Next Club Meeting
The next monthly meeting is scheduled for Thursday, May 5th at 6:15pm.
Assistance League of Temecula Valley Meeting Room
28720 Vía Montezuma, Temecula, CA 92590
Splash Photography Workshop
Our May meeting will feature a fun Splash Photography Workshop. It would be a good idea to bring a macro lens if you have one, and a tripod too if you've got that, as well as anything you feel may be good to drop in water (or use what we will have).
Fish tanks wills be set up with dark, light and color backgrounds for photos as well as a droplet station.
Featured Member Photographer - Tom O'Keefe
Let me get a few basic facts out of the way. I bought a Minolta SRT 101 camera in 1969.
Unfortunately, photography was a hobby that increasingly sat on the back burner while
I did adult things. I retired, mostly, thirteen years ago. For my retirement, my son gave
me a Nikon D100 DSLR and a couple of lenses. Why Nikon? Simple, he works for Nikon.
That 6.1 mp D100 has been upgraded over the years. Currently I shoot a Nikon D780
and use the Sigma Art series lenses. Now for the more serious stuff.
Walt Santos, A Navajo Sheep Herder, and Experiential Photography
My photography really started to improve in the last year and a half. The frustrating part
of that was that I did not know why and had no idea how to sustain the improvement.
On the club’s Yosemite trip, Walt Santos and I drove up together and shared a hotel room
for four days. Walt kept probing me about my “vision” and where I wanted to go for the
next step(s) in my photography. Walt’s great at sharing how he grew as a photographer, asking probing questions, but not giving you the answers. It did
set me on the path to find my own answers. Surprisingly, I did gain some insight about my “vision” recently; while on my way to Canyon de Chelly on the Navajo Nation in Northeast Arizona. I was parked on the side of the road looking at my National Geographic Road Atlas, when a man tapped on my passenger window of my camper van. I rolled down the window. The man told me his name, Gordon, and said “I see that you are trying to go somewhere. The map you are using will not take you there. If you want, I can show you.” I invited Gordon into my van. He saw my camera gear and asked if I was heading to Canyon de Chelly. I said yes. Gordon thought that I had been driving too much in desert and I should see something else. We started down roads that were not on my map. As we drove, Gordon talked about himself. He had been a sheep herder all his life but was too old to work and the sheep are mostly gone now anyway. He has a lot of pain, and when he does; he walks. He was walking to his daughter’s house, 20 miles away, when we met. As we turned on Indian Rte. 7, Gordon told me everyone calls this road “Massage Road”. It is a bumpy road and his uncle, the first man that drove it after it was paved, had a bad back and after driving it at 70 mph, his uncle’s back felt great. I listening to Gordon’s stories about living in these hills, herding sheep, the histories of his people. I realized that he was subconsciously weaving three strands of his life together: the land, his people, and his experiences. So intertwined were these strands that it would be impossible to separate Gordon from the clay we were standing on, or his ancestors that were buried in the clay. Gordon’s life is entirely experiential. A road is not a number it is what someone feels while on it. The hill to our left is where you sink in clay in the rain. The valley ahead is where hundreds of Anasazi are buried. After spending a few hours together, we reached the area where Gordon’s daughter lived. He thanked me, and I thanked him. He stepped out of the van and walked quietly into the woods that led to her home. After my time with Gordon, I thought about how my life has changed in the last few years. Several personal tragedies have left more focused on what I am experiencing in the moment. Like, Gordon, my life has become more experiential. My photographic vision? It starts with my feet. The more rooted I am in what I am experiencing, the better my photography is. It’s not so much about focusing the camera as it is about focusing the photographer.
Next Education Night
The next Education Night is scheduled for Thursday, May 19th at 6:15pm.
More info to be announced at the May meeting.