I’m very excited to invite you to be a part of my 8th Annual Worldwide Photo Walk™ (it’s a worldwide phenomenon with walks in over 1,000 cities last year). Here’s a quick Q&A with all the details:
Q. When is the official Photo Walk day?
A.The official date is Saturday, October 3, 2015
Q. What do you do on a Photo Walk?
A. You start by meeting with up to 50 other photographers at a central meeting point. Then a Photo Walk Leader leads the group on a leisurely paced stroll through an area that is photographically interesting; you take lots pictures; you can chat with other folks (photo walkers are very friendly by nature); you laugh, you enjoying being outside with a group of like-minded folks; and then after around 2-hours you wind up at a local restaurant, pub, cafe, etc. (chosen in advance by the walk leader), where you can have a meal, maybe a snack, some drinks, maybe lots of drinks,
you can get totally plastered), and make some new friends. It’s a social event, and it’s really a blast (and you get to make some cool pictures, which is always good).
Above: That’s a group shot of the local photo walk I led in Paris a couple years of ago — we’re posed on the steps of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. Look how happy we all look!
Look how cold we all look! Forget that last line.
Q. Is there a fee to participate?
A. It’s totally free. But if you’re feeling charitable, each year we “Walk with a Purpose” to raise money for the Springs of Hope Orphanage in Nakuru, Kenya, to help them feed, clothe and care for some very wonderful children who need our help. When you sign up for a walk, you’ll have the option (it’s totally optional), to donate just $1 to the orphanage via Paypal. 100% of your donation goes directly to the orphanage, and last year we were able to raise more than $37,000, which is just amazing (and they were absolutely thrilled!). This year, we’re shooting for $50,000. You cannot imagine what a difference this makes to the orphanage (and it would mean a lot to me that you’re helping. :) So, if you could donate just $1 when you’re on the site (just one buck) that would be awesome (and you’ll be helping more than you know), but again, it’s totally optional.
Q. Where do I sign up to join a walk in my city?
A. Visit the official Worldwide Photo Walk Website, and click the “Find a Walk” button to see if there’s a walk set-up in a city near you. If there is, and there are spots still available, you can sign up right there for free and join that walk. If there isn’t a walk in your city, maybe you can start one and lead it yourself (more on that in a moment).
Q. What happens when a local walk fills up?
A. We have a waiting list for each sold out city, so if someone cancels, it automatically adds (and notifies) the next person on the list.
Q. How many is full?
A. Each Photo Walk is limited to a maximum of 50 photographers. If that doesn’t sound like a lot, you haven’t seen 50 photographers coming down the sidewalk at the same time, and later all converging at once on a restaurant or pub. It’s more like a scary bike gang (except without the bikes, or gang, or scariness).
Q. Why do we limit each Photo Walk to just 50 photographers?
A. Click here for the explanation.
Above: That’s a group shot from the walk I led last year in London. It was a bright sunny day and everybody had
a criminal record a great time. A really great group of folks (except for Dave and Peter). Even Brad was there (see far left)!
Q. So Scott, are you leading a Local Walk again this year?
A. Absolutely! I’m leading a local photo walk in Sydney, Australia (I just posted my walk details this morning — I hope if you live in the Sydney area you can join me). :)
Q. If I led a walk last year, can I lead a walk this year?
A. We would love that! Check your email inbox — we sent out invitations already to last year’s leaders (the email comes from us at KelbyOne and it was sent on August 6th). The subject line reads “A special invitation.”
Q. Is there a photo contest again this year?
A. You bet! The best photo in each city (as chosen by your local Walk Leader) will get the ebook edition of my bestselling book — “The Lightroom Book for Digital Photographers” (it lists for $39.95) and their winning image is also entered into the main photo competition vying for thousands of dollars in prizes. From those local walk winners I will choose 10-finalists, who all get tons of great prizes, and then I choose a Grand Prize winner, who just gets an insane amount of stuff.
Q. I see on the site that Canon is the Platinum Sponsor. Does that mean the Grand Prize might include a DSLR and a lens?
A. Why, yes it does! Our friends at Canon are giving the Grand Prize Winner Canon EOS 5D Mark III with a cool Lens. How sweet is that!
