BIOCOMM 2023 was held at the Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe, New Mexico, one of the most popular destinations in North America. The annual BIOCOMM conference provided a fabulous opportunity to meet old and new colleagues, network, discuss technical issues and establish new connections.
This international conference included two keynote speakers, specialized presentation sessions and workshops. Thanks to all who prepared, presented and attended and we look forward to our next educational gathering.
BIOCOMM 2023 was an exciting and dynamic conference with a program full of educational workshops and presentations. Have a peek at the full program to get a taste of what was explored.
At this meeting, we decided to break things up a bit. The program was not presented in a linear manner. The presentations and workshops were intermingled. This proved to be a good method, giving participants greater diversity and interaction.
BIOCOMM 2023 was made up of presenters from various parts of the globe. Topics were diverse and wide ranging from forensics through bioluminescence to animation, just to mention a few. We kick started the meeting with Chip Hedgcock FBCA, BIOCOMM grant recipient with his documentary work on elusive lizard species in the Sonoran desert.
Awardees from BioImages 2022 were presented with their certificates and an image show of the full exhibition was shown. It was enjoyable to have the awards in person again after doing them online during the Covid pandemic. It gave the participants an opportunity to congratulate the awardees in person.
Maria Ikenberg Lindberg Keynote Address
Auto Immune Response, Critical Indigenous Photographic Exchange, Connecting the Dots
Will Wilson, Diné Photographer
Diné photographer Will Wilson talked about his work which offers a counter narrative to romanticized visions of Native people that fix them in an unchanging past. With his lens-based artistry, Wilson challenges the traditional portrayal of the indigenous North American image and reclaims it for modern generations. Wilson's art projects center around the continuation and transformation of customary indigenous cultural practice.
One advantage to an in-person conference is the opportunity to attend hands-on workshops. We had a variety of workshops included in the registration. We travelled back in time to make a tintype in a workshop conducted by Will Wilson, our Maria Ikenberg Lindberg keynote speaker. Then jumped back to the present to learn with Adam Copper the nuts and bolts of how to create a short YouTube video, from the initial storyboard, filming, editing and posting online. We also got in touch with our creative side with facilitators Jim Wetzel PhD, FBCA (BIOCOMM grant recipient) and Danielle Edwards FBCA (EFFE grant recipient) to share individual interpretations of images taken with a theme in the local area.
The annual BCA business meeting was conducted in person and additionally featured a zoom link up to members who could not be there.
We concluded the academic program with the Anne Shiras Pioneer Lecture, Stalked by Technology – The Challenges of Forensic Image Interpretation. Gale Spring, FBPA talked about the impact and challenges of technology he has witnessed for over 40 years, on the interpretation of images. At BIOCOMM 2023, he took us on a journey through time to look at how the photography landscape has changed up to present day AI.
The final part of the meeting was the banquet and awards ceremony. Danielle Edwards FBCA was awarded the prestigious and highest honor on BCA, the 2020 Louis Schmidt award. It was three years in the waiting due to the COVID pandemic. Julie Murray was awarded fellowship in BCA and Charlene Baron, FBCA and Jim Fosse, FBCA were made Emeritus members of the organization. James Hayden, RBP, FBCA and Susanne Loomis, RBP, FBCA, were awarded the Ralph Creer Service award. Congratulations to all the awardees for their outstanding contributions and service to industry and BCA.
At the final close of the meeting, the outgoing president Adam Cooper, RBP, FBCA passed on the gavel to James Hayden, the incoming new president of BCA.
Directly following BIOCOMM 2023 there was a post-conference workshop on May 19. We were able to continue the networking with colleagues in a more relaxed and informal atmosphere, while still reaping the educational benefits of photography in the field.