Y’all know how I love to photograph photographers, and even more fun is to talk photography with them. And leveling up from there is to talk about how to create/extend a thing in our community that facilitates excellence/learning/sharing/collaboration around photography. I caught up with some friends Thursday night to talk about just such a catalyst.
Foto:RE is the invention of Mark Walton and Sean Puckett, with Jen King, Karl Griffiths-Fulton, and a raft of others pitching in. The group is at least a couple of years old now, with some successes under the belt and self-reflection in progress as they look to the future.
Hey, before you switch channels: Foto:RE is getting together on the Third Thursday of April in a TBD venue to review photos among whomever shows up. So get off your sofa, and bring one (1) print or digital instance of one of *your* photos and we’ll sit around and critique each other’s work. Expect respectful and constructive honesty there. Get your unconditional love where everyone does: mom. Goals are to improve your skills and iterate. And make friends. Follow @foto_re or me on twitter to catch details.
I met Mark Walton (right) through some work with Art Allies back in 2011 and covered his show “shift” at The Button Factory. We crossed orbits again in a series of urban exploration shoots organized by Cathy Farwell, hitting up the now-gone RMS plant on Glasgow and later the American Standard plant in Hespeler.
And since we’re exploring the wonderful web of players in WR, here’s Jen King who I connected with through Art Allies guru Jacqui Murphy. When Jen isn’t working on Foto:RE, she’s Exec Directing the social good we call Social Venture Partners Waterloo Region which runs a charity photo auction each year, bringing us back to photography. See how that all knits together?
New friend for me at this meetup was accomplished pro photog and UW instructor Karl Griffiths-Fulton. He brings 25+ years of professional experience starting in his native Northern Ireland to other international locales. This highlights a topic of discussion we had: how do you guide Foto:RE so it has something to offer pros and beginners and those in between?
Hey, Joe Martz(!) and I paired up for the most fun gig of 2013: our Night\Shift bike-face LED-lit “photo-booth”. Joe’s been showing his work… everywhere. I first met him at BOX Art and saw his work at the SVP 8×10 show. He’s done a lot of work shooting architecture and is working on a large-print commission (if I understood the story of challenges moving a 5+ foot print, correctly). And the point of all this is to start to characterize the awesome mass of photography talent here and show some faces behind Foto:RE, thus helping you surmount your social anxiety threshold and getting us all together in real life.
Artist/Photog Terry Torra (right), dropped by with Linda (centre) and Sam. Correct me if I got those names wrong.
Sam brought her work-in-progress photo book that captures her five month tour around various parts of the world. High-five for busting out the work.
Time flew by and I probably talked too much on some ideas to engage the broader community. Quoting from the book of kwartzlab. Regular cadence of meetups is a good start, so save your Third Thursdays of the next couple of months and come out and talk photography with Foto:RE. And bring a photo. And a friend. This is what community looks like.