Beyond a Snapshot workshop

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River Action and the Figge Art Museum are co-sponsoring a workshop for photographers of all skill levels who are interested in explor-ing ways to improve the quality of their photos. The workshop – Beyond a Snapshot: the Art of Building and Creating Fine Photographs – will be held Saturday, March 8 at the Figge Art Museum from 12:45 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. The workshop is free, but individuals must register for the seminar. To register, simply complete and submit the form at the end of this article.

Internationally acclaimed photographer Joel Sartore has said there are three essential ingredients to make a quality photograph – light, composition, and an interesting story. A talented panel will address these various issues in an afternoon of brisk, lively sessions. Many of the world’s renowned photographers, both past and present, have cut their professional teeth as photojournalists devel-oping and refining their skill daily in taking pictures that tell a story.

Two of the presenters at the upcoming seminar are professional photojournalists. Todd Mizener of The Dispatch/ Argus and John Schultz of the Quad City Times both received academic degrees from the Univer-sity of Iowa. They will talk about the process each has developed as they meet their professional challenges of taking pictures that tell us something or show us something. They have developed the skill to take great pictures, not mere snapshots, while shooting under the pressure of deadlines.

Photographic giant Henri Cartier Bresson said “Composition should be a constant preoccupation-an organic coordination of visual elements.” Two respected teachers from our region also will make presentations concerning the various building blocks for constructing pic-tures that are strongly composed. Robyn Smith is a fine arts instructor at Eastern Iowa Community College, specializing in painting and printmaking. Roxanne West-phal teaches digital photography in the Davenport Public Community School District. She is a fine art photographer. Smith and Westphal will offer insights to various tools to consider as you compose photos that communicate clearly and effec-tively.

This time is one where some significant innovations to camera technology are reaching the consumer marketplace. Ted Doty , the manager of Camera Corner, will lead a show-and-tell on the new and exciting products that expand photographic opportunities. Brian Tugana, who minored in art at the University of Chicago and had instruction at the Art Institute of Chicago, will share his insights from seven years as a participant in the Valley Bank Calendar Project.

No matter what your photographic area of interest, participants will receive information the many diverse shooting opportuni-ties, and you might end up being motivated to sample shooting some subjects that you ignored previously. The workshop will conclude with an opportunity for presenters and participants to network, socialize and swap insights. The workshop is free. Reservations are required due to limited seating. To reserve a spot email River Action at: riveraction@riveraction.org, or call River Action at 563-322-2969.

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