Westfield Camera Club challenges members to compete and improve

Sept. 18, 2019 | Dennis Hackett

WESTFIELD – As one of the few photography clubs in the Springfield area, the Westfield Camera Club hosts monthly workshops and competitions to help its members hone their photography skills.

The club meets on the second and third Monday of every month with the exception of December and May, when they only meet once. Barbara Krawczyk, the club president and member since 1996, said the first meeting of every month is the competition night while the second is a teaching night with hands-on work or the occasional guest speaker.

Krawczyk said members are given advance notice for the theme of the competition each month and are sent in to a specific person on the first of each month. Then at the club meeting, the images are projected in front of everyone and are judged in a competition.

Even though members compete with each other every month, the competition is a learning experience. “A panel of four club members judge the images and make helpful comments,” Krawczyk said.

She added “Since one of our goals is to foster improvement and share techniques, members may inquire as to how the images were composed and edited.”

In addition to the president, Krawczyk said the Club has  “a board of seven who plan programs, set the season schedule, select the monthly challenge topics, and review and adjust competition rules and bylaws.”

Krawczyk said the club started in 1976 when it was hosted by Westfield State professor Gil Billings. After he retired, the club moved to the old senior center and now it meets at the Arbors Assisted Living center.

The Westfield Camera Club is one of just two photography clubs in the Springfield area that are not associated with any of the colleges. The other one is a club in the Quabbin area that focuses on nature photography, Krawczyk explained.

Members of the club also participate in interclub competitions across New England. “The club is a member of the New England Camera Club Council and participates in their digital interclub competition,” Krawczyk said.

She added that the Westfield members have done well in previous competitions. She said members “have been recognized in both their pictorial and nature sections for their excellence.”

Currently the club has 15 active members and some of the photographers have showcased their work in local, regional and even international competitions. Krawczyk added the club is open to anyone if they want to join or even if they want to just come watch the competitions and learn about photography.

“We may be a small group, but we have talented, amateur photographers, each having a specific strength or skill to share with club members,” Krawczyk said.

 Information can be found on the club’s Facebook page.

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wrote on 9/30/2019 at 10:05:02 PM

This is all well and good but some of us do not and never will use facebook. How about putting some basic info in like what time and where and what room(s) at Arbors. Would love to join but without a little basic knowledge of how it's kinda difficult.