The Tug McGraw Foundation unites photographers and enthusiasts for a historical photowalk in the heart of Napa Valley guided by our nation’s veterans
On Saturday, October 6th, the Tug McGraw Foundation (TMF) together with photographers and enthusiasts from around the world got out their cameras and met up at a designated location in their town to walk around and take photographs, socialize, make new friends, win prizes, all for a great cause-Scott Kelby’s Worldwide Photowalk®.
For the second year in a row, TMF and US Army veteran, commercial artist, photographer and instructor, Fred Hutton, guided the photowalk for 10 photographers from all levels on the historical grounds of the Veterans Home of California, Yountville. The home is located in the heart of scenic Napa Valley, a community of and for veterans. Founded in 1884, the home is the largest veterans’ home in the United States, and is home to nearly 900 aging or disabled veterans (both men and women) from World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Gulf War, and Operation Enduring Freedom/Operation Iraqi Freedom.
The group gathered in the early morning in TMF's Brain Food Garden. With his camera roped around his neck, Fred carefully reached into his pocket and pulled out a yellow piece of binder paper. Cleared his throat and shared his philosophy about photography from his heartfelt notes. TMF, CEO, Jennifer Brusstar, gave further background and history on where they would be walking. The photowalk included stops at the home's 1918 Armistice Chapel , the cemetery where nearly 6ooo men and women are laid to rest, including four Medal of Honors, and the home's Arboretum.
The arboretum consists of 300 plus trees from all over the world. After the tour, photographers enjoyed delights in the Brain Food Garden and had an opportunity to talk about their experience and images they captured.
Post walk, participants submitted their best photo (one submission only) taken during the walk to Fred their leader. Fred reviewed all entries and picked one winner to submit to Scott Kelby's individual main photo contest. In addition to the individual photo submission, leaders submitted their best photo for an opportunity to win Scott Kelby's leader photo contest. Scott Kelby will review all photos and pick one Grand Prize Winner of the Walker Photo Contest and ten Finalists.
Fred's Tips on Capturing Imagery
"We all have the right to be a corny, as cosmic, as bumptious and excessive as we like. As photographers, we have the right to tell the truth of the animate and inanimate life. If anyone gets in the way of your own unique vision, tell them to be careful for a wheel barrow may run over their feet.
Our achievement, if there is any, consists in the fact that the print we make are not photographs of places and things, but are a photographed symbol of our thoughts about them…
Think in terms of photography, we are not consciously producing an art for, but in clear thinking, at least, we are creating not imitating, whatever one’s criteria of aesthetic judgement.
Henry James at the end of his life wrote, “ It is art that makes life, make interest, makes importance.”
So today, is our day to participate with photographers from all over the world. Maybe we can feed off some that energy. So don’t wait for inspiration or for society’s kiss on your forehead. Be curios, don’t just look at something try to really see it. Try to make good pictures and thrill at the idea we are able to be here today doing what we are driven to do."
View Fred's Overall Picks from Yountville Participants