May 6, 2019 — Meeting Notes

The Dubuque Camera Club meeting on May 6, 2019 was attended by 18 people. Below are a few things that were discussed…

Ron and Jennifer enjoyed their trip to Wesley Woods for the N4C mini-con.
♦ Ron was awarded third place in panoramic prints. [Good job, Ron!]
♦ Jennifer has joined the N4C board of directors! [Yayyyy! Feet stomping on the bleachers! Cheerleaders doing stunts! Pep band playing!]

Jennifer and Ron Tigges

At the next club meeting on May 20th, we will hear more about what happened at the N4C mini-con. In the meantime, Ron leaked a few secrets [SHHHH, don’t tell our new board member!]:

  • Our club may possibly judge the next N4C Photo Essay competition.
  • The description of some of the N4C competition categories will be changing. If you have been following along, you already know that some parts are unclear, or just plain unhelpful. Change is good!
  • The DA (digitally altered) category was heavily discussed, so we may see some clarification of the expectations for that category.
  • The DJ (digital journalism) category, now judged with a 15-point scoring system, will soon get an alternate scoring system.
  • The comments that club members receive on competition photos were also discussed. Everyone knows HOW HELPFUL THEY ARE.
  • Video may be added as a category in the future. Ron gave the example of the recent Julien Dubuque International Film Festival. Some films were shot using the exact same cameras that club members are now using to create still images.
  • Ribbons will be handled differently for monthly competition winners. Cara now has a big packet of ribbons that she can hand out right away.
  • The postage costs and hassle of prints needs to be streamlined. That’s why our club stopped competing with prints several years ago. But the N4C point system is still skewed toward clubs that do do prints [Yes, that was do-do]. Because of this bias, it has not been possible for digital-only clubs to earn “club of the year” or “member of the year.” With a voice on the board, our club can now advocate for change.
  • The N4C signed a contract, so Wesley Woods will be the location of the spring mini-con for the next 5 years.
  • Remember that the Des Moines Camera Club is hosting the big annual N4C convention this fall. Here’s a link to the “Finding Your Light” registration page.
  • We are still getting positive feedback about Blufftops & Visions. Visitors especially enjoyed the Millwork & Models photo shoot! [Yayyy us!! We are so awesome!]
  • Remember to attend the next club meeting on May 20th. In addition to Photo Critique Night, Jennifer and Ron will share even more information about various N4C do-do. Be there!

Submissions and Returns

“Bouquet of Fireworks over People and Mississippi River” by Bob Felderman, 3rd place, Digital Pictorial, April 2019

The club also looked at the competition returns for April 2019. Congratulations to the following awesome Dubuque Camera Club photographers!

  • Robert Felderman, 3rd place, Digital Pictorial, “Bouquet of Fireworks”
  • Karen Durrant, Merit award
  • Cara Pusateri, Merit award
  • Cory Huntington, Merit award
  • Kevin McTague, Honorable mention

The Digital Journalism returns for March 2019 have still not been received. Cara will share them when/if she gets them.

The club also reviewed the submissions for May. Note that May was the last chance to submit your photos to the N4C competition this season. The 2019/2020 season will start again in September. The next submissions are due before our first regular meeting of the new season, on TUESDAY Sept. 3rd, 2019 (the Tuesday after Labor Day).

Other club news

If you have purchased new photography gear and want to show it off to club members, you can do that at any meeting. It doesn’t have to be part of the official agenda. Also, we plan to clarify the rules for our private Facebook group. Only club members are allowed to post items for sale there, which is one of the benefits of club membership.

Another benefit of membership in the Dubuque Camera Club is being able to participate in club exhibits. Reflections, the club’s 7th consecutive exhibit at the Dubuque Museum of Art, is scheduled for September 21 to November 10, 2019. Initial submissions are due before the potluck picnic on Monday June 3rd. Only club members in good standing may participate. (I.e. your dues should be paid up-to-date.) Watch your email for exhibit details. Find more Reflections information here.

