As mentioned in my last 2 posts (here and here), I partook in a photography workshop at Banning State Park Saturday morning with my friend Kendra. Thursday evening while perusing my Facebook feed, I happened upon an event announcement from MN State Parks & Trails advertising the workshop. I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to do a few different things: go hiking, explore a new park, play with my camera, and have some quality away-from-work hangout time with Kendra. I had decided to go whether or not Kendra could, and got rather excited when she said she was in.
I’ve only been really working on my photography skills for about the last 3-4 years. The hobby really took off right when my thirst for travel was revving up. Up until this workshop, I’d never had any “formal” training in photography. It was all by trial and error, reading some stuff online, and studying other people’s photos. I learned a lot just from looking at other people’s photos. Anyway, the workshop was pretty basic. The official title was “Digital SLR Nature Photography for Beginners.” Megan, our Naturalist running the workshop, did a great job explaining different ways to take photos, aperture, shutter speed, and other basic photography items. It was a nice review for me, and I even learned a new thing or two.
If you have a State Park nearby, I would highly recommend checking out the different types of events they are hosting. Megan talked about how in Minnesota, the Naturalists get to decide based on their own strengths and interests, what kinds of workshops they host. Topics could include photography, birding, plant identification, story time, fossils, archery, junior naturalist, and much more. This means there are fantastic learning opportunities for everyone in the family for little to no cost…which is awesome for people like myself who are forking over a lot of money to pay back grad school loans. On Saturday, our only costs were the gas to get there and back, a day pass for the park, and lunch after our hike.
Saturday’s hike wasn’t too hard. It was around 4 miles total with our main destination being a waterfall on Wolf Creek. Banning State Park is gorgeous. It was just so green. The trees just kind of hugged you as you hiked along. It had rained the night before so there was some water and mud on the trail. The mosquitos were out in full force. I didn’t get bit up too bad as they were more of a nuisance than anything else. We had a group of 12, plus the Naturalist. It was nice to chat with Kendra during our hike. We both mentioned that we would have broken out our cameras a lot sooner than we did because of the fact we were hiking with a group of people…and we were at the front of the group. Oh well. I still took plenty of pictures. 150 in total. Here are the rest of my favorites taken during the workshop.
Well, I hope you enjoyed this adventure into Banning State Park. Take a look at the photos Kendra took during the workshop.