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Good Leading

Royce Howland standing around eating

Royce Howland standing around eating… er, leading

Having a good instructor on a photo event is just as important as picking an interesting location. A good event leader is more than simply being a good photographer:

  • A photographer with the insight to know what other photographers need and want to make good photographs of their own.
  • Someone who knows the area and isn’t just relying on luck to find satisfying photo opportunities.
  • A person who can mix the ability to do with the ability to show and teach.
  • One who realizes that he is there for the group, not the other way around, and does everything possible to ensure each participant has a rewarding experience.

Without a good event leader, you might as well be tagging along with a general outdoor guide, or going by yourself! There’s nothing wrong with either of those, but my goal is to do better. I work hard to understand the expectations of my event participants. And then not just meet them, but exceed them wherever possible.

Here are some comments that will help paint a picture of my event leading style.

Comments From Others In the Field

I’m thankful for feedback from all of my event participants. Nothing is so perfect that it can’t be improved, and it’s also good to know what works so we can keep the focus on it! Many event participants sign up for repeated experiences, and that’s always a positive thing for which I’m very grateful.

Here’s a sample comment from the 2010 Fall Photo Tour:

I got to go over your reviews and have to say thanks for the input. You and Alan have made the tour a great experience. I hope to continue my training with both of you in the future.

Preeminent Canadian photographer Darwin Wiggett had some kind words on his blog (New Fall 2010 Photo Tour in the Canadian Rockies) about Aurum Lodge tour co-leader Alan Ernst and me:

Alan has been on every tour I have ever done out of Aurum Lodge and really knows the area better than anyone plus he is a fantastic photographer.

Royce has been on three Aurum Tours and is also familiar with the area plus he is one of the best photo instructors I know of both in the field and in the classroom. I am confident anyone who signs up for this tour will get great photo opportunities and fantastic instruction. If you want the pleasure of being on one of the best Rockies photo tours out there, then grab this opportunity before it is gone.

A kind note from California photographer Mac Danzig:

I highly recommend doing this to anyone who is considering… I can’t say enough good things about Royce and these locations…

From a few participants in the NatureScapes.Net 2008 event at Bosque del Apache, New Mexico:

Thanks to Greg, E.J., Royce, and Rick Sammon for great workshops. — Wayne N

All the classes were great, as were the field events. Greg, E.J., Royce and Rick thanks for the classes. — Bill B

Special thanks to Rick, Greg, Royce, E.J. for the fantastic instruction both in the class room setting as well as in the field. — Vivek K

Greg and Royce — I learned a LOT from you guys. — Joel G

I wanted to email you and let you know how much Dolores and I enjoyed your classroom as well as field workshops. […] You are an excellent teacher and really showed us something at Bosque that we have missed forever. Thank you for opening our eyes. — Sandy C & Dolores V

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