SUMMER PLANS: Even though our last “official” meeting for the season is on June 3rd, we plan to meet informally this summer. Ron wants to do light painting. This is a night-time long exposure technique. During the same photoshoot, people could also do star trails or other long exposure subjects. Photographer Roger Feldhans displayed his light painting work at Wesley Woods. Details of any summer photo shoots will be discussed at upcoming meetings and/or emailed to club members.


What club members have been doing…

Lori Burrows has taken a breather from her cross-country travels. She’s been posting some terrific images from Florida and New Orleans. Recently, she was spotted doing volunteer photography for a women’s shelter. What a great way to give back to the community!

Dubuque Camera Club member Lori Burrows using her photography skills as a community volunteer.

Andreas Exner recently teamed up with Kevin McTague for a nature photo shoot from a backyard bird blind. You don’t have to travel far to get great nature photos, especially during spring migration! He posted some of the bird photos on his blog.

Laura Schuster ‘s work will be in the inaugural show at the new Homestead Studio and Gallery in rural Bellevue. Laura will also be at the Corkless wine festival art fair in Galena on June 22.

Henry Matthiessen III is moving his Stoned Art Studio & Gallery to 1800 Central Ave., with a tentative opening date of August 1. In the meantime the gallery is open by chance or appointment. He will also be at various regional art fairs this summer, including Millwork Night Market.

Bob Felderman‘s images are featured in the May 2 issue of 365ink magazine, accompanying the 2019 Dubuquefest section. General Bob’s photos are also being used to promote our Reflections exhibit.

Photos by Jose Garcia in the latest issue.

Jose Garcia has several photos in Issue #77 of Photography Masterclass magazine, including the cover image.

In his new role as Canon ambassador, Jose will be leading a two-day workshop on June 21-22 at Photo Pro in Cedar Rapids. Topics will be off-camera flash for portraits, with a second workshop about using natural light. A selection of Jose’s photos will also be on display in the store.

Coincidentally, while searching for information about Jose’s event on the PhotoPro website, I noticed a familiar face on their Facebook page. Take a look:

Dubuque Camera Club member Gary Fagan, captured at Photo Pro in Cedar Rapids

Upcoming meetings

  • Monday, May 20 @ 6:30 p.m. — Critique Night. [Click here for more information about Critique Night] Email 1-3 photos to Ken as soon as possible, with “Critique Night Submission” as the subject of your email. We will hear more about the recent N4C mini-con at Wesley Woods.
  • Monday, June 3rd @ 6:00 p.m. — Potluck Picnic. Note 6:00 start time. Bring a dish to share, along with your loved ones. The club will probably(?) provide burgers/brats as in previous years. (Re-)election of officers. And don’t forget: REFLECTIONS submissions are due! [Click here for Reflections guidelines.]
  • Summer Photo Shoots and/or presenters — Day/time and details TBD.
  • TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 3019 @ 6:30 p.m. — First regular meeting of the 2019/20 season. This meeting is on a Tuesday due to Labor Day.

April 15, 2019 — Meeting notes

The Dubuque Camera Club meeting on April 15, 2019 was attended by 20 people. In addition to club members, we welcomed two guests, Lorna and Mike.

Top priority of the evening was judging the Digital Travel category of the N4C competition. There were 93 images from other clubs.

Greg Nauman, Kevin McTeague, and Andreas Exner volunteered their time as judges. The judging procedure was facilitated by Ron Tigges, Cara Pusateri, and Ken Kiss. Jennifer Tigges prepared the snacks (Thank you!).

Winning images will be posted in the winners’ galleries of the N4C website.

