My New Member Journey at TPS

Allister FrostHi – my name’s Allister and I’m the Publicity Officer (whatever that means!) for Tandridge Photographic Society, or TPS for short. I joined the club in September 2015 and have steadily improved my photography with support and advice from some of the more experienced club members. Joining a local camera club was the forcing function I needed to properly get to grips with my camera and smartphone and finally move on from lazily using ‘automatic mode’. In the early days, it felt quite intimidating showing some of my photos to complete strangers but I quickly realised that this is the best way to gather constructive advice on what I can do better. It’s great to show your photos to loved ones, but they rarely give you the honest and helpful feedback you really need! Over time, this simple discipline has helped me take lots more fun photos of family and friends, as well as try my hand at some new photographic subjects like architecture, flowers and sport.

Best of all, I now take photos that I’m really proud of! (Plus, of course, a whole lot more that are as wonky and out-of-focus as ever!) But that’s the joy of photography; you only improve when you’re prepared to experiment and try something new. TPS has been a great help for me.

The club meets in Godstone every Thursday evening 8-10pm and members follow a range of activities designed to help us take better photos. Some weeks we have a guest speaker who shares their photos and explains what motivates them to improve. Other times we hold an internal club competition where members share a few photos, usually just two, to be reviewed by an experienced guest judge. It’s all done very professionally and anonymously and other members only get to find out who took which photos after the judging is completed. We also have a few informal nights where we have a quiz or a group chat about some of our photos. You can find out what’s in store for the weeks ahead by viewing next season’s programme here.

Every week at TPS we learn from each other, get fresh ideas for our next photos, and receive practical help when we need it. As members, we come together to support and inspire one another, not to compete. And having a deadline to share photos is a great motivator to get out, take more pictures and continuously improve.

If this sounds like something you’d enjoy, why not come along and find out how our friendly club can help you? The 2018-19 season of TPS kicks off at 8pm on Thursday 13th September with a special event to welcome new members to the club. This is the ideal opportunity to find out more about TPS, discover what we get up to through the year and decide if you’d like to take part. There’s no requirement to book in advance, although we love hearing from visitors so we can give you a proper welcome when you arrive. Just drop us a short note on the form on this page.

The 2018-19 season will be my fourth year with TPS. I’ve learned so much, but there’s always something new to discover in the fascinating world of photography. I hope to see you at TPS soon. And, if you’ve any questions, just ping me an email at publicity@tpsinfo.org.uk.

Happy snapping!