Northern Image Photographers turn cameras on Saskatchewan architecture for newest exhibit

Members of the Northern Image Photographers were looking for a challenge with their newest exhibit, and they found it right here in Prince Albert.

The group opened their newest photography exhibit at the John V. Hicks Gallery on Sept. 8, with a focus on buildings and architecture. Club president Roman Orynik said that forced the 15 members who contributed to get out of their comfort zone and tackle a new subject.

“Generally our members photograph nature,” Orynik said during an interview at the opening reception. “They photograph landscapes. They photograph mushrooms, trees, sunsets, etc. This actually expands their horizons, and actually challenges them to do something that’s not natural or normal for them.”

While the exhibit subject matter features plenty of rural icons like old barns and grain elevators, club members also found unique and under-appreciated buildings in Prince Albert to cast in a new light.

Orynik said he’s impressed with the variety and quality of the photos club members submitted. He’s hopeful viewers will take away a new appreciation for the art of photography, and the skill it takes to create the perfect shot.

“It may expand their abilities to understand how to take some pictures that might be different than what they normally take, and expand, maybe, their knowledge,” he said. “In some respects, maybe they’ll become interested in joining the club.”

Northern Image Photographers president Roman Orynik chats with guests and club members during the opening reception for “Architecture”, the club’s newest exhibit at the John V. Hicks Gallery. — Jason Kerr/Daily Herald

Club members gather to select a new theme for each show, but ‘architecture’ a familiar one for Orynik. He loves photographing old buildings in Prince Albert. For this exhibit, the goal was to find something new.

“I find it interesting because buildings are just another facet of photography, and you come across some very interesting buildings,” he explained. “In fact, there’s some very interesting buildings here in the city that I photographed and our members have photographed.”

This month’s exhibit marks a return to the art of photography for many club members. Orynik said activity dwindled during the last two years as members dealt with COVID-19, but that’s starting to change as they return to the art they love.

“(For) a number of the members, it was like it was falling off the cliff. They didn’t take a lot of photographs,” Orynik said. “Many of them over the past year have started picking up their camera again and challenging themselves. Part of the club is to get together and expose people to other techniques and skills, and then have them try those skills so they expand their abilities, and it gets them out taking pictures.”

One club member making a return to the photography world is John Alexanderson. He didn’t have an entry in this month’s exhibit, but was on hand to support fellow club members.

“I hope people are inspired to get out, take pictures, and look for creative things to shoot,” Alexanderson said. “Don’t just stand there on the street side and shoot something. Look for the different aspects of it, and enjoy the architecture that is out there, because we have a lot of it that is nice to see.”

The Northern Image Photographers exhibit runs until Sept. 23 at the John V. Hicks Gallery.

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