Two photographers open exhibit today


July 01, 1998|By Kathy Curtis | Kathy Curtis,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

AFTER LIVING in the Cove, a group of condominiums on Wilde Lake, for 17 years, photographer Jim Mitchell says he probably will never move.

"If you are an artist or a photographer, it's a very inspirational place to live," he said.

Mitchell and Town Center resident Bruce Blum are exhibiting their photographs of west Columbia starting today at Slayton House Gallery.

Mitchell's display, in the Lobby Gallery, is called "Seasons of Wilde Lake." It includes black-and-white and color photos that show the lake and the surrounding area at different times and in varying weather.

"The light changes every day," he noted. "At certain times of the fall, at sunset, certain trees glow orange. There are some sunsets and sunrises that are incredible."

Mitchell has captured the changes during walks he takes around the lake four to five times a week.

Mitchell describes photography as something he does "as a passion." He earns a living as a representative for a fabric company, selling to designers and decorators.

His interest in photography began as a boy. "I used to sit beside the mailbox waiting for Life Magazine to come," he said.

Among his half-dozen cameras are a Leica and a Rolleiflex, manufactured in the 1950s.

They have "some of the finest optics in the world," said Mitchell. "They produce a different look to an image."

He used the older cameras for several of the photos in the show.

Mitchell processes his photos in his darkroom and does his own framing.

The photos of Wilde Lake are a departure from Mitchell's usual work, which consists mainly of architecture and street performers.

The show is his first in Howard County, although he has participated in group shows in the Washington area.

Bruce Blum's exhibit, "From the Lake Kittamaqundi Project," is in the Bill White Room Gallery. It consists of black-and-white photos of the Columbia lake taken over several years.

"We're surrounded by visual beauty," said Blum, who has lived in Waters Edge for more than 20 years.

For his exhibit, Blum decided to limit himself to a small area and observe it over time. Looking at the results, he said, "I notice how my own eye has changed."

Professionally, Blum was an associate professor of biomedical engineering at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Later, he worked at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, from which he retired in 1994. Along the way, he wrote four books on software engineering and the use of computers in medicine.

After his children grew up, Blum decided to use the royalties from his books to buy photographic equipment.

In 1990, he started to exhibit his work.

He participates in shows at Savage Mill and has photos in the "Doors and Windows" exhibit at Columbia Art Center.

Last year, he was part of a show at Borders Books & Music.

Blum shoots with a Bronica, using the 2 1/4 -inch format. He has a darkroom and does his own framing.

"I work primarily in black and white because I have a good feel for it," he said. In the last few years, he has begun using color.

When he's not photographing Columbia, Blum is apt to be shooting in exotic places such as Tanzania or Nepal. He recently spent three weeks in China, returning with a thousand slides.

Next, he's planning a trip to Niger.

A free reception for the two artists will be held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. July 12.

Gallery hours during the summer are 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.

Information: 410-730-3987.

Friends plan parade

The Longfellow Friends of the Traditional 4th will gather for the fTC 28th parade and softball game Saturday.

Organizer Bob Russell noted that anyone can be in the parade or just come to watch.

"There are no forms to fill out; just show up," he said.

The lineup will begin at 9: 30 a.m. at Longfellow Elementary School.

The one-hour parade will start at 10 a.m., and will follow Hesperus Drive and Eliot's Oak Road, ending back at the school.

At noon, the Hesperus Wrecks will face the Eliot's Oak Nuts in a softball game. Longfellow residents who live on or off Hesperus Drive or Eliot's Oak Road may participate.

The game will be held at a new location -- the ball field behind Harper's Choice Middle School under the water tower near Cedar Lane Park.

Russell's wife, Barbara, reported hearing rumors of neighbors planning to poke fun at local and national political figures during the parade.

"Election years are always fun," she said, adding that she expects a number of candidates to participate.

Information or to help: 410-730-4024 or 410-992-4047.

Artists greet summer

Works by several west Columbia artists are included in an exhibit called "Artists' Gallery Summerfest," which opened Monday at the Artists' Gallery, 10227 Wincopin Circle.

The exhibit will run through July 25.

Members of the artists' co-op are celebrating summer with photographs; paintings in oil, watercolor and acrylic; drawings in colored pencil and pastels; collage; metal sculpture; stained glass, and trompe l'oeil furniture.

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