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Monday, September 17, 2012

Speaking Light Presents: John Holmngren

Join us for the School of Communication's artist lecture series Speaking Light on Friday the 28th in the JVH Auditorium in Thayer Hall. We are starting the year with photographer John Holmgren, whose personal and layered work explores connections to and experiences of place, landscape, environment, time and memory. 

"Growing up in the Pacific Northwest and having a father who was an educator, we traveled a lot during the summer, mostly in North America. These travels instilled in me a wanderlust, which draws me to explore the landscape from a visual and research point of view. Travel also helped create my interest in our connections to and interactions with the environment that sustains us. Photography allows me to record and collect the visual images needed for my work."

Originally from Lakewood, Washington, John Holmgren received his Bachelor of Arts from Central Washington University in 2004, and in 2007 received his Master of Fine Arts in Photography from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In 2010 he accepted a position at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He has exhibited his work nationally and internationally and has been awarded many grants and awards. Holmgren has taught a variety of photography, mixed media and printmaking courses at numerous institutions, including the University of Minnesota, College of Visual Arts, University of Oregon, Prescott College and Wright State University. He is also an active member of the Society for Photographic Education and the College Art Association.

To see more of his projects, check out his website

The lecture will begin at 6PM on Friday September 28 in the JVH Auditorium located on the 2nd Floor of Thayer Hall (201 Wood Street) on Point Park’s Campus.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Stephen Chalmers: Unmarked, Speaking Light Lecture Series

The Speaking Light Lecture Series continues with photographer Stephen Chalmers. Stephen will be presenting his project “Unmarked”, which documents the locations where the victims of serial killers were found. These locations were precisely located using Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, police records and newspaper articles.

“Stephen Chalmers’ photographs of sites where serial killers dumped their victims on the West Coast of America are haunted with the final experiences of the victims that were brutally disposed of. They also tap into our society’s fascination with what murder looks like. Obscured by the passage of time and often invoking the natural beauty surrounding them—wilderness areas being ideal dumping places—Chalmers’ pictures challenge photography’s ability to expose the spectral history of a location and the knowledge of its viewers.” (Natasha Egan, Associate Director, Museum of Contemporary Photography. Chicago)

The lecture will begin at 6PM on Friday March 30 in the JVH Auditorium located on the 2nd Floor of Thayer Hall (201 Wood Street) on Point Park’s Campus.

More about Stephen:

Stephen Chalmers has worked as a Lead Treatment Counselor to Severely Emotionally Disturbed children, worked as an Emergency Medical Technician, and taught gang children photography – informing his projects which deal with issues of loss. Chalmers has taught many workshops in alternative photographic processes and digital imaging, and been a visiting artist at numerous colleges and universities. He has also been a contributor to five books, and has been in group and solo exhibitions throughout the US and also in Australia, Ireland, British Columbia, Thailand, England, South Africa, and China. Stephen Chalmers earned his MFA in Cinema and Photography from Southern Illinois University, was the NW Regional Chair for the Society for Photographic Education for two terms, was professor of Photography and Digital Media in the state of Washington for eight years and is currently a professor of Photography at Youngstown State University in Ohio. The work of Stephen Chalmers is in several collections including the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Light Work, Polaroid, and the Getty Research Institute. Since the start of March of 2012, his work was featured on the Picture Show on National Public Radio (NPR), the Huffington Post, the Daily Mail (UK) and other venues.

Selections from his projects and more biographical information can be viewed at:

Thursday, March 8, 2012

SPE Scholarship Winners Jamie Russel and Marie Mashyna

The SPE MA Board is happy to announce the 2012 National Scholarship winners for the National Conference in San Francisco, California.

Along with awarding the Adjunct Faculty, Graduate Student and Undergraduate Student Scholarships, we are extremely honored to recognize our friend Patrick Millard.

The Patrick Millard Scholarship has been awarded to two students from Point Park University. Patrick Millard served the SPE MA region as the Webmaster for 2011 and was active in SPE for a number of years. To celebrate his life and contributions to SPE, one scholarship was awarded by the SPE MA region and a matching second scholarship was generously donated by Point Park University.

