Monday, July 15, 2019

Forum Photographers Strike Again!

The Photographers Forum will be well represented at the VAE United Arts Council exhibit: Depth of Field. Forum members Christer Berg, Mike Ligett, Scott McRae, Ray Pfeiffer, and Eric Saunders have each had work juried into the show!.

Untitled #29, from the series Restless Eyes
(c) Ray Pfeiffer

The exhibit opens on First Friday, August 2nd from 6-8 pm. and runs through August 30th. The United Arts Council is located at 410 Glenwood Ave. in downtown Raleigh. To find out more about the Arts Council and the hours to see the exhibit, go to their website here.

Congrats to the Forum photographers selected for the show!

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Marthanna Yater New Work on Exhibit at Horace Williams House

Growing Together, an exhibit of work by local photographer Marthanna Yater will be on display at Horace Williams House in Chapel Hill from July 7th through August 18th. An opening reception will be held on July 14th from 2 - 4 pm.

(c) Marthanna Yater

Growing Together is a decades-long documentary of the evolution of twin sisters as they move from childhood into adulthood, motherhood and artistic careers of their own. In chronicling these two lives, a photographer discovers the power to redefine her own.

Marthanna brings a special blend of sensitivity and passion to her work so this is an exhibit you won't want to miss. To see more of her work, visit her website here.

The Horace Williams House is located at 610 E. Rosemary St. in Chapel Hill. To learn more about this historic venue, visit their website here.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Photographers Forum Monthly Meeting

Thanks to everyone who braved the excessive heat and came out for our July meeting. As always, we saw some terrific work from some of the best photographic artists in the Triangle. If you missed the meeting you missed a lot!

Once again, we had two Artists in Absentia this month: the husband and wife team of Michael A. Smith and Paula Chamlee. Unfortunately, Michael passed away several months ago, but his spirit lives on in his work.
(c) Michael A. Smith

Both Michael and Paula used large format cameras in their work; Paula the 4x5 and 8x10 and Michael using an 8x20 and 18x22! With negatives that size, most of his prints are contact prints meaning that they are printed on B&W photographic paper, and the negative size is the size of the printed image. As the great B&W contact papers disappeared, they developed their own!

(c) Paula Chamlee
Not being content to stop there, they are also the founders of Lodima Press. A small, independent publisher of fine art photography. To learn more about them, go to their website here.

To learn more about Lodima Press go to their website here.

As always, stay tuned, there's much more to come!

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Photographers Forum Monthly Meeting

Once again, thanks to everyone who came out to our June meeting. As always, we saw some terrific work from some of the best photographic artists in the Triangle. If you missed the meeting, you missed a lot!

In the course of one of our discussions, the subject of abstract images and photographing graffiti came up and once again, the work of Aaron Siskind came immediately to mind. One of the most influential photographic artists of the 20th century, his career spanned over six decades. Again, an internet search will call up an abundance of excellent resources, but a good place to start is at the Aaron Siskind Foundation site:

As the weather rapidly gets warmer, thoughts of picking up our cameras and heading out for some fun in the sun cannot be too far behind. And for fun with a camera, it’s hard to beat the fun you can have with the “Fantastic Plastic” that is the Holga. No dials, no chips, no batteries, no software required. As a little slice of “Analog Heaven” there’s nothing like it. A roll of film, a little vision and the magic happens! There are many resources available online to learn more but a good place to start is: Freestyle is now the manufacturer and distributor of the camera. Locally they can be purchased at Peace Camera in Raleigh.

(c) Ted Orland

And speaking of getting outside, clear your calendars on October 6th. The Forum will once again venture out on a photo safari. We did this last June and it was a blast! It was a little hot last summer so we’re anticipating it will be a little cooler this fall. Stay tuned for more details as the date gets closer.

(c) Michael Bryant

We had a record number of Artist’s in Absentia this month with 5. Each artist is, or has, used the Holga extensively in their work. Along with their websites, they are:

Jennifer Henriksen (HolgaJen)

(c) Jennifer Henriksen

Michael Bryant (Met him a couple years ago at Artsplosure in Raleigh)

Ted Orland
No longer has a website but google him. It’s worth the effort. (Ted is also the author of 2 books on being a working artist. They’re both terrific books. Check them out!)

