May 15 Newsletter

Hey there, you visionary photographer!

As summer rolls in and the days get longer, it’s the perfect time to get outdoors exploring your art. Even better, it’s a great chance to think about your photo friends, and the adventures that lie ahead for you together at Firefly Institute!

Notes from the Road – Discover Insights from Pei Ketron!

Check out this inspiring interview with Firefly Institute founding teacher Pei Ketron. A photographer, teacher, traveler, and volunteer; she shares valuable thoughts on how to wait for the perfect moment, and her fascinating journey into the craft.

Pei also shares her experience at camp last year … “I walked up those stairs, and when I saw the location my jaw dropped. I said to myself, ‘This is amazing’ and then, instantly, I felt this was the right decision.” 

Learn more about Pei’s 2017 classes: Composition 101, Social Media Best Practices for Photographers, and The Ins and Outs of iPhoneography.  And of course, if you haven’t yet, join Pei this summer by registering now for the best class selection.

Wow! Check Out Your Photo Friends…

At camp with Firefly Institute, you’ll meet amazing people and get opportunities that will literally transform your craft, your life, and your career. Many people write to us to ask if camp would be right for them. Some wonder, “Am I experienced enough?” Others wonder if, as working photographers, camp would be challenging enough.

These are such great questions! Rest easy by browsing through our website, and reading testimonials from real campers. If the camp looks like fun – it is likely a good fit. 2016 campers included a wonderful mix of professionals and amateurs. Did they enjoy camp? Over 45% of our campers have already signed up to return this year – those returning are half amateurs and half working photographers. 

We asked some of our registered campers to share their experiences, current projects, and what’s inspired them to attend or return this year! Check out some of these awesome answers:

Tisha Allen

A first-time camper this year, we can’t wait to meet Tisha!

“I am SO excited for camp,” she says, “the Firefly Institute appeals to me because It’s geared towards learning and connecting with others. And then there’s the chocolate chip cookies I read about.”

One great way to approach camp is with specific goals in mind. Tisha explained her vision for camp this year,

“I feel as if I’m finding my passion in photography again,” she says, “I consider myself a ‘natural light photographer’ (said with a pompous English accent) because I’m incredibly fearful of flash. Learning how to conquer this fear and gain the ability to take pictures at any time of day and in any lighting situation is empowering. I’m looking forward to meeting you!”

We’re so looking forward to seeing more of Tisha’s work, and welcoming her to the magic!

Elizabeth Roach-Molosky

A returning Firefly participant, attending photo camp last year was a leap of faith for Elizabeth Roach-Molosky,

“…I had no idea what to expect,” she says, “I was 55 years old, I knew no one attending camp, I was going to share a cabin with complete strangers, and had never taken my camera off auto mode!”

After arriving, she discovered – and this is the best part of Firefly Institute – that she was an integral part of the community here, and fit right in!

“My fear of not knowing anyone changed instantly… the spirit of friendship and community in this group of women began with our first get together and grew throughout our time at camp…” she says, “I was a stranger when I arrived, but when I left Camp, I had 40 new friends, some of whom I’m in contact with to this day!”

Iris Shields

First, congratulations to Iris Shields for her award at this year’s 32nd annual Chelsea International Fine Art Competition. We’re so thrilled! When we asked her what she’s currently working on, Iris told us,

“I’m still trying out different ‘disciplines’ and though I haven’t tried even half of what’s out there, right now I am really into flower portraits! Preferably with one of my fixed lenses and a super wide aperture.”

Iris’s photography is a powerful look at stunning moments and places, “I am in awe of life and the beauty of the world, especially the beauty in everyday things and/or little things.”

We can’t wait to meet Iris, and to see some of her current work!

Pauline Carlson

Pauline attended Firefly last year, and we are so excited she’ll be here again this fall!

“Firefly camp was the most incredible photography experience I could have hoped for,” says Pauline, “I was nervous about attending because I assumed everyone else would be a professional, and I would be in over my head.”

And yet, the line between professional and amateur is secondary to community, creative process, and discovery here at Firefly.

“Once I arrived at camp and got to know people I was no longer concerned with who was a professional or an amateur,” she continues, “… Firefly camp isn’t about judgement or who might be the best photographer; it’s about growing and reaching your own goals.”

And Now, About You!

We are so excited to meet you, and welcome you the magic that is the Firefly Institute! You will be amazed by the friendships and connections you make here.

October is just around the corner. In the meantime, get out there in the sunshine and give yourself the time and space to experiment, create, and develop your wonderful work!  



Pam Sogge

Camp Director