At the end of January I traveled down to London to be part of Europe's largest photographic convention. The Societies annual get together, which attracts tens of thousands of people from all over the globe, was taking place at the Hilton Hotel, and I was there as a guest speaker for the weekend.
As well as being a speaker, I found out a few weeks beforehand that one of my images had been selected as a finalist in the photographer of the year awards, under the wedding photojournalism category. Unfortunately by this time I had secured tickets to see one of my favourite people in the world, Billy Connolly, so had the difficult decision to make of which event to attend.
I had a wedding on the Thursday, which was at Lodge on Loch Goil, so this meant I had to fly to London from Glasgow. A dash from Lochgoilhead to Glasgow airport in rush hour traffic followed, and I eventually arrived at my hotel at 11pm. Not too late by my standards but I was speaking at 9am on Friday morning, so I was a bit stressed by this stage.
My Friday class was called Basic Equipment - Awesome Results. It was showing people that you don't need to spend silly money to take great photos, and using some cheap and simple accessories, I was able to put together some good images. One camera and one 50mm lens was used for much of it, and this class seemed to go very well.
The Saturday class was Weddings In The Digital Era, and was basically an updated version of a class I did several years ago, showing how the industry has changed in that short time, and how we need to move as photographers to keep up with the ever changing market place. This was my favourite class, and I spoke for a bit more than the allocated two hours, but could have gone on for three or four hours no problem. I even forgot to use the model who had showed up!
Saturday night I went to see Billy, and it was well worth the decision. A fantastic show by an amazing man. While I was there I got a text to say I had come third overall in the photographer of the year thing, so all in all, a nice way to end the evening.
Once again a fantastic few days and a great event, which I was proud to be part of.