Thanks to the Middle Country Public Library, Centereach, NY, for sponsoring two photography hikes on May 21 and 26, 2022 and having me as their photography instructor. We enjoyed a 2.7 mile trek through Terrell River County Park, Center Moriches directed by Amber Gagliardi through a lush deciduous forest to see deer, a turkey and her chicks, a box turtle, swans, ducks, the river, the bay beach, a majestic maple and a collage of vines. Fragrant wisteria bloomed at the trailhead.
I asked the smartphone and camera-toting patrons, “What interested you to sign up? The photography part or the hike part?” Almost in unison, the group said, “Both!”
A visit to living history in a Greenport, NY barn reveals that “blacksmithing is still alive and well,” according to Tom Barry, Village Blacksmith. “There is no threat to blacksmithing,” he said.
On weekends in the historic maritime whaling port you can find Barry “smithing” over a hot anthracite coal fire in the Front Street barn from which he works on weekends. That barn, from East Marion, was moved to the site of the original blacksmith barn in view of Greenport’s marina.
Barry often hears visitors making an inaccurate claim that his is a lost art.
“We don’t exist in this form,” he says–referring to the living museum from which he works–“where you walk around the village and might see two or three blacksmith shops working all day. Now, we’re just farriers who drive to the barns who shoe the horses; toolmakers who work out of buildings in their backyards, and professional blacksmiths who have hybrid shops doing forging and welding, all doing beautiful architectural work. These businesses are all over.” –Miranda Gatewood
Nine Views is the name of an assignment that I gave two of my Introduction to Photography classes at Farmingdale State College, Farmingdale, NY in the Spring 2022 semester.
The aim is to choose one subject. It can be a person, place or a thing. The smaller the subject, the harder it will be to explore it thoroughly (e.g., the eye of a bee). Don’t choose too large a subject (e.g., the Cross-Bronx Expressway) either.
I implored them to explore the subject photographically, shooting it from as many viewpoints and angles as possible, realizing the subject in as many ways as possible.
Think of the ways one might approach a subject: from above, below, back, sides, front, close-up, from a distance; framing it, cropping it, in full sun, in dim light, etc. Spending time with the subject will enable you to discover aspects that will reveal themselves over time.
Think of mood, about how you are communicating an idea, and about how the images you are taking reflect your active viewpoint or how they passively capture what exists. Can a photograph show bias? Of course; the mere choice of subject projects bias.
Sort through all the photographs you took and select nine completely different photographs to represent diverse ways the subject can be viewed.
Of course, my students can count on me to do every assignment that I give them.
Curated by Miranda Gatewood and produced by Lorena Doherty
Showcasing the photographers participating in Photo Safaris, the North Shore Public Library, Shoreham, NY. February-March 2022.
About this exhibition and the Photo Safaris:
Beginning in 2018, Lorena Doherty of the North Shore Public Library booked me to teach a photography workshop and the subsequent field outings that we called Photo Safaris. A year prior, Karen Thum, a librarian at the Riverhead Free Library showed me photographs she had taken with her smartphone and was impressed with my critique as I pointed out their merits and compositional strengths.
“You should teach!” Karen concluded.
“OK!” I agreed.
I had been exhibiting since 1977. After enjoying a vivid 40-year career in publishing, a new door opened for me when Karen booked my first workshop. I have since taught at East End Arts, Gallery North and Farmingdale State College. It’s an ongoing exploration and conversation with a few dozen people running alongside me!
I never expected those early workshops to be at capacity. But I had seen more and more people, retired or still mid-career—who had lost touch with what brought them joy—were turning to photography.
Far from an academic art class, anyone can enjoy a photography walk. More and more people showed up with cellphones or retrieved their old 35mm cameras, and learned a little at a time. I offered one-on-one instruction and answered questions as we walked. Almost immediately, a solid group of faithful patrons formed who, like Lorena and me, loved pictures, whether it be looking at them, taking them or talking about them.
When the pandemic shut down the libraries, we paused then went virtual. Lorena realized the value of keeping this group together and worked to reawaken everyone and guide them through the new virtual format. I came up with theme assignments like Home & Shelter, Pure Portrait/Self-Portrait, Water, Pattern/Color/Texture, Mirrors & Windows, Gravity, Posterity/The Past, Fears & Phobias, Fall Light, Masks and Unrealities. In December, Lorena organized the most recent in-person outdoor Photo Safari at Spirit’s Promise Horse Rescue.
Patrons thrilled in the sheer joy of discovery as they shared themed photographs, received critiques and saw examples from historical masters in the art of photography in each one-hour workshop. The outcome was the same for all of us: to relish in a playful awakening of imagination and to be a part of this meaningful show of fine work.
See the show at this link. https://northshorepubliclibrary.org/art-exhibition-winter-2022-digital-photography-exhibition/
Stay tuned for more Photo Safaris! All at northshorepubliclibrary.org
Thanks to the North Shore Public Library in Shoreham, NY for the opportunity to conduct both online and in-person Photo Safari tours for their patrons. On a recent sunny, chilly Sunday in December, the group visited Spirit’s Promise Equine Rescue, 2746 Sound Ave, Riverhead, NY for a tour by Marisa Striano, founder and board president. If you haven’t been dazzled by the incredible affinity between people and horses, pay a visit to experience this remarkable communication.
I can do this for you. Call me for a quote! 631-998-9172
Outdoor Photo Trek, first of three treks, March 17, 2021, sponsored by East End Arts, Riverhead, NY and led by instructor Miranda Gatewood. Images from three hours of personalized attention touring stunning Eastern Long Island locations for landscape and still life photography. Thanks to Patricia and Elizabeth for signing up and for their strong support of photography programs. Sign up for the next two at eastendarts.org
Join me to tour and photograph the clarity and beauty of East End light in this in-person field workshop at spectacular outdoor locations, sponsored by East End Arts, NY. Create landscape, waterscape, and still life images. Shoot in all conditions including available light, slow shutter, sunset, moonrise, and silky water effects. Bring a tripod and a face covering. Ages teen through adult, all levels welcome.
Wednesdays, 4-7 PM (3-class series / or individual class) March 17, 24, (no class March 31), April 7. Cost for 3-week series: East End Arts members: $180.00; non-members: $216. Cost for single class: members: $65; non-members: $78. Sign up at East End Arts, 141 East Main Street, Riverhead, NY 11901 631-369-2171 email@example.com EastEndArts.org
Clockwise from top left: Winter moonrise on the Peconic River, Riverhead, NY. ◼ The moon rises over the bay at South Jamesport, NY. With a thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices as watchers await the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn on the evening of December 21, 2020, the first time in 800 years that these planets appear to merge as one. The lyric belongs to an 1847 carol, “O Holy Night” written by Adolphe Charles Adam. ◼ Dusk falls over the fields of Northville, NY.