May 2016

Volume 1, Number 2

Elizabeth Sanchez, Editor In Chief

Jeffry Booher, Contributing Editor

Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst ― Henri Cartier-Bresson

From the office of the president

Terri Thompson
As my first quarter as President wraps up, I reflect on the club's accomplishments of the year so far to date

Constitution and ByLaws Changes

The board knew it could not make any changes to the Constitution without the required 3/4th’s majority to vote in favor of a change--something the club has been unsuccessful in getting in the past. Therefore we instituted the proxy system whereby a vote can be cast by the board on behalf of a member who chooses not to vote, thereby ensuring that we get the required number of votes in order to ratify a change.

In my first quarter, we added the office of Secretary to our club’s constitution. It is now affixed into the club’s charter and a permanent addition to our board of directors. Thank you for helping make this very important change!

I would also like to thank Josi Ross for stepping in and recording the minutes of the club’s activities when the club needed critical decisions made on the record and the club had yet to establish the office of secretary.

Thank you, Josi

Communication Enhancements

It has been my goal to ensure that members are fully informed of all club initiatives and activities. In addition to meeting briefs, Jeff has made it easier for members to get information from the Darkroomers web site. This includes more details about upcoming events, galleries of winning images, links to issues of In Focus, competition scores and quarterly competition standings. We also keep many important club documents on the web site such as membership forms, our constitution, bylaws and competition rules.


The club also wanted a change to the Newsletter. You voted to give a name to the Newsletter, In Focus, and, with Jeff's help, the Newsletter has a new face. The Newsletter is now uses free software from Adobe so future editors of the newsletter need not install any special software on their computer in order to take on the role of Newsletter Editor.

fiduciary Responsibility

The board is working on a budget and looking at ways to reduce our overhead and expenses. We are also looking at how we can supplement our cash reserves by bringing in donations through programs like the Orphaned Fine Art Print Program which was launched last month.

Member Participation

Member participation in our quarterly competition was the highest we have seen since it was rebooted last year and Jeff has really put together a solid year of exciting programs that really makes Darkroomers one of the best photography clubs in San Diego. I think this is really an exciting year for us: the club had its first overnight trip (thanks to Rich, Jeff and Elizabeth for helping me coordinate this) and Larry Vogel for leading a focus stacking workshop--another first for Darkroomers. We held our first ever cross-club workshop with Poly Photo on mounting and matting and we are working on future cross-club workshops and initiatives.

The programs calendar was built based on your feedback but there is a lot of passion from the steering committee and committee chairs to help ensure that the programs we offer are fresh and exciting. Member participation in Darkroomers programs and events is a testament to the quality of our programming.


A new method for image submission to the Monthly SCACC Interclub Competition was designed by Drema to allow the club to be more competitive. Members vote on images which they feel are the strongest and the top 10 are then entered into the Monthly SCACC Interclub Competition--subject to Interclub rules, of course. This has engaged the membership in the competition more intimately and allowed for more diverse member participation which is based on merit.

Club Popularity

At the time of this writing we are 42 members strong which, I am told, is the most we have had in many years. The rising popularity of Darkroomers is undoubtedly due to the hard work that the board puts into bringing you quality programs and promoting a competitive environment that fosters growth. But we could not do this without the support of the membership. The club's accomplishments are a result of your guidance, participation, and dedication.

Thank you for making darkroomers great


Weekend Workshop news

The Darkroomers Weekend Workshop Series is in full swing and we had a packed house in April for our Focus Stacking workshop. Darkroomers got fully immersed into the world of super-sharp realities using Helicon Remote and Helicon Focus with instruction by Larry Vogel--who was also on hand to help with lighting setups and to answer questions.

This is the second year that the Darkroomers has held a Focus Stacking workshop and, just like last year, we found ourselves reaching capacity very quickly with 15 participants and 6 workstations for folks to work and practice focus stacking.

The results were some stunning images and more fun than one should be legally allowed to have at a Darkroomers workshop! So, if you missed it, we will probably have it again next year so watch for that announcement and sign up early.


lights out

Our next Weekend Workshop will be a hands-on learning experience and total immersion into the mysterious world of Tabletop Reflections and Abstract Lighting with Abstract Lighting expert Rick Wiley.