We would like to thank Dr. Heather Starr Fielder of Point Park University for her help with the Patrick Millard Scholarship.

Additionally, we would like to thank SPE National for recognizing the contributions of Patrick Millard by donating a National Conference Registration to each Millard scholarship winner.

Enjoy San Francisco!


Sonya A. Lawyer
SPE MA Secretary

Marie Mashyna:

Marie Mashnya is working towards her BFA in Photography at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Marrow is a rendering of something that is difficult to articulate. It is about those quick moments in life that are not always shared or acknowledged, the interior transitional moments between action and reaction. They are bursts of significant emotion that do not appear externally, but occur silently within. They are defining moments that last perhaps a quarter of a second but linger while we exhale and sometimes long after that.
-Marie Mashnya

The scholarship committee found her imagery particularly compelling and awarded her a Patrick Millard Scholarship for her work "Marrow".

Jamie Russel:

Jamie Russell is working towards a BFA in Photography at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

This project was an experiment with letting go. After I began working with it, I began to embrace the uncertainty of the pinhole. I eventually let go of any control I had over the image making process and simply opened the shutter. While making the abstract images I finally accepted that I didn't have control.

- Jamie Russell

She was challenged by Patrick Millard to create and use a pinhole camera. The resulting body of work, "Letting Go", was selected for the scholarship award.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Nature Photography: midsemester reviews

The midsemester review posts from Chris Rolinson's Specialized Photography: nature class. Throughout all of their field trips, the students are building upon a cohesive idea.

Aldona Bird
 Allison Wynands

Amy Crawford 

 Camelia Montoy

 Evan Skowvron

 Heather Spirik

 Joseph Smith

Karen Bullock 

Laura Quinn
Lean Irwin

Lyddia Akrom

Madeline McKain

 Mary Reid

Matt Brudnok

Rebecca Lessner

Specialized Photography class featured on Point Park website

Professor Chris Rolinson's specialized photography class, which focuses each semester on a different topic area, has been featured on Point Park's website! This semester the class concentration is nature photography. Check it out!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Speaking Light Continues! "New 21st Century Photography"

Point Park University's School of Communication will be contenting its Speaking Light lecture series this Friday with an artist talk by Pittsburgh photographer Tom Persinger. Tom Persinger is an artist, photographer, writer, and the founder of F295. F295 is an international organization that believes in the value of a heterogeneous photographic approach, in which contemporary, historic, and self-made methods are employed and combined in the creation of a new "21st Century Photography."

He organizes the F295 symposium and seminar series to promote the exploration 21st Century Photography. These events offer a unique chance to investigate the ideas of light, time, and the apparatus through the voices of practicing photographers. The symposium also offers exhibitions and workshops by masters in their field.

Persinger's photographs have been shown in numerous exhibitions and are in many private collections in the United States, Europe, and Japan. He has been published in Photographic Possibilities (3rd Edition), Light and Lens (2nd edition), Afterimage, Ag, Black and White Photography (UK), OneLife, PhotoEd, Photo Techniques, and View Camera. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed of F295 Historic Process Quick Reference Card series, the F295 Historic Process Workbook, and the F295 Historic Process Syllabus.

He has lectured at numerous colleges and universities, has lead many workshops, is a member of Freestyle Photographic's Advisory Board of Photographic Professionals, and is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Pittsburgh Filmmakers.

In addition to several photographic projects he is also currently working on a book which will further illuminate the 21st Century Photographic approach. He lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with his wife and two sons.

