This week sees the launch of my new online bespoke mentoring service at Forest of Dean & Wye Valley School of Photography - our humble photography training school based in the UK south west since 2009. I’ve been asked many, many times why I’m not on YouTube, Facebook “how to” videos or Instagram reels. Lots of people are and they are very good at it. Some though are not and it’s not always easy to tell the difference. For me though, the photo school has always been about personal service.
When people re-book additional sessions, they expect it to be with me and not a staff member or stand-in. The face-to-face experience is what it’s all about. It’s not just the client’s point of view either – I get a lot from the experience too. It keeps me current on camera makes and models and the questions clients ask keep the grey matter ticking over. But it’s sad to see the “Myths of Photography” still spreading and mutating.
I’ve worked hard on an online package that I think will preserve the values of the photo school whilst at the same time allowing those who live outside our beautiful area to access our no jargon, no nonsense fun training. I meet lots of lovely visitors to our area who take in one of my photo experiences whilst here. Our training partners Forest Holidays and Puzzlewood have been extremely popular places to shed those lockdown blues and Humble by Nature have a packed course schedule for 2022. We’ve even had to add additional bird photography course dates to the calendar for Wildfowl & Wetlands, Slimbridge!
It has been the visiting clients who have kickstarted this latest initiative. Having been on a two- or four-hour course they’ve seen the benefit of my “keep it simple” approach. They’ve asked for this. So here it is. It’s really an adaptation of my existing Continuous Development package – except online.
It works at any time and for all levels. There is a small one-off sign-up fee to cover the initial analysis and assignment setting followed by a per session paid constructive Zoom based critique session. This process of assignment and debrief can be repeated at your own pace and on whatever timescale suits you. Each subsequent assignment builds on your experiences in the preceding one. In that way you can start to dig down into more complex and creative areas as you progress. Whatever level you start at, we can help. We’ve lots of experience and David provides beginners tuition right through to a Masterclass in your preferred genre. If you want to take a month to complete an assignment and have your debriefing session in the evening after work – no problem. No subscription and no pressure. We’ve got a small business edition as well. Helping business owners get the best from the devices the company owns to super charge their social and marketing cost effectively – ask for details.
Our first clients have already agreed their training needs established in their preferred working areas and the first few critique sessions have been lots of fun. The feedback so far has been really encouraging. Many of us are used to using Zoom and video meeting platforms in our everyday work and it’s nice to maintain that connection. It’s also the best way I can think of to get honest, constructive and encouraging feedback on your best work.
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