What is Travel Photography? Travel implies going to some place other than one’s customary environment, and travel photography suggests the photographic depiction of that new environment or the means used to get there. Be sure to state the name of the locale where the picture was made in the title of the digital image or print. If the location is in the U.S., list the state in the title; if foreign, list the country in the title. There is no definition of how far away that environment must be to qualify as travel or how different that new environment must be. However, the judges will generally award prizes to those photographs that depict more exotic and unfamiliar places, even though such places are home to someone. Good photographic technique and particularly the ability to convey the feeling and flavor of the place visited will help your photo be a winner. Try to emphasize the character that makes the place unique from other places. [Source: N4C rules]

Upcoming club events

  • Monday, May 6th @ 6:30 p.m. Club meeting. Send in your N4C submissions. We can submit double travel (DT). This will be your final opportunity to compete until next fall.
  • Monday, May 20th @ 6:30 p.m.Critique night. Club members only, email 1-3 JPGs to Ken Kiss, with Critique night submission as the subject of your email. Images must be received ASAP before the meeting. Click here for critique night guidelines.
  • Monday, June 3rd @ 6:00 p.m. Potluck Picnic. Open to club members and family members/significant others only. Plan to bring a dish to share. Watch your email for potluck details and an RSVP form. IMPORTANT: Reflections submissions are due before the picnic. Click here for Reflections guidelines.
Club members: Send in your Reflections submission(s) before the Potluck Picnic. See your email for details.

Find more upcoming photography-related events on the Events Page.


April 1, 2019 club meeting

The Dubuque Camera Club meeting on April Fool’s Day was attended by 17 people. No jokes were played. Instead, we enjoyed some compelling discussion, planned a few upcoming club activities, and looked at a bunch of interesting photos.

Much discussion happened regarding how to obtain prints for the club’s Reflections exhibit this fall, our 7th annual exhibit at the Dubuque Museum of Art. Click here to read about Reflections guidelines.

Click here to read the guidelines for the club’s Reflections exhibit.

March winners

During the meeting, we looked at returns from last month’s N4C competition, as well as submissions to the April competition. The following club members were recognized during the N4C competition in March 2019:

  • Jaime Gordo-Perez — merit award
  • Cory Huntington — merit award, honorable mention
  • Ken Kiss — merit award, honorable mention
  • Kevin McTague — merit award, honorable mention
  • Becky Mather — 3rd place in Digital Travel
Congratulations to Dubuque Camera Club member Becky Mather for winning 3rd place in Digital Travel with her photo of “Canyonlands of Utah.”

Protecting your photos. During tonight’s meeting, General Bob handed out notices that were created by PPA to help photographers protect their intellectual property. Here is a link to a helpful Copyright FAQ on the PPA website. Because the federal government charges a fee to register individual images for copyright, the expense of copyrighting multiple photos quickly becomes an obstacle. PPA is trying to change policy and be an advocate for photographers. Here’s the copyright section of their website. [Note that some parts are accessible only to PPA members. See below for related information from Petapixel.]

Art opportunity. Ron showed some photos of the Radio Building that was recently purchased by art museum supporters, and talked about the Flash Happening art event that will be held inside the building during this year’s Dubuquefest (May 17-19, 2019). Artists are currently being lined up to create temporary installations. Afterwards, the building will be demolished. Contact Ron for more details.

Panorama competition. If you want to enter the N4C panorama print competition, you can bring your print to the next club meeting on Monday, April 15. They should be mounted on foam board (?). There are no size or subject limits. Aspect ratio must be greater than 2:1. Ron will make sure the prints reach the Wesley Woods min-con on May 3-5. (See the March 18 meeting notes for more info about this competition).

Brainstorming club activities. The club held a short brainstorming session to discuss next season’s activities. We definitely want to host more speakers/presentations. Those we had this year were interesting and worthwhile. A few names of potential future speakers were brought up. Club members were also enthusiastic about hosting photo shoots during the summer. We could have a night shoot (Milky Way, etc.). Potential locations were brought up. It could be a learning session for people who are not familiar with this type of photography. Probably, someone in the club would need to step up as organizer. Stay tuned for more details.

Photo Critique Night on May 20. The club decided that the second meeting in May will be a photo critique night. Members can submit 1-3 images and receive constructive feedback from others. It’s OK for these photos to be potential Reflections submissions. Photoshopped images are OK too, or anything else you might want feedback on.

General Bob offered to share helpful information about giving critiques. He is taking photography classes and has photo critique guidelines to share. Ken volunteered to put the photos in the club’s Smugmug gallery. Email images to him before the meeting, and make it clear that they are for Critique Night. More details will be discussed at the next couple of meetings, and a reminder will be emailed to members.


