The Florida Center for Creative Photography is one of the largest photography related organizations in the Greater Tampa Bay area with almost 2,000 members. The group was founded by Jeff Donald in 2003 when he was teaching at the Dunedin Fine Art Center. The Center (FCCP) continues today under his leadership as Executive Director.
The Centers primary mission is education and all of our goals can be read in our Mission Statement. The most popular programs the Center offers are our PhotoWalks and educational opportunities. We've been doing PhotoWalks since our founding and by conservative estimates we've lead over 500 walks. PhotoWalks give photographers of all backgrounds and skill levels the chance to practice what they truly have a passion for, photography. The PhotoWalks place an emphasis on learning and fun! You can learn more about PhotoWalks here and see our upcoming walks on our calendar.
FCCP classes, workshops and bootcamps provide our members and area residents some of the finest learning opportunities and are very affordable. Our educational programs are suited to photographers of all ages and skill levels. Bootcamps provide a day long learning experience for beginning photographers and are great for anyone just starting out with their Point-n-Shoot or dSLR. Classes for the more experienced photographers range in length from 6 to 18 hours over multiple evenings. Topics and discussions in classes are more in depth and provide the students with a greater understanding and competency in critical skill areas. Workshops typically are conducted over a single evening or weekend and cover very specific topics in very great detail.
FCCP instructors makeup some of the most skilled photographers and experienced instructors in the area. Their dedication and passion shows in the way the classes are taught and the comments the students leave upon their completion of the class. Beyond our teachers and their vast experience is the FCCP Education Guarantee. The guarantee is simple:
Florida Center for Creative Photography students may repeat their paid class, workshop or bootcamp for FREE as many times as necessary to insure that they have completely learned the material presented by the instructor. If you find a better guarantee from any other educational source in the Tampa Bay area, we'll pay for your registration.
The Florida Center for Creative Photography would not exist if it were not for the commitment, generosity and enthusiasm of our members. There are multiple levels of paid memberships that bring an extra level of benefits and discounts to belonging to the Center. You can learn more about the many benefits here. However, membership on our Meetup site is FREE. We also do FREE mini-workshops every other Sunday night, so be sure to visit our calendar and reserve your spot. You'll also see that on alternating Sunday evenings we sponsor a family movie night that features DVD's on the lives of many of the great photographers of the 20th century, such as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Paul Strand, W. Eugene Smith and many others.
Do you know that the best way to learn photography is to take photos? FCCP offers more Photowalks than any other photography group on the West Coast of Florida. On average we offer over 20 PhotoWalks a month at times and days that will fit almost any schedule. Look on our calendar for PhotoWalks Sunday Mornings, Tuesday nights, Wednesday nights, Thursday nights, Friday mornings and Friday nights and Saturdays.
Members also enjoy our monthly New Member/Old Member Mixer and Orientation held in the evening, every third Tuesday of the month. The venues change every month and give members throughout the Bay area a chance to meet, share, learn and most importantly share a few laughs and have FUN. We also have our weekly Coffee & Photography Meetups every Tuesday and Wednesday mornings in Tampa and Clearwater. Members get a chance to share photos, ask questions, and see live tutorials on various photographic techniques, software and hardware. Guest speakers round out the two hour program. All the above events can be found on the FCCP calendar.
Sponsors are a vital part of FCCP. Sponsors provide discounts to members through their retail sites, provide door prizes at events and help with some expenses. All FCCP sponsors are hand picked and provide a unique opportunity for members to learn, explore and save. We've set up a special page just for our sponsors and your can link to them here.
Since 2003, FCCP has served as a voice for the photography community of the Florida Gulf Coast. Whether you are a photographer, a collector, astudent, or are just interested in new trends in photography, FCCP is the home for you. Join the FCCP community today!
FCCP is the largest photography related organization in the Greater Tampa Bay Area, with over 3000 members. We also sponsor over 1,000 photography related events every year ranging from trips to Africa and Yellowstone to fieldtrips to a park near your home.
FCCP members range from 13 to 96 and include people just starting out in photography and photographers with 50 or more years of experience. Every one, with all levels of interest and experience, is welcome at all of our events.
Classes for January, Februaryand March start registering December 9! Click here to learn more about our Beginning Photography Bootcamps and Clickhereto learn about our Photo Editing Workshops.Click hereto learn about our In-the-Field-Mini Workshops. Click here for NEW workshops for iPhone and Android users. Follow the links and register for a workshop today! Workshops and classes for April, May and June will start registering the second week of March.
Big groups many times suffer from inactivity, so how active is this group? We are the most active photography Meetup group in the world and one of the 50 most active Meetups in the World. While other groups struggle to offer 40 to 60 meetups in a year or two, we offer 125 to 150 separate events, classes, workshops, PhotoWalks and social activities every month. Take a look over to the left and you'll see that in a little over 5 years we've had over 3,500 great activities for all our members. You'll also see that we have over 100 activities scheduled in the coming months around the Greater Tampa Bay area.
So what's it like going on a PhotoWalk with a 100 other Photographers? Well, we wouldn't know, because our PhotoWalks generally have 20 photographers or less. Because we offer so many opportunities, photographers get to pick and choose the types of walks, classes and workshops that interest them. Check out ourUpcomingand Past Events and you'll see a great photographer to leader ratio. We even do PhotoWalks for just two or three members, no cliquishness or last minute cancellations here (except for dangerous weather, your safety always comes first with FCCP).
