FAQs – Some Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

//FAQs – Some Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
FAQs – Some Answers to Frequently Asked Questions2017-04-28T08:24:45+00:00


Please check through the FAQs below to see if there is already an answer to any question you may have.

I have endeavoured to give answers to the most FAQs and understand you may still have some questions about my business or the products and services I offer that aren’t cover here. If you would like to ask a specific question or report an error you found on the site, please contact me. Throughout the website there is lots of useful information that will answer many questions you may have. Look through the website and if you still have questions, I encourage you to ask anything you aren’t sure about. I am here to provide you answers about nature photography and your needs as best I can, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Gift Certificate questions?2017-11-05T18:25:58+00:00

Will they receive a physical gift certificate in the mail?

No. The gift certificates are a virtual Gift Certificate, meaning they will receive your gift certificate via email with your personal message which they can use for any product or service offered by James Doyle Photography. If you purchase a 1:1 Private Tuition Gift Certificate, the recipient is entitled to a tuition session equal to the value of the gift certificate purchased.  

What if they want to pay for something less than the value of the Gift Certificate?

That’s OK. The system will automatically keep a running balance of the amount they have used and adjust the value of the certificate until the total amount is used.

What if they want to use the Gift Certificate towards something more expensive than the value of the Gift Certificate?

Not a problem. They can use the value of the Gift Certificate towards something and pay the remaining amount during checkout. The system will automatically identify the amount of credit remaining on a Gift Certificate and ask whether they wish to use this towards their current purchase.

What happens if they lose the email you sent them with the Gift Certificate?

If they haven’t logged into their account to activate their Gift Certificate, they can contact me and I will send them a copy. Once they have activated their Gift Certificate it will be in our system, so all they will have to do is log into their account to use the value remaining balance or to see the status of their account. They can also retrieve the Gift Certificate code from their  My Bookings and Products Account after logging in to their account.

How long do they have to use the Gift Certificate?

All Gift Certificates are valid for twelve (12) months from the date of purchase. 1:1 Private Tuition Gift Certificates are valid for twelve (12) months from the date of purchase, which means you have a year to undertake the tuition.

Can the Gift Certificate be exchanged for cash?

NO. Gift Certificates are not redeemable for cash.

What if I need more help or have further questions about your Gift Certificates?

Contact me via the contact page

Requesting a refund?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

If you would like to Request a Refund for a booking or product you have purchased from James Doyle Photography and you feel you are eligible for a full or partial refund, you should head over to the Refund Request Page and fill in the form, so I can process your request as soon as possible.

I am happy to refund bookings or purchased items from James Doyle Photography under certain circumstances.

I generally don’t give refunds if you change your mind or forget to attend an activity or change your mind about your choice of product.

Please read our Refund Policy before requesting a refund.

Where do I find all the policy stuff?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

You can find links below for all the documents relating to the James Doyle Photography Policies:

Terms of  Use: Describes the general use of the website whilst you are visiting.

Disclaimer: Describes our liability with regards to third party websites  and their privacy and other policies.

Privacy Policy:  Describes what we do with the information you supply when you interact with our website and what we do to prevent your information from being used or seen by other people.

Refund Policy:  Describes under what circumstances we give refunds. This does not overwrite your statutory rights as provided by the laws of Queensland, Australia.

Activity Payment Policy:  Describes the payment policies, of how and when your payment is due if you are booking a activity placement.

Terms and Conditions – Outdoor Activities:  Describes the Terms and Conditions you are required to accept before you are allowed to make a booking for an outdoor activity of any kind with James Doyle Photography.

How old do I have to be to participate?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

You must be 18 years or older to participate in our fieldtrips, workshops, tours or tuition.

Children under 18 years old may attend some fieldtrips, workshops, tours or tuition only if accompanied by a parent or guardian and will need to be fully supervised by that person.

No responsibility will be taken by James Doyle Photography for the safety or behaviour of any such child.

If you would like to have children accompany you or to book them on a fieldtrip or tuition please contact me prior to booking an activity.

What camera gear is needed?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

Depending on the activity you are planning to attend, the basic equipment required can vary considerably.


At the very least you would require a camera body and a lens. I highly recommend that you use a SLR camera body, either film or digital.

If you only have a “point and shoot”, you are more than welcome to participate but you will be limited in what subjects are available.

These days, any camera which was manufacture in the past five or so years would be more than adequate for most activities. It doesn’t matter what brand it is, as they are all of high quality these days.

