Join professional photographer Victoria Hillman on one of her favourite areas, for a creative & fun photography workshop!
If you enjoy watching and photographing smaller wildlife, such as butterflies, dragonflies & damselflies, Crickets etc, and want to improve or expand your photography skills and creativity, this workshop is for you!
We will be exploring The Polden Hills in Somerset, these are calcareous grasslands, an intricate and diverse ecosystem containing many specialist species that are found nowhere else. These chalk grasslands are in huge decline due to changes in farming, in some cases reduced grazing leads to the dominance of course grasses, scrub and woodland.
The Polden Hills in Somerset remain a special place full of life if you know when and where to look and are home to several nationally scarce species including the Rufus Grasshopper which we will be looking for. Other species found include Chalkhill Blue butterfly and Silver-washed Fritillary, Great Green Bush Cricket and if we’re lucky to find them Wasp Spiders.
We will take a slow walk to the grassland from the car park through the woodland and once on the hill we’ll be searching in amongst the grass, on fence posts and in the small wooded areas.
These workshop days will not be species specific. Instead we will spend the day out in the field looking for different species in particular grasshoppers, crickets and butterflies, although there are many other plant and invertebrate species to look out for.
The workshop is designed to be of benefit for people at any level with their photography. However, a good working knowledge of your camera equipment is important, allowing us to concentrate on finding and photographing subject, working on various skills and trying some different ideas and techniques.
What photography topics we will cover
wide (f2.8) allows for blurring of surrounding areas
small (f9) brings more of the image into focus
artificial allows for different lighting options
backgrounds, foregrounds & surrounding areas
Fast shutter speed give crisp sharp images
Slow shutter speed with allow for movement blurring
Photographing In The Field
The welfare of the wildlife will always come first and we will not be moving any of the subjects or gardening around them for a better photograph
Instead we will look at how to use the habitat to frame and work with our subjects
We will cover some field craft skills, how and where to look for different species and how best to photograph them both for identification and more creative images
What To Bring
Camera(s), lenses (ideally a macro lens), compact camera also works if that is what you use and I would recommend a tripod if you have one
Outdoor clothing – waterproofs, fleeces, outdoor shoes, it can be very chilly at that time in the morning and very wet
Lunch/snacks/drink – these are not provided for this workshop
Important Information Including Health & Safety
- Please DO NOT leave any valuables in the car or leave anything visible
- There are ticks present so please be mindful of this
- If it’s a clear sunny day, please bring sunscreen/hat as parts of the reserve are exposed to the elements
- There are NO facilities at the reserve, please make a pit stop if needed before hand
- It can be wet first thing so it’s worth brining waterproofs, especially trousers
- The ground can be uneven in places but it is flat, we will be taking it very slow so we don’t miss anything
Contact us now to find out more or reserve places on what we expect to be a very popular workshop!