Less than a month is left until Scott Kelby’s 2010 Worldwide PhotoWalk takes place on July 24th. With close to a thousand photo walks all over the world and almost 20 thousand participants, this annual event is the largest photo event in the world. This year is my third year leading a photo walk and because I have some experience with the process, I wanted to point out the reasons why you should join a photo walk near you. Just for clarification, I am not here to advertise Scott Kelby or his websites – I do not get any commission from him or his affiliates, this is purely my personal opinion and my suggestion.
Reasons to join a Photo Walk
- It is free – that’s right, you just need to sign up to an existing Photo Walk and show up. No surprises here.
- Minimum requirements – you don’t need a fancy DSLR to participate in the Photo Walk. You can take pictures with your iPhone or your point and shoot and you won’t be judged by others.
- Have fun – going to a photo shoot with photographers like you is a lot of fun, even if you do not know anybody. The Photo Walk ends in a local restaurant, where you will not only enjoy great food, but also get to share your photographs and make many new friends. Overall, the Photo Walk is all about having fun!
- Learn – depending on the size of your Photo Walk, in most cases you will find at least one knowledgeable photographer who is ready to share his/her knowledge with others. I have personally learned a lot from other photographers and other participants also found the Photo Walk to be a good learning experience. Think of a Photo Walk as a mini workshop, where everybody gets to learn.
- Network – getting to know other photographers by asking questions is a great way to network with people, especially if you have plans to become a pro someday. Exchange business cards and get connected with others through Email, Facebook, Twitter, etc. – who knows, maybe you will partner with some of them in the future.
- Review photo gear – what happens when many photographers meet in one place? They obviously discuss their equipment :) During my last two Photo Walks, it was great to see that most people did not mind sharing their equipment with others and giving honest opinions about their gear. One of my good friends showed up with a fisheye lens last year, after borrowing it from another participant and trying it out during the 2008 Photo Walk.
- Try a different style – photographing streets and people is fun, something I am definitely not good at. The Photo Walk is all about street photography, so if you have never tried it before, now is your chance to try something different. Besides being a good learning experience, it is also a great opportunity to reevaluate your photography style.
- Great prizes – while the Photo Walk is not about winning a prize, if Scott Kelby likes you picture, you might get rewarded with a grand prize (which was worth $11,000 last year) or “honorable mention”. If your image does not make it to Scott Kelby’s favorites, you might be chosen by your Photo Walk leader, in which case you will get one of Scott Kelby’s books as a prize.