Back from Click 646

I just got into Santa Fe late last night after spending a week in Greenwood, SC. I am still reeling from the wonderful weekend filled with photographic festivities at the second year of the annual festival Click 646. The event was one of the loveliest and most professional events I have attended. The first evening Sundance Gallery hosted an opening reception with a potluck dinner of many Southern delicacies including one of my favorites-- baked cheese crackers topped with one juicy, meaty Southern pecan -- and someone even tried to test my Southwestern-trained taste buds with stuffed jalapenos. Ann Jastrab from Rayko Photo Center in San Francisco was my unofficial date for the evening and the photographer and featured artist at Sundance Gallery, Ben Ham, delighted us with a flight of California wines (not as delightful the next morning for some). The four-piece band and local favorite, The Nouveaux Honkies, entertained the crowd.

The next evening was The Taste of Greenwood where a few of the local restaurants set up booths on Maxwell and The Nouveaux Honkies entertained us again while we ate and imbibed more of the delicious red wine. Before the festivities, we met with some photo students from Lander University. One student, Gene Ellenberg, was wise enough to bring a portfolio and he has a promising project which I hope will appear on his website in the near future.

The local Arts Council hosted the exhibition of South Carolina student photography exhibition. That evening some of the keynote speakers -- Cig Harvey, Ann Jastrab and I -- selected the prize winners for the student show. In this order of the single image award from first to honorable mention, we selected Beth Stewart from University of South Carolina, Zane Logan from Clemson, Emily Osborn from College of Charleston and Ashley Wood from Clemson.  

The next day started out with portfolio reviews from 10am-1pm. Once again, I was impressed with the quality of work at the reviews. Many students and professors presented their work. Three instructors whose work I particularly enjoyed were Terri Bright, Kathleen Robbins and Polly Gaillard. Robbins presented work form her project on the Mississippi Delta titled Into the Flatland and Galliard showed Pressure Points while Bright presented work two projects (I hope to have a website link here soon). The rest of the day was spent shuffling back and forth from the venues, meeting other photographers, hosting impromptu reviews and discussions and grabbing a quick lunch.

The afternoon and evening were spent in the Greenwood Community Theater where a panel discussion moderated by Click 646 founder Jon Holloway and featuring Ann Jastrab, Cig Harvey, Ben Ham and me. The topic of discussion was primarily marketing your work as a photographer. The crowd in attendance was eager for information and the panel was lively and informative. I think a few of the instructors video taped the panel and I hope to post the links soon. The final events of the festival were two lectures, one by Ben Ham and, followed by, Cig Harvey. Both speakers were dynamic and charismatic seducing the audience with their passion for the medium. And thanks to Jan Banning and his assistant Ben for making the trek up from his artist-in-residence in Columbia, SC.

I might sound like I am just gushing about this event, but it took place just outside of my hometown so I am a little attached to this area. The City of Greenwood's Tourism Department, Click 646 Committee and Jon Holloway have created a festival that is on par with many international festivals that I have attended. This is a much needed event for the community of Greenwood and the photographic arts and education community of South Carolina. As I think of or find out about happenings, links or images related to the event, I might post more. Also, look out for the links and notes from the panel discussion in the near future.

For more info in the festival, read the PDF of Thump Magazine or on the Click646 website.

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