Toronto Photography Meet-up Group (TPMG)
Photo by Henry Roxas
Let's face it - Torontonians are totally crazy for photography. Home to Contact, which in 2007 was touted as the largest photography festival on planet Earth, and home to thousands of shutterbugs ranging from hobbyist to pro, this city has got to be one of if not the most visually-documented in the world.
Here's further proof: The Toronto Photography Meet-up Group (TPMG)
TPMG was founded in October of 2002 and started out as a small collective of photo enthusiasts on the meetup.com network. But by late 2005, the group had grown so large, events so frequent, and discussions so numerous that the meetup.com site could no longer provide the functionality the huge group needed. In May of 2006, with the help of volunteers (including yours truly), a more functional TPMG.ca was born.
But what is this meet-up group all about? It's about connecting, socializing, and learning. And photography!
Photo by Ryan Tacay
TPMG is a volunteer-driven, not-for-profit organization that frequently brings together people who share a passion for photography and cameras. Weekly group photo shoot outings to interesting locations (often that would otherwise be off-limits to cameras) throughout the GTA are organized online. Once a month, the group has a social night (where cameras inevitably show up) at a centrally-located bar or restaurant, and in the summer they've adopted an annual tradition of throwing a barbecue out on the islands.
Aside from the social aspect, TPMG offers its members some amazing opportunities to further their skills in all aspects of photography. Members often get together for slideshows, technical workshops, and lectures by some highly experienced professionals (eg. renown art photographers, teachers, and photojournalists).
With over 2000 members and growing, there's sure to be someone out there that shares your passion - whether it be nature, sports, portraiture, photojournalism, erotic, concert, fashion, or street. There are also plenty of 'gear heads' in case you want to get all technical and wax about CCDs, crop factors, image-stabilization, or portable storage devices.
New members are always welcome, and to get a true sense of what the group has to offer, be sure to register a free account and take a look at the most excellent discussion forums (registering allows you to access many more forums categories than are viewable by the public). The forums are the online core of this awesome, real life meet-up group.
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