Peer Mentorship Program

Introduction

Welcome to Washington Park Camera Club’s  Mentor group.  The mentor program began during the 2020-2021 camera season.  Many of the members said they would love to have sessions where people that were not as experience could get together to learn more about the functions of their camera, how to set these functions and  where to use them.  

From these discussions the WPCC Mentoring program was developed. We just finished our first year during the pandemic and the program was a great success. With mentees learning about their camera: what to focus on, when to shoot, how to set their cameras for different scenes, using a program to correct some things in the photos and many other area.

We will offer the program again this camera year (2021-2022).  All members that want to learn more about photography are welcome to join.  You must be willing to commit to working with your mentor, have a working camera, and able to join your mentor on Zoom at the time the group decides to meet.  Finally, complete the application on our website. (Look for the tab entitled ‘Peer Mentor Survey’)

If you would like to be a Peer Mentor and you desire to work with people who want to learn, have patience or you just want to share your craft then we are need you!  Please contact the Roslyn or Bonnie with your information.

Meet the Mentors

Fred

Mentoring Style: As mentor, Ken and his mentees utilize the 1:1 coaching approach.

Mentoring Focus: Photoshop.

Fred has been a member of the club since 1972 and has served twice as its Vice President. In addition, he’s served as the chair of the Print Committee for six years, the color-slide chair person for eight years and was the first Digitally Projected Image chair person for the club.

He likes to shoot with his trusty Nikon camera and also uses his cell phone to capture images.

Fred says, “I take pictures for records and memories.  I have been shooting for over 70 years, 48 with help from the Washington Park Camera Club. I love the ‘alteration of reality’ and abstract photography.  I truly love sharing and having reciprocal-interactions on Facebook.”

Mentee Feedback:

“Fred Lott was always willing to try new methods. He was always willing to respond to my questions and requests.”


Ken

Mentoring Style: As mentor, Ken and his mentees utilize the 1:1 coaching approach.

Mentoring Focus: Photography Fundamentals

Ken Mitchell was a portrait and wedding photographer who turned a hobbyist photographer. He is also a skilled landscape and close up photographer

His interest in photography started with him shooting film in early 1970, when he bought his first 35mm camera. He is also self taught, based on extensive research and trial and error experimentation.

He joined the Washington Park camera club in 2001, he has held the office of club president and Vice President. He was also chosen  person of the year in 2005 and 2008 by the club membership.

Because of his knowledge of a variety of different photographic equipment, Ken is the club’s, equipment committee chair person. He regularly shares his knowledge and experience of shooting portrait and wedding photography, in the form of work shops, with the clubs membership.

For over three years, Ken was the exclusive photographer for a nursery school, taking annual individual and group portraits of approximately 20 children. He was also the exclusive photographer for a life insurance brokerage firm for two years, photographing the office personal for sales contest and advertisement photos as well as all the board meetings and annual sales meetings in a number of down town hotels.

For 37 years, Ken worked for Jewel Food Stores as a security officer and security manager, at times managing a staff of 4 to 5 persons. During that time Ken was a wedding photographer, he photographed a number of weddings, and had a home portrait business, shooting in home family portraits.

Ken says  “Artistic Creativity Expressed Through Photography Can Be Realized By Understanding Light And Mastering Camera Operation”.

Mentee Feedback:

“Ken has a wealth of photography knowledge. Ken shared tutorials/exercises to help answer my questions as well as being a good sounding board when purchasing equipment.”

“Every meeting with Ken I learn tons of information. The best memory was when he told me I was no longer a beginner; I had advanced to a novice photographer.”

“My best memory of the Peer Mentoring program is my mentor guidance and direction in approaching an end result on assignment.”


Preston

Mentoring Style: As mentor, Preston and his mentees utilize the small group coaching approach.

Mentoring Focus: General Photography & Practical Skills

Preston has been a member of the Club since 2014 and served as it’s Vice President (2018-2020). He also serves as the chairperson of the By-Laws committee. His interest in photography started in high school.

Preston says, “I have shot with a Sony 717, Canon Rebel XTi, and a Canon 7D. Now I’m shooting with a Canon R6 and Fujifilm X-T30. I love the fact that you freeze time with photography. I enjoy looking at and taking great-looking images. I do not specialize in any particular discipline of photography. I like shooting whatever catches my interest. After joining the camera club my photography skills grew 100%. In addition, I’ve significantly improved my Lightroom and Photoshop skills.

