by MICHAELA CHAMBLEE//Staff Writer
Each year, photographers around the world gather on the same day to explore, photograph, share photos with one another, make new friends, and be a part of a great cause.
On October 1 at 7:15 a.m., James Clinich gathered a group at the Wallace Theater in Levelland to begin the WorldWide PhotoWalk.
“This is the first time holding the PhotoWalk in Levelland,” said Clinich, the PhotoWalk Leader. “I was going to do it in Lubbock again, but another leader had already signed up for it. I thought Levelland had a lot of potential for photos, and we got set up with Alycyn Keeling to start the Photo Walk at the Wallace Theater and work out a show to get your work out there and see what other people took photos of.”
The PhotoWalk happens once a year during the first weekend of October. It is held all over the world. Donations are accepted, with all of the money given to Springs of Hope Kenya Children’s Home in Njoro, Kenya, in Africa.
“This is the ninth annual PhotoWalk around the world,” said Clinich. “And the first PhotoWalk here in Levelland, because it’s fun to get out into the smaller towns and really see what is out there.”
Those participating in the PhotoWalk can use any kind of camera, from phone cameras to a single-lens reflex cameras. Any kind of photos can be taken, from buildings to broken glass on the sidewalk.
“I’ve always liked to take photos since I was a kid,” said Clinich. “I didn’t really get serious about it until a friend of mine gave me an Olympus camera with interchangeable lens, and it made me realize that there is so much you can do with photography. And somebody had to be a leader last year for the PhotoWalk in Lubbock, so I stepped up and decided to do it.”
The PhotoWalk happens at different times of the day all over the world, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. People from all over the state, and even other states, come walk with someone and bond over taking photos for a good cause. The Levelland event included people from Lubbock, Levelland, and Clovis, New Mexico.
“If you’re looking for shots,” said Clinich, “you pick one object and just take a lot of different angle shots of that one object, and move to the next object of interest.”
At the end of the PhotoWalk, the walkers are to post their best photo to viewbug website for the Walker Photo Contest. Each walk Leader will pick an Individual Location Winner. There is also the People’s Choice Award for one winner. WorldWide PhotoWalk also has a Video Contest as well as the Photography contest.
“It’s difficult to choose just one photo,” said Clinich. “Even though we are taking a lot of photos in the same place for two hours, everyone sees everything a little different. Someone could have seen something I didn’t and captured it, so all of the photos are going to be different in some way or another.”