If you are buying a camera, you should read my articles about Buying a Camera System and  Thinking of buying a Nikon D800/D800e? (or any high megapixel camera, for that matter) for some helpful tips.


Depending on the type of subjects we target, this will dictate the type of lens recommended for quality images.

A breakdown of recommended focal lengths for subjects.


  • You would need something around the 300 mm and above. A 400/500/600/800 mm would be better
  • If using a shorter focal length, a teleconverter would almost be a must.


  • Any focal length could be used

Close ups or Macro

  • A 70-200 mm Zoom with diopters is a good choice
  • A macro lens of at least 90/105 mm or greater
  • I do not recommend the short 60 mm macro lenses


I highly recommend a strong, sturdy tripod with a quality head.
You should read my article about Buying and using a Tripod for my recommendations.

Other Equipment

I would recommend any of the following be included:

Personal Gear

  • Headlamp or torch
  • Rain gear
  • Water bottle
  • First aid kit (especially elastic bandage for snake bites)
Adventure Grading?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

The Adventure Grading is an estimate of the degree of difficulty in gaining access to a location.

This rating has nothing to do with your level of photographic skill, as most activities cater for all photography skill levels, from beginners through to advanced.


The degree of difficulty in gaining access to these locations is easy.

There is usually pathways, paved tracks, stairs, grassed areas or  broad walks.

Generally these activities have easy access. Maybe suitable for people with walking difficulty.

You should be in reasonable good health as a little physical effort required.

Any of the following factors need to be considered depending on the field trip:

  • Early morning start (sometimes pre-dawn)
  • Staying late and walking in the dark
  • Small inclines to climb
  • Being hot, humid, cold or wet


The degree of difficulty in gaining access to these locations is Moderate.

You would need to be in good health and physically fit.
(There may not be easy access for medical assistance if needed).

Any of the following factors need to be considered depending on the field trip:

  • Early morning start (sometimes pre-dawn)
  • Staying late and walking in the dark
  • Cross country walking
  • Moderate hills to climb
  • Moderate stairs to climb
  • Rock hopping up creeks or gorges
  • Getting wet with creek crossings
  • Getting dirty
  • Easy climbing of rocks
  • Being hot, humid, cold or wet


The degree of difficulty in gaining access to these locations is Difficult.

You would need to be in good health and physically fit.
(There may not be easy access for medical assistance if needed).

Any of the following factors need to be considered depending on the field trip:

  • Early morning start (sometimes pre-dawn)
  • Staying late and walking in the dark
  • Cross country walking
  • Long walking distance
  • Steep hills to climb
  • Steep stairs to climb
  • Rock hopping up creeks or gorges
  • Getting wet with creek crossings
  • Use of ropes to secure yourself or abseil
  • Getting dirty
  • Fear of heights
  • Being hot, humid, cold or wet
Fieldtrips, workshops, tuition, tours, what is the difference?2017-09-25T17:17:39+00:00

When it comes to photography education, you find different people use different names for the same thing, in a general sense.

Some terms used in photography.

You may find terms like

  • Photography Workshops
  • Photography Fieldtrips
  • Photography Classes
  • Photography Lessons
  • Photography Courses
  • Photography Tuition
  • Photography Outings
  • Photography Tours

All being used interchangeably when talking to different people but have a similar meaning to most people. They provide some form of photography instruction or education. Depending on the style of learning you are most comfortable with, will in the large part determine what you might call what you are seeking. People tend to use terms like photography classes, photography courses, photography lessons, photography tuition, photography field trips, photography tours and photography workshops, just to name a few. Essentially, what the person is wanting is an education in photography.

Here at James Doyle Photography, I specialise in nature photography and nearly all my activities are out in the field with real subjects, real weather conditions and for the best lighting to photography nature. My style of educating is more of a mentoring approach rather than a set of hard and fast rules to be followed in a classroom situation. I also believe that being in the field is the best place to learn about nature and therefore nature photography. If you come across different words throughout the site you can be assured that unless stated otherwise, we will be in the field to experience nature as it was meant be be experienced, an adventure in photography!

Whatever term you use, rest assured you will be in the field to photograph real nature except in rare occasions such as theory based workshops. The only time I use a static lecture or classroom style of presentation is for theory based subjects that are best suited to being presented via a whiteboard type situation. Regardless of the delivery of the presentation I try to be in a field type location so that practical demonstrations and exercises are in a real world situation.

Why choose James for your nature photography needs?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

What makes me different from most other nature based photography businesses?