Next season’s judging dates

During the 2019-2020 N4C season, our club will judge the monthly competition three times. Judging will happen during our second meeting of the month (i.e. on the 3rd Monday). Submissions are due by or before the first meeting of the month (i.e. the 1st Monday).

Monthly MeetingAgenda
1st MondaySubmissions due/Submissions & Returns
3rd MondayJudging/Workshop/Presentation

Remember, on the months that we judge a category, our club cannot submit competition photos to that particular category. The following month, the club can submit double photos to that category. (Double means up to 16 photos in that category. The club usually submits 8 photos per category. Only one entry per photographer is allowed per category.)

Because May is the final competition of the N4C season, when we judge in May, double submissions are accepted the previous month, in April. (The N4C season runs from Sept. to May, so there are no entries in June.) Confused? Me too. You may want to look at the N4C rules.

Judging DateCategoryCan’t SubmitSubmit Double (16 per club)
September 16, 2019Nature (DN)No DN in Sept.Double in Oct.
February 17, 2020Pictorial (DP)No DP in Feb.Double in Jan.
May 18, 2020Travel (DT)No DT in MayDouble in April

Our club will judge Digital Travel at the meeting on Monday, April 15th @ 6:30 p.m.

March 18, 2019 meeting notes

About 45 people attended the Dubuque Camera Club meeting on March 18, 2019. What a nice crowd!

Dubuque Camera Club meeting on March 18, 2019. Histogram Magic presentation by Henry Mattheissen III. Photo by Amy Laskye.

Our speaker for the evening was Henry Matthiessen III, from Stoned Art Studio in rural Galena. He shared a few of his original photos during a three-part presentation:

  1. The Magic of the Histogram
  2. Black Rock Desert: A Photo Study of Nothing
  3. A Day in the Driftless Region

We learned helpful tips about stretching out the tonality of an image, and heard about the perils of photo expeditions to the desert! More than one person in the audience was spied taking notes (F/9, 1/125, ISO 100).

The storm chasers present were intrigued by Henry’s panoramic images of cloud formations. Not only does he bring out the dramatic range of an image by using his camera’s built-in histogram, he also emphasizes the sky by using a two-stop graduated neutral density filter. These techniques result in some nice pictures!

Thanks to Henry for sharing his photography expertise during tonight’s meeting!


N4C stuff

Panoramic Print Competition. The N4C will be judging panoramic prints during the upcoming spring mini-con in Indianola on May 3-5. If you would like to enter (one entry is allowed per person), contact Ron or Jennifer. They will be taking print entries to the event (prints must be of a size to fit in their vehicle).

N4C rules for Panorama Print Annual Contest:
1. A Panorama print is considered to be a photographic print with an aspect ratio greater than 2:1 with no square inch limitation.
2. Open contest, any subject, mode or process, color or Black & White, one entry per member.

Photo essays and Video essays will also be shown during the mini-con. Our club has never(?) entered either one of these annual competitions before, so if you want to be an innovator, please step up. These two categories are submitted digitally. Complete rules are in the February N4C bulletin. Deadline is March 31.

If you would like to go to the mini-con, you must mail your registration by April 17. Complete info is on the N4C website. Be sure to read the Feb. and March N4C bulletins on their website because they also contain pertinent info.

Member news & other stuff…

If you read 365ink magazine, you may have noticed they have begun to use a social media hashtag to gather image submissions for their regular photo page. If you have taken local event photos that you want to bring to their attention, when you post them to Facebook or Instagram, use the hashtag ‎#my365ink‬.

On the other hand, if you get a hankering to submit a photo to appear in the Telegraph-Herald (they run a lot of backyard bird photos), here is the link to Pix & Flix.


Club member Jesse Green has invested in a mirrorless camera and is starting to take pictures. The camera’s monitor is a pleasure to look at! In addition to showing off his new toy at the meeting, Jesse has posted several images to the club’s Facebook group.

