April 21st

Royal Photographic Society, Bath

Learning from History – photographing plants and gardens

As founder and judge of International Garden Photographer of the Year Philip has viewed and appraised over 200,000 images of plants and gardens over a ten year period. This talk will be of interest to anyone interested in a deeper and richer photographic engagement with plants and gardens.  Using examples from art and photography history, Philip will consider how today’s photographers can gain vital insights into their own work and be inspired by artists of the past to take their work to a new level of awareness.

For booking: http://www.rps.org/events/2018/april/21/learning-from-history--photographing-plants-and-gardens


May 5th

Stockton Bury, Gardens, Herefordshire

Better Plant and Garden Photography

The workshop welcomes photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will enable you to explore this splendid location - a hidden gem full of gardening interest deep in the Herefordshire countryside. You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

Click here to book online


May 12th

The Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead Market, Essex. 

Close up on plants

Macro photography provides a fascinating insight into the world of plants. The focus of the workshop is on the most useful techniques and tips to help you explore the colours, shapes and patterns of plants. Philip will start the day with an introductory talk, sharing information from his professional experience to help you improve your images, including lighting, composition and exposure. You will discover how to get the best out of your camera and what are the best equipment options for macro camera work. Following the talk you will have an opportunity to explore the garden making your own images with one to one help and support with Philip's expert guidance as needed.

In association with International Garden Photographer of the Year.

For bookings:  http://www.bethchatto.co.uk/courses/close-up-on-plants.htm


May 26th

The Garden House, Buckland Monachorum, Devon

Better Plant and Garden Photography

This workshop takes place in a garden renowned for its innovative, contemporary planting and fantastic location on the edge of Dartmoor. It is several locations in one , including a walled garden, lawns edged with mature prairie-style  grasses, and mature trees with views across the moor, all of which offer great opportunities for photography. We welcome photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will be a photographic exploration of the garden . You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

More information at: http://www.thegardenhouse.org.uk/events/?date1=2018


June 1st - 4th

Dordogne, France

This is a 2-day / 3-night Photo Workshop  in the Dordogne region.

 We will visit and photograph in some of the most stunning gardens in France, as well as the spectacular Dordogne region.

This is an opportunity not to be missed, France and all its magic, together with priority access to gardens located in the most spectacular of locations. 

The Trip will be of great interest  both to those new to photographing flowers and garden scenes as well as the more experienced, either using DSLR or top range digital compacts. The emphasis though will be how to get the most creativity out of the wonderful Dordogne gardens when visiting these photogenic locations. We keep the groups small, with a maximum of six people.

More information: https://www.worldphotoadventure.com/photo-workshops-and-tours/french-gardens/


June 22nd- 23rd

York Museums Trust, Yorkshire

Better Plant and Garden Photography

June 22 - The workshop welcomes photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will involve the splendid location we visit. You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

June 23 - A half day introduction to plant and garden photography, exploring the York Museum gardens. After a short introduction and guided walk, you will pursue your own subjects and interest. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography, including camera phone photography.

More information: https://www.yorkmuseumstrust.org


July 7th

The Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead Market, Essex. 

Capturing the Image

A garden in midsummer is a wondrous sight and one of the most popular times for garden visiting. In many ways we are spoilt for choice of subjects, but how often is it that the resulting images fail to really capture the essential spirit and character of the garden?  This workshop will help you to feel that elusive essence of a garden in your photography.  Philip will start the day with an introductory talk. Topics covered will include composition, light, the 'language of lenses', metering and exposure, preparation and planning. We will also touch on post capture processing. Following the talk you will be free to explore the garden making your own images with one to one help and support with Philip's expert guidance as needed.

In association with International Garden Photographer of the Year.

For bookings: http://www.bethchatto.co.uk/courses/capturing-the-image-.htm


July 8th

The Beth Chatto Gardens, Elmstead Market, Essex. 

Get Snappy

Enjoy an afternoon of exploration of the garden for budding plant photographers. The event is aimed at children between the ages of 8 and 14 who enjoy photographing the world around them with their phone or camera. Your guide will be pro photographer Philip Smith. We will look at the best way to choose subjects, whether they be plants or the creatures that live on the plants. We will talk about colours and shapes, views and closeups, with the aim of getting budding photographers to get more enjoyment out of their cameras, and to be able to capture images that they are really proud of.

For bookings: http://www.bethchatto.co.uk/courses/getsnappy.htm


July 15th

Chelsea Physic Garden, London

Better Plant and Garden Photography

The workshop welcomes photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will involve the splendid location we visit. You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

More information: https://www.chelseaphysicgarden.co.uk/Pages/Events/Category/walks-talks-and-workshops


August 4th

Ironbridge Gorge Museums, West Midlands

Better Plant and Garden Photography

The workshop welcomes photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will involve the splendid location we visit. You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

In association with International Garden Photographer of the Year.

