Art Walk and Other Happenings (aka- Inspiration in a Slice of Cheese)

Yesterday was the First Friday Art Walk. Several of you stopped by our display at the museum. If you were among those who stopped by, you most likely noticed our small table of tasty snacks. Cheese and crackers, pepperoni, cookies, cheese and crackers, little Halloween styled cupcakes with sprinkles on top. Did I mention the cheese and crackers? Apparently this is a common theme with art exhibits, as several of the other locations doing the Art Walk also had cheese and crackers. I know. I checked.

At nearly all of the exhibits, I noticed a startling trend. Almost invariably, the white cheese was getting eaten faster than the orange cheese. I found myself cheering on the orange cheese, even though I prefer the white cheese. Believe it or not, there is a point to be made here. To know what that point is though, you’re going to have to stick around for a bit as I talk about photography/club topics first. Don’t worry though. I promise to come back to the topic of cheese inequality soon enough.

Each of us joined the club for our own reasons. Some want to be around others who share their love of photography. Some want to practice, get feedback, or even just learn how to use their camera.Others want to mentor and share their knowledge. Some want to see how they compare to others and hopefully win some ribbons. Some want to make possible business connections and try to break into the photography market at some level. Our club has a great variety of skill levels and interests. Everyone brings something different to the table. The opportunities are there, whatever you are seeking, especially with the numbers at our meetings doing so well.

Here are the “snacks” currently on our table:

  1. Having your prints hung in a museum is cool. If you don’t have anything up currently, remember that there will be other opportunities to do so.
  2. Positive people who motivate each other to look forward instead of back… Numbers were low at the Art Walk (not just at the museum, but other locations as well), but people are already discussing how to increase awareness of the exhibit so next time will be a  more impressive turn out. Also, people will continue to trickle in over the rest of the month. Small crowds or not, I know a lot more people see my work hanging in the museum, rather than if I simply stored them in my closet.
  3. The chance to be in Berkshire Magazine. A good foot-in-the-door opportunity with the editor of a magazine, but also a good way to get some name recognition.
  4. NECCC Fall Competition. A chance to represent yourself and your club. Submit your images to Bruce by the 10th (this Tuesday).
  5. Though the deadline of our competition made it impractical to do so in the available time frame, Jennifer Vrabel of the Literacy Network has told me, “I am definitely interested in partnering with the club to cover tutors and students in the future, if anyone would be interested.” This could be an opportunity to volunteer, get name recognition, find someone to setup a portrait with, etc… If anyone is interested, contact her.
  6. Many of us collect photography books that we read, close, and never touch again. I’m getting rid of 10 or so of mine. They’re free to anyone who can make use of them. I’ll have them in my car at the next meeting.
  7. Attendance at meetings is good enough to require us to pull out more chairs. More people means more possibilities. Nothing official here, but we should brainstorm some photo outings before the weather turns to snot and see if people are interested. Hmmm… Actually, if you know you’re interested in something like this, e-mail me at and we can brainstorm together.

Well, as promised, it all comes back to the cheese. The orange cheese… As you probably guessed, the white cheese won the Great Cheese Race of 2017. Orange cheese isn’t even real cheese. Everyone knows it. Orange cheese knows it can’t win against white cheese. It’s just not possible. But it tries anyway. Orange cheese -vs- white cheese, mere inches from each other, ready for the challenge. And you know what? The orange cheese put in a stronger showing than expected. And…

Some online research has brought me two stunning revelations. First, orange cheese really is cheese. Sometimes it is dyed, but usually it gets its deeper coloring from either a higher level of beta-carotene or the tasteless annatto seed. Second, cheese preference is somewhat dependent on where you live. Apparently, people living near the coast prefer white cheese, whereas people in the mid-west prefer orange!

The Cheesy Conclusion: Orange cheese is real cheese and it can outperform white cheese when placed in the proper market. But it never would have found its market if it hadn’t put itself out there in the first place or if it worried too much about what other cheeses thought. So when you’re wondering whether to put yourself out there, whether in the museum displays, or the NECCC competition, or any other photo challenges that come your way… Be orange and be cheesy.

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