Photography workshop - FAQs

Frequently asked questions (FAQ's) relating to our General level and the Advanced photography workshops.

Who are the workshops aimed at?

The General level workshops are aimed at people who consider themselves at beginner to intermediate level. This workshop aims to move participants from the cameras auto-settings to manual settings. This will allow participants to become more creative with their photography.

Advanced are aimed at advanced amateur photographers. Participants should be comfortable using the manual or semi-manual settings, and need to have a DSLR camera. This level will focus more on composition and the art of photography.

What is the difference between the General level and the Advanced workshops?

On an advanced workshop we will talk more about composition and how to approach the art of photography, and less about camera settings. People booking on an advanced workshop should ideally have a DSLR camera (not a compact) and at least know how to use the camera in manual or semi-manual mode (not be reliant upon the cameras Program and Full-auto settings).

How long does the workshop last?

Workshops last approximately 6 hours (including 30-minute lunch break).

Do I attend just one of the workshops or all of them?

The workshops are all very similar so you would just attend one. However, you could attend the General workshop first and once your confidence grows then attend an advanced workshop. You could also attend one at ZSL London Zoo and one at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo as the two collection of animals are quite different. Go to www.zsl.org to see which animals we have at each site.

What camera and equipment do I need to bring?

We recommend you bring the following photographic equipment.

The essential items are highlighted in bold text. The remaining items are non-essential but useful and may increase the number and range of photo opportunities you are able to exploit. If you are unsure about what gear to bring or have any questions, please email us at info@zsl.org .

For all users:

  • Digital or film SLR camera (participants with compact cameras can attend General workshops)
  • Lenses in the range 100MM – 300MM
  • Shorter focal length lenses (e.g. 17MM – 28MM)
  • Longer focal length lenses (e.g. 400MM)
  • An alternative to long telephoto lenses is a tele-converter (e.g. 1.4x or 2x)
  • Small flash unit (preferably with off-camera bracket)
  • Monopod or tripod with head
  • UV filter (screw-in type)

For digital users:

  • Spare memory cards
  • Battery charger
  • Spare battery

What happens if the weather is bad?

The workshop will still run. ZSL London Zoo has lots of indoor animal houses whereas ZSL Whipsnade Zoo has fewer indoor areas. In both instances we would recommend bringing appropriate waterproof clothing and footwear. Please also ensure that your camera and other equipment is also protected.

Are there any age restrictions?

Participants must be over the age of 16 years old to participate on a workshop.

Will I need a vehicle for the Whipsnade workshop?

No, the group will walk around the site together.

How much does it cost to take part in a workshop?

All of our workshops are £125 per person.

What's included in the price?

As well as taking part in the workshop the fee also includes entry into the zoo for the participant and car parking. Lunch and refreshments are not included in the price, but can be purchased from the cafe. Participants are also welcome to bring a packed lunch with them.

How many other students will be taking part on my workshop?

There will be a maximum of 10 participants on each workshop. This ensures that the lead photographer has plenty of time to answer any questions and interact with everyone on the workshop.

What should I wear?

Please dress depending on the weather. At both zoos there will be lots of walking around so please ensure you wear comfortable and appropriate footwear which you don't mind getting a bit dirty. You may enter quite humid exhibits at ZSL London Zoo so you may prefer to wear layered clothing. At ZSL Whipsnade Zoo the weather can be fairly changeable so layered clothing is also recommended as is a waterproof coat as most of the exhibits are outside.

Can I bring a guest?

Friends and family are welcome to visit the zoo on the same day that you're attending the workshop. However we ask that spectators do not follow the group around during the workshop as this could potentially distract the other participants.

How do I book a place on one of the workshops?

You can purchase an open-ended voucher or book directly onto a date.

What should I expect to receive?

If you book directly onto a date, then you will be emailed your confirmation and ticket shortly after your purchase.

If you purchase an open-ended voucher, this will sent out to the specified delivery address within 1 - 2 working days.

Any other questions?

If you have a question which is not covered in this list, please email info@zsl.org or telephone 0844 225 1826 and we will respond as soon as we can.

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