One of the Gila Valley’s best kept secrets is the Safford photography club. It is a group of all skill levels for Safford and surrounding areas. The club meets at the Safford library monthly. The photography club also comes together to share knowledge and boost creativity in group trips. Their latest trip was to Safford’s Main Street, where everyone took a variety of photos. Interestingly enough, even though these photos were of the same area, one wouldn’t guess it by looking at them. Each photographer’s eye is so completely different that once placed side by side, the average onlooker would never have guessed that the entire group went to the same location. Photographer Charlie Scofano especially appreciates the creative aspect of the group, “I love the creative energy that is unleashed when the group gets together,” he stated, “People from all walks of life, each with a unique perspective on the world. Some with point and shoots some with DSLR’s. All creating art from their hearts. I learn so much from a situation like that. My favorite thing is when we have an assignment or a group trip. Seeing the same thing though many different eyes by the photographs taken. I am looking forward to continuing to improve my photography by the challenges and inspiration from others in the group.”
While it may come as a surprise to some, almost any sociologist will tell you that the mere presence of other people in a group can boost performance. Floyd Allport, noted social psychologist, has determined that individuals working on different projects will be more productive if they work together. Also, Harvard studies have determined that if you are in a situation surrounded by familiar people, you are more likely to perform well. To put it plainly, Charlie Scofano will tell you that getting together as a group helps boost creativity, and he’s right.
Not only is the creative vibe strong within a group, but the sharing of knowledge is indispensable. Of course in today’s world there is the internet, where an infinite amount of knowledge is accessible to anyone. However, the data of the internet is like looking for a needle in a haystack. The face to face communication of a local group can be invaluable to any enthusiast. Brandon Nite appreciates this certain aspect of the group especially. “Personally, I love the interaction that goes on photographer-to-photographer in the group,” Nite said, “We learn so much from one another mechanics-wise and try our best to break down rather heady photography terms like f/stops, aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and make them easy to understand and apply.”
Whether you’re an amateur or experienced photographer, the photography club is waiting for you. Come meet other enthusiasts, boost your creativity, and polish your chosen passion. For any questions, call the Safford library at: (928) 432-4158.