The Art of Photography: A Sneak Peek into Our Photography Workshop

Whether you are new to photography, or just looking to improve your craft, Camera House has a range of photography courses and workshops available to photographers.

One such advanced workshop takes place at The Entrance, a favourite destination for Camera House Erina’s resident photography expert, John Ralph.

John isn’t only a customer service whiz, he’s also a brilliant photographer. Below, he describes why The Entrance makes a great workshop destination, along with a few handy tips to help you take better snaps.

boat beside the entrance jetty

Learning All About Photography at The Entrance, NSW

The Entrance is an interesting and picturesque seaside community about one and a half hours drive from Sydney, at the mouth of Tuggerah Lake.

The town has had a revival in recent years which makes it a great place to visit for either a day or a short break. Photographic opportunities here are impressive, from both the interesting streetscapes and the beautiful coastal scenery.

The town is easy to get around and is wheelchair friendly, so it’s perfect for people of all physical capabilities. Wide paths run around the lake and along the foreshore.

As it is located on a finger of land, there are opportunities in the morning and evening to photograph either out to sea or across the lake. Night photography is also popular, as the magnificent Milky Way is often visible in the darker skies.

There are some long jetties constructed into the lake that make for good foreground scenic interest, while on the ocean side, the Entrance baths can produce superb morning sunrise locations.

boats at the entrance

When to Go

If you want to visit the Entrance on a day trip, visiting on a Sunday opens up the ability to photograph the interesting sights of the market on Dening street. It always supplies an immense range of curios for photographic subjects.

Many Sundays, there are a series of events further downtown beside the lake entrance. Anything from a pop concert to car show can be found. At 3.30pm every day there is a feeding of the pelicans in this area beside the channel.

The best landscapes here are from an hour before sunrise to sunrise, and in the hour either side of sunset. Sometimes, if there are formidable cloud formations out to sea, there will be rays of light during the day.

The markets and events are generally during the day so you need to choose your angle carefully to avoid too much contrast in the photos.

Your Photography Kit

For the serious landscape photographer, the equipment you will need will be a sturdy tripod and a DSLR with various lenses. A day trip to the Entrance is best served by packing a portable and lightweight photography kit.

Either a DSLR or mirrorless body with a versatile longer zoom would be helpful. A lens such as 28-300 for a DSLR, 16-300 for a camera with a cropped sensor, or 14-150 for a mirrorless camera is ideal.

A bit more ambitious lens selection would include a wide-angle lens for scenery shots, and a telephoto lens for nature and action shots.

photography workshop at the entrance

Hints and Tips

Market Photography

Take a series of photos to create a story about the markets. Don’t try to get everything in one shot. Get in close to separate detail and blur the background.

Remember it is polite to ask the stallholder if you could photograph their stand and I suggest you do not photograph copyright items, like artworks.

Photographing Seagulls in Flight

Get low on the ground in the park and throw chips in the air. Use your camera with tracking focus and you may need to increase the exposure slightly (+1 using Exposure Compensation) to avoid the birds looking dark against the sky.

Panning for Action

If you have a moving subject, like a racing car or running child, you can make the picture more effective by panning with the subject. Follow them with your camera and gently squeeze off your shot. Keep a medium shutter speed of 1/30-1/60 second. This will add motion blur to the background, while keeping your subject in focus.

woman and child in car

Camera House Photography Courses

Camera House offers courses and workshops to photographers of all levels and stages. For people new to photography, attending our Introduction to the DSLR is highly recommended.

This is a three-hour basic workshop packed with useful information, including information on:

  • Composition
  • Exposure
  • ISO settings
  • shutter speeds
  • apertures
  • lens selection.

The next recommended course is the Better Photography Workshop, a four-hour practical photography course that covers the four steps to better photography: Set-up, Compose, Expose, then Adjust.

All the basic functions of the camera are explored. Our expert instructors take you on a photography tour through streets and markets, allowing you to take photos, critique the results and improve your photography.

There is also a Landscape Photography workshop run once a month at the Erina store, and an Astronomy Photography workshop run a few times a year when the weather and stars are just right.

If you want, learn the basics of photography, improve your photography, or learn to use an advanced technique, Camera House has a range of courses available. You can book online or instore.

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