Q1. The annual fee is £38. What does this cover?
This fee covers the cost of hiring the room for weekly meetings, all equipment and stationery, our website, annual exhibition and any costs arising from the attendance of judges and guest speakers. It also pays for most of our programme of tutorials: these are available to all members to attend.
Q2. Are there any other costs associated with membership?
Well, the only regular cost is 30p for a cup of tea or 40p for a cup coffee in the tea break at weekly meetings! We may also ask for a small contribution towards the cost of a tutorial (for example, if we’ve had to pay extra for premises or equipment or to hire a model).
Q3. So what do I get for my money?
Weekly meetings include opportunities to meet with other photographers, including very experienced photographers who will give informal advice and help to the less experienced. Guest speakers are a regular feature of club life – these are usually specialist or professional photographers whose talks both inspire and inform. There are regular club competitions: it’s up to members to decide for themselves whether to enter any or all of them and the judging, carried out in front of the whole group by experienced photographers qualified as judges, provides an invaluable source of feedback and learning whether you enter your own images or not. You have the opportunity to attend tutorials and club outings; to join the club’s group on the Flickr photography website; and simply to get to know and chat informally with people who share your interest. You also have the opportunity to exhibit your work, including at our own annual exhibition, Photoshow. Should you be interested in entering external competitions, we will inform, guide and support you with that too.
Q4. What if I’m brand new to photography – will I know what’s going on at meetings?
When you join, we’ll ask you about your photography experience and if you want our help with anything, our Membership Secretary will introduce to people who can talk with you about a wide variety of subjects from choosing a camera or software to understanding some of the terminology used in photography.
Q5. What about very experienced photographers, or professionals? What’s in it for them?
We welcome people at all levels and currently are very keen to attract experienced photographers and professionals. For professionals, competitions provide an opportunity to extend photographic skills outside the relative comfort of your working specialism and to compete with others operating at the same level; and really the same applies to highly skilled amateurs. One of the benefits that many of our most experienced members enjoy is the chance to share some of their knowledge and skills with new or less experienced photographers; for example, by leading or participating in our tutorials, through informal mentoring or, in some cases, by training as judges and joining the judging circuit.
Q6. Can children join?
We welcome people of all ages but children (ie those aged 16 or less) must be accompanied to all meetings by a parent or other responsible adult. Children pay a reduced fee; our membership secretary will discuss this with the parent or accompanying adult.
Q7. How can I find out if LSAPS is right for me?
Come and join our meetings for a couple of weeks for free – we will welcome you, talk to you about the society, let you join in the meeting and help in any way we can while you decide whether it’s for you.
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