We are so exited to be offering a free photography workshop as part of What Flamingo. From DIY zines, to glossy mags, to Instagram, photography has been telling the story of skateboarding for decades. Of all of the associated art forms - music, fashion, drawing, video etc. - photography is the one that so clearly captures the spirit and culture of skateboarding. Whether it is shooting a sweet trick, a bunch of buds hanging out at a skate spot, or somebody's bloody knee, skate photographers capture an urban art form. By combining elements of street, sport, and portrait photography into image after image, skate photographers continue to inspire us to skate. And we want more women skating in Calgary, which means we need more women photographing women skaters! 

This free workshop will be led by 100% Skate Club member and professional photographer Marlene Hielema (who has been doing a pretty amazing job over the past couple of years, photographing the Calgary skate scene). 


Who are we looking for

This workshop is for women aged 16+ in the Calgary skate community. We will prioritize women who are skaters or really dig skate culture (skaters at heart). This workshop is suitable for beginner and intermediate photographers interested in learning more about skatepark photography and working with skaters. Participants must have their own, or have access to, adjustable digital camera  (DSLR or Mirrorless).

In addition to the in class instruction, hands on photography shoots, and online participation, photographers must be able to attend 3 out of the 5 days of What Flamingo events as part of the photography team.


What you need to know about the workshop

  • Classroom instruction: Saturday June 17th, 10 am - 4 pm 
  • There will be an online component for review of the classroom lessons, notes, instructional videos, and photo sharing with other students
  • A dedicated outdoor hands-on shooting session at a skatepark with models: (one of these dates) 
    • Sunday June 18th, morning
    • June 19 or June 20, evening (in case it rains on the Sunday)
  • Follow up critique of the practice session (in the online space)
  • Participants will also be part of the photography team for the What Flamingo events from June 21-25
  • Participants will submit their best 20 photos of the all events combined as part of the final assignment for the course
  • Photos will be shared to the event’s social media channels (Instagram and Facebook)


Your instructor – Marlene Hielema

  • Marlene has taught photography in the classroom at ACAD, SAIT and RDC from 2001 to 2015, and online since 2010.
  • Marlene is an avid skater but also loves photographing the variety of people that she gets to know at the skateparks.
  • She is a member of the 100% Skate Club, and does the photography and social media for the club.
  • You can usually find Marlene skating at Huntington Hills skatepark in the middle of the day.   
  • For more info about Marlene, check her website: and see her skate photos on Instagram @imagemaven