New York’s Williamsburg Bridge by Will Hawkins was the first place print.
New York’s Williamsburg Bridge by Will Hawkins was the first place print.

The Wassenberg Camera Club’s recent meeting on Thursday, Feb. 13, at the Wassenberg Art Center was both interesting and educational. A photo taken by Will Hawkins of the Williamsburg bridge which spans the East River and connects Queens and Manhattan in New York City placed first and his picture of fireworks at the last Hot Air Affair took second in the club’s monthly competition, Night Photography.

Judging the best slide however, was another matter. A historical first occurred when not being able to open the file containing the slides forced a postponement of selecting the best slide till next month’s meeting. Seth Baker, executive secretary of the Van Wert County Foundation and former interim director of the Wassenberg Art Center, introduced himself to the club. He shared information about foundation’s history, mission, and sources of income as well as about himself. Will Hawkins demonstrated his MeFoto RoadTrip travel tripod which folds to only 15.4 inches long and extends to 61.6 inches high. The unit can support 17.6 pounds and can be converted into a monopod. This monopod conversion is a feature to keep in mind for those considering a tripod purchase.

Vice President Stuart Jewett then led the discussion about the monthly competition and details concerning the photos to be submitted. The discussion was necessary because there had been an unofficial understanding about conducting the monthly competition, but nothing could be found in writing that would provide consistent ways of entering pictures and selecting the winners. Some rules were easily agreed upon, but other rules were obviously more controversial and would require more time to reach a conclusion that the majority could accept. As a result, the monthly competition rules will be finalized at the next meeting.

Stuart then demonstrated how he had achieved the appearance of placing a ghost into a picture. Basically, you lock your camera on a tripod and take two pictures. One with the total image (ghost and background) and one without the selected image. Place the two images exactly on top of each other and adjust the opacity of one picture till the other picture shows through to the desired amount.

The Bokeh effect is a method of blurring the background to emphasize the subject. A tripod and a low f-stop (large lens opening) will accomplish this effect.

Producing a star effect can be achieved several ways. You can program this effect in some cameras. There are a lot of different filters available that can be attached in front of the lens. Even stretching a woman’s hose in front of the lens will produce a star effect, but any time you are shooting at a light source that is brighter than its surroundings, the star burst will be created by the lens opening used. The wider the lens opening the shorter and softer the flare, the smaller the lens opening, the longer the fingers of the flare will be.

It was announced that the Fort Wayne Photography Club is sponsoring a program by two professional photographers, Steve Vorderman and Tim Brumbelor, who will highlight their travel experiences around the world and emphasize a fine art approach to travel photography. The meeting will start at 7 p.m. in the Townhouse Retirement Community on St. Joe Center Road in Ft. Wayne, Ind. Travel plans and directions will be published later.

The production of more special effects will be demonstrated at the club’s next meeting Thursday, March 13, at 7 p.m. Winter Scenes will be the competition theme that evening.