January 9, 2009

President's letter

Hello all,
Happy New Year!!
I’d like to wish each and every one of you a very Prosperous and Healthy New Year. In these times we hear a lot of complaining about the economy and how bad things are. Well, yes the economy is not the greatest at the moment. We are all facing many challenges and will probably have to deal with many more in the upcoming year. This is why it is very important to look at and focus on the positives and to stick together. Remember there is strength in numbers. This is why we have this wonderful organization, which supplies us with many opportunities to come together and learn, create or simply have fun. I would like to take this opportunity to encourage each and every one of you to take advantage of these great benefits and of this wonderful organization we all belong to. In the past months we have had some great meetings not to mention a wonderful Holiday Party.
In November we had a representative come and speak to us from the NJVLA-New Jersey Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts which is a non profit organization dedicated to providing pro bono legal referrals to organizations involved in culture or the arts and individuals involved in any creative or cultural endeavor. NJVLA matches artists and cultural organization clients with volunteer attorneys who assist them with arts-related legal issues such as copyright, contracts, organization formation, taxes on artist royalties and real estate and landlord/tenant issues regarding studio and gallery space, as well as help them resolve many other types of arts related legal problems. Our turnout was not as good as we had hoped it would be but the members who did attend gained a better understanding of how to deal with copy rights and where they can turn to in the event an attorney is needed and the funds are low. I was actually surprised that more members were not interested in this very important topic.
In December we had our Annual Holiday Party. We did something different this year. We did a State Holiday Party, which turned out fantastic. As you all probably know from our e-mail blasts, it was held at the Forsgate Country Club. We had dancing, wonderful entertainment, creative portraits by Flint Gerard and Terry Greerdts with the assistance of Norman Kushner, great food, numerous prizes supplied by our generous vendors such as; Tri-State, Capri Albums….. a big Thank you to all. But the best thing of all was the company of fellow photographers from all three regions. It really was a superb party. Thank you Gene Urban and everyone who helped in the planning process.
January we will not be holding a meeting due to our National Convention. Many of our members are PPA members as well who plan to attend the convention in Arizona this year. It looks like it will be another success.
In February we will have our annual Print Critique. This is a great opportunity for our members to get their work ready for the State Print Competition. We always have three judges who are there to critique but if one listens closely they actually educate and give you pointers on how to enhance your print so that is does well in the State Competition. These prints are then displayed at our Annual State Convention in Atlantic City. I strongly encourage you all to start looking through your work and start preparing for that meeting. As in the past several years we will again be accepting both digital and traditional submissions. Please be on the lookout for e-mails with more information pertaining to that meeting.
Now in March we are planning to bring back the Awsome Auction!!! We held it last year for the first time, which was amazing. Our members brought in equipment and products they wanted to unload…let me tell you we had some unbelievable stuff. I sure was impressed. We held an Auction where we had our members bid on the items they wanted to purchase. Not only was it fun, we all had the opportunity to unload things we no longer needed or wanted and to purchase equipment we did need at a very reasonable price. This year we are planning to advertise more extensively in hopes of attracting students and more of the general public giving our members the opportunity to sell more items.
Please continue to attend the meetings, state wide programs and workshops. We love to see you there and pledge to continue to provide them for you as long as you continue to attend them. I wish you much success and I hope to see you at our next planned meeting.

With warmest regards,

Jackie D. Koscinski
PPANJ –North President

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