The talk will begin at 6 in the JVH auditorium, located on the 2nd floor of Academic Hall located on 3rd and Wood Street. This event is free and open to the public. For more information please contact Stephen Grebinski,

Friday, January 27, 2012

Speaking Light: In Memorial

When I went to the SPE Regional Conference in November, he stressed that we should live blog events. He said we should blog in the moment, at events, to show others what's going on as its really happening. I started live-blogging at that conference for this blog. So Patrick would want me live-blogging this event: his memorial at Point Park.  
The first thing Patrick did when he got to Point Park was instill a photographic lecture series. We all went because it was extra credit, but what we didn't know was that Speaking Light was the start of his legacy. There were always so few people here for them. Tonight, the room is full. There are people standing in the back. We all took off work and rearranged our schedules for this Speaking Light.
Tonight, Patrick is the guest artist. Tonight we celebrate his life, his work, his teaching and his legacy. I think we all feel him here with us tonight.
He may be gone but... he's here. In all of us.

- Camelia Montoy
Junior photojournalism

Monday, December 19, 2011

Studio Photography Final Projects

Below are the Final Projects from JOUR 316 Studio Photography. There is great work here. The experimentation and creativity used in lighting the images are outstanding, creative light coupled with a concept and storytelling.

Chris Fuhr

Carl Bloss

Jaime Russell

Joey Smith

Max C. Lee

February - Valentines Day
Sean McKeag

Cassandra Harper

Justin Rotundo

Friday, December 9, 2011

New Scanner introduced to the Digital Imaging Suite

Epson Perfection V750-M Pro scanner - with Digital ICE Technologies

Call for Entry | Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force


Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force is gearing up for its 26th Annual Benefit – to take place Wednesday, March 14 at Pittsburgh Public Theater - by inviting local student artists age 18 and older to enter an art contest. The contest’s theme coincides with this year’s organization theme, “Open Your Eyes.”

PATF will accept art submissions Monday, Jan. 9 through Tuesday, Feb. 1. Submissions may be graphic design, painting, mixed media, sculpture, photography, fashion or jewelry design.

There will be six finalists:

First place: $500 (The winner will be announced at PATF’s Annual Benefit. First-place artwork could be featured in the Annual Benefit Program.)

Second place: $250

Third place: $100

Fourth place: $50

Fifth place: $50

Sixth place: $50

The aforementioned top six finalists will have an opportunity to network and present artwork to prominent PATF donors, sponsors and leaders in art at PATF’s Annual Benefit, as well as a VIP reception (date TBD).

The first 50 artists to sign up will receive a $10 gift certificate to a bar/restaurant in Station Square, once artwork is submitted.

For an entry form and official rules, please visit For more information, call 412-345-0569 or email

As the oldest and largest AIDS service organization in Southwestern Pennsylvania, the Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force (PATF) is dedicated to supporting and empowering all individuals living with HIV/AIDS, and to be relentless in preventing the spread of infection. PATF is a leader in providing comprehensive support services that improve the health and quality of life for those living with HIV/AIDS in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Greene, Fayette, Indiana, Washington, and Westmoreland counties.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Student Portfolio | Jamie Russell

Jamie Russell, Untitled, 2011
Inkjet Print
Studio Photography

Jamie Russell, Untitled, 2011
Inkjet Print
Studio Photography

Jamie Russell, Untitled, 2011
Inkjet Print
Studio Photography

Jamie Russell, Untitled, 2011
Inkjet Print
Studio Photography

Jamie Russell, Untitled, 2011
Inkjet Print
Studio Photography

Monday, December 5, 2011

Mid-Year Thesis Review

We had a great turn out last Friday evening for the Mid-Year Photography Thesis Review (over 50 people came in throughout the two-hour event) that led to a fantastic discussion about the work the 2011-12 thesis students are making.

This event was the first public showing of the work, and will be followed by the more formal presentations this spring as artist talk(s) in JVH Auditorium where the students will present their final products and the official exhibition and reception to be held for their accomplishments!

Thank you to those who made it out for the review - and for those who missed it this time around we all hope to see you this Spring when the portfolios are finalized.

Call for Entry: Visual AIDS

Postcards from the Edge
ART DEADLINE: Friday, December 9, 2011


Postmark DEADLINE for ARTWORK is this Friday, December 9, 2011

Artwork can be mailed to or dropped off at:
Visual AIDS
526 West 26th Street, Room
510 (btw 10th & 11th Ave)
New York, NY 10001

Express deliveries or dropped off of artwork will be accepted until Friday, December 16 before 6 PM.
Visual AIDS's office is open Monday - Friday from 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM. After office hours, an envelope may be slid under the door.

