Get the Picture – by guest blogger Bob W

An interesting conversation took place during a planning meeting for the 2017/2018 Club Year last August, which seems quite relevant now that we’re at the end of the year. It had to do with who might be a great speaker for PhotoArt and went something like this.

“OK, we need a dynamite speaker for PhotoArt. Who has one!”

“How about ‘so-and-so’? He’s been all over the world, a Magnum member and won a lot of photojournalism awards for his work. He really has a message to share about serious issues and telling their story.”

“No way! I love photography because it makes me feel good and is relaxing. I won’t go if it’s going to be too heavy!”

Two very different opinions. Same love of photography. Both worthy feelings. Just like…Nikon and Canon. Ooops, well that analogy doesn’t work, does it?

This observation may seem trite and self-evident in your view(finder), but, the key take away was that the conversation took place at all and it was an easy one at that. Everyone was welcome to stake their territory out. No one threatened to sue! The Club remains a safe space and a shared one. That’s something in short supply these days in an increasingly polarized world, and something to be thankful for.

That “sharing part” is what I really want to “focus” on to see what “develops”. So, don’t “f-stop” reading now or you’ll be left in the “dark(room)”. OK, OK. I promise the rest of this blog won’t include my “leading lines”! (Which only worked once BTW, and we are still together, 41 years later!)

Ahem, the serious point is this.

A club like HHCC is many things, and often, our Club is a little like seemingly incompatible objects occupying the same space at the same time in the same place.

While a “club” usually means a group of people who think, act and are basically the same, at HHCC at any given moment, we are more about those seemingly incompatible objects, occupying the same space, time and place. It might mean:

  • Expensive – Inexpensive
  • Full manual mode – Full program mode
  • Outdoor – Indoor
  • Digital image – Print image
  • Beginner – Expert
  • Reportage – Relaxation
  • Nikon – Can…sorry, let’s not go there again!

When two incompatible objects can occupy the same space at the same time in the same place, there has to be some kind of powerful “atomic-like” relationship happening to make it possible, and in the Club’s case, there is! The relationship is “sharing”. Sharing a love of something we have in common. Sharing our experiences. Sharing our knowledge. Sharing our time. The sharing is the energy that feeds the relationship among Club members. That’s why:

“I can’t figure out how to…”, shares space with, “Have you tried…?”, or

“How many stops do I need to …” shares time with, “That’ll be about one and a half.”, and

“Can you do a workshop or Q&A on…” shares a place with, “Sure, when do you need it?”

And, all of these different combinations should lead us to the very same destination: “Thank you!”

That’s the formula that makes a club like HHCC work! If sharing energizes the relationship, gratitude sustains the sharing. After all, we’re all about “f-stops”, not “f-bombs”! (Hey, print the T-shirts and copyright that one!)

So, do you, “Get the picture”?

I “shutter” to think what a club would be like if it lost its sense of sharing the love of photography, and more importantly, if there was no shared sense of gratitude for, well, all that sharing! Not to “over-expose” the issue, but all that sharing deserves to be recognized and given some gratitude, especially now that we are about to break for the season.

So, as you head off after the last Club meeting, take a moment to thank the tireless club executive, the dedicated workshop presenter, the enthusiastic PhotoArt volunteer, the Q&A expert, the competition judge (yes, the judge) and even that club member sitting beside you whose name you can’t remember. Thank them for sharing their time, their expertise, their enthusiasm, or, for sharing their Nikon to those unfortunate and misguided Canon owners.

Thank you, everyone!

Until next time…Cheeze!

ps- from Barb –  for all who don’t know, Bob is the one who organized all the workshops and guest blogs this past year so if you enjoyed them give him a big thanks at the next meeting … he too is one of those volunteers ! Thanks Bob ….


Backyard Beauty by Lori Metcalfe

The two most photographed types of wildlife in my backyard would be birds and grey squirrels. Like all birds some species are more comfortable with humans than others. I find Blue Jays, Chickadees and Woodpeckers are some of the birds that are more comfortable being photographed while the Northern Cardinal is probably the most guarded.
I have four different types of bird feeders that have different kinds of bird feed in them to attract different species of birds. Food, water, protective cover and a sheltered place to raise young are the basic requirements for any wild animal’s survival. Satisfy these  needs, and all you’ll have to do to photograph wildlife is step out the door.
Backyard animals are often accustomed to human presence, allowing you to approach close enough for a photograph if you move slowly and quietly. Squirrels and rabbits are usually tolerant enough to permit a photograph using a telephoto lens. The type of wildlife photos you can capture in your backyard is limited only by your imagination and the number of animals you’re able to attract. Get to know more about the types of wildlife in your area.

As you can see from the images above Blue Jays love peanuts. Sometimes
all it takes is patience, right time, right place or just plain luck or all. I always keep my camera nearby with a telephoto lens on it so I can capture the moment.

b+w jay

Who says nature has to be photographed in colour. This blue jay was on a tree in our backyard probably telling me the feeder was out of peanuts.

Always keep your windows clean. This was shot through my patio door. If I had
opened the door they would have flown away. I am always thrilled when I can get a an image of a cardinal. This past summer I had several families come to my feeders and when I saw this young female drinking out of our dog’s water bowl with the sparrows I just had to capture it.

water bowl

The image below was captured after I had filled up the bird feeder with peanuts and had gone back in the house. A female cardinal is cleaning up the mess I made on our patio table. This image was shot through the patio window and I can’t stress enough about  making sure your windows are clean.

wet cardinal

This was taken on my daughter’s 19th birthday a couple of years ago. This female cardinal flew into one of our windows. My daughter had picked her up to ensure she was ok. My camera was nearby and I was able to get a couple of shots before this beauty happily flew away.

cardinal in the hand


Although the lighting the day this image was taken was not fantastic I could not pass up the opportunity to photograph these three. I call this one “The Three Stooges”.

This is my rodent friend Oliver. He is an Eastern Grey Squirrel. As you can tell he is a handsome fellow and likes to pose for me. I have been photographing him for almost a year now. The shot below was taken this past summer and the collage of images was taken this winter.

squirrell 4 by

Having bird feeders may attract wildlife that you may or may not want. As you can see from the last two images we had a family of rats that were nice enough to share the food with the squirrels and birds in my backyard. I love animals of all kinds and love capturing them. Whatever you chose to photograph in your backyard have fun with it and enjoy.