Meeting notes, May 19, 2011
by Danny Schweers
Brandywine Photo Collective monthly meeting.
We met at the Buzz Ware Village Center in Arden, a utopian village northeast of Wilmington.
Who Was There?
Kathy Buckalew, Mickey Freed, Erik Kissa, Jane Koester, Lynn Maniscalco, Don Kuespert, Bill Pepper, Harold Ross, Danny Schweers, Jeffrey Steen, and Casey Orr
"One of the most enjoyable meetings ever because of the relaxed discussion that took place, of things other than f-stops and shutter speeds. Maybe the number of people was a factor. A small group of like-minded serious photographers. Great!"
Free Photographic Equipment
Our two Beths — Beth Harpham and Beth Trepper — offered several items to the collective. Actually, I think the filters came from Tom Davis. If you want any of these, contact Danny Schweers at 302 475-0998.
- Nikon FB film camera with with a Vivitar 28-135mm macro lens
- IX-Nikkor 30-60mm lens. Mysterious. Won't mount on FB or D200 bodies.
- Vivitar Extension Tube Set: 12mm, 20mm, 36mm, bayonet mount. (I tried these with a 55mm AF Micro Nikkor lens and, though the image looked good through the lens, all my photos were blank.)
- 58mm filters, two each: Red 25, Yellow 8, Deep Yellow 15
- 62mm filters: Red 25, Yellow 8 (two filters), Light Green
Free to Borrow: Reflex-Nikkor 500mm f/8 lens
Danny Schweers has this lens if you want to borrow it. This lens is much shorter than other 500mm lenses because of its mirror construction. (It is also called a catadioptric lens). This old lens does not get very good marks. Click here to see Ken Rockwell's comments. Fixed focal length, fixed aperture.
Here are four images Danny shot, three while waiting for the meeting to start, and one during the meeting using his Fuji S5, which has a small sensor, which effectively makes this 500mm lens a 750mm lens. Click any one to see it larger.
In the first one, notice that out-of-focus points of light appear as donuts, not as globes. This is due to the mirror construction of the lens. Harold Ross had a Japanese word for the pleasing out-of-focus areas of a photograph: "BOKEH." The last image, of Mickey, used a flash. All images used a manual exposure setting.
Delaware Photographic Society group show at Gallery 919, 919 N. Market Street, Wilmington, DE, through June.
Kathy Buckalew has a huge spread in the June issue of Delaware Today magazine. Click here to see the photos and read the "Face of Farming" article.
Harold Ross had an equally huge spread in a Chinese photo magazine in April. We passed this handsome publication around at the meeting, but no one could read a word, even the title of the magazine! While the magazine is a designer's dream, it has no website, yet. (Above: the magazine cover and a two-page spread.)
Galleries, Museums Want a Narrative
Every other April, an international set of photographers and reviewers gather in Portland, Oregon for a five-day celebration of photography that includes lectures, workshops, and exhibition collaborations called Photo Lucida. Intensive portfolio reviews are at the heart of the Festival. Reviewers are selected for their experience, involvement, and commitment to advancing the work of emerging and mid-career artists.
Harold Ross reports that there were some 60 reviewers at this year's event, and 150 photographers.
Fairly consistently, Harold was asked for the story beind his outdoor light paintings. The gallery owners, and others who reviewed his work, wanted to hear a narrative, a compelling story about why Harold was making these images. The images alone were not enough.
This should not be confused with narrative photography, a series of photos that tell a story. The idea is more that your photography should explore an idea, or seek to answer a question. Here are three series of photos that do that.
Photo: detail of light painting by Harold Ross.
What Was Shown
Bill Pepper showed some large photographs of actors, including three guys in tutus (shown above). One image of an agitated older woman was especially appreciated.
Jane Koester showed a single print of a wild colt on one of the outer banks of southern-most Delmarva Peninsula.
Harold Ross showed a portfolio package he is preparing of ten images, a 4-page cover sheet with text, all folded into a handsome dark-grey heavy-paper envelope.
The iPhone Hipstamatic App. Kathy Buckalew, Mickey Freed, Harold Ross, and Jeff Steen love this app on their iPhones and iPods. The website My Plastic Eye has a Photoshop action that mimics the Hipstamatic effect. (Click the photo at right to see it larger.)
Mickey Freed told a story about how he was innocently photographing the geometric shapes of the oil refinery at Marcus Hook when, within minutes, he was surrounded by security forces. A helicopter circled overhead. Boats were launched. This was in 2003, when the security alert levels were beyond red, if not infra-red. Click here to read the story Mickey wrote on the Democratic Underground website.
We discussed Kathy Buckalew's exhibit of scanned vegetables currently at the Delaware Center for Horticulture. That prompted Harold Ross to recommend the scanner art of Kim Kauffman.
Our next meeting will be on a Saturday in June at Beth Harpham's home / farm / ranch / chicken coop. Details soon.
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