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West Plains Photography Club Exhibit 2024

West Plains Photography Club

Exhibit May 24 – July 6, 2024

West Plains Council on the Arts (WPCA) will host an exhibition of works by members of the West Plains Photography Club in the Gallery at the Center, West Plains Civic Center from May 20 through July 6, 2024. The Gallery, on the mezzanine, is open to the public during regular Civic Center hours.  The exhibit will feature pieces to complement the Agricultural theme of this year’s Old-Time Music, Ozark Heritage Festival.

The West Plains Photography Club, which was unable to meet for three years because of the Covid pandemic, has enjoyed a rebirth beginning in January of last year. The club currently has meetings at 6:30 p.m. the second Monday of each month in the Missouri State University-West Plains Creative Discovery Center, 411 West Main Street, Suite 1. Everyone regardless of age or ability is invited to join the club which has no membership dues.

The purpose of the club is to share and support everyone’s passion for photography arts whether they are a beginner or have been engaged in photography for many years. Present members include some who do not even own a camera to professionals who make a living by selling their art. For more information on the club feel free to call Bob Cunningham at 417-257-8206 or Dennis Crider at 417-274-7101.

A virtual slide show is available to review here.

Featured members in the exhibit include:

Jason Adolphson

“I have been a photographer for twenty years. My goal from the beginning has been to show others the wonderful creation that God has gifted us with. As I travel, I can’t help but think about how many people never even stop to see what’s around them in their daily travels. I want to share with others all that I see. God gave us beauty for everyday of our lives, so I feel why only stare at asphalt.

I started my business to share with the world. My goal is some day to have taken photographs in all 50 states. Every state holds some secret treasure. Our country has some of the most diverse landscapes in the world, and few of us ever get to experience them all. Through my photographs I hope to share a piece of each of my experiences with others.”

Bob Anderson

Robert Anderson grew up in West Plains Missouri. He graduated from West Plains High School and earned degrees in Forestry, Forest Pathology, and Public Administration from the University of Missouri and Century University. He served in the US Air Force and worked for the Missouri Department of Conservation (3 years) and the US Forest service as a Forest Pathologist (Tree Doctor) living in Nevada, Virginia, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio, North Carolina, and Georgia.

He traveled extensively in the US and other countries as a Forest Pathologist working on sick trees. As part of his work, he documented the sick trees and organisms causing diseases using photography. While on location he photographed the culture and landscape. Retiring in West Plains 24 years ago, he has traveled extensively in the Ozarks taking pictures of the landscapes, buildings, people, animals, and whatever presented itself for a picture. He has also used his photography skills in Tennessee and Colorado where his kids reside.

Cindy Blanck

I’m a semi-retired math teacher and nature enthusiast. I purchased my first camera when I was ten years old but wasn’t serious about photography until my children came along. The desire to document my children growing up was the inspiration to learn more about the technical side of photography. Eventually, I took my skills outdoors to capture the world around me. During the pandemic, I purchased a few bird feeders and turned my attention to birding in order to occupy my days. The intriguing world of bird photography has captivated my heart, so that is where you can find me if I’m not teaching or on a hiking trail making memories with my family.

Marc Brannan

Marc Brannan grew up on the family farm near Willow Springs, MO., and currently lives and works in West Plains, MO. He started playing with cameras and taking pictures at a very young age. He loved playing in the old barn and enjoyed being outdoors as much as possible surrounded by nature. His parents nurtured his desire to travel and see new places. His dad encouraged him to learn and enjoy history, especially the history of his family and where they came from.

 “I have always enjoyed the stories of my mom attending one-room schools when she was a kid, and I think that is a big reason I seek them out to photograph today. There are less of them around every year, as a lot of them slowly fall into disrepair and collapse unless they have been cared for or restored over the years. I love incorporating them into my landscape photography as much as I can, especially as a way of preserving their history. I have started to reach out with my photography and have started trying to capture more shots in other areas, as well as different states, both in nature and landscape scenes. Lately I have focused more on reaching out to new parts of Missouri, and trying to show the viewer that there is so much more around us than we are used to seeing locally.

The pictures that I have selected for this exhibition show a little bit of our area’s historical and current way of farming life, displaying settings that our area is known for. “Whether historic or current, they are images that we might otherwise only see if you were to travel there and see for yourself.”

Dennis Crider

Dennis Crider has always had a camera in his hand, and as a child in Wichita, Kansas he just had to capture the moments on film. He was newspaper and yearbook photographer in both high school and college and spent high school summers working at a film processing firm in Wichita. Toward the end of his college days, he owned and operated a portrait studio in Edmond, Oklahoma, then Uncle Sam came knocking and he gladly terminated that career.

After moving to West Plains, he became a general assignment reporter/photographer at The Daily Quill Newspaper and spent his last years as sports editor. That career spanned 39 years from 1969 to 2008.

During his tenure at The Quill, he captured thousands of moments through the lens of a camera, both good and bad. The highlight of that career occurred 15 years after his retirement. On Oct. 19, 2023, he was the 77th person to be inducted into the Missouri Press Association Photojournalism Hall of Fame. He was nominated by former Quill Publisher and Editor Frank L. Martin III, who is a member of the Missouri Newspaper Hall of Fame.

Crider is quite busy these days photographing things that don’t talk back and sells his nature/wildlife images at art shows in Kansas, Arkansas, and Missouri. Included in this exhibit are three canvas wrap photos that adhere to the agriculture theme of the festival. “The Target” is an Old West windmill that was at the receiving end of several shotgun blasts. “Missouri Wild Horses” shows three running through a field near Round Spring north of Eminence. “Eclipse 2024” was taken during the totality of the recent solar eclipse.

