SaddleBrooke Photography Club featured photographer

Picture by Eric Peffer

Barbara Wilder

Our speaker at the August meeting was Eric Peffer, a Renaissance man of many talents. He is a photo guru, adventurer, teacher, biologist documenting wildlife and more. When asked to be our speaker, he chose the topic, “What makes me excited to go out and take pictures.” During his slide show we saw a large variety of his interests: wildlife; architecture; landscapes; night scenes; cycling and his favorite, black and white images.

He has lived in Pennsylvania, California and his mom’s native country for a time – Sweden. He can speak fluent Swedish and has shown our group some lovely landscapes from his last visit there. Hiking abroad or in the USA, he uses his well-known virtue of patience to wait for the perfect moment to catch the best tortoise portrait, the light enhancing a mountain, or a person at the optimum place in a landscape shot. You have to observe by looking at something carefully. He says, “It is more important to get the shot of a moment, than trying to get a perfect shot.” And, “There are no failures, only room for improvement.” Also, “Be flexible in your itinerary to then be able to take advantage of unexpected photo opportunities.”

Eric is a volunteer at the Golden Goose Thrift Shop, heading up the Camera Department where he is an expert evaluator of camera equipment. Old cameras are his thing. He enjoys working with the older legacy lens where you have to manually adjust focus and aperture, rather than relying on the camera’s automatic settings. His nature tends for him to be rather cautious, but feels free to experiment with photography. In high school he worked in an art gallery which exposed him to many types of art. Studying the old masters’ paintings and early classic photography exposed him to the use of light and good composition.

He is attracted to “Crustic” things like seed pods, rust, graffiti art and grunge. Macro shots of insects, fungi, etc., enable him to get abstract-like pictures. Also, by photographing the city at night, he is able to get details not noticeable by day. He laughed, and quoted the photographer Ken Rockwell, “You must F.A.R.T. when photographing: Focus, Assess, Refine, and then Take pictures.” “Photography takes one out of the day to day difficult times.” You can tell by Eric’s pictures that he loves what he is doing. Check out his website at

The SaddleBrooke Photography Club has open studio time every Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9:00 a.m.-noon, in the Agate Room at SaddleBrooke TWO in the MountainView Crafts Center. Monthly meetings with a speaker are every third Friday at 3:00 p.m. in the Sonoran Room, MountainView.