Story and Photos By Karen Glenn
I stood in the shadow of Half Dome reading the Yosemite calendar of events when a man with a long gray beard approached me. “See anything good?” he asked.
“A photography-in-the-parks slide show at 8:30.” I said, “Free.”
“I caught that last night,” he said, nodding with enthusiasm. “It was the best educational thing I’ve ever seen. You’ll like that.”
And, no surprise, I did. After all, I’d taken the Canon photography-in-the parks hands-on workshop that morning. Also free.
What’s more, there’s plenty of time left this summer for you to take a workshop as well. For the fifth consecutive year, Canon and the National Parks are offering Canon in the Parks, free digital photography workshops and photo presentations in a series of National Parks. The workshops move from Yosemite (June 7-28), to the Grand Canyon (July 4-July 24), to Jackson Hole (July 29-30), to Yellowstone (August 1-7), to Acadia (August 16-24). (For a complete schedule, visit www.usa.canon.com/parks.) They are also testing out video workshops in two locations, Acadia and Jackson Hole.
Skilled photo professionals lead all the classes, but I was especially lucky to experience one with Canon “Explorer of Light” Lewis Kemper, who lived in Yosemite for 11 years and worked with some photo greats, such as — are you ready?– Ansel Adams. Since Lewis is also the author of the Photographing Yosemite Digital Field Guide, it’s hard to imagine a better teacher.
Interviewed by Everett Potter
San Francisco’s Book Passage bookstore is one of the great American independent bookstores. Anyone with more than a passing interest in travel literature also knows it as the home of the Annual Travel Writers and Photographers Conference, which this year has expanded to cover food writers. At the helm of this lively festival is Don George, a travel writer and editor who is a contributing editor to National Geographic Traveler. George was the travel editor at the San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle, founded and edited the Wanderlust section of Salon.com, and most recently was Global Travel Editor at Lonely Planet Publications. He is the author of The Lonely Planet Guide to Travel Writing and the editor of six literary travel anthologies, including The Kindness of Strangers, Tales from Nowhere, and By the Seat of My Pants. I caught up with Don to ask him about this year’s Conference, which runs from August 12-15, 2010.
Everett Potter: Don this year marks the 19th Annual Book Passage Travel, Food & Photography Conference. How did the conference originate?
Don George: The conference began when I was the Travel Editor at the San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle and Elaine Petrocelli, the owner of Book Passage bookstore in Corte Madera, Marin County, called with “a crazy idea”: How about, she said, putting together a multi-day conference for aspiring travel writers, with workshops and panels featuring notable writers, editors, agents and publishers? I loved the idea and invited Jan Morris to be our first guest of honor. She graciously agreed and the conference was born.
Reviewed by Deborah Hay
When Henry Hudson, sailing on behalf of the Dutch East India Company in 1609, stumbled upon the river that would later bear his name, he opened the way for the Dutch colonization of the island we now call Manhattan. To commemorate the quadricentennial of those events, the Museum of the City of New York, in collaboration with FOAM Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam, presents Dutch Seen: New York Rediscovered. For this exhibition, contemporary Dutch photographers — some established, others emerging — were invited to create a portrait of New York City today.
Though Dutch Seen has a thoroughly modern sensibility, many of the show's works recall paintings of the Dutch Golden Age. In fact, Hendrik Kerstens' impeccable portraits of his daughter Paola may even remind viewers of Vermeer's Girl with the Pearl Earring, what with that inky dark background, that dramatic "Dutch light" and the subject's serene gaze. These similarities make Kerstens' portraits that much funnier when you realize that the noblewoman's cap on Paola's head is actually a dinner napkin (from her father's favorite Manhattan restaurant) or one of those ubiquitous plastic shopping bags.