Bob Cunningham

Cunningham is a life-long Missourian who has lived primarily in the Ozarks. He developed an interest in photography after completing a photo-journalism class at the University of Missouri–Columbia in the early 1970s. Cunningham graduated from the University of Missouri in 1976 with a B.S. in Forest Management, and has resided in West Plains, Missouri since 1988.

Cunningham retired in 2010 after 34 years of service with the Missouri Department of Conservation working as a professional forester, and since that time has owned and operated a forest and wildlife management consulting business, plus freelance outdoor photography. His photographic works have appeared in books, videos, and other publications. His wildlife, nature, and landscape images have been captured from the South Pacific, Central America, Caribbean countries, and throughout all North America.

Artist Statement – “My photography goal is to create artistic images worthy of a lengthy view. Otherwise, the picture is merely a snapshot.”

Bob Greenlee

I am a mostly retired freelance photographer. My experience includes weddings, photojournalism, travel, nature, and portrait photography. I was the photography instructor at Hannibal LaGrange University for several years. I have also worked for several publications. A good day’s photography is when I get to capture the beauty of the world God created.

Janice Gunter-Moss

I took up photography just as a hobby when I was very young. I got my first camera by selling garden seeds and took a camera as my prize. Later I discovered taking pictures was a great stress reliever – just going out and concentrating on the beauty around me and trying to capture it with my camera.

I love old barns so try to get pictures of them so that maybe when they are gone at least a bit will remain.

Vicki Hogan

I am an amateur photographer that enjoys taking pictures of my family, nature and animals. I recently joined the local photography club in West Plains to broaden my understanding of photography.

In my early years I lived on a large farm in the Ozarks with my parents and older sister. My parents moved from Iowa to escape the cold winters and try their hand at farming in the Ozarks, milking cows and raising hogs, and chickens. I passed my time by playing in the barn with the kittens, sat astride the cows as they were milked and watching the baby pigs.

A few years passed. My parents decided it was more difficult to make a living on a farm in the Ozarks as opposed to the rich black soil in Iowa. As a result, they sold the farm and moved to West Plains. But I still have good memories of those times on their farm and acquired a love of animals and nature. After moving to West Plains, my parents nurtured my love for the outdoors by often taking me to nearby rivers and lakes on the weekends to camp and fish.

For 40 years my late husband and I had a small farm that lay between West Plains and Willow Springs, where we raised our three children, hay and Charolais cattle, as well as working full time at other professions.  When we retired, we were able to enjoy many camping trips to the local rivers and lakes and take several overdue trips to the Smokey and Rocky Mountains where I fed my love of nature through the eyes of a camera.

Ralph Moore

Ralph Moore is retired from Viola Public School, where he was a teacher and counselor for many years. After retirement he became interested in photography. Today, he travels far and wide searching for interesting subjects in perfect light. His favorite subjects are landscapes, animals, travel, night photography, birds, flowers, micro, and sunrise/sunsets. Really just about anything except people!

Krista Pendergrass   

Krista grew up amidst the corn and soybeans of southwest Minnesota.  Since leaving the upper Midwest after college, she has spent most of her time in rural north central Texas and here in West Plains.  She loves her family dearly which includes her husband, David, and her four sons, whom she homeschools.  Her free time (if there is any!) is spent exploring the Ozarks, gardening, reading, spending time with friends and church family, and capturing pictures of all those things.

Krista has always enjoyed photographing botanical items of interest in her garden and in her explorations.  In the last ten years, her real passion has been to capture everyday moments of her family and friends that tell a story.  That motivated her to purchase a good camera several years ago and learn as much as she could on her own and with the help of others in the photography community here in West Plains.      

Tammy Schulz

Tammy (Gunter) Schulz was raised in West Plains, Missouri and is a West Plains High School Graduate. Tammy currently resides in Mountain View, MO with her husband Ricky. She has a degree in Advertising Design and her ability to compose an image stems from that design training. She’s had a camera in her hand since she was 10 years old and sold seeds to her neighbors and relatives to earn her first camera. She didn’t delve into 35 mm photography until 1999 when she wanted better photographs of her daughter’s dance performances. For years her favorite photography subject was her daughter, especially when she was dancing.

She ventured into digital photography with her first dslr in the early 2000’s with a Sony a100. She currently shoots with her fourth Sony and recently upgraded to the full frame Sony a7 III Mirrorless Camera.

Tammy’s photography was first published in an issue of Country Lifestyle magazine in 2008. Her photo was a Christmas lights photo taken during a Christmas festival in San Marcos, Texas. Tammy has no formal training in photography and continues to learn and practice to perfect her craft. She learns from other photographers, researching online, and practicing what she’s learned. She loves to capture old churches, mills, and schools and prefers candid shots of people over formal poses. She particularly loves to capture scenes she later turns into paintings.

“Art is feeling more than seeing” Tammy Schulz

Regina Stone

From taking pictures as a young girl to shooting professionally since 2008, Gina Stone has made photography a job that she truly loves. She enjoys making beautiful memories for family and friends, but especially photographing life’s special moments such as newborn/children’s photos, senior pictures, weddings, or even your best furry friend. In her spare time, she shoots the occasional wildflower, countryside, old barn, or really all the above. Gina Stone Photography is located on west 8th street here in West Plains.

WPCA will host a Meet the Artists event on Saturday, Junel 22, from 2-4 p.m., in the Gallery at the Center. All are invited to attend, meet the artists, and discuss the pieces.  The exhibit is co-sponsored by the West Plains Civic Center and West Plains Council on the Arts, with partial funding provided by Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.