“Have fun at photographer camp!”
My wife told me that as I left home to make the drive to Elgin Community College in Elgin, Illinois for the 52nd Technical Symposium of the University Photographers Association of America, or UPAA.
Yep, we have our own association. Being a photographer in the context of a university has unique challenges and opportunities and every year the UPAA gives us a chance to get together with 70 or 80 of our colleagues from colleges and universities around the country for 5 days of networking, inspiration, and creative exercise. Each year a member school volunteers to host the symposium and this year it’s in suburban Chicago. The symposium includes a print-judging competition to show off and critique what we all feel is our best work from the previous year, as well as speakers and mini workshops. Often the best learning experiences come from after the day’s events when we get a chance to look over one another’s shoulders at our laptops and ask “wow, how’d you light that?” or “How do you handle this-or-that hurdle?”
One of the favorite traditions of the symposium is the shoot-out. We are given a theme and have to submit one and only one photo that we think captures that theme. This year we went to downtown Chicago for an afternoon and were given the theme: “Reflections of Historic Chicago.” Hmmmmm…
Dunno if I have the winning image or not, but as long as I beat the guys from Michigan I’ll be happy.
Enjoy some images from Photographer Camp: