Channing Benjamin Combining Golf & Photography to Help Grow the Game
By Kyle Kelley, PGA.com
Tradition Golf ClubChanning Benjamin | Instagram @channingbenjaminphotography
Golf truly is Channing Benjamin’s life.
An avid golfer with a 3-handicap, he has always had a passion for the game, but before he was traveling around the United States taking professional photos of courses, he started with a cell phone and posted his photos to MySpace.
Now Benjamin has established himself as one of the best follows on Instagram for fans of golf photography with nearly 27,000 followers.
A licensed photographer for Pebble Beach Resorts, a certified drone pilot and the founder of Golfography, the Southern California resident understands how lucky he is to combine two of his biggest passions everyday.
“There is no perfect gig anywhere, but golf is my passion and so is creative art and photography,” Benjamin said. “I think like anything in life, if this is your passion and it is from the heart, you are going to have a better time doing it. You’re going to get better results and it’s not going to feel like work.”
A former video concert product, it was an opportunity to take photos of Tradition Golf Club in La Quinta, California, that changed his career path.
“That is when it hit me, about four or five years ago,” Benjamin said. “I decided right then that this was exactly what I wanted to do. I love the game of golf. You’ve seen the golf is life hashtag or slogan on my posts and that is true; golf really is life for me.”
As his following grew on Instagram, Benjamin began to hear from fans of his work and often received inquiries to learn about his process or attend workshops.
The fanfare is fulfilling for Benjamin, but it also sparked an idea he launched last year with the inaugural ‘Golfography Experience.’
“It’s all about growing the game,” Benjamin said. “That’s what it’s all about. There is a dead end to shooting golf clubs, but where I could take it from there to make me feel like I’m helping others and really growing the game is ‘Golfography.’”
The ‘Golfography Experience’ is an intimate experience for golfers who have a passion for photography to “play golf, hang out, talk about photography and just have an epic time” according to Benjamin.
“People who aren’t the best golfers in the world but enjoy photography tell me they’re spending more time on the golf course,” Benjamin said. “They tell me they didn’t realize golf courses were so beautiful and they want to give it a try. I feel like I’ve helped grow the game through my photos, which was never intentional, but it's the way it worked out.”
Check out some of Benjamin’s work below and be sure follow him on Instagram for more.