Monday, February 15, 2010

Photography Brings a Community Together

Photography is something most of us engage in. We take pictures of our friends, family and pets. We’re all artists, to some degree: find the subject, check the lighting, focus the camera (or phone) and snap---Instant art! Something everyone can relate to and almost anyone can do.

To paraphrase Calvary Community Series program director Kathryn Jakabcin: this series aims to find a common place with religion, art and humanity. The Photography Contest & Exhibit, now in its 4th year, is described as “an opportunity to share our creativity and spend and afternoon viewing our photographs”. And that is exactly what happened. In the intimate space where the works were displayed, it was impossible not to strike up conversations with the other viewers and participants. We marveled at the close-up shots of tiny woodpeckers, the capture of motion or the interesting angles and patterns the artists had found.

The contest had six categories: Action, Architecture, Landscape, Nature, People and Still Life. Contest judge Helen Gerstein, whose own award-winning work was displayed along the walls of the room, evaluated more than 75 entries according to composition, lighting, originality and overall beauty. Her comments were specific, and probably quite helpful to the photographers. For example, she commented on how the shadow of a kitten slightly obscured the face of the subject, or how a seed tray with plant labels showed busy-ness, but seemed to lack a central focus. Gerstein’s analytical comments were spot on, and her own work, including several portraits, was stunning in its beauty, simplicity and clean lines.

Some of my favorite shots were those of scenes from the Nemours mansion, Longwood, Bombay Hook or even our recent blizzard. It reminds me---and others---not only of the artistry we have here in our state, but also of the stunning vistas that are waiting to be photographed.

Next up in the Series on March 14 at 2:00 pm: Happy Birthday Chopin, featuring faculty artists from the Music School of Delaware.

(Photograph credit: Kathryn Jakabcin's Bombay Heron-First Prize, Nature Category)


To learn more about Helen Gerstein:

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