If you like abstract lighting and tabletop inanimate reflections or both, and we know you do, then our Abstract Lighting and Tabletop Reflections workshop is for you. You will learn some crazy abstract lighting techniques with this workshop. You will also have an opportunity to experiment with different kinds of lighting applications. But, most of all, you are going to have a lot of fun.

We are going to have 8 workstations with different lighting effects for you to play with including a fun portrait lighting setup that will be special and different.

Equipment you will need to bring:

  • dSLR
  • Tripod
  • Remote Shutter Release
  • Macro Lens or Medium telephoto
  • Speed light and Diffuser (optional)

This limited seating workshop takes place on Saturday, June 11th at 9:30am in the Photographic Arts Building and is open to both Poly Photo and Darkroomers members in good standing. This is going to be a popular event and will fill up quickly so you must sign-up online in order to attend. We are also asking participants to stay after and help cleanup.


other program news

Our program in May will include a presentation on May 4th entitled, The Art of Fine Art Photography, presented by San Diego City College Professor, N. David King. If you want to better understand the technical and the compulsory concepts of what differentiates a Snapshot from Fine Art then you will want to come listen to what Professor King has to say. There will be a portraiture aspect to the program and he will be engaging new technology to give us his take on what the future brings for the world of Fine Art.

* * *

The Darkroomers are once again On Location in May--this time in San Juan Capistrano for a Day at the Mission on May 21st.

We will meet and carpool from the Old Town Transit Center at 7:30am and travel up to the Mission. We will make a second stop at the Park and Ride at the 5 and Carmel Valley Road for for those living north of the city. For those that want to drive straight to the Mission, we will meet as a group at the Starbucks across from the Mission at 8:45am and then head over at 9am. The Mission opens at 9am so we will be able to get right on to the grounds and photograph the mission while there are few people there. Lunch will be promptly at 1pm and we will head over to the Historic San Juan Capistrano Train Depot after lunch. We will shoot around the train depot and and the surrounding areas and then meet for dinner at 5pm. After dinner we will drive to the San Clemente Pier and catch the sunset then depart for San Diego around 8pm.

Itineraries will be sent to those who sign up online or at the May 4th or May 18th meetings. If you'd still like to go on the trip but didn't sign up please send an e-mail to so we know that you will be attending.


Club news

Hail to the chief

Elizabeth Sanchez

This will be my final issue as Newsletter Editor. It was not that long ago that I volunteered to take over the Newsletter. I thought it would be a great way of finding out what was going on around San Diego: Photo Opportunities, Events, Museum Exhibits, Competitions and other Events around town.

It became clear, after a few issues, that writing the newsletter was my creative outlet for helping members of the club. I enjoyed writing about upcoming events and learning about the upcoming judges but I think I liked the in-depth writing about the workshops and field trips the most.

Stepping down from Editor in Chief of the Newsletter will allow me to go to more workshops and learn about new software programs such as Lightroom, Helicon and Photoshop. But I will be spending the coming months traveling to Puerto Rico and Massachusetts attending to family matters--taking pictures along the way.


state of the secretary

Nancy Varga

Last month we passed much needed legislation to add a new officer to the club's charter to fulfill the duties of secretary and the club affirmed Nancy Varga to the post. Nancy has served as the club's secretary since she was confirmed by the membership in February but in a non-voting board member capacity. Nancy has served the office well and the addition of Secretary to the club's charter will designate her extraordinary and plenipotentiary. Congratulations Nancy!


May is Darkroomer's month to clean the Photographic Arts Building and, as usual, we need all hands on deck--that means you need to come help clean the building. Our May cleaning event is Sunday, May 15th at 9am so come and help your fellow Darkroomers make the building shine.


board games

The Board of Directors met to discuss the next round of changes to the club's governing documents and changes to competition and exhibition rules are next in line to be reviewed and amended. Watch for changes to hit your mailboxes soon.


