Hosting a photowalk — my experiences

About two weeks back, I hosted a local photowalk — as part of the Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk for 2012.  I’d never done it before, so just wanted to pass along a few of my experiences (bottom line: I dramatically overthought things going into it, but everybody had a good time).

The basic idea is to just spend a couple of hours as a group, walking (2 miles or less) through some photogenic sights.  As is my usual tendency, I did all sorts of research in advance (even though I’ve lived in this town for 22+ years now), and collected a pile of trivia about various places along our route.

A veiled beauty

In retrospect, this was largely a waste of time, since walking 24 people along sidewalks means only a handful will be in earshot at any time — and even then, leading photographers is a whole lot like herding cats.  Within a few blocks, your group will be spread over a large swath of terrain.

So my main bit of advise is to not overdo your research — pick a route with good sights and concentrate on getting your group through it safely (we had traffic to contend with).

Feeling a bit hung up

One thing I did right was to make a detailed map, and give everybody a print-out of it at the start of the walk.  This way, those that aren’t familiar with the area you’re walking in will be able to get back to the group if they get… distracted.

Hanging on for dinner

What I wasn’t expecting to be so challenging is that in the Kelby system, the leader of a local photowalk chooses the “best” image that his / her walkers took on the walk.  I’ve never played judge before, so had to learn how to deal with the apples-and-oranges nature of this task.  There’s a really good street photograph, and a really good nature photograph, and a couple of excellent environmental / detail shots — which one is “best?”  You’ll have to go to the photowalk page to see what I mean.

Going out blazing

In any event, the weather cooperated, the walkers all seemed to enjoy the tour, and I know I enjoyed showing them around my home turf — so definitely, I’d recommend this to anybody!  And as you can see, I had fun playing with my (still-)new 60mm lens.

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