Q. Are there more prizes for the photo competition part?
A. You bet! Our official sponsors are awesome and have kicked in everything from subscriptions to the Adobe Creative Cloud Photography Bundle (high-five Adobe!), to Wacom tablets (love Wacome!), B&H Photo Gift Cards (best camera store on earth), and more for the finalists and grand prize winners. I’ll have a blog post about ALL the prizes soon, but the list is getting cra-zay!
Q. Are any cities with Photo Walks organized yet?
A. Yes! We already have 250 walks set-up all over the world, with more being added every day! From Cairo, Egypt, to Ogunquit, Maine — from Tübingen, Germany to Quito, Pichincha, Ecuador — from Isfahan, Iran to Puyallup, Washington — from Lleida, Spain; to Dubai, and New Orleans — there are walks all over the world who would love to have you join them!
Q. How can I find out if there’s a walk in my area?
A. Go to the official Worldwide Photo Walk website and click on the “Find Walks” link at the top right, then type in the city, state, and/or country where you want to walk, and if there are any walks already organized in your area, they’ll be listed on the right side (and you’ll see pins on the map). And if you don’t see any in your area, keep checking back because, like I said before, new walks are being added every day.
Q. What does it take to become a Photo Walk Leader?
A. We’re looking for people who have experience leading groups, so if you’re the president of your local camera club, or a college teacher, or photography instructor, or you run a local camera store, or you’ve lead Photo Walks in your area before, so your familiar with keep a group of up to 50 people happy, safe and healthy, etc., you’re likely to get accepted fast to be a leader. We ask for your qualifications on the leader application, and that’s the type of experience we’re looking for.
Q. What if my city already has a Photo Walk, but I want to lead a walk, too?
A. Most big cities can accommodate more than one walk, and so as soon as one starts to fill up, we add a 2nd or even a third or fourth depending on the response and city size. Also, if the walks are held geographically far from each other but technically in the same major city, we usually add those, too. (For example, New York City could have walks in Central Park, SoHo, Chinatown, and Times Square, and probably a half dozen other locations)
Q. Do I have to enter the prize competition?
A. Absolutely not — it’s totally optional — you don’t have to upload even a single photo for the contest).
Q. Do I get anything for being a Photo Walk LEADER?
A. Love. You gets lots of love. And admiration from your walkers (and me). You also get a copy of the same ebook the winner of your local walk gets, as our way of saying “thank you.”. You also get to pick the best shot from your local Photo Walk group and award them with the book as well (and judging a photo competition is a lot of fun. It’s often hard to narrow things down to just one winner, but it’s also fun because you get to see lots of beautiful images).
Q. Is there a separate Contest For Photo Walk LEADERS?
A We have that, too! We started it three years as a way to honor the photographic work of our leaders.
Q. Do we have cool t-shirts for Walkers & Leaders?
A.You betcha! Each year, our friend Rob Jones from Towner Jones Photography, who came up with idea of selling t-shirt to raise money for (you guessed it), Springs of Hope Orphanage in Kenya. 100% of the profits from the sale of these t-shirts go to feeding and care for these great kids. Last year we raised over $7,000 just from these t-shirt sales alone (imagine how much $7,000 means to the orphanage) I’m so grateful that Rob wanted to help us once again this year (Rob rocks!). Order you t-shirts right now at this link (and feel the good karma coming back to you!).
NOTE: We have special LEADER shirts as well (Leaders — you’ll find the link on your leader’s dashboard).
Q. I want to know more about this Photo Walk thing. Where do I go?
A. There’s a detailed FAQ on the Website (here’s the link).
Q. Where do I go for the latest Photo Walk information?
A. Stay up-to-date by following us on our Twitter page and Facebook Page (If you talk about the walk on social – we would love it if you would include the hashtag #wwpw2015).
Plus, I’ll shoot you an email once a week leading up to the walk with some photography tips, camera tips, post processing tips, and fun stuff to get you ready for the big walk on Saturday, October 3rd all over the world.
I hope you join us this year as we “Walk with a Purpose” to help the Springs of Hope Orphanage in Kenya and as we make worldwide photographic history once again!
All my best,
P.S. We want as many people to participate as possible, so anything you can do to help us spread the word about the walk would be greatly appreciated. Could you share it on forums, on social, with your camera clubs, and anywhere cool photographers hang out? Many thanks. :)