The best photographers rise to the top by practicing, while second-best photographers rise to the top by shooting blackmail photos of the first-best. Snap like a champ with today's Groupon: for $45, you get a touring photography workshop from New York City Photo Safari, with your choice of the following tours: Central Park, NYC After Dark, People on Location, The Urban Jungle, Intermediate Nuts & Bolts, Madison Square Park & Environs, City Hall & Environs, and Museum Inside Out (a $100 value).
The experienced photogs at New York City Photo Safari sharpen the photography skills of beginners and advanced hobbyists in small groups with hands-on instruction through workshops, or "photo safaris." Participants must bring their own digital camera, which they will use as they learn to frame a shot without the help of a tripod, compose a photo with natural light, and stop time around New York City's landmarks, entrapping them in a moment of ice-cream consumption or arm wrestling for all eternity. Snag shots of Central Park's natural environs or enroll in the People on Location tour to capture mug shots of friends who borrow clothes without asking. The Urban Jungle takes to High Line Elevated Park to stress dynamic composition, and Intermediate Nuts & Bolts adopts a seminar approach to improve participants' technique. Wander through Times Square post-sunset to learn about low-light conditions, survey City Hall Park's nearby photogenic architecture, or navigate through the Metropolitan Museum of Art to snap frames of statues during games of freeze tag.
All skill levels are welcome to most classes, although certain workshops are recommended for more seasoned shutterbugs. A flexible schedule boasts sessions multiple times each week, allowing busy photographers to pencil in treks between shifts as traffic cameras.
New York City Photo Safari
New York City Photo Safari coordinates year-round educational excursions that blend hands-on photography lessons with tours of NYC's most famous locales. Owner Diem "Zim" Pham—who works as a travel photographer, a position that often requires the skills to create compelling images in less-than-ideal conditions—and Zim’s team of instructors are all professional photographers currently working in the industry. Safari sizes stay cozy at no more than eight people, allowing for a wealth of personalized feedback and troubleshooting advice for each apprentice. The Metropolitan Museum of Art safari employs the lauded museum halls as a setting for lessons in the use of light and how to overcome difficult lighting challenges, whereas the avant-garde High Line Elevated Park course instructs eyes in the art of composition. Aspiring politicos can embark on the City Hall safari, which fills memory cards with crisp shots of neo-classic architecture and caped superheroes flying to and from the mayor’s office.