Messing around in (narrow) boats

IMG_4563I had a great  morning on Saturday taking photographs for Reach Out Plus a local charity helping people with special needs and disabilities at their centre at Nash Mills on the Grand Union Canal (near Hemel Hempstead). It aims to support special people to overcome exclusion and discrimination, develop their skills and broaden their experience. On the waterway, they have a small fleet of craft offering riverboat experiences and holidays.

The purpose of the day was to launch their new fund raising appeal. Other than getting speech pictures, some general atmosphere shots and pictures of the boats and kids, the key shot of the day was to get a photo of all the supporters and the appeal message. Large groups are always a challenge to organise. People have short spans of attention, it’s cold and it’s easy to miss someone not doing what they’re supposed to be doing e.g. in this case holding letters at the wrong height / angle. The major problem was finding somewhere to get a shot from. The obvious places had plants growing in front of the camera so the only thing to do was to traverse across a flower bed on a steep bank until I could find a clear space. It’s then a case of directing everyone as forcefully as possible while trying to be humorous (and keeping my balance) then taking as many shots as possible in order to get one where most people are looking at the camera. I didn’t get ‘the’ perfect one but this is pretty good given the whole thing was done in about five minutes from start to finish.

Luckily the session seemed to work reasonably well. The kids were just lovely, happy to pose for pictures and hopefully the photos will help the charity publicise the appeal as they try to raise funds for their ongoing activities.

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