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BCA News: Summer 2016

John FordFinding Time to Stay Connected

by John Ford

"Little did I know this would become a place where my photography would play a big role."

Retirement has been an interesting development and comes with a lot of expectations and exploration. One of those explorations brought me to the Yellow Springs Senior Center in Ohio. Little did I know this would become a place where my photography would play a big role.

Early in 2015 when I was at the Center I was approached by one of the other seniors, a lady. She asked me what I thought about having an art gallery at the Center. I had brought it up with the Chair of Activities about three years prior to this and the Chair told me she would look into it. Well it was decided to move forward and we got a committee together consisting of six artistic women and myself. We didn't get much done for the first month or so due to much arguing about redecorating and paint colors, etc. Plus we had no funds available to redecorate. I said the art would be the decorations. Got a good chuckle out of that one.

Finally, the Center Director and the first lady who talked to me about a gallery got together and between us we established firm dates for the first of its kind gallery show. I was asked how soon I could put a show together and I told them I could hang a respectable show that afternoon. I wasn't expected to do it that quick, but they wanted me to have the first show. I was given cart blanch to do whatever I wanted to cover the walls of the Fireplace Room at the Yellow Springs Senior Center!

Benzoic acid spiral © John FordTwo weeks later I was hanging twenty-eight of my photomicrographs. Some are framed as 16x20 and some are 11x14. The opening night in early April 2015 was a roaring success when 240 people in attendance for the opening. I was overwhelmed with questions from many of the visitors. The show lasted six weeks and I sold nine prints.

My show was followed by a show of very nicely done weavings. An art quilt maker who also had a very successful sale followed. We finished out the year with a holiday show. For this show any artist who was a member of the Senior Center could enter a piece of their art. We had two sculptors, about 15 painters, four photographers and a doll maker. To start off in 2016 we had a painter's show followed by another painter's work. I hope to have another photography showing this spring.

Vitamin C © John FordAs a result of my photomicrographs show it was suggested that we start a camera club at the Senior Center. We now have a camera club and held our second meeting in January. Four people braved the cold weather and came out to talk about photography. I took in a few props and a couple of backgrounds and we did some tabletop photography. One of the fellows got rather animated about wanting to do nature photography. I finally suggested he go out and try photographing snowflakes. He told me that was ridicules because snowflakes can't be photographed. Well, I smiled, I happened to have a couple of Michael Peres' great snowflake photos to show him. I had brought them along hoping to get a discussion going about snow photos and we'll see how that goes. Next month I am going to demonstrate how to create a portrait setting. Come spring it may be warm enough to go on a photographic field trip.

All in all, with a little extra time on my hands I'm productive and connected with a community of artists. I have my photographic history and friends at BCA to call upon, and that allows me plenty of photography techniques and tips to share.


Editor's Note

Sadly we learned the news that Emeritus Member John Ford, RBP, FBPA passed away on May 24, 2016. John studied photography at Wayne University in Detroit. He was first exposed to medical photography while serving in the Army during the Korean Conflict and he retired from the Miami Valley Hospital where he worked for 40 years as Chief Medical Photographer.

Since retiring John devoted his photographic skills to nature photography and photomicrography. He was a Registered Biological Photographer and a Fellow in the Biological Photographic Association. He has had several exhibits of his photomicrographs across Ohio. John was active in the BCA, serving on the Board of Registry and most recently he served as Chair of the Emeritus Committee.

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