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South Tampa News

Hammer: Book captures a day in Tampa Bay area

Tribune correspondent
Published:   |   Updated: April 11, 2013 at 04:44 PM

The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts in September sponsored a photographic event called “One Day Tampa Bay,” from which a book with the same name would be compiled. During the 24-hour event on Sept. 22, everyone was invited to take to the streets with a camera and record sites, scenes, landscapes, people and groups throughout the Tampa Bay area.

The completed book now is available for purchase and perusal.

Putting it together was not easy.

The museum received more than 750 photographs from the 100-plus camera buffs who participated that day. It took a committee three weeks to cull that number down to the 108 that appear in the book. The results show the effort was worthwhile.

The photos in the book are ordered according to the time of day, starting at 12:04 a.m. with images of outdoor night life in Ybor City and a shot of “Hortense,” the clock atop Tampa City Hall. The last picture in the book was taken at 10:09 p.m. Called “Smoke Break,” it shows customers outside the Blue Devil Tattoo Company in Ybor City.

The pages in-between provide a colorful and engaging trip through different locales in the area: buildings pitched against a perfect blue sky; familiar clouds rolling in; a near-empty Gandy Bridge at 11 a.m.; fountains, fish, fauna, lakes and kids doing what kids do – jumping, catching sand dollars, soaring on skateboards.

The book is the result of a collective effort by Jamie Jackson, vice chairman of the board of the Florida Museum of Photographic arts; Roger Robson, chairman of the board; and Joyce Zavola, former manager of the museum. All three expect this will be merely the first event and book.

“We really want it to be one day every year, so the books would create a photographic time capsule year after year,” Jackson said. “That way in, say, 10 years you could look at the first and the last years’ books and compare them and really see the changes in Tampa Bay in so many areas.”

Although he can see things he might do differently next year, Jackson said overall he is pleased with how the book turned out.

“We got some of the things we wanted. We got photographers in the community to recognize the event as something they wanted to get involved in,” he said. “And area businesses are beginning to see it as a way to promote Tampa Bay.”

He already is thinking bigger about the next book.

“I hope to make it a competition to see who gets the cover next year,” Jackson said. This year’s cover, a sunrise shot of Tampa’s skyline by Rob Bovarnick, was selected by committee agreement. “And next year we’re hoping to produce a print of one of the images. We’d like to partner with the City of Tampa to get some of the images out into the community possibly for tourism.”

The One Day Tampa Bay event this year probably will be held around the same time as last year -- the third week in September -- Jackson said.

“One Day Tampa Bay 2012” is on sale at the museum for $65. The museum has a public copy, so you may browse before you buy.

Check out the exhibits While you’re looking at the book, don’t miss the exhibits currently at the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts. On the second floor is an exhibit of photographs by the famous street photographer Vivian Maier. Called “Out of the Shadows,” the exhibit somewhat follows the arrangement of images of her works in the book by the same name, available in the bookstore.

Maier inserted herself in many of her photos, often through a window or reflected in a mirror. It adds other-worldly drama to her “down-to-earth” images of everyday people in everyday activities.

The third floor gallery presents an exhibit of photographs from the private collections of four people: Robert Drapkin, David Hall, Robert “Pancho” Sanchez and William Zedadski.

“They actually chose their own pieces for the show,” said curator Joanne Milani, “which of course is very difficult. It’s like choosing which child is your favorite.”

Both exhibits run through June 16. The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts is at 400 N. Ashley Drive in “The Cube” in downtown Tampa. Visit www.fmopa.org


Tribune correspondent Esther Hammer can be reached at ehammer@tampatrib.com

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