The Champaign County Camera Club was founded in November, 1935, on the campus of the University of Illinois as the Photon Camera Club. After several name changes, it became known as the Champaign County Camera Club. The Club meets in Turner Hall on the ACES campus of the University of Illinois.
At the Club's inception, the primary medium of work, presentations and competitions was black and white photography, with members doing all of their own lab work -- development of negatives and printing of photographs -- often in their own darkrooms. It was not until 1950 that color slides became a feature of the Club's work. Until the mid-1990's, the Club retained the requirement that any prints exhibited had to be the work of the exhibitor. This was not too arduous for black and white work, but with the more narrow latitude required in doing color lab work, this rule was finally repealed in the late 1990's to allow prints to be printed commercially. The Club now also allows prints to have been made using any available digital techniques, and digital photography has become the main medium of photography for the Club's members.
The Club has several competitions a year, including a Salon each April. All Salon competitions are judged by non-member judges, usually from Chicago, Peoria, Bloomington-Normal or Decatur
Club meetings cover a variety of topics. These include lectures on various aspects of photography, most recently on the use of Photoshop. Each year the Club has four intraclub competition, with the categories varying from year to year. Most of these are digital image competitions, with one print competition. In addition, a year end Salon is held each April with a digital competition and a print competition. The Club also has a competition each May with the Bloomington-Normal Koda Roamers Camera Club. This competition is called the I-74 Challenge, and is held in alternate years in Urbana and Bloomington.
The Club is a charter member of the Central Illinois Camera Clubs Association (CICCA) formed in 1950. Members of our Club have served as President and other officers of CICCA. CICCA conducts two Salons each year, a Fall Salon in which Clubs compete, and a Spring Salon in which individuals compete. These competitions currently include slide images, digital images and prints.
The Champaign County Camera Club is recognized as a campus-community organization by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The Club meets twice a month September through November and January through March. It meets once in December and has one or two meetings in April in addition to its annual Salon in April. Most meetings of the Champaign County Camera Club are held in Turner Hall on the UIUC campus, and are open to the public.
For those persons interested in the early days of the Club, the Urbana Free Library's Archives has an abundance of materials.