Competition: Color, Monochrome, Creative, Nature (Projected Only), Photo Journalism (Prints Only) (7:30 PM PDT)
Judge: Len Cook
Welcoming studio and location assignments since 1973 in the San Francisco Bay Area, Len Cook has 47 years of professional experience (more than a QUARTER-MILLION frames of film exposed and personally developed!) as a photojournalist, chief photographer, and director of photography with a staff of 13 full-time photojournalists. He subsequently turned to commercial photography as a studio owner/operator.
Added to his extensive film-based experience is 10 years of experience supporting computer applications like Adobe Photoshop. Len knows software! He has earned the Adobe Certified Photoshop Instructor credential.
Len is now noted primarily for his willingness to share his experience and knowledge through private mentoring, 7+ years college lecturing as well as 10+ years of City of Fremont community education classes. Before closing his studio recently, Len taught more than 200 sessions for his 2,000-member Meetup group.
Decades ago, presented with work I didn’t understand by a staff photographer I trusted, I learned to observe rather than judge, to learn rather than decide, to open my mind to discomfort rather than leave it smugly closed. In looking at work offered in competitions I bring that same approach. With it I also understand that participants expect feedback. I offer my personal view, the view through my eyes of the work: “Here’s what I see.” I find its strengths to praise. In many cases I see opportunities for improvement, and offer a bit of coaching. Finally, I am almost always silently ambivalent about the results hierarchy I must provide. I see much good work.