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photo by Joe Strode
December Photo Newsletter
 Black & White


Dear Photographers,

    The chill is setting in. But, don't hide inside thinking your photography must hibernate until the spring thaw.  Put on some boots and a scarf and head out for those  starkly beautiful images of bare tree branches against a white sky.  Or, maybe a barren field that speaks of the nurturing sleep of winter.  Or, if we're lucky, some snow!  Or, for the street photographers, capture people bundled up as they, too, brave the elements.  There are too many examples to list - but you get the idea...winter is the perfect time to embrace our Black & White photography.










photo by Owen Biddle



Two-Part  Photo Workshop:

Painting with Light in Black & White


Here's a new approach to that basic of basics: lighting.  In this special workshop learn how to use a flashlight in a dark room to reveal your subject. This technique results in pictures that bring out texture, modeling and shadow in unexpected ways as you take charge of the direction, quantity and quality of light with that simple device, the flashlight.   

First Session:  Hands on experience and discussion of equipment and technical matters.  Wednesday,   7:00 - 8:30  12/8

Second Session:  Feedback on your work from the intervening week.  Wednesday 7:00 - 8:30  12/15


check out this link to see how Harold Ross does it!









photo by Juan Torres


Photo Field Trips

We have picked out two trips that are excellent places to experiment with black and white photography.  (Not bad in color either!)

30th Street Station

This Philadelphia site is so familiar  and utilitarian, it is often overlooked for its photographic possibilities.  But we will explore  the grand architecture, indoor markets, the tracks, wires, trains coming and going and views of the city from the platforms.  Our approach will go beyond showing a "beautiful building", and aim to document the interplay between man and the environment in this transportation hub.  (Also a great place to capture people going about their everyday lives.)

Monday  10:00 - 12:00  12/13

West Laurel Hill Cemetery

An unusual choice of setting, perhaps, but one that is especially evocative in the  winter light.   The mausoleums, obelisks, angels and arching trees are the elements for creating uncommon compositions.  A great chance to try out your tripod and wide-angle lens.

Location:  Bala Cynwyd, PA

Saturday  10:00 - 12:00  12/11





Do you know about the Media Arts Council?  If not, you should!  This group promotes the arts in our area, including, of course, photography.  In October they held their annual national photo contest; this year the theme was balance.  Owen was honored to be the judge for this prestigious competition.    His comment:  "The quality of the entries this year was so consistently high, it was really hard to make the top picks."  But he did!   You  can check out how he solved the problem with his four top picks, plus more details about the contest and Media Arts Council at this link:




photo by Henri Cartier Bresson

(not from the MAC contest, but definitely about balance)


Please Note:  New Cancellation Policy


As we transition to this phase of providing photography instruction both in-person and on-line, we are instituting a new policy covering cancelled lesson.


Students are asked to provide at least 24 hour notice when an appointment cannot kept.  

When a lesson is cancelled with less than 24 hour notice, students have the option of rescheduling for a $10 rescheduling fee.   If no make-up session is scheduled, however, the full amount of the missed lesson will still be charged.


Exceptions in the case of emergencies will be determined by Owen on a case by case basis.

                 In- Person!

Like many of the rest of you, we are taking some steps to reconnect...            in person!!

For those who are vaccinated and comfortable meeting in the classroom setting, small group events and individual lessons are available.  

For those who are not yet ready for this step, we are carrying on with remote lessons via Zoom.

Email or call (610) 626 - 7854 to sign up.



Don't Forget all Those Shutter Bugs on your list...

Wouldn't they just love a photo field trip to get lots of photo tips and bring home a picture worthy of putting on the wall??

Or a special photo workshop to develop skills?

Or a tutorial individualized to the student's  level and interesest?

(Maybe you need a gift certificate for yourself!)

It's easy to set up -

just email or call (610)626-7854


DSLR Fundamentals Tutorials

Below are descriptions of the basic units of our curriculum available to students ranging from beginner to advanced.  Most units are five lessons and include a set of assignments designed to give practice in targeted skills with opportunities to get feedback from the instructor so that you learn from your experiences.

Just give a call and  we can set up individual sessions to keep you moving forward with your photography.

 Call (610)-626-7854 for details.


​(click on links for more information)


Fundamentals 1:  Camera Operations   is for students who are just starting out, or want a good review of the basic camera functions. 

Fundamentals 2:  Applications  is for students who have some comfort with the camera and want to start applying their skills to expand their photographic range.

Fundamentals 3:  Composition  takes photography beyond the subject, and encourages you to see the artistic and compositional opportunities in everyday life. Here is a chance for your right brain to come out and play!


Fundamentals 4:  Lighting Across the Genres is for students who are  ready for the next critical step: lighting.  Explore sophisticated means of controlling both natural and artificial light for portraits, landscape and still life to get just the mood and effects you want.


Advanced Photography - Using self-generated assignments and in-depth critiques we will help you move forward in your work.  


 Photo Salon

​  Sunday  3:00 - 4:30  12/12/21   In Person at our new address!!!

These are very friendly, relaxed get-togethers at my apartment in Lansdowne. Photographers of all levels are welcome to share pictures, get photography tips, and discuss camera equipment. You can also get ideas for entering photography contests, submitting to photography magazines and having photo shows. Feedback from the group provides encouragement and inspiration to go out and take more pictures. These informal photography critiques offer an excellent opportunity to start identifying themes in your work and to get ideas for new directions. Group size is limited, so if you can come an RSVP is required by email or call (610) 626-7854. Cost is $10.  These Salons often fill-up,

so it's best to get your spot early

ALSO.... Check out this  facebook link and join the group.  

Our purpose is to provide an online place for our community to stay in touch, stay inspired  and get out there and keep snapping.  You can post pictures and get feedback, ask photo questions, make suggestions etc.  What do you say???

Special thanks to Jonathan Prusky, whose technical skills have saved us more than once and made this whole endeavor possible.


                            photo by Owen Biddle


Not a photo, but ...

 Franz Kline (1910 - 1962) discovered the graphic possibilities of black and white in his abstract expressionist paintings.  Give you any ideas....? 


Scroll down for Photographer of the Month,
Joe Strode




Joe Strode













Here's what Joe has to say about his Black & White Photography:

      "For me, this can feel freeing; you’re no longer stuck thinking constantly about color but can instead focus on the more fundamental aspects of photography such as tone and light."

 Putting together this collection was a tremendous pleasure.  Each images asked me to pause and enter a special, quiet world.  Thank you Joe, for showing us the wonderful potential of Black & White to capture mood and beauty.  


Click on thumbnail to see full images.                    

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