Saturday, September 26 marks the first session of Assignment Key West: 2015, a two-part photography workshop at the Custom House Museum offered by Todd Feit in conjunction with Key West Art & Historical Society and their new adolescent and adult education program, Outside The Lines.
The workshop is open to all skill levels and integrates the museum’s exhibit of world-renowned photographer Arthur Rothstein’s monochromatic images and photography practices as impetus to view the island and create new works. Rothstein documented Key West in 1938 while on assignment under the Farm Security Administration, capturing the mood and essence of Key West during the Great Depression. His images offer striking insight to the world of displaced cigar makers, sponge fishermen, and street peddlers as well as the island’s unique architecture.
“During our first three-hour workshop (from 9:00am-12:00pm) we will focus on the architecture but always be on alert for the quirkiness of Key West,” says Feit.
Feit, who has been capturing images for over thirty years, moved to the Keys with his wife Tonya three years ago, where they own and operate the boutique Keys Accents on Caroline Street. Feit has quickly made his mark on the island by bringing out the best it has to offer through his popular social media Facebook page “Conchtastic Key West,” where he integrates his online business marketing savvy with his photographic artistry, providing quality content that has garnered him more than 30,000 followers.
“Key West gives me the perfect backdrop for my passion in documenting the non-stop exciting energy that the island provides,” he says. “Knowing that Rothstein was in Key West and able to capture its essence and the genuineness of the people provides me with a constant blueprint for how I document it.”
Feit, who also sits on the KWAHS board of directors, will guide participants from the Custom House on 281 Front Street on a photography outing to revisit some of the spots Rothstein photographed during his 1938 assignment and while pointing out various interesting subject matter during the walk. He will also provide many tips as well as any needed technical or equipment assistance, but stresses that the workshop is more about composition than equipment and even encourages iphoneographers and other smart-phone users to sign up.
“If you do have a DSLR camera that’s okay, but I encourage you to only bring one lens, anywhere from 28mm to 50mm,” he says.
The following Saturday’s three-hour, 10:00am-1:00pm workshop (on October 3rd) at the Custom House’s third floor Helmerich Research and Learning Center will focus on digital darkroom basics using Adobe Lightroom and how students can up-level their images. Participants will also select one of their own created images for the workshop’s Saturday, October 10th pop-up exhibit at the Custom House Museum.
“If you have an interest in photography and want a sprinkle of Key West history then this class is for you,” says Feit.
Reserve your spot in this limited-space workshop by registering online at KWAHS.ORG/Learn. For more information call Adele Williams, Education Specialist, at 305-295-6616 x 15. Participants should wear comfortable shoes and bring bottled water for the photography excursion. Cost is $50 for KWAHS members or $75 for non-members. Your museums. Your community. It takes an island.