A reception will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, July 11 at the Second Story Gallery, on the second floor of the Camas Public Library, 625 N.E. Fourth Ave. It is also open to the public during regular library hours, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.
To learn more:
The Camas Camera Club meets the third Wednesday of every month at the Camas Public Library. New members are welcome and are asked to contact Kirsten Muskat at (503) 880-8775 prior to the meeting. Social time begins at 5:30 p.m., with the meeting from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
When Kirsten Muskat formed the Camas Camera Club, she had no idea if it would even last.
Three years later, the club has 20 members and is preparing for a group exhibit at the Camas Public Library’s Second Story Gallery.
“It’s a great group of people, a place where you can pick up new skills and there is a lot of help,” Muskat said. “It’s a really nice way to learn from other people and there is a good social aspect as well.”
Muskat started the Camas Camera Club at the request of her male friends, who wanted to participate in the photography workshops that she offered to women. After they jokingly threatened to dress in drag in order to attend, Muskat decided to form a club that included everyone, at any level of photography.
“There is so much laughter and fun that we have,” she said. “It is just a joy.”
Last summer, the club had its first ever group exhibit at the Second Story Gallery. It was such a success that they signed up for another slot this July, with the theme, “New Works.”
“We really struggled to come up with a theme this year,” Muskat said. “We must have changed it five times.”
Due to the wide spectrum of images club members wanted to share, they decided on a theme that would allow for a diverse viewing experience.
“People have really outdone themselves,” Muskat said. “We have everyone from amateurs to professionals and the work is beautifully framed.
There will be approximately 40 images in the show, which range from sweeping landscapes to picturesque sailboats.
The show, from July 3 through 26, will include photographs from Karen Elliott, Shonda Feather, Rick Hopper, Cheri Jackson, John Lasher, Tom Mallon, Suzanne Michalik, Muskat, Clayton Ravsten, Lora Rollins, Cindy Schroeder, Lois Settlemeyer, Lou Steffey, Tonette Sweet, Les Taylor, Karen Wilson and Tracy Woods.
The photos will be unveiled at a reception from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, July 11, instead of the usual First Friday. The special date and time is due to the July 4 holiday which closes the library the weekend before. Photographers will be on hand to discuss their work at this event, which is free and open to the public.
“It’s been really interesting to see how people have grown with their skills,” Muskat said. “It gives me joy.”
All the artists are writing statements to appear with their work.
“You always want to challenge yourself to learn more and go outside your comfort zone,” Muskat said. “I hope that this show is a stepping stone to greater successes in their photographic journey.”
As a professional photographer, Muskat has had her work featured in several exhibits and enjoys the challenge of working toward a new goal every time.
“Photography is my life,” she said. “To me, it is a spiritual journey. I try to see the world with kind and compassionate eyes. It is more elevated when I am using a camera. I really like to combine my hobby with my beliefs.”
Muskat believes that when people have a good attitude, it translates into the images that they produce. The same goes for a bad attitude.
“Being behind a camera and teaching that, it is my mission work and gets me inspired,” Muskat said.
The Camas Camera Club meets the third Wednesday of every month at the Camas Public Library. Everyone is invited and new participants can attend up to three times for free. After that, it is $20 per year for membership.
“We always welcome new people,” Muskat said.