Wild Food School Photo-Foraging Course

Foraging Fotographer Course

Taking decent pictures of plants is something of an art - both technically and creatively - while photographic styles differ depending on whether flower 'beauty' shots are required for a coffee table book, nursery catalogue, or more formal images for botanical identification purposes.

Marcus Harrison, who has run his Wild Food School foraging courses since 2004-2005, offers irrepressible shutterbugs photography courses with a difference - combining hands-on foraging with plant identification time while at the same time developing your skills for taking better plant photos (although the days are ultimately fine-tuned to whatever interests you most and do not have to be centred solely around edible wild plants).


You don't have to be a forager to enjoy the day - just have an interest in plants, and photographing them. And what you learn can be carried forward into other general domestic plant and gardening photography. However, the Foraging Fotographer courses are not designed for absolute beginners to photography and you should be reasonably familiar with using your own camera - or at least know which way to point it. [If you're a real novice then time can be made separately to teach you the basics on your own.]

The itinerary of the courses really varies according to what individual students want. So we can spend a greater proportion of time on taking photos and looking at the in's and out's of depth-of-field, shutter speed, lighting, composition and 'seeing' pictures, and other tricks of the trade that may improve your shots. Or more time can be spent on plant identification with pictures taken as a secondary requirement. We will also use some of the edible wild plants we find on the session for you to try at lunchtime; unless it is decided to go with a packed lunch on the day.


* Camera - preferably a DSLR, manually controllable Compact, or Point and Shoot Camera with the ability to switch to macro mode, and the ability to control exposure time, aperture size/f-stop and sensitivity [ISO]. Not mobile phones.
* Lenses - a Macro lens (or one that offers a Macro setting) is ideal while an optional mid-range zoom telephoto [24-80mm Nikon DX format, for example], or 80mm/100mm lens [Nikon FX, full frame, format] for isolating subjects from distracting backgrounds. If you want to capture pictures of whole fields of flowers, bring a wide angle lens.
* Filters - a circular polarising filter [CPL] is useful in plant and foliage photography.
* Small tripod or monopod - if you have one, though not a tabletop tripod as these tend to be too small, fragile, and delicate for use in the field.
* Reflectors / Diffusers - if you have any.
* Flash - not the pop-up one on the camera, if at all possible. Ideally, an off-camera flash unit linked to an on-camera trigger provides more versatility.

If you don't have any of the above items - excluding a camera of course - please don't buy one just for the session (unless you really want to), we'll make do with what you have. For Nikon users Marcus has some Nikon (F mount) lenses available for use, Nikon compatible flash units, a few spare CPL filters, and the odd spare camera.

* Camera Bag / Rucksack / Carry Bag - to carry your possessions as we walk around Cornwall's country lanes and fields. Think lightweight in terms of any additional lenses or tripod (monopod may be preferable) as you will be carrying the gear, not a Cornish Sherpa! That's if you can find one.

Bring, also, walking shoes / boots and light waterproofs since we'll be walking in the countryside most of the time. And feel free to bring along some of your plant images as this can help Marcus get a feel for your experience, creative eye, and also particular imaging interests.

Plant Photography Course

Photography Holiday

So why not join award-winning documentary film-maker and writer Marcus Harrison for a plant photography course with a difference and immerse yourself, partner, or the person who has absolutely everything when it comes to finding a gift, in the great outdoors? Call 01208 873788 or e-mail to make your booking.

£85 day, per person, or 2, 3 and 4 day sessions respectively £160, £225 and £280.


Marcus did a Degree in Photography and Film at the renowned Polytechnic of Central London photography school when it existed (the PCL started out as the Regent Street Polytechnic and is now incorporated into Westminster University). These were the days when film, sprocket holes, 10x8 cut sheets of Ektachrome, and E4 and C41 processing were king, and there were only a couple of institutions offering photographic degrees. Leaving the PCL Marcus went into the film industry in which he worked for around 25 years, notching up several awards for documentary films and occasionally producing corporate multimedia projects, but also exhibited at The Photographer's Gallery in London in his 20s when the gallery was based in Great Newport Street.

His still images have appeared numerous times in publications - mostly to accompany articles he has written - and various media types over the years. Today his photographic work largely evolves round plants in relation to his wild food work and courses. Out of necessity most of Marcus's plant pictures tend to be for 'descriptive' botanical illustrative and editorial purposes as opposed to jazzy 'flower portraits' for gardening catalogues. In his other photographic work, however [see bottom of page], Marcus likes to play creatively with subject form, structure, colour and texture. He is represented on Alamy where he contributes both plant images, but also macro and micro technology imaging of industrial-type and technology subject matter.

Close-Up Photography Photography Holiday Macro_Photography

Take a look at some of Marcus' pictures at the Alamy links below (they open in new tabs). All images are as shot straight out of camera without any digital manipulation, allowing Compositors more freedom to digitally alter the pictures. Some of the images are composed as complete 'framed' shots while other pictures have lots of space around them - not a mistake, but providing Picture Editors and Compositors working space around the subject matter, and for use in Editorial where caption space may be required.

Plant Images | Outdoors | Agriculture | Technical | Textures | Environment | Business

To make your booking for a plant photography course with a difference call 01208 873788 or e-mail while you're surfing this page.

£85 day, per person, or 2, 3 and 4 day sessions respectively £160, £225 and £280.