Lou Norton has worn many hats. After graduating from Bowdoin College as a chemistry major he received a DMD degree from Harvard School of Dental Medicine and then became a Harvard Research Fellow at Boston’s Children’s Hospital where he focused upon the dental specialty of orthodontics and ultimately an academic career. After military service during the Vietnam War, he went on to patient care teaching and research at two universities achieving full professorships at Kentucky and UConn. Lou also had a Fulbright Fellowship at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel, an NIH Fogarty Fellowship at Cambridge University in the UK, and a NATO Fellowship at Denmark’s Royal Dental College at Aarhus as well as an appointment as lecturer at Harvard School of Dental Medicine. He received numerous academic awards in both the US and abroad. During his retirement, he returned to graduate school to earn an MA in History from UConn. Lou also found time for his many hobbies such as music, biking, photography, writing, tennis, travel, cross country skiing, sailing, received a private pilot’s license, deep sea fishing, and performing in the Simsbury Theatre Guild, Simsbury Light Opera, or other local venues. He was also Chairman of Board of Ethics for the Town of Simsbury and volunteered for the Talcott Mountain Festival for 21 years. Lou has several hundred publications including nine books in the dental, medical and basic science literature as well as in non-fiction maritime history and popular fiction. He has been invited to speak at various American and foreign Universities.
Born in the old seaport of Gloucester, MA, Lou now largely writes about maritime history and some creative fiction, drawing upon his “salty” seaside roots. He and his wife, Ellie, have traveled extensively over the world. As members of SCC we get to peak at exotic foreign lands via the multitude of images Lou shares in his monthly competitions. He also presents his adventures and pictures of their travels to entertain various groups.
When asked what experience he had with photography prior to joining the club, Lou tells us he took photos all his life particularly when he traveled and also taught a class on intra-oral photography at the dental school. His primary camera is a 5100 Nikon with an AF Nikkor 18-105 lens. Some of his most memorable photographic experiences were travel images made during his retirement. He also was fortunate to experience the nation’s birthday 21-gun salute from the USS Constitution over a 4th of July holiday 2012 in the Boston Harbor with Blue Angels flying overhead. He was invited to photograph the event from the deck of the Braque USCG Cutter Eagle. He describes that experience as being incredibly patriotic and spine-tingling.
Lou and Bruce Metzger have been long time friends and Lou previously had been friends with Dolph Fusco and Nathan Gutman so he followed their lead and joined the camera club. He finds looking critically at other members work, learning what’s “good,” and being attentive to details, helps in finding ways to improve his own photographs. Lou’s club participation includes being a judge as well as a most appreciated writer for the Member Recognition Column. Lou has seen changes such as when the digital prints were eliminated and finds the quality and imagination of monthly competition submissions astounding. “The standards of the competition have increased therefore the pictures keep getting better all the time.” Lou enjoys using post processing via using photoshop plus DXO and NIC plugins. He says he learned to improve “average” pictures by these means. It has become fun and a challenge to his creativity. In summary, Lou appreciates that being part of the club enables him to add to his learning while participating in a hobby he so much enjoys.