Prior to my arrival in Calgary I was a co-organizer in a photography meetup group Van City Free Capture (VCFC). The idea of this meetup is to do a co-event with VCFC. Dionysios and Sharon are hosting their event in Vancouver and I'll be hosting a satellite event here in Calgary. The event details below are courtesy of Dionysios (with a few changes for the Calgary component).
When we make a photograph, we present a message. We interpret an issue in a scene and present our understanding in a manner that can be deep or concise, cryptic or dazzling. Just like one word or sentence might not be enough to state our intention, then perhaps one image might not be enough to present our understanding of a subject (your message). Here we will produce a set of three or more images, mounted together, that will exhibit our message as either a series or a sequence.
A series is a set of photographs that does not require a viewing order to be understood. If re-ordered, meaning is not lost. What ties the images together is a common idea, subject, style or content such as "Vancouver's Mt Pleasant neighborhood", "Textures of Venice" and "New Orleans from the hip". With a series, there is consistency.
A sequence is a set of photographs that does require a viewing order to be understood. If re-ordered, the meaning is lost. What ties the images together is a movement through time and space or a narrative, which has a beginning, middle and end (in French, l'exposition, le development et le denouement), such as "A day with gypsies in Triana" or "Learning from each other while baking". With a sequence, there is continuance.
The similarity with a series or a sequence is they tell a story, whether it's a short or long one, but one that cannot be told with just one frame. The challenge, after choosing a subject, is finding appropriate scenes while photographing and then selecting images from the contact sheet that will successfully illustrate the story; it is relating multiple images into a coherent whole, which is our message.
Above: I Would Have Liked to Have Seen, Montana, 2011 by Dionysios Psychas
Following are some examples. Some are staged or span years.
Duane Michals: Chance Meeting
Michael von Graffenried: Shoreditch Stories and Cocainelove
Greg Miller: School Bus Stop and County Fair
Bernd and Hilla Becher: Typologies Photographic Series here
Ryan Schude: Vintage cars portraits
Michael Eastman: Vanishing America
John Bennett Fitts: Industrial landscaping
Claire Martin: The Misfits: Downtown East Side
A set of stopped motion images (continuous or multi-shot) or one image simply divided into three is not the point of this exercise and meetup. In order to create a tryptic or series you'll need a piece of software that can create a "strip" of images (free software like Faststone, which can stitch or create a contact sheet).
We'll explore the east side of downtown Calgary and Inglewood. We'll meet in front of Caffe Rosso (425 11 Ave SE) at 4:00pm.
We will make introductions, the subject will be presented, there will be tips, we'll have a short Q&A, identify members with like camera brands to help each other navigate their gear and then we'll head out to try to make memorable photographs and have fun. We'll also buddy up.
Afterwards, we'll meet up in front of Ironwood Stage & Grill (1229 9 Ave SE) in Inglewood where we'll share photos and conversations.
NB: This is not a lesson, just a photo exploration. The event will go on dry or wet, so be prepared for the weather. If you participate in the event you should also participate by sharing your images in the album (up to 8); ask us questions and we'll get a discussion going to help each other with technique and composition.
The function of the group is to learn and practice the techniques of photography. This involves learning photography not only from your guides but also by sharing knowledge with your group-mates. The intention is also to organize and get to know new people. The attendant size of the meets will be small so participants can have the opportunity to get to know all their group-mates and spend time with a guide. If you select to attend a meet and then cannot make it, please be courteous to others in the group and change your RSVP status as soon as possible to allow others the chance to participate.
Please feel comfortable in posting your photographs and advising others; critical appraisal is helpful. What will also be appreciated are ratings and, especially, comments to individual meets and the group dynamic as a whole. This is important because it will ultimately add value to our meetings and improve our experience.