On May 3, Binghamton’s First Friday Art Walk showcased student photography with the Binghamton University Photography Club’s “Candid First Friday Photography Gallery.”
The event, held in the lobby of the 20 Hawley St. apartment building, ran from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and displayed student photographs with themes of light and landscapes. The event was free and open to the public, and attendees were offered free snacks and drinks as music played in the background to set the scene.
Following the theme of landscapes, some pieces presented vast spaces, including a photo of the massive New York City skyline taken in Brooklyn. Others covered a significantly smaller scope, such as a photo of a broken construction barrier in Downtown Binghamton.
Leisa Rockelein, a junior majoring in philosophy, politics and law who serves as president of the Photography Club, said events like these are essential for the well-being of the photography community on campus.
“I think it’s really important to have events like these for students to showcase their work because there aren’t a lot of platforms for that,” Rockelein said. “We don’t have a photography major or minor at Binghamton, so it’s hard sometimes if students are looking to get further opportunities if they don’t really have any experience they can put forth.”
For the photographers of BU, Rockelein said events like these provide an opportunity to not only make headway in the professional world of photography, but also in the local community.
“Being able to say ‘I have work showcased in a gallery’ or ‘I have work showcased in a photo book’ is really great for experience,” Rockelein said. “It’s also a really great way to connect with the community because a lot of locals always come to these events.”
Noah Meyers, a junior majoring in philosophy, politics and law, said the display encouraged him to consider trying out photography.
“To be honest, I didn’t really plan on going to the event, but I was passing by so I stopped in,” Meyers said. “I was never into photography and I never really have been, but there was some really cool stuff there. It made me kind of want to buy a camera.”
Although this marks the club’s final event of the year, Rockelein said the Photography Club is always welcoming new members and encouraged any interested students to get involved.
“We’re very laid back and chill; we only meet every other week and people are welcome to come with cameras or without,” Rockelein said. “Definitely don’t be afraid to show up; we’re always down to help with whatever you want to explore in terms of photography.”