Happy 2016, may it bring peace, happiness, health and wealth to all!
Well, we are in a new year, and so far it has been a good one. Our health is reasonably good, Jan has almost fully recovered from her unfortunate accident and partial hip replacement, Elif and Mina are doing fine, we managed to visit Turkey and saw family and friends, Pasha recovered from several health problems and barking away, all good news. Now, I would like to share a few pieces of news and look back to 2015.
Kept Light Photography in 2015
I have been writing on this blog since 2003, which started as a static Web site a good deal earlier than that. There seems to be a steady number of visitors to this site, although the total number of visitors has declined a little in 2015. Here are some highlights.
- In 2015, this blog was viewed 69,000 times
- The most popular post was “Lightroom Folder Structure For Photographs,” viewed 1.072 times
- Not surprisingly, most viewers came from the US, over 30,000
- Views from Turkey went up a notch, to 2,100+
- You can view a little more by viewing the report, which also lists the most active commenter as Haluk Atamal, thanks, Haluk.
I had an encore exhibit of Sacred Spaces Large and Small collection at Lifespan, Davol Exhibit Space in RI Hospital-Hasbro Hospital spanning several weeks in March-April. I think it is time to retire the Hagia Sophia collection, perhaps even the Panagia Isodion set. Don’t you think?!
I visited several camera clubs, Greater Lynn Camera Club, Merrimack Valley Camera Club, Film Photographers Association, and Connecticut Valley Camera Club for presentations. They all went very well with a warm reception from the members, and in one case by the weather as well! The Film Photographers Association meeting was a mini-workshop on creativity, and I will have a follow-up to that in March 2016.
I had three of my posts published on a very large photography blog, PetaPixel. They sparked some conversation. They are: An Imaginary Conversation Between Two Masters of Painting, Seeing is the Essence of Photography, And You Can Learn to Do It Better, and JPEG Voodoo: Or, Does JPEG File Size Matter?
On a different note, someone working on her dissertation shared her bibliography, which includes an article I wrote as one of the “key articles.” It sure feels good being included in a bibliography, which includes such names as Barthes, Berger, Sontag, Burgin, and others. Best of luck to the student.
Today, one of my photographs made it into a small collection in The Guardian. The topic is “talk” and my photograph is one I took at The Grapes in London during our last visit. Better exposure :-) is good! Spread the word.
Coming up, judging the competition at Fall River Camera Club next Wednesday, and NECCC Interclub Print Competition on January 27. I have already judged the FRCC photographs, which they delivered to my house and picked up. On Wednesday, I will provide my personal comments. Although I do not believe in “scoring” photographs for the illusion it creates is a false one, I am trying to use these opportunities to bring a level of conversation on this matter. For the FRCC scoring, instead of giving a single score, I evaluated and scored the photographs on the subject, form, execution with clear explanations of each. Detailed comments will also help to make the point that looking at photographs is not, and should not be a 5-10 second affair. A few years ago, two years in a row I judged the NECCC B&W Print Circuit photographs and introduced a three-tier grouping rather than scoring each photograph, which was well-received. And as far as I know, that method is still in use. Small steps may eventually reach somewhere!
Tentatively scheduled for mid-summer, I have an exhibit in the works. As the details crystallize, I will share more about it. There are two ideas in my mind, but I don’t want to spoil the show by spilling the beans now, stay tuned.
Quite a few years ago, I built a Web site for PSRI and later moved it to the WordPress platform. For the last few years, Dennis has taken the Webmaster responsibilities, with a little support from me on technical matters. I have been working with Dennis to bring the site to a contemporary level, update everything, and totally transfer the responsibilities to a team. It is almost finished. I will run a workshop next Saturday for training and developing the administrative and editorial protocols. See the site in its new clothing.
I plan to offer a workshop on seeing and creativity in photography. Most workshops tend to focus on “how to” and they steer the thought process to the mechanics of photography. The essence of photography, for me, is still seeing rather than recording. And, I would like to somehow spread the word. The mini-workshops at the Film Photographers Association will likely be the seeds of the full workshop. I have several posts related to this. But, the workshop will involve exercises the participants will perform, then reflect on the experience and the results. It will be good to hear if you are interested or have some thoughts to share on this.
I try to write on different subjects to keep the collection interesting and to emphasize what I think are important dimensions of photography, subject, form, technique. In all these, the fundamental message has been and will continue to be “there is no magic key or button that will improve your photography until you improve your eyes and mind.” I am open to suggestions for topics. Please share them in the comments, in case others would like to chime in.
On a couple of occasions, I received requests to be removed from the new post updates list. It is very simple actually. You can do it by using the widget block on the sidebar. It is titled “Subscribe For New Posts.” Enter your e-mail address and click on “Unsubscribe,” that’s it. You will no longer receive new post updates from the site. By the way, I do not use that list for any other purpose.
So, to quote Bogart in Casablanca, “here’s looking at you kid,” and hopefully “seeing the essence of what you look at”!
About the opening image: The leaf was caught in the wind and I captured several frames trying to keep the camera as steady as possible, then created an animated GIF file to make it dance as I saw. The invisible hand that was helping me was a strand of spider web that did not allow the leaf to fly away, thanks!