Creative pursuits: Photography
Photography is a hobby that can be enjoyed at any age, and can be adapted to meet your needs. Whether you have a compact snapper or a high-end DSLR with a bundle of lenses, it’s something that can be fun, as well as preserve memories.
Being a keen photographer gives you a reason to get out and about to find things to capture. If you enjoy landscapes, then countryside walks offer a plenitude of scenes to capture. Nature and wildlife is another popular topic, and there are national parks, nature reserves, wildlife parks and even your own back garden where all kinds of beasts are ready and waiting.
You may prefer photography as a way to keep a record of your life, taking family pictures and candid snaps at events. These can be printed and kept in albums to view another time, or you could get creative on a computer and turn them into all manner of creative projects, such as digital photo books, calendars, mugs and scrapbooks.
There are classes for people of all ages if you want to take the hobby further and learn more about cameras and photography. These are a great way to meet new people, as well as discover new locations to snap.
Photography helps to keep the mind active, as you have to think about things like the right shooting settings, what makes a good composition and setting up a scene. It can also help to keep the body active too, as you wander around the country looking for places to capture.
It’s also good for helping you keep your memories safe, so that you can look back on events and watch family grow up any time you like. Start now, and you can build up a valuable collection.
It can be a social hobby too, with things like local classes and photo walks, which helps you to meet new people and interact with like-minded individuals.
Top 5 ways for sharing your photos
Once you have started to build up a nice collection of photos, it’s a shame to just leave them sitting on your camera’s memory card or computer. Here are some ideas of what you can do with your images.
1. Photo-sharing websites
There are lots of simple websites that let you create an account and upload your images. You can then direct people to your web page and they can see your photos and comment on them. Try Flickr, Picasa or Adobe Revel.
2. Photo albums
With all the digital photos we store these days, it can be easy to forget to actually print anything out. Get all your favourite images printed and then organise them into a traditional album to form a keepsake that you can pull out and enjoy at any time.
3. Wall art
If you manage to get the whole family to sit still for a portrait, make sure that you immortalise the event in print, by turning the snap into a canvas or poster for your walls. It’s much more personal that a painting and will bring you joy whenever you look at it.
4. Video slideshows
A good way to share lots of images from one event is to turn them into a video slideshow. This isn’t as complex as it sounds. If you have a photo-editing application on your computer, then it will likely have the option to create a slideshow. If not, then you can do it using an online service like Roxio PhotoShow. Video slideshows can be shared via email or copied onto DVD.
5. Photo books and gifts
If you like your photo albums, but don’t want them to fade over time, then you can go for a digital photo album instead, where your images are printed directly onto the pages of a book. There are lots of photobook companies out there now, such as Photobox, which makes it really easy to create your first book. You can also print onto a range of other products too, such as mugs, calendars and more.
Hotcourses is a directory of UK courses, including fun and short courses. It has a topic search and courses can be filtered by location. The courses on offer range from creative, like photography and crafts, to practical, such as learning to use a computer or basic first aid. Fun and short courses don’t tend to have any entry requirements, so they attract a wide range of people with different skills and abilities. There are hundreds of photography courses available, from beginners’ through to more advanced and genre specific, so there is sure to be something to meet your needs.