About 6 years ago I attended a photo club meeting for the first time. It was with the Launceston Photographic Society. At the time I wasn’t sure about joining a club and the feel of the club didn’t really grab me. I’m not sure what it was about it, but I didn’t go back to another meeting there.
Come to 2014 and I’m starting to think about joining a camera club again. I had done some research and found 2 more clubs in the region. The nearest of them, the Northern Tasmanian Camera Club, had a web presence so I was able to gain some knowledge of the club from there. They also had a contact email that I also used as well. It seemed like an interesting club so, with a nudge from my wife, I attended a meeting.
The club use to meet in another location, but now they are meeting at the Lions Club rooms in Merino Street, Kings Meadows. The meeting time was set for 7.30pm, so I got there a touch earlier. As it turns out everyone gets there earlier so I was sort of late. I walked in and met the treasurer, Ron Camplin, who got me to sign in and then directed another member to show me around. This was a really nice touch. I was new to the meeting so instead of having me stand around on my own they gave me someone to talk to. John Shepherd introduced himself to me and we spoke about photography and the club.
We sat down to listen to a very interesting talk from Howard Colvin about ISO and Noise in digital imaging. I thought I knew a bit about this subject. I really liked his analogy about noise being like static on a radio. You turn up the volume and the static gets louder. You turn up the ISO and the same thing happens.
I got to also sit through the judging of the monthly competition and hear the critiques of each photo. At the end of the night I left thinking that I had a really good night. As a prospective member I was allowed three meetings before having to decide about joining. I was already thinking of joining from the first night, but I chose to wait for at least one more meeting.
The following month I went along again and got to hear a talk about forensic photography. There was also viewings of the monthly competition entries and critiques. By the end of the night I was ready to join so I got a form from the treasurer and filled it in. The membership only cost me $25 for the year, which is nothing when you think about it.
During that meeting there was a call for nominations for the committee and to edit the clubs newsletter, The Drum. The editor didn’t have to be on the committee if they didn’t want to be. For the next few weeks I contemplated taking over the editors position. The newsletter didn’t seem too difficult to me. Spending 18 years in the printing industry has given me some skills that could be put to use for the club.
It came to the night of the AGM and mid year dinner. I wasn’t actually meant to be going that night as we had friends coming around to visit. I was cleaning up after dinner and then just asked my wife if she would mind if I went out for a few minutes. She was fine with that so long as I wasn’t too long.
I headed down to the club and went inside. the first person I saw was Ron Camplin. He said “I thought you weren’t coming tonight”? He was right, but I just couldn’t let the position of editor go. I went and spoke to the President and told him about my intention to put my name up for the Drum editor. He was very pleased with that and got me signed up quickly. He even got me to agree to be on the committee.
I sat back while the AGM was held and when the nominations came up for the committee there was 1 extra nomination for the positions. Luckily there was room to add another person to the committee, so I filled that spot.
To think that only a couple months ago I was contemplating joining a camera club and now I am on the committee and editing the newsletter. I’m also entering images into the monthly competitions, starting with the coming month of August. I guess I have jumped into this with both feet? We’ll see if I can swim now.