The Board also discussed penning a budget and forming committees to do things for the club such as finding new ways to hang the galleries.

quarterly update

The Quarterly Themed competition series kicked off in April and saw huge success with 13 members submitting 23 images; 6 of which were monochrome entries.

It was great to see new-comers Joyce Muscat and Osia Strasner jump right in and compete but it was a huge surprise when long time member Angie Crompton submitted an image to the quarterly competition for the very first time and placed second in the Color Division.

Congratulations to our 1st place winning entries

Congratulations to all of those who participated! The winning entries galleries are on the website along with the scores and standings. The theme for our next quarterly competition is Calm and will take place on Wednesday June 29th at 7:30pm. Remember: members are given points for each entry so, even if your image doesn't place, you get points toward your overall score total just for entering.


fair warning

The San Diego County Fair Exhibition of Photography completed their first round (Tier One) of Judging and the results have been announced. Last year we had a good showing with 12 members getting their work accepted into the Exhibition and this year 15 Darkroomers advance to the next round.

Congratulations to Darkroomers Jeff Booher, Kay Collier, Antonio Croft, Angie Crompton, Jean Eichenlaub, Joan Everds, Mike Packard, Cynthia Parnell, Dave Poplawski, John Pryor, Bill Rehm, Josi Ross, Janice Roudebush, Osia Strasner and Drema Swader who were accepted into Tier Two.

You have just a little over 2 weeks to get your prints ready for submission into the exhibit. You can deliver your mounted images to the exhibit curators on Tuesday, May 17 from noon-7:00pm or Wednesday, May 18 from noon-7:00PM. Your mounted work is presumed to hang in the exhibit but we are hoping you bring home some ribbons. The club is working on some Darkroomers related fair programs so stay tuned and good luck!



SCACC will hold its first meeting of the fiscal year on Tuesday May 3rd at 7pm. The bi-monthly scheduled conference call in April was canceled so the May meeting will serve as the inaugural meeting for the new SCACC officers, including Darkroomer David Poplawski who steps in as SCACC VP of Buildings. The meeting is open to all SCACC member club members to attend.


Mike Packard

Darkoomer Mike Packard is starting his own club and goes before the SCACC board of directors to pitch his new club and begin the induction process at the May meeting. His new club is called the Photo Artists Camera Club or, the PACC. If you are interested in learning more about the club or the process then you should attend the May SCACC meeting on Tuesday May 3rd at 7pm.



SCACC will have its April/May Interclub competition on Tuesday, May 17th at 7pm. We have some great images in the competition so come out and cheer on your fellow Darkroomers.


If you came to the SCACC Interclub Year End Awards Ceremony you saw that Darkroomers was awarded 3rd place in the overall points standings for 2015. Poly Photo came in 2nd and Photonaturalists came in 1st.

In the Jan/Feb Interclub Competitions, Poly Photo got 6 mentions and 2 awards. Darkroomers got 5 mentions and 1 award. So far this year we are in 3rd place. With Photonaturalists in 1st and Poly Photo in 2nd. It's a tough competition--it really is.


Dan Palermo will be holding a workshop on how to judge photography and give constructive feedback on June 18th in the Photographic Arts Building at 9:30am. If you have a critical eye and want to learn how to be a judge then this workshop may be for you.




A face full of dollars

Local stereo photography expert, Gary Schacker, will be stopping by on June 1st to hook up his stereo to our screen and put on a 3D photography show that is out of this world. He has glasses for everyone and cubic tonnes of material to curate for his presentation so it should be a Darkroomers meeting of intergalactic proportions.



Ellyn Norris.

Our Judge for the Month of May will be Ellyn Norris. Ellyn is a photographer and assistant professor in the photography program for the Art Institute of Pittsburgh-Online Division and holds adjunct positions at the Art Institute of California-San Diego and UCSD Extension. Aside from her teaching career, Ellyn exhibits her own photography both locally and internationally and leads photography adventures to Iceland and Nepal a few times a year. Her dedication to her own photographic work inspires her to share her passion with photo enthusiasts all over the world.



Cinco de mayo festival

The 32nd annual Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo 2016 in Old Town is the largest event of its kind in Southern California and takes place May 5th through the 8th.