Club member José Garcia is making an awesome leap in his photography career! Some of his photos will appear in an upcoming issue of Photography Masterclass magazine. On Instagram, he has been noticed five times (so far) by the official Canon USA Instagram account. This has led to an opportunity to be part of the new Canon USA Ambassador program. He will travel to other midwestern cities to lead workshops on portraits, astro-photography, landscapes, and off-camera flash portraits. Congratulations, José!

Online photo sharing (via Flickr) also led to an opportunity for club member Pamela Brandt. She was asked to contribute images to a commemorative book of photos and essays that will celebrate the first hundred years of Iowa State Parks, 1920-2020. The book will be available at the end of the year, with proceeds going to state parks projects.

We recently learned that Andreas Exner, who gave a presentation on Storytelling in Wildlife Photography a few weeks ago, was mentioned in the Feb. 2019 issue of the Belltower, the student newspaper at the University of Dubuque. The complete issue is here.

A photo from club member Debbie Denlinger appeared under “Write the Caption” in the Dubuque Telegraph-Herald on Sunday, March 31 (p. 21A). What a cute image, Debbie!

The April-May 2019 issue of Our Iowa magazine contains a photo by club member Robert Felderman. It is also up for an award. You can vote by sending an email to hotline@OurIowaMagazine.com and letting them know that PHOTO NUMBER FOUR is your top choice!

“Taps at Sundown,” by Robert Felderman, in the April-May 2019 issue of Our Iowa magazine.

Do you have photography-related news or events to share here? Please let Pamela know! After all, “None of us is more than all of us”!

Upcoming meetings

  • April 1, 6:30 p.m. — Club meeting. N4C submissions are due before the meeting. No Travel submissions this month.
  • April 15, 6:30 p.m. — Club meeting. Our club will judge Digital Travel (DT). We will have refreshments! Please attend!
  • May 3-5 — N4C mini-con at Wesley Woods, Indianola, IA. More info here. Contact Ron or Jennifer if you want to submit panoramic prints.
  • May 6 — Club meeting. N4C submissions due. We can submit double DT.
  • May 20 — Club meeting. Presentation or workshop, TBD.
  • June 3rd, 6:00 p.m. — Annual picnic. Open to club members only. Last meeting of the regular N4C season. “Reflection” submissions are due.

FIND MORE INFORMATION about upcoming photography-related events on the EVENTS PAGE.

March 4, 2019 Meeting notes

Fifteen club members attended the Dubuque Camera Club meeting on Monday March 4, 2018. Ron and Jennifer opened the meeting with a discussion of upcoming events and photo opps. Below are a few items that were mentioned:

  • The N4C mini-con is coming up on May 3-5, and will be held at a location in central Iowa that is only a short drive from the Pella Tulip Festival. Send in your registration by April 17. Panorama prints are one of the specialties that will be judged during the mini-con. Jennifer is on the ballot for a director position with N4C. This will be a one-year appointment. More info and a link to the mini-con registration form is on the N4C website.
  • The Dubuque Audubon Society will sponsor its annual bird banding program at the Mines of Spain on Saturday, March 24 @1:00 p.m. If you love photographing birds, this event may offer you some photo opps. You will get an up-close view of chickadees and other birds that frequent the feeders near the nature center.
  • The Dubuque Area Writers Guild is taking B&W photo submissions for its Gallery anthology. Several club members have had work included in the past. This year the subject matter is wide open. However, we do not have info about dimensions or filesize. It might be a good idea to team up with a writer in order to have your photos illustrate their work. Deadline is April Fool’s Day.
  • Depending on the weather (and who knows about that lately?!), the 2019 Galena St. Patrick’s Day parade may make a good photo opp. Not only are you likely to see leprechauns but also people wearing Civil War era costumes. The parade will be held on Sat. March 16 starting at 4:00 p.m. It is sponsored by the Galena Elks Lodge.

REFLECTIONS — Dubuque Camera Club photography exhibit at the Dubuque Museum of Art, Sept. 21 to Nov. 10, 2019.