What kind of places do you go to on the PhotoWalks? We have on average 4 to 5 PhotoWalks per week. We've been to many of the Pinellas County Parks, Hillsborough County Parks and many city parks. Destinations include Lowry Park Zoo, MacDill Airfest, Bok Tower, Heritage Village,Florida Botanical Gardens, Sarasota Classic Car Museum, Florida Gulf Coast Railroad Museum, Brooksville Raid Civil War reenactment, Kennedy Space Center - Shuttle Launch, Village ofthe Artists - Bradenton, Florida Aquarium, American Victory Ship - Tampa, and hundreds of other great locations.
Are all the PhotoWalks elaborate or expensive? No, most of our PhotoWalks are to local parks and area destinations. Most parks are free as well as the Street Photography we do in places like Tarpon Springs, Gulf Port, Ybor City, Clearwater Beach and area Farmer's Markets. A few charge for parking, but most are absolutely free for all members. We get to practice macro, portraiture, landscape, wildlife, bird photography, HDR, B&W and so much more.
The third Tuesday of the Month we have a New Member/Old Member Mixer at different restaurants or pubs around the Bay. We go to photo exhibits at local museums and galleries, show DVD's about photography and famous photographers and many other social activities.
I've been to other photo classes and workshops and they're packed. There's no opportunity to ask questions or even talk to the instructor. The classes have a great instructor to student ratio. We limit class sizes to 20 or less and some of the advanced classes are limited to as few as 5 students. Most of the other local clubs offer few educational opportunities and when they do, the classes are huge or fill up so quickly few members can register. Our classes aren't just offered once or twice a year, but repeat on a regular schedule. You'll have the chance to learn at your pace and have a wide range of classes, such as HDR, Beginning and Advanced Photo classes, B&W, Infrared, Lightroom, Photoshop, Photoshop Elements and much, much more. New classes, Bootcamps, workshops, In-the-Field Mini Workshops and webinars are being added all the time.
How come you charge for your classes when many clubs don't charge? FCCP has many free learning opportunities, not just one or two per month. Every Wednesday morning, every Tuesday morning, you'll have an opportunity ask questions and get answer from "real" teachers, not a couple of guys sitting around that got their photo education from reading a book or attending a weekend workshop.
Jeff taught photography for 4 years at Montana State University and for 5 years at the Dunedin Fine Art Center. You spent a lot of money on your camera outfit, so spend just a little on your education and learn from the best.
What if I can't make it to a class or workshop? Try our Webinars and Webcasts. We're the only local photo group that offers classes over the internet and via email. You get live interaction with the instructors and students with the convenience of being at your home, or even your office. We've even had students take webinars in their pajamas, how cool is that?
It's cool going out and shooting and learning all this stuff, but what do I do with all the thousands of photos I'll have? I'm glad you asked, because FCCP has a strong commitment to you and our community by getting your photographs publicly displayed. We have an ongoing, permanent display of our members photos in several local community organization buildings.
We also offer our members several additional opportunities throughout the year, to display their work as well. More chance to show your work means more chances to get exposure and recognition for the great photos you'll be taking. Heck, you may even sell a few along the way.
Want to learn more, or even help out? Great, we have a committee of over 25 members that oversee all of our exhibits and gallery shows and they welcome any help they can get.
So far, so good, but what's the catch, what is all this going to cost me? Most all of our activities are FREE. In fact over 95% are free. The PhotoWalks, social activities, even some of the classes, workshops and webinars are free. Sure, you have to pay your own admission fees when we go to places like the zoo, aquarium and others, but we get great group rates that saves us bucks in the long run.
What's all the stuff aboutDues,FCCP SupportersandBasic Members? The dues are optional and will get you great discounts and perks. FCCP Supporters get free camera and sensor cleanings (that alone will pay for your membership and more), 2 free mini-workshops, discounts on classes, workshops and webinars the rest of the year. FCCP Supporters get some great perks from merchants (like B&H Photo and Adorama), discounts on software (Adobe, NIK, onOne, Topaz Labs and Photomatix), discounts on lens rentals, and free photo printing (this year Nation's Photo Lab will give every FCCP Supporter a no strings attached $50 Gift Card). Basic Members aren't totally left out, they get some cool perks as well, but hey it's free.
So who organizes this stuff, leads the PhotoWalks and teaches the classes?Jeff Donald, the guy in the photo over to the left, organizes the group. But he's not superman, though sometimes he thinks so, he's got the help of a bunch of great Co-Organizers, Assistant Organizers and Volunteers. They help with the PhotoWalks, Webcasts, website, and they even teach a few classes or workshops.
But Jeff is the main guy. He's got over 30 years experience in photo retail, teaching, computers and photography. He's taught at Montana State University, the Dunedin Fine Art Center and the Digital Photo Academy, he's worked for national companies like Apple Computer and Ritz Camera, and owned his own business, IMPACT Video Productions. If you get a chance ask him over a beer about his travels to Africa, the Philippines, and other cool places (really cool places like Churchill Manitoba, the Polar Bear Capitol of the World).
Jeez, is he like 100 years old or something? No, he just looks it, he's only 56.
Ok, so what happens next?Watch the video and get a feel for what the group is like. Ted, he's an Assistant Organizer, put the video together and he's got some other great videos on the site as well. When you're ready, click the Join button in the upper right. In a day or two Jeff or one of the Assistants will email you a getting started kit. But the rest is up to you. Sign up for an upcoming PhotoWalk (the partial list is below the video and to the right) and get out and take some pictures. RSVP for a class or webinar, or go to the New Member Mixer, there are two every month and they're free.
So what if I want to learn more about the group? You've gotten this far, so go ahead and click the button, you know you want to. Check out some of the links below or better yet come to one of the many PhotoWalks and get a real feel for the fun you're going to have as a member of FCCP.
See all the activities class, workshops, webinars and PhotoWalks on our calendar.