Get a bunch of artists together, and talk will naturally turn to their craft. So, when some of the best local photographers gathered Monday at the Du Quoin Public Library, you would expect conversation to be sprinkled with camera settings and computer applications.
What you would have heard instead were some great stories about "getting the shot."
There was the one about the doe who posed patiently while the photographer crept closer and closer.
"That doe just stood absolutely still for me," Pat Purnell said. Her photographs included in the library's display are of an egret and that photogenic doe.
There was the story about the photographer who counted the "plop, plop, plop" of her subjects' escape with every step she took toward them.
Becky Hagerling took a walk around the the Du Quoin State Fairgrounds to find her photographs: one of a ring-billed gull landing with wings outstretched and one of turtles sunbathing on a log. But that last shot almost didn't happen.
"I just walked up to the water and there were turtles everywhere," she said. "I had to take the photos quickly, though, because as I walked up to the water's edge, I could hear the turtles sliding into the water, spooked by the noise I was making."
There was the story about the photographer who walked into inspiration at a rest stop in West Virginia, where a field of sunflowers had attracted a swarm of bees.
"I just grabbed my camera and started shooting," Brittany Elswick said.
And there's the story about the photographer whose favorite subject is her constant companion, clothes horse and part-time fashion model, Bane, the bulldog.
Jean Bullock's photograph of her dog, dressed in his best Easter hat and tie, is included in the library's gallery. Bullock -- the daughter of legendary local photographer and craftsman Gene Gallmeister -- loves to take photos, and Bane loves to dress up for the season or the holiday, so this isn't the first in this series or the last.
The Du Quoin Public Library opens its gallery each quarter to any local photographer -- resident and non-resident library patron -- who submits work in accordance with the library's rules and chosen subject matter. For the spring exhibit, the subject was nature, specifically birds, fish, amphibians, reptiles, insects, butterflies and mammals. For summer -- July to September -- the subject will be sports. For fall, it's pets.
The rest of the art in the gallery now belongs to: Austin Booker, photo of ATV; Jon Montgomery, photo of bald eagles and mallards; Betty Eastman, photo of goat and owl; Gary Brock, photo of bull frog and mallards; Henry Dews, sculpture titled "Bowing East & West," made from recycled and found materials; and Gary Stanhouse, pencil sketches and acrylic works.
For more information, call 618-542-5045 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.