.

Huh...Here are my thoughts about a photowalk:

  • You get to see a city/place with new eyes.
  • You can focus on specific components of a "good picture"
  • You have a concentrated time to practice one skill
  • You meet new people
  • You learn new skills/techniques
  • You make great memories

Keeping those thoughts in mind, here are some photos and experiences from three different photowalks. i hope you find them useful.

New York City

Taken during a photowalk in NYC. "Under the overpass" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, New York, NY.

Taken during a photowalk in NYC. "Under the overpass" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, New York, NY.

I went to New York City in the spring of 2014 to learn composition from the photographer/sculptor, Adam Marelli.  We spent the morning in his studio reviewing the compositional "home-runs" and "fails" of great painters.

We walked the streets in the late afternoon hours and again the following morning...while looking for compositional elements.

"Knitting in Central Park", "96th Street Subway Station" at 3:00 a.m., "Totally Focused" all photos (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, New York, NY.

"Knitting in Central Park", "96th Street Subway Station" at 3:00 a.m., "Totally Focused" all photos (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, New York, NY.

Every one of these photos brings warm memories of New York; the knitting lady graciously allowed me to take a photo of her knitting. If you look VERY closely, you can see the blur of her fingertips moving with well-practiced rhythm.  And her quilted coat reminds me that April was a bit chilly in Central Park.

The 98th Street Subway Station is one of my favorite photos.  Taken at 3:00 a.m. (you knew there would be at least one "insomnia" photo!) I was able to capture the gorgeous lights emanating through the glass walls and ceiling. 

The little boy and his family were involved in a volunteer clean-up of a park along the river.  He was sooooo focused on pulling the ivy off the tree.  His bright red sweatshirt was a perfect complement to the greens surrounding him.

I knew the moment was coming where he would be successful at dislodging the vine...so I waited for the perfect shot.

Washington, D.C.

You may remember this blog post from May.  I traveled to Washington, DC to participate in a photowalk  sponsored by the photography group, Clickin'Moms.  I learned a lot during this walk...specifically things I can do to make this particular Photo Walk-About easier for you.

A photograph of photographers outside Ben's Chili Bowl in Washington, DC. "Outside Ben's Chili Bowl" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2015, Washington, D.C.

A photograph of photographers outside Ben's Chili Bowl in Washington, DC. "Outside Ben's Chili Bowl" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2015, Washington, D.C.

Three more photos from the Washington, D.C. Photowalk.  "Roots on the ground", "Boy in the mirror" and "Memorial Curve". (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2015, Washington, DC.

Three more photos from the Washington, D.C. Photowalk.  "Roots on the ground", "Boy in the mirror" and "Memorial Curve". (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2015, Washington, DC.

My focus for this photowalk was "experimentation".  And in this case, that meant physically positioning myself in "out of the way" positions or places to get the shot I wanted. 

Yes...I was lying on the ground to get that root shot. And in the curving memorial shot? I had my camera perched on the lower level.

And, if you look closely at the boy in the mirror, you will see another photographer taking the "same" shot that I did.  Except that I had positioned myself out of the reflection in the mirror. I was able to get the boy and the photographer by wrapping myself around the corner of an adjacent building.

Overall, I'd say this photowalk accomplished what I set out to do.

Panama City Beach, FL

The sea was rough on a story morning and the waves rolled in large and turbulent.  It just seemed this egret had no concerns about the rough waves. "Brave egret" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, Panama City Beach, FL

The sea was rough on a story morning and the waves rolled in large and turbulent.  It just seemed this egret had no concerns about the rough waves. "Brave egret" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, Panama City Beach, FL

The Northwest coast of Florida is one of my favorite places to relax. And I love that I can take photos of new and different flora and fauna - things one just would not see in Maryland suburbia and farmland.

I tend to focus on "subjects" when I photowalk in Panama City Beach.  On any given walk, the subject could be seabirds, waves, marine life, how shadows fall on the pier...moonlight over the Gulf of Mexico.

"The Wading White Reflection" - I focused on clarity of the reflection in the water. "Hiding Blue Heron" was a surprise! "Lining up" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, Panama City Beach, FL.

"The Wading White Reflection" - I focused on clarity of the reflection in the water. "Hiding Blue Heron" was a surprise! "Lining up" (c) Rebecca LaChance, 2014, Panama City Beach, FL.

"The Wading White Reflection" and the "Hiding Blue Heron" were taken within yards of each other.  As I walked the edge of the marsh, I felt I was being watched.  Concerned that the eyes might belong to an alligator, I slooooooowwwwllly turned and saw the yellow eye of the heron upon me.

(I know, what was I doing walking along the edge of a marsh?  Being stupid, one could say. Don't do this "at home".)

Wrap it up...

A photowalk can have many purposes; choose the one that fits your needs.  In the examples above we've seen:

  • practicing composition
  • experimental positioning
  • subjects

What do you want to focus on during this photo walk-about?

And why do I refer to it as a "walk-about"?  Because this walk will give us the opportunity to connect with each other as a community and reconnect us with the "bones" of photography.

A Word from Rebecca

“I love PHOTO WALKS. I love the new insights about the city and the camaraderie of the participants. I want to share my love of photography with the world. That’s what this walk is about. This photo walk is a great opportunity for beginning photographers and anyone looking for their "style of photography".

Click the box above to register and pay for your place in the Photo Walk-About

Click the box above to register and pay for your place in the Photo Walk-About

Why put off taking your photography to the next level?

You can buy your Photo Walk-About spot right now for only $129.

Class size is limited so  you'll receive personalized attention. (Click here for complete details)

Class size is limited.  A wait list will be started once all the class spaces are taken.

Sign-up for the weekly blog/newsletter and receive the free downloadable guide "Photography 101 -  Mini Course.  Click on the "Send my copy of Photography 101" below.

See you soon!

Expect the best. Anything else is an adventure!

Rebecca