TheMOFMan Speaks to the Hamilton Camera Club

We Need To Talk

We Need To Talk

I want to take this opportunity to thank Virginia Stranaghan and all the members of the Hamilton Camera Club (HCC) for inviting me to be their guest speaker (November 4, 2013). I feel quite honoured that they selected me to introduce them to street photography (SP).

I’m especially excited to have spoken about street photography with fellow Hamiltonians. As I explained during the engagement, there are other Hamiltonians who engage in SP in the city but there doesn’t appear to be too many others who have made focused projects of the endeavour. I hope it will become infectious.

As I also explained, last October the city approved the draft of its first Cultural Plan under the Love Your City Project (http://www.hamilton.ca/CultureandRecreation/Arts_Culture_And_Museums/culturePlan.htm).  Being incurably passionate about this city, its arts movement and this photographic art genre I like to think that SP will play some part in illustrating, promoting and even modifying Hamilton culture, in a positive way, over the next 20 years. I believe that members of the HCC will do their club and this city proud by rediscovering their local community through contemporary street photography.

I am absolutely thrilled about the amount of feedback that members have given. I think I fielded most of the questions that were asked. For those I couldn’t get to, I sincerely apologize but, to any members who may see this post, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me with your unanswered questions or ask right on this blog. You can also do so on the MOF community page on Facebook.

Some of what I discussed and more can be obtained through the Unrepentant Flâneurs Guide to Street Photography. To find your way to all twelve parts of the series whenever you need to, it’s easiest to just visit the Hammer Home Street Photography Project and click the link to the guide’s preface below the blog’s masthead image.

Hammer Home itself is the only project of its kind, to date, that is dedicated to showcasing the city of Hamilton through SP. By exhibiting the project mainly through blogging it functions as an interactive project, so HCC members are also most welcome to offer their thoughts and questions there along with others who are interested in creatively photographing the life of a city.

As promised, I will forward Virginia a summary of links, names and terms that she can disseminate within the club.

There were a couple people who expressed interest in me participating in one-on-one and small group photo walks as they venture into the genre. I would love to do this. Drop me a line and we’ll work on scheduling weekend outings.

For those associated and not associated with the HCC who will continue to pursue this genre, I can assure you that you are about to embark on one of the most challenging yet spectacular adventures of your life.

Again, I thank the HCC, and I wish them all the best.

22 thoughts on “TheMOFMan Speaks to the Hamilton Camera Club

  1. I’m nice surprised at all. You must be very proud addressing in person your Guide to Street Photography that you showed to us. A lot of your images are planted into my memory. I’ll never get tired of looking at your photography even if it means for the next 20 years.😀

    • Thank you so much, Rommel.

      I’m also taken aback at the interest the guide has generated. My statistics show that it is still being consulted by people from all around the world on a nearly daily basis. I am so happy that it has become so useful.

  2. Congratulations with the speak to the Hamilton Camera Club. And it’s a joy to read you engagement and enthusiasm for street photography in general and doing so in Hamilton in particular. And your picture for the post shows the same engagement. Very nice!

          • Yes, a lot of the tax payers money are financing different cultural projects.It’s a shame really, because then you end up with “art” like: a bicycle cut in half, painted yellow and turned upside down on the floor.

            Shit like that would never pay the rent, because no one in their right mind would have bought it. But since the state finances it, the “artists” don’t really care. They get paid and they’re happy.

  3. The image: The pigeon whisperer. Really well captured. Amazing that the bird can by itself counterbalance the man and the dark area of the picture. I like.

    Your thoughts on SP: I like how you present them. I would also add, in case you didn’t mention it elsewhere, it can be quite addictive🙂

  4. I hear you, Cardinal.

    I think something like that could happen in Hamilton through its Public Arts Master Plan, which has already been around for several years now, but it hasn’t yet. The standards for getting public art projects approved have been very strict, and through a committee that some have felt has been superfluous; so it’s in their interest to ensure that the city doesn’t invest in nonsense art. For instance, our current mayor, Bob Brantina, has outright said that he’s not in favour of devoting funds to the local arts. He prefers to see it grow completely on its own.

    The only unpopular project that some believe has slipped through in recent years was the Open Doors campaign in which these curved multi-coloured painted doors were put all around the downtown core. They didn’t come off as interesting, popular or representational of the city.

    It’s only been within the past 15 years that Hamilton’s arts scene has become increasingly political and vying for a place in the city as a new industry to be reconned with. It’s not quite there yet but the effort is certainly real and the studies that support the new Cultural Plan indicate that the arts should no longer be ignored by city council if they truly want to modernize the city and make it inviting to both citizens and non-citizens. I’m hoping that this new plan pays off.

    • Thank you, Paula. The HCC asked me to host some street photography walks for them. We just had our first one this morning. I took seven of their members out for a tour. Lots of fun. Lots of on site discussions. A few good opportunities developed.

      I’m told by their event coordinator that more have signed onto a waiting list to participate, so I’m quite excited.

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