Attending the Viking Photography masterclass was a chance to get some photography tips from photographer Elousia Georgiou.
At the start of July I went along to a photography masterclass at the Botanist, Newcastle. The idea behind the evening was to give bloggers a chance to learn more about photography. It was also a chance to ask any burning photography based questions.
The Venue – The Botanist Newcastle
I must be one of the few people in Newcastle who has never been inside The Botanist, Newcastle before. You will find it just opposite the Monument. After going in the door and up a few stairs you will find yourself in a Botanical wonderland. A tree grows up though the bar, the decor is green and peaceful with flowers on every side.
The photography masterclass took place on the terrace, which is very pretty with fairy lights and flowers. There is even an outside terrace with lovely views over Newcastle. It is a lovely venue for photography inspiration.
At the start of the evening Elouisa took us through the fundamentals of photography. Knowing how to change the shutter speed, aperture size and ISO on your camera allows you to get of auto mode and take better photographs. We were also given an insight into the exposure triangle.
The settings on every camera are different so you may need to check your camera manual to find out change these settings. Balancing all three of these will help give you a better photograph.
After explaining how a camera works we were given some top tips on how to improve our photography. We then got a chance put the tips into practice using lighting, shooting flat lays and food photography.
Top tips for taking photographs
- Natural light is best for photographs. Learn how to manipulate it for better photographs.
- Be aware of ambient light in the room. You may need to turn it off or block it out.
- Use natural reflectors in the room to send the light where you want it. Foam boards work well as do plain pieces of paper.
- Using a tripod will allow you to shoot slower if there is not much natural light.
- using prisms, glasses, bottles and windows can make images look more creative. Hold items at different distances from the lens to create interesting flashes of light.
- Use shadows and reflections to create viability though a reflective surface.
- Don’t be afraid to put items close together. Large amounts of space is not always pleasing to the eye.
- It is fine to have things going over the edge of the frame. This can look good.
- Using a tripod will help you steady the shot
Food, drink, product and still life photographs
- Use three main angles to help get the perfect shot. Straight on, 45 degrees or flatlay.
- Use accessories to brighten the photo but be careful not to detract from the product
- It is fine to focus on the details of the dish rather than the whole plate
- Using a low aperture will blur the background.
Trying out the photography tips
We had ten minutes to try each activity, portraits, flatlays and still life. I didn’t get a chance to try portraits. Instead I used lighting creatively capturing the light shining though the glasses. I also managed to do a couple of flatlays using the nibbles provided. It was fun trying out the different tips. You do need longer than ten minutes so I will need to practice at home.
When we had finished we were asked to choose our best shot to be printed out using the printers supplied by Viking. The photographs were judged and the best one took home a printer. All the shortlisted photographs were fab and the overall winner deserved it.
To finish the evening we were treated to a cocktail and a lovely spread of food from the Botanist. My cocktail is a raspberry disaronno sour. It comes in a teapot which gets poured out into a flowerpot with a great show of smoke. Very unusual and the perfect drink for a hot day.
While the event was a little large I really enjoyed the evening and took away some great photography tips. I will be putting them into practice in the coming days.
Many thanks to Viking, Elouisa and The Botanist for a lovely event. It was a great evening.