Those who attended this year's Photo and Film Expo - the first time an event of such magnitude dedicated to photography and film took place under one roof in SA - will no doubt agree that it was a massive success.

"For a niche event, targeted towards the photographic industry, the turnout was outstanding with 15 322 industry members attending, and many returning for all three days of the event," commented Matt Raven, the Photo and Film Expo's spokesperson.

The expo featured some of the top names in South African photography and film giving free workshops to attendees, in addition to the incredible prizes that were up for grabs.

Raven said that thousands flocked from all over the country to attend what has been hailed as the largest and most interactive photographic event on the continent.

The interactive nature of the show was a nostalgic treat and kept almost every visitor entertained throughout the day. So much was on the go, from extreme target shooting alleys with prizes to live underwater shoots as well as numerous practical demonstrations and giveaways.   

The event was supported by 78 exhibitors displaying their products and service offerings, many of them offering substantial discounts to the public - as a result, record sales were achieved with some suppliers having to make special arrangements to replenish stock.

The inaugural edition focused on showcasing latest talents, educating enthusiasts and the public about the overall nature of the industry and lots of networking. Many members of the advertising and production communities also attended.

"Photographic and film organisations such as the PSSA, PPSA, GFC and SAFREA were represented at the event and an emphasis was on education with 14 workshops, 22 practical demonstrations and numerous other feature areas. Thanks go out to the presenters for their contributions," commented the enthusiastic Raven.

There were numerous competitions with prizes ranging from photographic courses to aerial photography. One lucky winner (Michael Clarence, a 3rd year photographic student) walked away with a Nikon D3x valued at over R100 000 while Willem Schonken won the online prize of a new D90.

Special mention goes out to Epson, Nikon and Sony for taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd place respectively for their stand designs, as well as to PiX Magazine for supporting this initiative as primary media partner.

Planning has already begun for next year's Photo & Film Expo, scheduled to take place later in the year (again at the Coca Cola Dome) to accommodate new product releases.

For more information on the 2010 event, keep visiting www.photofilmexpo.com  and be sure to subscribe to receive newsletter updates; or search for the group on Facebook.