Exploring a passion for photography: An interview with Lancs Uni Photography Society

‘A place for those actively taking photos to share their work’

As the national lockdown continues, Lancs students are perhaps feeling more and more disconnected from their friends and the university than ever. However, one way to feel more connected and involved is to join a new society, even if it is only remotely.

If you are a more creative person, who finds themselves going that extra mile to get that perfect shot, Photography Society could be the one for you. A friendly space where you can learn and develop new skills as well as connecting with people (via Teams), this welcoming society caters to all levels and abilities and continues to hold regular meetings during lockdown.

The Lancaster Tab spoke to Photography Society to find out more about what they do, how they are operating during lockdown and how students can get involved.

Photography submission from the society

‘A place for those actively taking photos to share their work’

Photography Soc told us that the society was “originally a way for interested students to use the on-campus darkroom and buy film at a reasonable price” but they now they “operate to provide information to new photographers and a place for those actively taking photos to share their work and ideas.

“The photography society hopes to be relevant to all levels of experience and give them the resources they need to dive deeper into the community.”

So whether you are just starting out and wanting to find out more about photography, or you are already a pro, this society could be perfect for you.

Photography submission from the society

‘Competitions are something we run every so often’

The society still holds regular, weekly meetings during lockdown on a Wednesday via Teams, usually in the form of a video call workshop or discussion. There are currently around 20 members, however membership is not required to participate in these meetings.

When asked what they are doing as a society during lockdown, they explained their photography competitions are “something we run every so often, giving members a deadline and a theme, the execs will then look over all the submissions, provide critiques, then choose a favourite to feature on the society Instagram page.”

They hope that this opportunity will “help give motivation for members to get out and expand their repertoire of photography skills.”

Photography submission from the society

‘Ordinarily the society would lend members to be official photographers at campus events’

Photography Soc makes good use of social media, saying they hope they can “reach students with an interest in learning about cameras, photoshoots, film photography or videography.”

Although they are managing to operate during lockdown, the society has struggled with reaching out to new potential members. The Photography Society told us: “Our meetings and competitions are advertised through our Instagram page, but one avenue for promotion we would have in a usual year is closed to us.

“Ordinarily, the society would often lend members to other societies or campus events to be official photographers. We could see members join from seeing the society presence at these events in the past, now the responsibility is on us to reach out.”

Photography submission from the society

‘We are a welcoming and informed society’

Photography Soc is open to all, they said: “If you enjoy photography or just want to learn, we cater to all levels. We are a welcoming and informed society, we aim to have a relaxed atmosphere, so members feel comfortable to share their ideas and learn valuable skills.”

The society have exciting meetings and workshops planned, as they told us “a few of our meetings now and in the near future aim to focus on film photography and how to use analogue cameras, so if that sounds cool to you, come along!”

We asked whether they get much support from the university and the student’s union. They told us that in previous years the student union would give financial support “to subsidise the travel costs for trips or activities”, but since trips and in-person meetings haven’t been able to go ahead this year they “haven’t made use of the usual support.”

The society “would like to see guidelines from the union for how to run a safe trip, if and when it would be possible. Some attempt at helping society members have similar opportunities to photograph campus events like we have been used to previously would also be beneficial.”

Photography submission from the society

If you have any interest in photography and learning more about the art, this society could be for you. Lockdown has been particularly brutal to the university experience and it is important to get involved with things outside of your degree.

If you are thinking of getting involved with the society, you can contact them via Instagram or Facebook 

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