Featured Photographer - August 2013

Jim Hendon I caught the photo bug while studying journalism at San Diego State in 1973. The news photography course included the darkroom, lots of fun. As a reporter for 10 years, I occasionally shot fires, school events, police actions -- more fun. On assignment in Alaska, I wrote a travel article with associated photos. Great fun! Covering a trade mission to China in 1983, I shot a dozen rolls of film for my series of stories. Serious fun! Working later in corporate communications, I shot a variety of assignments with a digital camera, industrial scenes, portraits and meetings. Also worked with several pro shooters, and admired their skill and intensity. My first digital camera was an Olympus 8080. Great lens. It showed me digital could compete with film, so I kissed my beloved AE-1 goodbye. Discovering Photoshop Elements, I entered a period of experimentation -- fake watercolors, wild compositions. But I've since embraced a conservative approach, trying to keep things real. For many years, I've enjoyed making greeting cards using cardstore.com. People love them - and it's gratifying to put my images to good use. Each year, I try to shoot a better Xmas card, an annual motivational cycle. I want my photos to be useful or good enough to frame. So my best shots of Paris hang in my home. My largest framed image captures Capitol Reef at sunset with "The James Hendon Gallery" superimposed across the bottom. When visitors ask where the gallery is, I tell them they're standing in it. I'm grateful that our club challenges me to improve. I've been shooting with an Olympus 510, but want to upgrade my equipment. Almost entirely self-taught up to now, I feel I'm at a turning point. Do I invest more time and money in this hobby, or stay in my comfort zone? Either way, I'll continue to escape into the alternative universe of photography whenever I can. eMail Jim
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