One of the more creative and rewarding social activities open to adults over the age of 55 is photography, which is offered in a social setting by Moose Jaw’s own camera club. Photography helps enhance cognitive functions including memory, keeps the brain healthy and active, and boosts creativity.
The Moose Jaw Camera Club currently has around 35 active members and meets on the second Monday of each month from September to June at 7 p.m. The meeting place is the Cosmo Senior Citizens’ Centre, located at 235 Third Avenue Northeast across from Crescent Park in Moose Jaw’s historic downtown.
The club operates with the mission of fostering an appreciation for photography as an art form.
“You’re capturing a moment in time when you take a photo. There’s a great satisfaction (in that) – at least for me there is,” said Wanda Hudson, the club’s membership manager and assistant programming committee member.
At the camera club, members come together to exchange information and share in a mutual learning activity. Newer photographers are given an opportunity to learn from seasoned and experienced members, and a range of optional outings help give focus to the learning experience.
Several of the club’s members even get the opportunity to have their works showcased on the east wall at Carol’s Catering, located at 820 North Service Road.
When members of the camera club were asked about their reasons for joining, the most common response was to interact with like-minded people. This included a frequent mention of the social aspect of the club, as well as the shared sense of camaraderie.
Other members were simply interested in photography, and many wanted to learn new camera techniques or methods.
Two members said they enjoyed the guest speakers who regularly attend meetings, and others mentioned the club’s activities. In one of the club’s previous activities, balloons were inflated and then popped, while members who had a camera set up on a tripod took a shot at capturing the exact moment the balloon exploded.
In one outing, Hudson recalled a memorable experience where she and a few members attempted to photograph the northern lights around Moose Jaw. After nearly giving up, the iconic lights began to glow at the exact time the members were packing up to leave. As a result of the night’s excursion, Hudson said she witnessed some of the most beautiful pictures of the northern lights she’s ever seen.
“There are all kinds of fun things we try. That’s where (members) get the hands-on (experience) and (try) new things they haven’t done,” she said.
This year’s upcoming events include:
- Feb. 12: Will include a “Landscape” critique and a workshop called “Another Focus” presented by Kim Schneider. There will also be a used photography equipment sale that might benefit new members or those without their own camera equipment.
- Feb. 24: Will include an outing at McMaster Studio covering a “Posing & Lighting Demonstration” and led by Mark Duffy starting at 11 a.m.
- March 11: Will include a slideshow and presentation about “Environmental Photography” presented by Branimir Gjetvaj.
- March 23: Will include an outing at Buffalo Pound Provincial Park titled “Wildlife, Buffalo, Birds and Babies.”
- April 8: Will include a slideshow and presentation by Rob Harden titled “Altered Reality.”
- April 27: Will include an outing in downtown Moose Jaw titled “Buildings of Moose Jaw.”
- May 13: Will include a critique titled “Reflections,” as well as a “Water Works” workshop led by Wanda Hudson.
- May 25: Will include an outing with details to be announced and titled “Pow Wow.”
- June 10: Will include a slide show and the club’s Annual General Meeting. There will also be a year-end photography competition with an “Open Theme” and a year-end party with details to follow.
- Late June: Will include an outing titled “Night Photography” with a time, date, and details to follow.
“The last two (members) that signed up at our last meeting were a new couple that moved to town (and were) anxious to perfect their cameras, take pictures and learn things. I think they are retiring here, so it’s going to be a fun pastime for them,” Hudson added. The club offers an exceptional retirement hobby for anyone expressing an interest in photography.
More information can be found online at TheMooseJawCameraClub.com or in one of the club’s brochures.