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  1. #1
    jss
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    san francisco camera/film group

    at the end of january, i went to the home of a photographer who was trying to start up a non-digital camera club. he had big ideas and big opinions. he had a few meetings, frustration from people who never responded to phone calls or emails, and two groups of attendees (one of which wanted to meet on week nights, the other on week ends).

    this was the second incantation of such a group i've seen. last year i attended a few meetings that was a much younger crowd, mostly students.

    so this week i learned the recent group is basically disbanded. i emailed everybody, excluding the original organizer. there is still some interest. i pitched apug.org, if people wanted a place to discuss or organize. i didn't think the web needed another photography discussion site.

    my initial thoughts, things i want to focus on:
    - consistency.. predictable frequency, one place to go for information. meet more frequently/regularly at first until there is interia
    - come up with a template (discussion, prints, hands-on, outings, etc) and publish minutes so people see the activity, hopefully sparking interest
    - market, more than just one place. communicate frequently.

    i think the flaws of the previous meetings ive been to were:
    - meetings without structure or agenda. even a simple agenda gives some sort of flow to a meeting. you publish what happened so the next meeting can build on it, right?
    - infrequent communication. the group last year, i never knew what was going on. the more recent attempt..
    - decision by committee, one of my pet peeves. i'm usually not one to get up and speak in a group (ignore this email for now..). i think im annoyed to the point at which i'll just make a decision and move forward, taking constructive criticism as i go (and hide my nervousness).

    being a rather quiet and reserved person, i'm about 40% excited and 60% intimidated by my own actions

    I am still in brainstorming phrase. basically, i was curious if others have started regularly meeting groups. what worked, what didn't? did you meet somewhere publically or private?

  2. #2
    Aggie's Avatar
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    You have a core group you can draw from here on apug in the SF area. Geary (gaylons I think I got his id correct) Brad (BradS) Bjorke (can't remember his name I am having a brain cramp) Che (tomtom she is a manager at Looking Glass) and there are a few others that chime in from time to time. Talk to them and see what you can do. I plan on making it back to the area periodically, but don't know when exactly.
    Non Digital Diva

  3. #3
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    I don't have much help for you in terms of structural suggestions for how to make something like this work, but... As a Bay Area APUG'er, I'd love to see something like this get off the ground and would be willing to pitch in where possible.

  4. #4
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    FWIW, I'm trying to get the Foothill Photography Club off the ground at Foothill College (though it is not restricted to students), down in Los Altos Hills. We've got about 20 members now, and a few activities lined up (including a lighting workshop).

    I've been trying to either recruit folks from groups such as apug and rangefinderforum or, at the least, merely get some folks from these sites interested in our activites for possible sharing of ideas, etc. If anyone is interested, I can provide more info.

    allan

  5. #5
    jss
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaiyen
    FWIW, I'm trying to get the Foothill Photography Club off the ground at Foothill College...
    i'm interested in more info. i heard about this. are there people coming down from SF? i seem to have at least a few people interested from this disbanded SF group. i was hoping to resurrect something within city limits. stuff like outings, workshops, etc, it would be great to draw from different groups/pools of photo folk.

    i'm still in brainstorming phase. i'm going to try to get a few of us SF people together to decide what to do.

  6. #6
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    You heard about it? I must be doing a better job than I realized :-). As you witnessed with that other group, it really can be an uphill battle at times. However, I think we have a good core of folks that will make it a good group.

    We are unfortunately quite a way south from SF. However, we have a couple SF folks from RFF interested, and we're doing a joint "photoSlam!" in late April where we will bring folks together to share work, equipment, ideas and techniques in an informal setting. We also will be having a studio lighting workshop in May and our field trips tend to be towards the city (if only because both our field trip organizer and myself tend to like doing work there).

    Keep me updated on your progress. Perhaps you could include me on some of your conversations with others?

    allan

  7. #7
    DeanC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaiyen
    You heard about it? I must be doing a better job than I realized :-).
    I saw at least one post about it here on APUG, I think.

    Quote Originally Posted by kaiyen
    We are unfortunately quite a way south from SF. However, we have a couple SF folks from RFF interested, and we're doing a joint "photoSlam!" in late April where we will bring folks together to share work, equipment, ideas and techniques in an informal setting. We also will be having a studio lighting workshop in May and our field trips tend to be towards the city (if only because both our field trip organizer and myself tend to like doing work there).
    Yup, coming down that far once in a while would be do-able, but I live in Marin in work in SOMA, so it would be a pretty big hike. Getting something regular going in the city or a little north might even entice some of the wine country folks down occasionally.

  8. #8
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    I would love to be part of something - but since I live 3500 miles away the commute would be unreasonable.

    Suggest that you start by organizing events rather than meetings. Start with some field trips to interesting shooting locations. Then, after a few of those, schedule an informal session to show and share the results of the shoots. That way, the initial sessions have clear objectives while still providing an opportunity for casual conversation and testing the water for a regular and more formal series of activities. It also keeps things clearly focused on phtography rather than club building.

    And frankly, if all that comes out of it is building a group of people who enjoy shooting together and sharing work, that's probably better than the formality of a club with dues and competitions and end of the year dinners and all that stuff.

  9. #9

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    Since I both live and work in the East Bay, the city and peninsula are not my first choice for events. I don't have a car at work so during the week I favour places within reach of BART. On the other hand, Marin is easy. I have participated in some of the East Bay events when I can adjust schedules to suit.
    I feel, therefore I photograph.

  10. #10
    kaiyen's Avatar
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    FWIW - we're going to the Pinnacles sometime in the next few weeks. Any interest?

    allan

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