I have just returned from a warm and sunny few days in Queensland. It was an honour for me to once again be invited to run even more photography workshops in Rockhampton, situated along the central Queensland coast. I have now been there four times, and each time has been wonderful. This time, however, was unique.
I was asked by Rockhampton photographer, Sharon Mahoney, to come and run a complete wedding photography weekend, taking the local wedding photographers through the process of a wedding day and helping them overcome some of the difficulties they encounter that are unique to them as photographers and unique to their part of the world. This included offering a fresh perspective on everything from typical (and not so typical) Rockhampton locations and the harsh afternoon light that all wedding photographers battle with...especially in a place such as Rockhampton.
Sharon was wonderful in making everything happen. She had organised everything I needed - from a large church for ceremony photographs to a 1925 Essex vintage car...and much more! There was nothing I needed to do except turn up and run the thing....which is exactly how I like it! I can run a mean workshop but I am not the best organiser in the world...
So, Saturday morning found us emulating 'home of the bride' photographs', followed by the ceremony photographs in St Joseph's church. I had been asked to assist with these things particularly, and even though Goldstone House was the location for our 'home of the bride' photographs, we actually used it in such a way that proved to all there that no matter what the nature of the location, beautiful bridal portraits can be achieved - if you know how to use and meter for light. Essentially that was my message for the entire weekend.
After our meal together on Saturday night me met on Rockhampton's river bank for a photo session with a beautiful old Essex car. Not liking the light, we simply moved to a better location only a hundred meters or so away. I did this deliberately. I wanted the group to learn to never settle if a change can be made for better light and a better context. Sunday afternoon saw the entire group of us walking along the street that runs along the river, using whatever we could find to create wedding images. What was interesting was that the group soon learned that great wedding photographs are not created in beautiful locations. They can even be created in parking lots if you know how to use and manipulate light.
Monday found me tired but excited. I had an appointment to be on Radio 4RO with host, Michael Harvey. He is a lovely guy. In the studio with us was Rockhampton Mayor, Brad Carter. We all just chatted about photography for a little while. I do love being on radio talking about photography!
I pour my heart and soul into my workshops. They exhaust me and uplift me at the same time. They exhaust my energies and renew them also. I love the entire experience, despite its rather tiring nature. That being the case, its gratifying to get testimonials like this...
"It was totally awesome. The off camera flash shoots we did just rocked. I just ordered my 'cactus' gear. Shelton...you're a blast.....talk about laugh laugh laugh and laugh some more!The lessons were very very rewarding. THANKS SHELTON. YOU ROCK!!!!"
Thanks Tanya.Thanks to all of the fun photographers who came to the workshop and especially to you, Sharon, for making it possible. I am looking forward to coming up again soon!