It would be easy to write a long list of awards and achievements James Doyle has made over the years, but this isn’t really helping you the customer or client gain a better understanding of your nature photography needs and why you should choose James Doyle Photography. This is just “blowing my own trumpet”! So I won’t be listing my achievements but instead giving you the facts of what I provide YOU in regards to an adventure or education in nature photography and why I feel I can assist you to truly become a better nature photographer.

As a business

  • James Doyle Photography is a Queensland registered business | ABN: 35 872 159 410
  • James Doyle Photography has been in business (in one form or another) since 1983
  • James Doyle Photography carries full Public Liability Insurance
  • James Doyle Photography carries all required permits for operating as a business
  • James Doyle Photography carries a valid First Aid Certification
  • James Doyle Photography has specialised in nature photography for over 30 years

Operation of the Business

  • I specialise only in nature photography
  • I put you in locations at the right time of day or night to maximise your opportunities
  • I go to locations in the field where the subjects are located and active, not staged animals or situations
  • I keep numbers low on each activity to ensure we do not disrupt the subjects needlessly and to ensure each participant receives equal time with the instructor or mentor
  • I carry out safety briefs prior to starting the activity
  • I provide ethical advise to each participant to ensure the welfare of the subject or location
  • I provide information about the creatures we photograph
  • I provide after activity support when needed
  • I operate giving the client the true adventure as professional nature photographers would operate
  • I maximise your involvement as much as possible by providing advice about clothing to wear, equipment selection etc.

What makes James Doyle Photography different to other businesses that run nature photography fieldtrips, workshops, courses or outings?

If you have ever booked a field trip, workshop, course or outing with someone else or joined a group outing to photograph nature in the past, did you arrive mid morning or later only to find a large group of other participants gathered around? Did you notice that some people may have been wearing inappropriate clothes, such as bright coloured clothes or inappropriate footwear? Did you all head off in a large group? This is not an unusual situation with many businesses that claim to have experience in nature photography.

These sort of situations rarely work when undertaking nature photography particularly bird or wildlife photography. Arriving at four or five hours after sunrise isn’t very good, the light is usually harsh and very contrasty. The birds or wildlife have taken shelter from the heat of the day in many cases. You need to be where the subjects are when they are most active and when you have the best light. You need to have someone who is experienced in the natural history of the subjects to know when is the best time and place to maximise your opportunities.

Large groups don’t usually work either except in rare situations. Birds and animals are usually very nervous when confronted with lots of people and will soon leave an area. With groups of people it is easy to start talking amongst themselves and this can become rather loud and distracting to other participants and not very comforting for the subjects.

When selecting a workshop for your nature photography you really need to be with someone that understands the reality of what it takes and to apply this to providing the best opportunities to their customers or clients, not someone that dabbles in nature photography.

The truth is that nature photography is one of the most demanding and hardest genres of photography to do well!

Wouldn’t you want to learn from someone that specialises in nature photography and has a knowledge and interest in the natural world to help you become the nature photographer you would like to be, rather than someone that just sees a profit for their business?

Where is James Doyle Photography located?2016-05-24T13:27:13+00:00

I am located in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

I mainly conducts fieldtrips, workshops and private tuition to a variety of locations in the South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales region. Tours are conducted worldwide in conjunction with my partners.

To view a list of current activities check the Fieldtrip, Workshop and Tours Calendar.

What payment methods do you accept?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

I accept the following types of payment

  • PayPal (with or without a PayPal account)
  • Direct Bank Deposit (Australian Customers Only)
  • If you have made prior arrangements to pay on the day, I can accept MasterCard and Visa Credit and Debit Cards. This will only apply after you have paid a deposit at the time of booking, excluding Tours. (Your payment will be protected with the highest standards of Chip and PIN technology and world-class fraud management systems).

To pay via PayPal, you don’t need to have a PayPal account, you can pay securely using a credit or debt card.

Payment is required before confirmation of any product or booking. Each product or booking has payment options in the checkout and this will be required to proceed with the purchase or booking.

Some bookings allow paying a deposit at the time of booking, if you would like to pay a deposit to secure your booking. The balance will be required in full before you can commence the activity, tours require payment in full at least 60 days prior to the tour start date.

You should read our Refund Policy and Privacy Policy before making any booking or purchase.

If you have any questions or problems, contact James Doyle Photography and other arrangement may be available.

Accounts, what are they and do I need to sign up?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

“I keep getting asked to fill in forms when I go to book or buy something.
Why do I have to give so much information about myself?”

