CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- It was just a small seed of an idea someone had at the Buckhannon Upshur Camera Club.
At the May 23 club meeting, someone mentioned the big fireworks display coming up at the West Virginia Capitol to mark the state's Sesquicentennial celebration and that club members should shoot some photos.
"I said, 'Hey, we can make a special section in the newsletter.' I got to thinking a couple days later, 'Let's see if we can tell the story of the state today,'" said club member Alan Tucker.
They put out the call for photos on various aspects of the Mountain State -- nature, people, heritage and so forth. Word got out, someone mentioned the project on Facebook, other people heard about it.
"Within a week or two, I started getting calls from people in Morgantown, Ravenswood, Fairmont, emails from people out of state," said Tucker. "We started to amass just an incredible number of photos."
The end result was that 42 photographers submitted more than 1,000 photos, which were then whittled down to 265. With help from club member John Simon, they worked through the Amazon subsidiary CreateSpace to create the 40-page, full-color photo booklet "A West Virginia Sesquicentennial Celebration," featuring the photos played in small formats, several to a page.
"I went off into a closet, basically, and tried to tell the story of West Virginia through the photos that were sent," Tucker said.
The booklet, priced at only $10.60, began to sell and generate income for the club, money they decided to use for a good cause. Tucker and Simon are both Air Force veterans. "We got the idea and recommended to the club that we provide books to our West Virginia men and women who are serving in Afghanistan," Tucker said.