SPi Workshop

On Saturday I attended a workshop in London organised by Street Photography International. It was run by Walter Rothwell, Craig Reilly and Emily Garthwaite.

The day was split into three so that each group (maximum four people) spent time with each of the three tutors, who individually have very different styles and approaches. My group started with Walter at the British Museum where we looked into some of the techniques for discreet image capture, such as ‘shooting from the hip.’ We also discussed the moral issues and etiquette of street photography. We made our way down Oxford Street and Piccadilly, looking at the potential of shop windows, advertising billboards etc.

After lunch we changed over to Emily. Her technique is very much more to do with approaching your subject and engaging with them before photographing them. It was really interesting to see how people were generally flattered to be approached for their photo and how interacting with them made for a much more fulfilling experience. She demonstrated that the clever photographer can still capture unguarded images of their subject in the moments after their subject has finished posing for them. We were then encouraged to practice these techniques at Leicester Square, then on to Westminster Bridge and around the London Eye, all vibrant and exciting locations for the street photographer.

For the final part of the day we went with Craig to Tate Modern. He taught us about composition and setting up the perfect shot. He set us off to do an exercise involving photographing a stairway and then spent time with each of us individually showing us how to improve our technique. He also offered me some incredibly helpful advice regarding exposure and metering, neither of which are my forte.

All in all it was a completely excellent day and I have to say, brilliant value for money. I went home exhausted but so excited and inspired! I am very much looking forward to putting all my new found knowledge to practice.

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