  • When you book an activity at James Doyle Photography, because we operate out in the field, in a public place, James Doyle Photography has a legal obligation to all clients and members of the public to ensure everyone is safe. For that reason I require people that want to book an activity to provide me with information of who they are, contact details in case of an emergency. I also use the data for account keeping purposes.
  • If you are just buying a product and there is no physical contact, I collect your details for shipping and account keeping purposes only.

Please do not sign up for multiple accounts using different email addresses.
If you have forgotten your previous login details, you can reset your password here or contact me for your username or email.


A account will be set up for you automatically when you make a booking or purchase a product. During the checkout, you will be asked to supply some required information to complete the booking or purchase. It’s important that you provide accurate information. Once you have an account, and you have logged in, your information will be automatically filled in on any form that requires your information. Below is a quick link to your Accounts where you can change your address, password and check on the status of any booking or purchase you have made at James Doyle Photography.

My Bookings and Purchased Products Account records your bookings of an activity or a purchased product from the store. You can also update your personal details and password.

Email Subscriptions is just basic information collected to allow me to email you from time to time with information about updates from James Doyle Photography. I will not spam you with unrelated emails.

Comment Subscription is just basic information collected to allow me to verify your email address before your comment is available to the public (anti spam).

Please refer to the Privacy Policy for further information about how I keep and what I do with your data.

What is the booking confirmation Email?2017-04-28T08:24:59+00:00

After your booking has been confirmed you will receive an email titled “Your activity booking confirmation”, which is your confirmation of your booking and that a place has been reserved for you on the activity you have booked. You don’t need to print this or bring it with you on the day unless advised otherwise.

Please keep this email handy in case you are asked to bring it with you on the day of the activity. You will see on the individual activity page whether you will need to bring the email with you, so please ensure you check the activity details.

Please note that even though your booking has been confirmed, the activity may still be cancelled under certain circumstances. If this happens, you can receive a refund or can reschedule a different date.



What does the Status within my account mean?2017-10-16T08:33:20+00:00

Whenever you book an activity or purchase a product at James Doyle Photography you first have to create an account. Once an account is created, all your activity bookings and purchases will be listed within your account. From your account you can view the details and the status of each booking or purchases. You will also receive a number of emails as your booking or order is processed. If you don’t receive any emails from James Doyle Photography after making a booking or placing an order, check your spam folder and place me in your safe sender list (I don’t want to spam you).

Please read the information contained in any update or email, as it will contain important information about your booking or order and helps things go smoothly.

Listed below is a brief explanation of each status & emails you might receive.

New Account

You have created a new account at James Doyle Photography. Please DO NOT create multiple accounts!

Reset Password

You asked to reset your password for your account.

Tax Invoice

A “tax invoice” email will be sent to you containing your order information and payment links for orders you place outside of the normal checkout system.

On Hold

Awaiting payment to be transferred to my bank account when you pay via Direct Bank Transfer. If you paid a deposit and your status moved to Processing Order, when you pay the balance the status will return to On Hold until the additional funds have cleared. Your booking is reserved and when your final payment has cleared, your booking status will change to Booking Confirmed.

On Hold could also mean that there is additional information needed with regards to your booking or order.

Pending Payment

I received your booking or order but haven’t received your payment to date and your booking or order is delayed until your payment is received.

Processing Order

I have received your order and it is being processed.

If you paid a deposit for an activity or tour. Although your booking has been reserved, you will need to pay any outstanding amounts before you can participate in the activity or tour.

Order Processed

I have received full payment and your order has been shipped.

Order Cancelled

This indicates that your booking or order has been cancelled .

Customer Note

There has been some addition information added to your order. You can read this additional information in your order details.

 Booking Confirmed

This means that your full payment has been received and a place has been reserved for you on the activity you booked.

Booking Confirmation Email

You don’t need to print this or bring it with you on the day unless advised otherwise. You will be advised if you need to bring this email on the day, within the individual activity page.

Activity Cancelled

One of the activities you have booked has been cancelled.

Order Finalised

You have paid in full and there is nothing more for you to do.

Order Refunded

You have received a partial or full refund for a booking or product you purchased.



If you require any further information, don’t hesitate to contact James.

1:1 Private Tuition questions?2017-09-25T17:31:27+00:00

If you would like to book private tuition, I ask you a number of questions on the checkout page which helps me understand your request for tuition. Please fill in as much detail as you can.

Once I receive your booking, I will contact you as soon as possible to discuss what you would like to learn about and other relevant details like location etc.

Your tuition timeframe is 12 months, which means you have up to 12 months for the tuition to happen.

Please note I will not be available for any outdoor activities in the immediate future. Thanks. Dismiss