NO ARTWORK will be accepted after the drop off deadline.

Please DO NOT drop off or mail artwork to Cheim & Read.

Click HERE for details and submission forms.

**Please note: We are still processing submissions, and apologize for any delay in returning confirmation requests. We appreciate your patience and understanding.

The 14th Annual Postcards from the Edge
A benefit for Visual AIDS
January 6-8, 2012
Hosted by Cheim & Read

PREVIEW PARTY: Friday, January 6, 2012 from 6:00 - 8:00 PM
The only opportunity to see the entire exhibition. No sales.

$85 admission. Participating artists may attend free.

BENEFIT SALE: $85 each.
Saturday, January 7, 2012 from 10:00 - 6:00 (*Buy four and get a bonus fifth)
Sunday, January 8, 2012 from 12:00 - 4:00 (*Buy two and get a bonus third)
Over 1500 anonymous displayed postcard-size masterpieces.

Postcards from the Edge is a Visual AIDS benefit show and sale of original, postcard-sized artworks by established and emerging artists. All artwork is exhibited anonymously. While buyers receive a list of all participating artists, they don't know who created which piece until after purchase. With the playing field leveled, all participants can take home a piece by a famous artist, or someone who is just making their debut. Nonetheless, collectors walk away with a piece of art they love, knowing that the money raised will support HIV prevention and AIDS awareness. Click here for more info.

Questions? Visit our FAQ page here or email

Friday, December 2, 2011

Call For Entries | SPE Member Show at RayKo Gallery


Call for Entries SPE Member Show at RayKo Gallery

The SPE member show at the RayKo Gallery, San Francisco is organized in conjunction with SPE's 2012 national conference, Intimacy and Voyeurism: The Public/Private Divide in Photography.

This competition is open to artists holding current membership in SPE. The exhibition will be on view March 15 - April 6, 2012 and feature a reception for SPE conference attendees on Saturday, March 24. Download prospectus here.


Best in Show: Complimentary 1 year membership in SPE and complimentary conference registration to SPE's 49th national conference in San Francisco.


Todd Hido is a San Francisco Bay Area-based artist whose work has been featured in Artforum, The New York Times Magazine, Eyemazing, Metropolis, The Face, I-D, and Vanity Fair. His photographs are in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, as well as in many other public and private collections. He has over a dozen published books, the latest monograph being A Road Divided, released in 2010.


All work must be created by current SPE members and must be original. Works previously shown at RayKo are not eligible.

Entry Guidelines

Entry Fee (non-refundable): $25/up to 3 images. $5/additional image up to 10 images in total.

  • All entries must be jpegs (8" longest side at 72dpi | RGB color space)
  • Save files with artist's last name, first name and title of image
  • Example: Smith_Jane_Pigeons01.jpg
  • Any work deemed misrepresented by its jpeg will be declined

Deadline for Submissions January 16, 2012

Online Submission

Go to for login, payment, and submission information.


Notification of juried results will be communicated by January 23, 2012

Submission of Accepted Work

Accepted artists will be invited to send or deliver actual work. All work must be framed or mounted with a wire affixed and ready to hang, no saw tooth hangers accepted. Entries are handled with great care; however, RayKo and SPE assume no liability for work on the premises. All selected works must be for sale. RayKo retains 40% commission on all photographs sold. Selected images may be used for promotion of the exhibition.

spe portfolio reviews
Image: Michael McLeod, SPNDXBOI (Silver), 2010.

Intimacy and Voyeurism:

The Public / Private Divide in Photography

Keynote Speaker: Sally Mann

Featured Speakers: Sharon Olds and Trevor Paglen

Preview the conference schedule

Register online

Join over 1,000 artists, educators and photographic professionals for programming and dialogue that will fuel your creativity--presentations, industry seminars and critiques to stimulate and engage you!