(c) Michelle Bates

Michelle Bates (She literally wrote the book on using Plastic Cameras)

Yours truly

(c) Ray Pfeiffer

Each artist is using the Holga in different ways to reflect their own creative vision. Check them out!

As always, there is much more to come, so stay tuned!

Monday, June 3, 2019

Forum Member Tricia McKellar to Speak at Cary Photographic Artists Meeting

Whatever you had planned for the evening of July 24th will have to wait because Forum member Tricia McKellar will be speaking at the Cary Photographic Artists meeting that night!

Tricia will be presenting her program: “Exploring Your Creativity with iPhone Videography”! Anyone who’s been paying attention to her latest work will know they are in for a treat.

The Cary Photographic Artists meet at 7:00pm the Cary Theatre, 122 E. Chatham St. Get there early because you won't want to miss a minute.

And while you’re there, consider joining the Cary photo group. They are a great group that puts on terrific programming. To find out more, go to their website here.

You can see more of Tricia's work on her website here.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Photographers Forum Meeting Night

Thanks to everyone who came out to our May meeting. As always, we saw some terrific work from some of the best photographic artists in the Triangle. If you missed the meeting you missed a lot!

(c) David H. Gibson
We had two Artist’s in Absentia this month: David H. Gibson and Kenro Izu. David Gibson works in a number of film formats but I chose to highlight his panorama landscapes. This led to a very interesting discussion on what makes a landscape a landscape. (Thanks Linda!) To see more of his work check out his website:

Kenro Izu is a photographer working mostly with large format film. He works in several “traditional” printing processes such as platinum and cyanotypes, sometimes combining them for a deep and elegant effect. I chose work from each of those portfolios as well as work from his most recent monograph: Eternal Light. You can see more of this work at his website:

(c) Kenro Izu
Thanks also go out to everyone who stopped into the open house at Bonded Llama this past weekend to support Teresa and Tricia. This is what our community is all about! My apologies for not getting a notice posted in time. I promise to do better next time. And congrats to Teresa on the sale of her tulip print at the open house. It was a beautifully executed print, and we saw it here at the Forum first!  When I say if you miss a meeting you miss a lot, I’m not kidding...

And speaking of community, we had a terrific discussion on what a "community" of photographic artists might look like and what it means to be a part of one. Whether we realize it or not, we have created one with the Photographers Forum. We are a collective of very talented and very passionate artists who are wiling to take time to share, to learn, and to grow as photographers. That makes the group as special as it is rare. So, as we begin our 9th year as a group, let us never forget to celebrate how lucky we are to share our journey with such an incredible group of artists.

As always, there's much more to come so stay tuned!!!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Photographers Forum Meeting Night

Thanks to everyone who came out to tonight's Forum meeting. As always, we saw some terrific work from some of the most talented artists in the Triangle. If you missed it, you missed a lot!

(c) Craig Ferroggiaro
We had two Artist’s in Absentia this month: Mark Power and Craig Ferroggiaro. Both are documentary photographers but are quite different in style and approach. We talk often about styles of photography and the types of work that seem more “popular” (read: more likely to be juried into exhibits) than others.

But is that really what it is?

I think that the issue is less about “popularity” than it is about creating work that stands out from the crowd. Documentary work is probably the easiest type of photography for artists to produce. After all, isn’t that why many of us pick up a camera to being with? To record our lives for posterity? To remember? I have a camera. I carry it with me. I take photos of people and things as I go. That’s not so hard. Right?

Except that to create meaningful work, regardless of genre, it is hard.

Why? Because, for one thing, everything’s been done to death… Everyone with a camera is out doing what everyone else is doing.

So, what to do?

(c) Mark Power
Keep making images! The only way to improve your work is to keep making it.

To quote Harry Callahan: “I guess I’ve shot about 40,000 negatives and of these I have about 800 pictures I like.”

That’s a pretty good crop.

And while you make art, share it. Get it out in the world. Get feedback. Take what’s useful and discard the rest.

How will you know the difference? Don’t worry, after you engage for a while, it will start to make more sense. But only if you keep doing it.

While trends in taste come and go, there’s a reason that, after over a hundred years, the chocolate chip cookie is still the most popular baked good in the world. While you may find them everywhere, when they’re very good, they’re very satisfying…

Both photographers have great websites with a lot of images. For Mark Power, go here. For Craig Ferroggiaro, go here.

I hope to see many of you at our next meeting!