Happy 2018 Everyone!
Wow! What a month!
As you may or may not know, I retired from AT&T on January 5, 2018 after working 18 1/2 years for them. I had always planned on working 20 but there comes a time when a change is due and this was that time. I can now give photography my 100 percent attention which is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time but, I either didn’t have the confidence with my ability or the time to devote to it.
I am teaching two photography classes at The Huckleberry Center for Creative Learning in Valencia. What a kick in the pants!! These kids are awesome! It is so fun to see them learn how to use a camera, to see when the light bulb turns on, and they get what is going on…..it is also a learning experience for me. The old saying is true … “if you want to learn how to do something, teach it!” It seems the more lesson plans I put together, the more I tend to learn. It is really exciting.
We had a great “Off Camera Workshop” at our last membership meeting in January. We started small with 1 speed light and a small to medium umbrella, first a bounce and then a shoot through, then moved to a 2x2’ soft box, a hair and background light, a 6’ white shower curtain liner before moving onto a 7’-bounce umbrella with three speed lights shooting into them. Talk about beautiful light! Our model, Linda Hatton, was excellent, she was very patient and did everything we asked of her.
Thank yous go out to everyone who helped, Tom Spanos for working the fill reflector, Henri Lajer for sending me photographs of the workshop and helping out with the other reflector. Garry Tice, for helping with the computer and making sure that the teether worked so everyone was able to follow by watching the TV and seeing the results of the different light modifiers. I hope I am not leaving anyone out who helped. I can’t believe it was over three weeks ago already.
For the first time since 2014 I felt healthy enough to get out on a club outing….went to Death Valley National Park with Dusty Stiles, Kelvin Pulker and James Mahan-Soto. We had a great time. The weather was almost perfect …..except for maybe the hurricane force winds Friday night ….I thought for sure we’d end up in OZ or someplace. Other than the wind on Friday night the weather was great ….we had awesome clouds Friday morning and most of the day. We started Friday morning shooting the sunrise at Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes before going to the Badwater Basin where the clouds and the light were amazing. We did some exploring, taking the West Side Road to an old Borax mine and finding some off-shoot roads where after about a mile or two you can camp. Thinking that might a possible trip in the future. Saturday morning we went to Zabriskie Point where James made a time exposure video before we all piled into the FJ and drove 3 hours to the “RaceTrack” well worth the drive!!! What an awesome place! Going to go back in the spring during a new moon and shoot the Milky Way from the RaceTrack …it is going to be awesome! Saturday evening, after we got back from the RaceTrack we went to dinner at Stove Pipe Wells before heading back to Furnace Creek to call it a night. We left Sunday morning, Dusty and I drove through the town of Trona….that looks like it would be a town to explore. It is way past its “Heyday” as less than 2,000 people live there. Its high school is only one of two schools nation wide that has a dirt football field….because of the salt in the ground and the summer heat, grass won’t grow.
Saturday, January 27, 2018 was the Professional Photographers of California’s Installation of Officers and Awards Ceremony and I must say the SCVPA was well represented. Mel Carll received a PPC Service Award, Glen Glancy received the Architecture Photographer of the Year Award for his image “St. Peter and Paul” and a Judges’ Honorable Mention Award. I received the Photojournalism Photographer of the Year Award for my image “In Formation”, I received California Top Ten Photographers Award and finished 7th overall and I had an image included in the PPC 2018 Prime Image Collection. Only images that scored an 87 or better are included in the Prime Image Collection.
I am very honored and proud to be a member of our association as my accomplishments would not have been possible had I not joined the club. Many thanks to Larry Gasinski who talked me into joining the association back in 2013. I have learned so much from everyone I’ve come in contact with since joining. My photography was gotten stronger because of all of you and I thank you for that. I am truly amazed in the level of talent we have in the SCVPA and as a group I see us growing and growing and our level of work improves every time we have a competition.
This month Mel is going to lead a workshop on what makes a good competition image. Mel has won many awards over the years, he judges contests and is very knowledgeable and willing to share his expertise as we are getting ready to host our Spring Print competition on the 19th of May. The rules are now available on the website. Now is the time to get your prints ready, get them printed and mounted so when the turn in deadline nears, you don’t have to scramble to get everything done at the last minute. Our next meeting is Feb. 13, 2018! See you then!
Keep Shooting my Friends!