May 5th is a Thursday which doesn't have a lot going on except probably drink specials but here is what you can expect to see at the festival the weekend of the 7th & 8th which has more photographic opportunities:

  • folklorico dancing
  • low-rider car show
  • cosplay
  • equestrian show


If the Fair wasn't enough excitement for you, the Mission Trails 2016 Amateur Photo Contest is now underway and they are accepting entries through May 31.

The exhibit will run from June 18 through July 15 with an awards reception at the Visitor Center on Sunday, June 26, 2016.

There are strict rules like No Focus Stacking but it is only $5 per entry. Here are the 4 divisional categories:

  1. Flora (plants),
  2. Fauna (animal),
  3. Landscapes (landscapes),
  4. People and/or Man-Made Structures (stuff)


Open Show organizes live social events worldwide where the public can experience compelling visual stories and interact directly with photographers, filmmakers and multimedia producers and it's coming to San Diego.

The Museum of Photographic Arts is hosting 4 Open Shows--where five different presenters from students to award-winning professionals show a project based on narrative, topic or single visual style. Curators select an eclectic mix of genres including reportage, art, commercial, historical and more. Both completed and works in progress are accepted. Collaborative projects are also welcome.

The first of 4 Open Shows is July 14, 2016 from 6-9pm. Five curated presenters have 10-15 minutes each to introduce one project/body of work. Open Show welcomes diverse topics ranging from documentary to fine art and is designed to be an interactive forum where audience members are encouraged to give feedback and ask questions of the presenters, both formally and in a social setting. The first Open Show in San Diego is an open theme but other Open Shows will have a common theme for all participants.


MOPA Presents: Beauty and the Beast--an examination of animals in photography in celebration of the San Diego Zoo Centennial. Showcasing a diverse range of photographers, the exhibition highlights the many ways animals are featured from portraits to supporting subjects. The exhibit opens May 28th at the Museum of Photographic Arts.


Kelby on the run

The Kelby One Group will be hosting their ever popular Shoot like a Pro seminar at the San Diego Convention Center again on May 12th. Early Bird registration for the Reloaded tour ends on May 2nd.

KelbyOne Live Present Shoot Like a Pro: Reloaded. May 12th. San Diego Convention Center. $89 before May 3rd, $99 starting May 3rd.



Samy's camera is hosting the first-ever Photocon in Los Angeles May 21st and May 22nd--it looks like it may be very interesting and it's only $10 ($15 for both days).

Saturday May 21st & Sunday May 22nd 10:00am – 6:00pm Magic Box at The Reef in Downtown LA

The Reef will be packed with a virtual Who’s Who of the Los Angeles photographic and cinema names providing entertainment, education and opportunity for all levels of photography from enthusiasts to professionals. Many of the most respected brands in photography and video will be on hand to offer exhibition and demonstration of their camera and photography related products. Most of whom will be offering exclusive deals and discounts only available to PhotoCon LA attendees.

A sample list of experts scheduled to appear include Joe McNally, RC Concepcion and John Adler.

Highlights from the learning center include: Paul J. Van Allen giving a special 1 hour Introduction to the D5 & D500 and RC talking about getting your images ready for print that should be engaging for the Darkroomers.




Photos used in this newsletter from Terri Thompson, Jeff Booher, Michael Fairbanks and Rick Wiley are used with permission and may be subject to copy restrictions from the copyright holder. All rights reserved.

Darkroomers and the In Focus logo are Trademarks of the Darkroomers Photographic Club

The InFocus Newsletter is a Publication of The Darkroomers Photographic Club,

Elizabeth Sanchez Editor in Chief

Darkroomers Photographic Club

1780 Village Place

Balboa Park

San Diego, California • 92101 • USA

Copyright MMXVI Darkroomers Photographic Club. All rights reserved.

Terri Thompson, President • Jeffry Booher, Vice President • Drema Swader, Treasurer • Nancy Varga, Secretary

Created By
Jeff Booher
Jeff Booher, Michael Fairbanks, Terri Thompson, Rick Wiley

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