More information: www.ironbridge.org.uk


August 21st

The Royal Photographic Society at Stockton Bury

Summer Moods

The English garden at its height is full of interest for the photographer, with sculptural shapes of grasses to the vibrant colours of late summer plants. Stockton Bury is an undiscovered jewel, deep in the Herefordshire countryside. Created by generations of passionate gardeners it is now run by Tamsin Westhorpe, formerly editor of ‘The English Garden’ magazine and a gifted gardener in her own right.


For a photographer, the challenge is to really capture the essential spirit and character of the garden. This workshop will help you discover practical techniques and ideas to capture that elusive spirit. Philip will start the day with a short introductory talk. Topics covered will include composition, light, the language of lenses, as they relate to garden and plant photography, including macro. We will then tour the garden and Philip will discuss the many photographic opportunities on offer. You will then be free to explore the marvellous ‘garden rooms’ at Stockton Bury, making your own images with one to one help and support from Philip as needed. There will be time for the group to reflect at length on the photographs taken on the day and also any images you may want to bring with you to share- on data stick please.

Who is it for: photographers with any type of camera, although DSLR or Bridge users with interchangeable lenses will get most from the day. If you are unsure about how your camera works then please bring your manual.
What to bring: tripod is extremely useful but not essential  (not monopod), all your lenses, full battery and enough card storage, any reflectors or extra lights you like to use, garden kneelers are useful and suitable clothing for outdoor work. 


August 29th, 30th or 31st - day to be confirmed

Dillington House, near Ilminster, Somerset

A morning opportunity to experience a photography course at the picturesque Dillington House in the heart of the Somerset countryside. Details to be confirmed.


September 15th

Knoll gardens, Wimborne, Dorset

Experience the photographic opportunities in one of Britains' leading gardens that specialises in grasses, plants that are at their most dramatic in autumn. The owner, Neil Lucas, is holder of ten Chelsea Flower Show gold medals. This workshop is a unique opportunity to photograph the garden in the best morning light - it will be an early start at 6:30 am, finishing at midday. The morning will be a mixture of talking and practical work; the exact schedule will be determined on the day as it will be weather dependent.

Who is it for: photographers with any type of camera, although DSLR or Bridge users with interchangeable lenses will get most from the day. If you are unsure about how your camera works then please bring your manual.
What to bring: tripod is extremely useful but not essential  (not monopod), all your lenses, full battery and enough card storage, any reflectors or extra lights you like to use, garden kneelers are useful and suitable clothing for outdoor work. 

For more information: http://www.knollgardens.co.uk/events/


October 13th

The Garden House, Buckland Monachorum, Devon

Better Plant and Garden Photography

This workshop takes place in a garden renowned for its innovative, contemporary planting and fantastic location on the edge of Dartmoor. It is several locations in one , including a walled garden, lawns edged with mature prairie-style  grasses, and mature trees with views across the moor, all of which offer great opportunities for photography. We welcome photographers of all levels and no specific level of expertise or previous experience is expected. The aim of the course is to provide you with a set of skills and techniques that you can use to improve your photography of plants and gardens no matter what type of equipment you use. You don’t need the latest expensive cameras – all levels are welcome.

There will be an emphasis on training the eye to see photographic opportunities, as well as ideas and techniques to enable you to make the most of the locations. The course will be a mix of lecture, practical work, and group discussion.

The lecture will consist of a talk by Philip Smith accompanied by images of his and other photographers’ work to illustrate key points. The aim is to give you a sound basis for developing your techniques later in the day. Topics covered will include macro, composition, depth of field, focus, priority modes, control of light, and light and colour. An overview of digital processing will also be given.

The practical work will be a photographic exploration of the garden . You will pursue your own subjects and interest, in addition to undertaking projects suggested by Philip. There will be ample opportunities for one to one discussions with Philip about any aspect of your photography.

You should bring your camera - full battery please - and a storage card (any format). If you have a DSLR or compact system camera with interchangeable lenses you will get more out of the day than if you use a simple compact camera. 

More information at: http://www.thegardenhouse.org.uk/events/?date1=2018


October 19th to 22nd

Alpine Experience

This is a 3 day Photo Workshop in the stunning Haute-Savoie region of France. The goal of this workshop is to work with light in the high mountain pastures and forests, looking at how to capture magnificent panoramas to patches of light on the woodland floor that highlight fungus, flora and fauna.

 The Haute-Savoie region offers some of the most spectacular mountain and woodland scenery in France

 We will visit and photograph spectacular mountain and woodland vistas near to the village of Samoëns

 Your tutors and fellow photographers, Philip Smith, founder of IGPOTY – The International Garden Photographer of the Year, and Wilf James

This is an opportunity to photograph the diversity of mountains, forests and waterfall scenes with autumnal colours.

For bookings https://www.worldphotoadventure.com/photo-workshops-and-tours/alpine-experience/