REFLECTIONS will be the theme of our 2019 exhibit at the Dubuque Museum of Art. The exhibit will be on display from September 21 through November 10, 2019.  BE LOOKING AT YOUR PHOTOS FOR SUBMISSION IDEAS! Deadline to submit your images: June 3rd.

Participation is limited to current club members. Initial image submissions will be due by our June 3rd picnic with the museum staff to make final selections. We plan to print on metal or on metallic paper. The club will offer a stipend toward the cost of prints. We may hold a workshop this summer to frame and mat our own prints.

Exhibit committee: Robert Felderman, Pamela Brandt.  More details will be announced at future meetings.


Our club will judge Digital Travel at the meeting on Monday, April 15th @ 6:30 p.m.

In other news…

The club voted to purchase and provide refreshments on judging nights. Jennifer offered to organize the goodies. Our next judging event will happen during the meeting on Monday, April 15th @ 6:30 p.m. We will be judging the Digital Travel category of the N4C competition. More fun with munchies for the audience! [Note that since we will be judging, we cannot submit to this category in April.]

About 40 people attended the sequel to Andreas Exner‘s Storytelling in Wildlife Photography presentation on Sunday, March 3rd. The program had been pushed back one week due to winter weather. Good job again, Andreas!

Robert Felderman is going back to college in an online photography program at the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design. His work was recently juried into the college’s annual student exhibition. Congratulations, General Bob!

José Garcia had his photography noticed again on the official CanonUSA Instagram account. Congrats, José!

♦ ♦ ♦ A reminder to tell your friends about the Magic of the Histogram presentation on Monday, March 18th. We are all looking forward to seeing Henry’s lovely photos and hearing his tips and techniques. More info here. ♦ ♦ ♦

Congratulations to these photographers…

The club reviewed submissions and returns. Four photographers received recognition in last month’s competition:

  • David Smethers, First place, Digital Journalism. Two merit awards.
  • Kevin McTague, Merit award, Honorable mention.
  • Karen Johannessen Durrant, Merit award.
  • James Durrant, Merit award.

Good job! We are very proud of everyone who entered!


Mirrorless Cameras

As the keynote discussion of the evening, club member José Garcia demonstrated the advantages of using a mirrorless camera. He owns a Canon EOS R. It is lightweight and comfortable, can use any Canon lense, and has an awesome focus assist and other features.

For instance, with the touch-screen, adjustable LCD, you can use your finger to select the focus points and not take your eye away from the viewfinder. Meanwhile, in the viewfinder, what you see is what you get. There’s no “click” sound, which is convenient for church weddings (or wildlife).

The camera’s low light focusing ability makes it “amazing for night photography,” said José. It’s got eye detection for portraits and a real-time histogram. When you change the lenses, a curtain closes so you don’t get dust inside the body of the camera.

Every photographer at the meeting had a chance to take a closer look at Jose’s new Canon when he passed it around the room. It felt like passing the baby during a family gathering. However, the technobabble and photography jargon made it clear we were at a meeting of the Dubuque Camera Club.

Thanks to José Garcia for sharing his expertise in this presentation!


Here’s a 5-minute video from Sony that talks about the difference between DSLR and mirrorless cameras.

Upcoming events

  • March 18, 6:30 p.m.  — Club meeting.  “The Magic of the Histogram.” Free photography presentation by Henry Matthiessen. BRING YOUR FRIENDS! More info here.
  • April 1, 6:30 p.m. — Club meeting. N4C submissions are due before the meeting. No DT submissions this month.
  • April 15, 6:30 p.m. — Club meeting. Our club will judge Digital Travel (DT). We will have refreshments! Please attend!
  • May 3-5 — N4C mini-con at Wesley Woods, Indianola, IA. More info here.
  • May 6 — Club meeting. N4C submissions due. We can submit double DT.
  • May 20 — Club meeting. Presentation or workshop, TBD.
  • June 3rd, 6:00 p.m. — Annual picnic. Open to club members only. Last meeting of the regular N4C season. DMA “reflection” submissions are due.