Many moons ago, I worked as a travel agent. I had a fabulous time traveling around the world and taking pictures of just about anything that caught my eye or represented a destination I was visiting. Eight years later, my globetrotting days came to an end. I quit my job. I decided to pursue my lifelong dream of becoming an entrepreneur. I took a flying leap of faith into the unknown without a clue of what to do next. On a December day in 2001, inspiration struck unexpectedly.
While walking along the Boston Common with my camera, I was in awe of the beauty around me: Beacon Hill’s beautiful 19th-century architecture and the winter scene at Frog Pond as ice skaters glided by. There were photo opportunities everywhere I looked! I wondered, do locals and visitors take the time to really observe the details of our historic city? Or, do they just keep walking and overlook their immediate surroundings? Suddenly, I had an epiphany: I am going to start a photo walking tour business in Boston and include fascinating, historical commentary too!
That serendipitous walk in the park changed my life. Long hours of research, marketing strategies, building content for a website, and mapping out itineraries followed. In six months, my entrepreneurial dream became a reality on May 1, 2002. PhotoWalks, Boston’s first photo tour business, launched with only two tours on the calendar: Beacon Hill and the Public Garden.
Today, there are a variety of photo tours, workshops, and scavenger hunts in Boston and beyond. In 2016, Private Photo Sessions were added to capture visitors’ experience in Boston in front of the camera – a great way for clients to explore the city and have professional pictures taken at scenic locations with historic and iconic landmarks in the background. Private photo sessions are also available for surprise marriage proposals and engagement pictures too.
One of my greatest joys is meeting many wonderful people from all over the world. It’s so exciting for me to see how surprised clients are when they discover that a PhotoWalks tour revealed their hidden talent as a photographer!
As a photography instructor and Boston tour guide with 15+ years of experience, I feel fortunate to share my knowledge with people of all ages and skill levels. Visitors and locals discover techniques for capturing amazing pictures with a digital DLR, mirrorless camera or smartphone. Most importantly, participants will develop a photographer’s eye and learn how to see creatively.
A PhotoWalks tour is an eye-opening experience you can’t get anywhere else in Boston!
Hope to see you – and your camera – on tour!
Saba Alhadi, PhotoWalks Founder + Creative Director