Education and Development – old

The Education and Development evenings take place once a month, on the 3rd Wednesday of the month, starting at 19h00 in St Stephen’s Church hall, Pinelands.

Main Objective:

It is important to acknowledge that improving one’s own level of photography can only be achieved by getting absorbed in photography from all perspectives. Hence the objective of the E&D programme, working in conjunction with Outings, is to expose our members to a cross section of recognized photographers working with varying genres, so giving them the opportunity to experiment with their own photography in guided situations with like-minded people.

It is not about “telling” you how to get that “perfect” shot (is there such a thing?), but rather the intent is to motivate you all to read about, and astutely view, top quality photography. A prime aim is to get you to move away from being controlled by “rules and marks”, and to rather encourage you to establish your own style of capturing that magic moment which caught your eye in the first place. No internationally renowned photographers stick to the “rules”, but by fully understanding the basic principles of photography they create their own style to present outstanding images; and most of them stress the need for a creative approach supported by a passionate commitment.

These evenings are worth attending and will take your photography to new levels!


15th JULY


Avoid the Traps! – 5 mistakes even the pros make

Years of experience guiding photographic safaris have taught me which traps wildlife photographers typically make whilst on safari, so in this 20-minute Power Point-style talk I will discuss five of the most common mistakes amateur and even professional wildlife photographers make. Each will be illustrated with striking examples from the field, followed by ways to avoid the specific trap. I’ll also give an opportunity for questions and tell the viewers more about our At Close Quarters photographic safaris, as well as my exciting new YouTube Channel, The Safari Expert.

“I have been taking photos ever since I can remember. I was our high school photographer when I grew up in Pretoria, photographing everything from sports events and socials to stage shows and class photos.

 My camera never left my side in the seven years after school when I completed my Masters Degree in Nature Conservation, focusing on leopard movement patterns and densities in Botswana’s majestic Northern Tuli Game Reserve. It was here, in Mashatu Game Reserve where I was based and constantly surrounding by animals, where my love for wildlife photography bloomed.

After completing my studies in 2008 I started my own photography business, Vision Photography, and embarked on another exciting seven-year journey, this time as a freelance travel writer. I published over a 100 future articles on Africa’s wildest and most beautiful game reserves and national parks, focusing on South Africa and its neighbours. With the backing of South Africa’s top travel publications, Getaway, go!, DriveOut and Country Life, I was able to experience and photograph the best this extraordinary region has to offer.

 My love for people and teaching made adding photographic safari guide to my repertoire in 2010 a natural evolution for me as photographer. There are few things as fulfilling as sharing a great sighting with my guests, and even more so when I’m able to help them capture those memories through the lens of a camera.”




Exploring the invisible – the magic of macro photography

“Hello, my name is Desiré Pelser, and I am an insect and spider macro photographer. Sure, I am much more than this, but photographing the six- and eight-legged creatures we share our world with is my passion and my joy!

My day job is working as an editor and as a communication developer and designer for a number of NGO clients, all environmental and human rights organisations. About seven years ago, I managed to save up enough to buy my very first entry-level DSLR camera – and a whole new world of artistic expression opened up to me. I found that I loved to explore the cross-over space between graphic design and photography, shape and meaning, visual story-telling and it’s power to spark change; and I have been very lucky to participate in a number of well-received exhibitions. Just over two years ago, I discovered the world of macro photography – almost as a fix for my yearning for the African bush and the wild creatures that still live there. I realised that I had a “micro” safari right on my doorstep! A whole new world of intricate detail and exquisite beauty opened up to me;  and I fell in love with bugs and spiders!

Join me and let’s explore the wonder of worlds invisible to the naked eye; the marvel of insects and spiders! I’ll also share some macro photography techniques, and how you can get amazing results with minimal, affordable equipment”.