PhotoBARRYthon is an event taking place in Barry on 10th October 2020. There will be a 12 hour event for those with enough stamina and a family friendly 6 hour event. It's an event for locals who know the place well but who may not have looked at it closely through a lens, and it's an event for visitors to spend the whole day exploring and finding great shots.

Taking part will fire your creativity, get you exploring Barry, introduce you to people with the same interest and challenge your photography skills.

What is a photomarathon?

It’s a test of creativity, photography skills, endurance, and sense of humour! It is a competitive event with prizes, and takes place over a set period of time. The PhotoBARRYthon format is 12 topics, 12 photos, 12 hours.

Or you can do the shorter event, which is 6 topics, 6 photos, 6 hours.

There are many rules to the game, but crucially you must have one photo per topic and they must be in topic order on your phone or camera, with no extra photos.

Book tickets here


12 Tips to survive (and thrive) at PhotoBARRYthon

  1. Read the rules and all event information. Make sure you understand the timescale, photography requirements, locations, topic pickups, final deadline etc.
  2. If you’re using a digital camera start with an empty memory card and a charged battery. Carry spares of both. Spare battery and charger will keep you in the game. Spare memory card means you can create other photos as you go (if you have enough energy).
  3. If you’re using a smartphone, charge it overnight and bring your charger.
  4. Using your smartphone in airplane mode will protect your battery life and keep you focused on your photocreation.
  5. Wear appropriate clothing. Comfortable shoes, trousers that will get dirty and pack clothes for possible weather changes.
  6. Enter the event with a friend. One of you has the camera, both of you fire off ideas at each other. Two heads are better than one. You also get to spend time with that person and get to know how they think.
  7. Pace yourself. Make sure you build in breaks and refreshment; it is an endurance event.
  8. Often you are more creative during the first half, but more decisive in the second half. Excitement at the beginning creates more ideas and photos. Tiredness makes you more decisive. Aim to be decisive in the first half and then you’ll be more creative in the second half.
  9. Decide on each final photo for each topic as you go. Do not leave that until the end, you’ll be tired. Do each topic in turn. Complete and choose just one photo for the topic and then move on. This provides creative clarity.
  10. Discuss and view topic photos together, but decide in your pair who makes the final decision on choice of photo (usually the photographer).
  11. Use insider knowledge. It is helpful if one of you knows Barry. If not then talk to locals. Ask for advice. However, don’t let your knowledge or information about Barry limit you seeing what is right in front of you.
  12. Consider choosing a simple overarching theme to link the photos. You could use a prop to do this (e.g. a mini Lego figure who appears in every photo). You could choose a theme, like a colour or technique – red or low/high viewpoint.

How to participate?

Tickets will be released on Ticket Source with a limited number of tickets available for the 12 hour and 6 hour events. The cost of the tickets will be £5 for the 12 hour event and £3 for the 6 hour event. You only need one ticket per photographer, so if you are working as a pair or as a family and taking only one set of photos, you will only need one ticket. The deadline for buying a ticket will be 24 hours before the event starts (i.e. 8.30am on the 9th October). It will not be possible to buy a ticket on the day.

On the morning of the event, you will need to register at the Memo Arts Centre. Registration times will be staggered and you will be emailed a time slot to register. At the Memo, safety measures have been prepared to keep everyone safe, with social distancing and hand sanitizers. On registration you will be given a bracelet, a map leaflet and your first 3 topics.

The next 3 topics will be released at 11.30am, 3 more at 2.30pm, and the final 3 at 5.30pm. If you use twitter or instagram you can follow our account to get the topics throughout the day, or the map leaflet will show you venues around the town where topics can be collected.

It is possible to participate entirely on foot. Barry has different areas to explore but you can walk from one place to another, e.g. Barry Island is about 15 minutes walk from the West end of town. If using a car, familiarise yourself with the road network around Barry, or if using public transport, check the bus and train timetables. There are 4 train stations in Barry – Cadoxton, Barry Docks, Barry, and Barry Island.

Book tickets here

Once you have bought a ticket and we have your email address we will keep in touch with you by email with further information.

Upcoming Events

Barry has a busy programme of annual events ranging from open-air cinema, triathlons, Gwyl Fach y Fro and artist-led events.