Learning to Teach Photography

Thoughts on extending what you know …. in the right direction

One of the things I have done a lot over the last 9 months of a pandemic ridden world is listen to podcast.

I realize that I do not have (or maybe it is that I do not give myself) the time to sit down and read, especially on a screen. I am already in front of a screen enough! So listening is great. Podcast work- whilst on the move. I get my news, the state of world affairs, stories and also learn and connect to other photographers and the global photo world.  Maybe it is not always the most mindful way but it does feel like I am not completely living an Ibiza no man’s land bubble!

As a photographer you do much alone. A lot of work from home on a computer. In Ibiza we have also lacked a community with in the ‘photographer world’- a project that I am now trying to change (- that’s a whole other blog post.)  So listening to the many many different podcasts from photographers and photographer business owners all over the world has been eye opening! You end up in a podcast hole- one leads to another and another and another.

I have come to learn:

Relatively I have been ‘a photographer’ for a long time. I never set out or decided ‘to be’ a Photographer or a Wedding Photographer for that matter, it just kind of came to me. I am not a hustler or much of a business woman (I could do with more google reviews but don’t like to push people into writing them!) Though I do hang on in there and have pushed to where I am and what I have done so far but with/from different intentions. I procrastinate. I am not a great trend follower(all these brown presents at the moment- I just can’t go there). I am not good at putting ME in front of the camera or as the subject, (so a big fail in the modern marketing world: INSTAGARM stories). I am not a techy photographer at all, though I do know my way around MY camera settings). It is better to stay humble and not get big for your boots. I have so many stories in ‘my days at work on an Ibiza Wedding’ that would resonate with so many other photographers in the same game or on any destination wedding for that matter. But mainly I have realized that I have learnt a lot along the way and if I put it all down on paper, it would fill some pages!

Where are these thoughts going? Where have they taken me? Can I teach and pass on what I now know? Or is that a saturated market too? What could someone starting out learn from me? Do they want to?

One thought:

I have kind of been teaching along the way without making it formal. I have had assistants and second shooters since as far back as 2007.

Not many know it, Ana Lui was the first. She was just out of university, moved to Ibiza and super keen and eager to learn! I am not sure what expertise I gave her but she got some practice and some portfolio for her first website for sure. She had her own drive to push herself, to learn and gain knowledge, read and study which meant she was out and about getting work all over the island fast. And look where it took her! Since then I have had another 10 or so girls and guys who have passed through my summer seasons, whether for a day, a week, a month, a season or a few years. I have watched them become photographers in their own right Or decide not to. I have for sure influenced and encouraged them along the way but also they have also influenced and taught me as well.

The other thought:

Last year I actually did what I would call a more formal bit of teaching, though true to my character I kept it relatively relaxed. Pushed along by the Lovely Delphine at @del_mao I did my first photography workshop. Putting together a photography workshop of my own was a daunting experience. I did have a few sleepless nights leading up to it! I think it was the idea that I had to believe in myself and my experience, I am no sales woman either. I had to believe it would be useful to someone else to hear my experience, not just attend a beautiful Ibiza retreat experience.

It turned out to be a very humbling few days. An eye opener and it gave me a little clarity that after so many years and so many weddings, families and couples photographed I do have something to share. And would love to be able to continue to do so.

Of course Covid blew a repeat event for 2020 but it has been a year of changes and plannings and I hope I can bring more to these experiences in 2021!

So with all this time spent with very little work in 2020- and what should be more time (it did not feel like it) I did look back through old hard drives and old photos; here is a small selection and evolution of my work- what has changed? Staring as far back as 2008 up until last year.

And these are a few of the the talents that have spent some small moments AND long moments, over the last 12 years with me. I am thankful for meeting them all and for having had them join me, in Ibiza, on my photo journey.

@josephconlon1@73karlitosbrown@anaostrom @emmily_b@emmathare@emma_saunders

@marieefrancesca @sofiagomezfonzo@clarissasofiat @mollyjayneb