Welcome to the Photo Night Web Site Revised Monday, April 1, 2002 1:13 PM

Photo Night began in mid-1995 as the brainchild of Bruce and Claudia Strong in an effort to quench a growing thirst for camaraderie, community and discussion among Southern California photographers. After enlisting the help of their colleague Paul Rodriguez, the group set off on what has become a successful venture of goodwill and an invaluable opportunity to meet with and learn from others who share similar visions and aspirations. The first Photo Night, on Sept. 28, 1995, was held at Bruce and Claudia's house and featured a Pulitzer Prize-winning guest speaker and about 25 photographers from throughout the region. Now into its fourth year, Photo Night has attracted up to 500 photographers, with regulars from Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino and everywhere in between. Over the last few years, other Photo Nights have begun to meet in various cities around the U.S.A.. In October 1997, Photo Night held it's first foreign meeting with about 80 people in attendence in Quito, Ecuador.

The format is simple and informal – a potluck gathering that begins at 7 p.m. on the third or fourth Thursday of the month. Everyone is encouraged to get to know one another and enjoy themselves. The group eats, mingles and decompresses for the first hour, then moves into the featured speaker and slide show. Speakers and presentations have varied from narrated three-carousel presentations to photographers who prefer spontaneous commentary as their images appear on screen. Audience participation generally consists of questions during and after the show.

Photo Night aims to have the best speakers – ationwide and to cross over traditional lines, allowing for great variations in style and genre. Photo Night has sought photographers whose work is recognized for its quality. The shows have varied in subject matter as well, from the grand adventures of various National Geographic photographers to an inside look at Hollywood, celebrity portraiture, the fashion world and more traditional news photojournalism.