February 2012 print competition

When? Tuesday, February 28, 2011 : 7-9 p.m.

Where? Tracy Gee Community Center

What? Join us for our monthly print competition. HPS members may bring up to two total prints in their respective group (bronze, silver or gold – new members begin in the bronze group). All members may enter only once in the monthly Special Assignment but keep in mind that doing so still counts towards your two total prints.

This month’s Special Assignment theme for open interpretation is “Silhouette.”

Afterwards, feel free to join us for the meeting after the meeting as many of us will drive a very short distance to La Madeleine French Country Cafe (10001 Westheimer Rd) for some social interaction and late night snack.

Program meeting: “Feldman Method” workshop

WHEN?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 – 7-9 p.m.

WHERE?

Tracy Gee Community Center
3599 Westcenter Dr., Houston, Texas

WHAT?

Our first program meeting of the year focuses on critiquing your photography using the “Feldman Method,” a critique method used to look at art work in general, not just photography. Our presenter will be Todd Marshall-Closson.

There is a lot more then just ‘making’ pictures if the professional photographer is going to be successful. They must keep up with the latest technology in both camera systems and accessories. They must keep up to date with the ever-changing business practices if they are to profit from their image making and they must constantly market their services if they want those profitable assignments. But, most important of all, the professional photographer must learn the discipline of critiquing photography if they want to improve their image making capabilities.

In this workshop, you will learn about the four fundamental considerations when critiquing photography. We will discuss the differences between snapshots and photographs. We will cover how to judge a photograph based on its technical merits, the impact the photo has, and composition.

Learning how to critique photography is a very important discipline and this workshop will help you build the skills needed.

The most important filter in photography

Message from the President
February 2012

Lens filters are a useful tool for the photographer. It was prevalent in the days of film, but still applicable in this digital era.

Today, digital white balance takes away most color balance issues in an overall setting and gradient filters can be applied in post processing.

© 2012 by John Kleb Honestly, do you think I’m going to write about some piece of gear that a hundred articles on the internet can tell you about?

Really?

And, then I try to sell you on one thing making your photographs better?

You should know me better than that!

Yet, selling you on using one important filter is exactly what I’m going to do.

I’ve spent the last five days on the road travelling from Houston to Phoenix and back — approximately 2500 miles in all.

The trip served two purposes: one was to meet up with some photographer friends and acquaintances from all across the country; and the other was just to take a good mind-clearing road trip.

Mission accomplished on both goals!

We had an interesting conversation while I was there that particularly rang true on my second goal. You see, I’ve been kind of bored with my work lately. I felt a bit stagnant.

Getting back into film helped, but it seemed I was doing the same thing — just on a different format.

Then the subject of photographer Jake Stangel’s work turned into a philosophical discussion of the filter, that is — the personal filter.

Stangel is a young guy who is one of the bright new faces of commercial and advertising photography. What’s interesting is that if you follow his work, you’ll see there really isn’t anything he won’t photograph.

It’s not that the photographs are unknown genres, new ideas or new processes.

It’s that it’s all still interesting and new to him. If he sees it he shoots it. It isn’t that he doesn’t have a good eye or lacks technical skill, but rather that there isn’t anything not important enough for him to photograph.

It’s like giving a camera to a young child. They have no filter or rules to tell them what to do or how to do it. If it looks interesting they push the button.

I remember at our wedding we had disposable cameras on the tables that all the kids had a field day with. Who knows how many photos we had developed of the reception that showed everyone from their knees down? But that was the kids view. They didn’t have to bother with being ‘proper’ photographers. They didn’t have that filter getting in the way of what they saw.

So, Sunday morning, I woke up early before I had to hit the road back to Houston and walked around downtown Phoenix for a while. I took with me two rolls of film and the determination to shoot what was interesting, not what was grand and perfect.

It was fun.

© 2012 by John Kleb It was enjoyable to not have to shoulder the burden of making sure that I had made a photograph worthy of the rest of the world. I still have no idea if any of it is any good or not. I haven’t had a chance to develop the film yet. But, in some ways, it doesn’t matter if they aren’t good.

Street signs.

Stripes on the road.

Blocks of color painted on the side of a building.

I let go of caring if it was cliché or an overdone subject.

I removed the filters.

I continued the exercise a bit on the way home. Not a lot of time to hang around and shoot along the way if I wanted to make it home at a reasonable time and still make it to work on Tuesday.

The camera in the phone became my friend again. We made peace and a few photographs. Even if they lack a lot of merit from an artistic or technical standpoint, they documented a journey that was both physical and spiritual.

What more can you ask for without asking for too much?

~John Kleb, 2012 HPS President

January 28th field trip

What?

Join us as we go on our first outing of the 2012 year. This opportunity features an old church, general store, jail, barber shop, train station, school and more in the feel of the pioneer days! This is a great venue for black/white, sepia, alternative print processes, pinholes, etc…
This venue also has the Pickett House Restaurant that serves boarding house style all-you-can-eat fried chicken, chicken & dumplings, country vegetables, cobbler, biscuits & cornbread and all different condiments for your liking. Please RSVP by the Jan. 25th with Nathalie Brouard so that she can make arrangements.

Where?

Heritage Village Museum
157 Private Road 6000
Woodville, Texas 75979
(409) 283-2272
Directions

When?

Saturday, January 28, 2012 beginning at 9 a.m.

2012 Houston Public Library – HPS Year-end Print Exhibition

This photo/video fusion project shows a few HPS members who volunteered to hang the 2011 winning print competitions photos at the Houston Public Library Central (Downtown). The exhibition will be on display on location through February 28, 2012. ~ Photos courtesy of HPS member Leslie Stessel.