Thank you for your interest in the Science Museum Camera Club


We are a group of photographers of all levels from beginner to advanced coming together to share experiences, know-how, and learning. The Club has many activities that provide you a range of venues for improving your photography. The bigger opportunity is to join in group discussions or participate in group outings as you will find that fellow members are always ready to help.

You will find more specifics for club activities listed in the club newsletter the “Format” which is published several times over the year, in the NFRCC annual program guide, in meeting handouts or email announcements.

Overview of activities

Meetings: SMCC meetings start in September and end in May. Meetings are semi-monthly on the first and third Wednesday of the month starting at 6:30 PM to give us time to snack, socialize and talk shop. At 7:00PM we go into the Auditorium for our program or competition. At times, we can also hold special educational meetings during the summer or during the meeting year.

Competition Night is the 1st Wednesday of the month. This is a chance to have a judge give feedback on your Projected Images or Prints. For most of us, this is the hardest thing to do because we hate to hear anything but good comments. Once you get past that, competition is the best possible way to learn.

Why do we call this competition? Judges assign scores to our images which are collected over the year. There are four levels for "Competitions”: Bronze is where we all start out; Silver and Gold are intermediate and Diamond is the Top-level.

The top point earners in each level are recognized at our annual year-end banquet.

Our Competitions consist of:

Projected Image Competition: 2 - projected images (digital photo files)

Print Competition: 2 - Color Prints and/or 2-Monochrome prints. You can substitute 1 Creative print for a Color print or Monochrome print.

It is your choice to enter competitions. We have competition rules specific to each competition. You will get a copy of the rules when you join.

Depending on the number of competitions that are held during the year, we will have a pre-determined number of entries that must be entered to be counted toward the year-end standings.

We have a Novice program for new members. We will assign an experienced member to help you improve your photography and editing skills. The mentor will also help you to decide what and when to enter competitions. The mentor will accompany you on Club outings to help you as well.

If you join mid-year and start competing later in the year, you can enter one extra digital image and one extra print each competition night until you have caught up to the minimum entry number in Projected Image and Print competition. These additional entries must be approved by the appropriate competition chair.

Program Night is the 3rd Wednesday of the month. This program can be educational, an outside speaker, or a club activity. This night includes time to socialize as the talk will end early enough to allow for a little camaraderie and talk “shop”.

The SMCC website is a source for information about the club, photographic topics, and a place where members can have their own gallery. Paid-up members get a password for the website and instructions for login. Please log into the site and explore it. Look at pictures in other member's galleries. Telling someone that you liked a picture they posted is a great way to introduce yourself and start a dialog at the meeting. You will be able to download very good help files for how to do things, but there are also are members who will assist if you have difficulty. We have started a “Critique Forum” where members can upload images and have feedback from some of our experienced members.

SMCC special competitions: The E. Thomas Smith is a nature competition held every year. The Dorothy Ralph Photo Essays are shown at the annual banquet. There is a year-end "Projected Image of the year" and "Print of the Year" at the last meeting before the banquet.

Inter-club competitions are held throughout the year in which SMCC participates using projected images submitted to club competitions. These are the McKellar, the Golden Horseshoe (both projected images), and the George Butt (print). Awards for these are given at the annual NFRCC Convention banquet. The Glennie is an international nature contest operated by the Merrimack Valley Camera Club in Massachusetts. Our NFRCC members also compete with members of GTCCC (Greater Toronto Council of Camera Clubs) in a yearly competition.

The Niagara Frontier Regional Camera Club (NFRCC) is a group of 17 US and Canadian clubs that work together to promote learning and friendship between clubs. The NFRCC holds the annual NFRCC Convention and inter-club competitions. The NFRCC also hosts a one-day Fall Seminar. Both are excellent opportunities for photographic learning in the Buffalo area. Whatever your skill level, you will find nationally recognized speakers with topics of interest to you.

Group Outings are wonderful ways to get out and shoot with fellow photographers.

The Buffalo FORMAT is published several times each year. You will find the meeting schedule along with general articles and information from club members. This is a great way to share ideas and techniques with the club. Mary Lou Frost is the editor.

The Annual Banquet is our annual get-together where members bring family and guests to share in a recap of the year's competitions with awards, Ralph Dorothy essays, and to enjoy the camaraderie. This is always held on the 3rd Wednesday of May.

SMCC is an all-volunteer organization that has operated at the Science Museum since 1939. There are many tasks that we need volunteers to do that keep our club going. Please ask if you are interested in doing something.

Note that there is specific information available explaining the requirements for all competitions. Club Outings and special events get announced as they come up.

SMCC Announcements are also sent via email from the SMCC website before every meeting and as things come up throughout the month.

Please ask anyone for assistance. If they do not know the answer, they can point you to someone who can help.

If you have questions please contact Sharon at:

Sharon Dentice, President SMCC

To Join our club, please fill out the membership form and mail it to the address on the form or bring it to one of our meetings

SMCC Membership Form.pdf

SMCC MEMBER HANDBOOK rev 08/2021.pdf

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