I visited a camera club when I got my first SLR. They met one night a month at a library. It was inconvenient to get to and I only went a couple of times.
This page and others like it are global and you can participate from home at any time.
Hi Martin. Yes, politics and ego seem to eat up most of the clubs in my area too. Another good way is to enroll in a class or two at a small college. (In the US, we have "Adult Education" or "Continuing Education" classes that are inexpensive.. and since the students are a bit older with some maturity, you can sometimes develop some good relationships that last.
Other than that.. as CC mentions, THIS site and several like it, can act as that outlet. There are several groups that seem to have some pretty good interaction and low drama. Topical forum entries can go for several days and pages too.
Thank you guys you are both right
I worked for 35 years in business with little politics and the local camera club has more , no matter to me if people do it for free, if they're volunteers then they should do as good as job as if paid, it annoys me that people think free work should be done "tardy"
I belong to a camera club that meets 2 times a month on most months. The first one is a competition meeting and is judge by PSA guidelines. We show both digital images and prints. Prints are harder for me to pick the good ones to show. The second meeting is a workshop which mostly show pictures on CD of international competition.
Martin, I too joined a camera club as it is advised usually. Then I left it due to following reasons,
It was inconvenient to go, distance and time were big hindrances. Most of the meeting were arranged at weekends when my family wanted me after a hectic schedule of week.
The combined photo walks were enjoyable but I found it not suitable for creativity. it was more of a gossip and socializing rather than serious creative work. Personally I like to be alone and think, with a camera in my hand rather than a group with me, continuously chattering and gossiping. Though the trips themselves were good outings for fun.
The lectures arranged were good source of learning but I have gradually found more expert lectures available of youtube which I can listen to at my home
The gossip, politics and egos were the final coup de grace for my ambition to join the group. Since then I am on PS and have not found any deficiency
Having belonged to several clubs over the years I find you're take on them to be spot on. So a group of us got together, found a room at a local school to use one evening a month and started a non-fee club that was geared at being supportive and educational in an extremely relaxed environment. We have grown in leaps and bounds . . . . . . and we're having fun, lots of fun with zero politics. There's an old saying, "If it's not fun, then why are you doing it?"
A club dynamic is defined by it's leadership and what that leadership sees as the purpose of the club. I'm President of a local photography club and from the beginning this is going to be a learning/helping/camaraderie experience. We welcome all questions about all things photographic and photography business.
We are very clear about the intentions, steer conversations to being helping instead of being argumentative and overall have very few rules. Unfortunately we just had to add one, no snatching or trolling others business pages for clients.
So it's a matter of finding the right club dynamic for you, hope that you can find that one day because in the correct environment there's no better place for learning without being under the gun.
You are correct Steve, just will have to visit a few, seems sadly that a lot are run by (with the humblest respect people in their 70's) of the old school and perhaps a little out of date. Decision were taking months and for no good reason, 1/3 of the members were on the committee which makes it very hard to get decisions. Tiem to move on.