With this mentoring program, I hope to give back some of the things I have learned to someone else.

Mentee Feedback:

“… Our mentor works very well with us explaining techniques at our levels on our field trips shooting the same objects.”

“It’s a great learning experience and refreshing my memory on a lot of things.”


Philip

Mentoring Style: As mentor, Philip and his mentees utilize the small group coaching approach (3-5 mentees). The group collaborates by leverages technology to provide remote sessions (Email, Zoom Screen Sharing, WhatsApp & iMessages).

Mentoring Focus: Photography Fundamentals; Event, Travel, Street and Portraiture photography.

Philip has been a member since 2012 and was once the club’s Secretary (2014-2016). He is currently the chairperson for Information Technology. He primary shoots with a Nikon D800 for art/pleasure and a D700 for event work while leveraging his iPhone for mobile photography. Lightroom is his preferred post-production processing tool.

“Since I was a child, I’ve always been inspired by the photos from my parent’s and grand parents’ National Geographic Magazines. As time passed, I wanted people to see life through my eyes, my perspective. In 2000 I started my self-learning journey into digital photography. While my styles and genre have changed over the years, my current focus is event, portraiture, street, city scape and travel photography. I especially love capturing people during those off-the-cuff, candid moments and sharing my travel experiences through photography with others.”

As a mentor, Philip and his mentee’s utilize the group-learning approach. He believes that we all can teach each other — He’s “only here” to help guide them on their journey of discovery. The primary focus has been:

  • Exploring “what makes for a good photo” (the basics, composition, subject matter, objective team/self-critique, and workflow best practices),
  • Building confidence in capturing and showing great photos,
  • Constantly learning new idea, techniques, and inspiration, making the art and science of photography a worthy and enjoyable experience.
  • Having fun as a team.

Mentee Feedback:

“My best memory is how we are challenged to try new things, like light writing. I appreciate how Philip always provides written guidance to reinforce what we have discussed.”

“3 Best Memories (not necessarily in this order): the way we meet on Zoom, and Philip’s structuring of the sessions; the sessions in which we reviewed Lightroom; the group outing to Rockefeller Chapel.”

Peer Mentorship Mentee Sign-Up

Washington Park Camera Club is dedicated to fostering the progression of photography to club members who possess varying levels of expertise and interests. To help us understand your needs and potentially match you with a WPCC club mentor, please complete the survey below. Once submitted, the survey responses which will be reviewed by the Mentorship Committee.

A Special Note:

  • You should always feel free to approach any WPCC club member for feedback, advice and help.
  • The WPCC Mentors have volunteered their time and expertise to mentor fellow club members in various settings (1-to-1 or small-group) for a specific period of time.
  • Mentors will primarily be focused on capturing images and providing light post-processing advice as it relates to competition (example: cropping, lighting, color, etc.)
  • Learning specific techniques for specific post-processing applications (such as Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom) is generally outside the scope of this mentorship. For an in-depth knowledge of each of these applications/programs, please consider online classes, YouTube or even courses at your local college.
The will help us understand what you're hoping to get out of a peer mentoring program. This will help us to level-set expectations and provide the best experience.
This will help us to gauge what learning/mentoring setting you feel works best for you.
Though not requirements, assignments and practice help reinforce what you learn.
The options above will help us understand where you see yourself and your expertise as a photographer.
This will help us understand your approach to photography and the different types cameras you use.
Regardless of the types of cameras that you use, who made the primary camera that you use? This can help with pairing mentors and mentees.
This will help us understand what, specific types of photography you're interested in.
Being prepared helps everyone to understand the common language spoken by photographers and how they relate directly to your specific make/model of camera. Even if a mentor has a camera from the same manufacturer their settings may be access from a different mechanism on their device.
Every photographer uses a different camera mode for each situation they find themselves in.
Capturing the right photo is usually about 75 - 90% of the process. However it's good to understand your desire for post processing advice as it related to inter/intra-club competitions.
Understanding your post-processing application/program will help match you with an appropriate, available mentor.
This will help match you with a mentor who may have some knowledge of this specific application in your post-processing workflow.
This will help us to understand your expertise level with the application. Keep in mind the mentor is primarliy focused on capturing images and providing light post-processing advice as it relates to competition (cropping, lighting, color, etc.) There are many classes available for learning each application/program in depth, however this is outside of the scope of the mentorship program.
This will help us understand your perspective of photography. There is no right or wrong answer.