PHOTO SHOW: Sarnia through the looking glass

Christine Roenspiess captured this image of the Wawanosh Wetlands at dawn during a photo shoot with friends last Oct. 10. “We went armed with warm clothes and hot coffee and were rewarded with spectacular sunrise photos,” she says.

One local group is bucking the trend of dwindling interest and volunteer fatigue.

The Sarnia Photographic Club is growing at a rate of 10% a year and today has more than 130 active members.

“It’s one of the largest (photo) clubs in Ontario,” said vice-president Christine Roenspiess, who credits the rise of digital cameras and an aging population.

“Digital photography has made it more accessible to people, made it easier and simpler.”

To mark Sarnia’s 100th anniversary as a city the club is staging a special exhibition and sale at the Lawrence House.

The images chosen include churches and schools, industrial scenes, skylines and nature shots from parks and trails. The common theme linking all of them is the City of Sarnia itself.

“In some respects it was a difficult subject because photographers don’t always think local, they go somewhere else to take pictures,” Roenspiess said.

“It forced our members to either look through their old archives, or go out and shoot new ones.”

Many of the club’s growing group of cameraphiles are 50-plus or retirees, and many of them are women.

Smaller groups often get together for photo outings, Roenspiess said.

“It’s a wonderful social activity, and a great way to share photography tips and techniques.

IF YOU GO:

WHAT: Photo Show: “Sarnia Century Celebration”

WHO: Sarnia Photographic Club

WHEN: April 4 to 25

First Friday reception, April 4, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

WHERE: Lawrence House Centre for the Arts, 127 Christina St. S.

– George Mathewson