Explore our exhibits fair featuring over 70 exhibitors showing the latest equipment, processes, publications and schools with photo-related programs.

Participate in one-on-one portfolio critiques and informal portfolio sharing and take advantage of student volunteer opportunities for reduced admission.

Other conference highlights include a print raffle, silent auction, film screenings, exhibitions, tours, receptions, a dance party and more!

Review of Filippo Tagliati's Speaking Light

Filippo Tagliati, Las Vegas, NV

Point Park faculty and students welcomed photographer Filippo Tagliati to showcase his “series of stills moving” in beautiful synchronization for the final Speaking Light this semester.

Tagliati spoke about his personal history with photography while showcasing his most recent works in the JVH auditorium on Friday, Nov. 18.

Originally from Bologna, Italy, Tagliati has had a camera by his side since he was 13 years old. He said that it felt like the camera was his “natural friend.”

This natural friend stayed with him as he went on to get his BFA in Semiotics and Art History at Università di Bologna, and later his MFA at Arizona State University, when he moved to the United States.

For much of his early work, he was interested in creating panoramic images that represented the vastness of his subject matter, which was mostly architecture found throughout Italy and even some parts of the U.S.

As he explored the United States more, however, he found that he wanted to create more than a panoramic image; he wanted to show even more vastness through the art of montage.

“There’s not a right time to take the pictures;” he said, “there is a series of right times.”

He traveled to Las Vegas, Nev. where he showcased this technique of montaging with the city as his subject. One of his montages, Las Vegas, NV (as seen above), is of the city skyline, where he placed together both day and night shots of the city, and it was one of my favorite pieces he showed during his lecture.

His explorations did not just end with the U.S., however; he also visited Tokyo, Japan and found yet another technique that he could use for his art: video. He started using video and audio to create montages much like his photographic work, just with the use of motion.

After this trip to Tokyo, he found that he could use both his photography and video together to make moving art that almost seems to fit together like a puzzle, which he used in creating his newer projects.

Now living and working in Grand Rapids, Mich., he is not only working as an assistant professor of photography at Grand Rapids Community College, but also just finished his most recent project, The River Project. Focusing on the Grand River in Grand Rapids, Tagliati showed several examples from this project during his lecture.

In this work, he mixes his still photographs with video of the river as it changes through the seasons over a two-year span. He literally linked the different parts together like a jigsaw puzzle.

As a student who has been to every Speaking Light lecture this semester, Tagliati’s work was by far the most abstract pieces of the photographers that came to speak, and in my personal experience, some of the most interesting as a multimedia major.

While many may see multimedia as a journalistic term for using different forms of media, such as photography and video, to provide news and current events to the public, Tagliati turned multimedia into an art form. This artistic approach showed how beautiful works of art can be created by using different media.

Evan Skowvron, a second-year photojournalism major, also found Tagliati’s work to be thought-provoking and striking.

“I really like his work,” he said. “A lot of his work reminded me of Picasso. I especially enjoyed his very early stuff in which the subject matter would break through the frame of the image.”

Many of the students and faculty in the audience agreed that there was a subtle Cubism and Picasso influence to Tagliati’s work, which he seemed to appreciate and was grateful to hear.

Point Park Professor Patrick Millard, who helped bring the lecture series to Point Park, said he enjoyed Tagliati’s work because he, too, is from Grand Rapids.

He enjoyed much of Tagliati’s work because he is originally from Grand Rapids and he appreciated the dedication and creativity that Tagliati took toward his hometown.

As for the Speaking Light series as a whole for this semester, he thinks it is great how its following grows with every lecture and that the lectures are a “nice building of culture.”

The Speaking Light series returns for the Spring 2012 semester with a presentation by John Holmgren on Jan. 27. Other lectures scheduled include Tom Persinger on Feb. 24 and Stephen Chalmers on March 30.

All lectures are at 6 p.m. in the JVH Auditorium in Thayer Hall. A peer review session precedes each lecture at 5 p.m., where students can show their work with peers.

To see Filippo Tagliati’s work, see his website at or his Vimeo page at