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Welcome to the Ophthalmic Photographers' Society Blog! The posts on this blog are authored by a myriad of individuals in Ophthalmology. Posts are not always authored by those directly affiliated with the Ophthalmic Photographers' Society and opinions may not be those of the OPS; however, all posts are submitted to a review process and have been approved by the OPS before being posted. Comments are open to the public. New posts are added every Friday, so make sure to check back often!

 

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Ophthalmic Jeopardy!

Posted By Tim Bennett, Monday, April 3, 2017
Updated: Friday, May 12, 2017

In what’s become a bit of a tradition at OPS Mid-Year Educational Programs, I been invited to present Ophthalmic Jeopardy again in 2017. The mid-year is a great environment for this presentation, as the attendees are all together in the same lecture hall for the entire program. In short, I have a captive audience!

If you’ve never seen it, Jeopardy is an irreverent but truly educational event, loaded with audio clips, videos, and spectacular clinical images. Although it’s been presented several times at OPS meetings, it’s just a little different each time. I try to customize the content for each specific meeting and location, often pulling inspiration from topics that will be covered by other presenters earlier in the educational program. At every OPS lecture I attend, I often take notes looking for new categories and questions. I also get some great material from other OPS members who forward ideas and images to me after seeing Jeopardy in action.

Looking over the great lineup of speakers and topics scheduled for Pittsburgh, I’ve been able to choose some cool categories and begin writing questions. New or recent categories will include: Creepy Crawlies, Oma Gosh, and The ‘Burgh. Of course I’ll include some of the classics such as: Animal Kingdom, Celestial Bodies, Ex Girlfriends, Video Acuity, and OCT Rorschach Test.

Hopefully I’ll see you in Pittsburgh. I’ll be channeling my inner Alex Trebek as host of Ophthalmic Jeopardy - although it’s probably closer to the Will Ferrell’s SNL impersonation of Trebek! Ophthalmic Jeopardy is a fun, informative, and challenging way to learn. If you do attend the meeting, be sure to pay attention to all the great speakers/lectures in the Mid-Year program lineup. I’ve been known to sneak in questions at the last minute and see if everyone has been paying attention!

For more on the origins and evolution of Ophthalmic Jeopardy, check out my personal blog at: http://eye-pix.com/what-is-edutainment/

Tags:  2017  blog  cute  education  Educational Meeting  Ice Breakers  Interactive  Jeopardy  Meaningful Use  Mid-year  Pittsburgh  Special Events  Travel 

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Mid Year Meeting - 2017

Posted By Heather Carmello, CRA, OCT-C,COA & Don Kuitula, CRA, OCT-C, Monday, March 27, 2017
Updated: Friday, April 7, 2017

Hello Everyone!  

Welcome to Pittsburgh Pennsylvania! We will be having an indoor/outdoor reception to welcome you as attendees Friday evening following the meeting. This is a great opportunity to network, make new friends and see old friends. There will be a cash bar and light hors’doeuvres served in the restaurant and wonderful outdoor patio!

 

Image courtesy of wyndhampittsburgh.com  

 

 

Pittsburgh has many outdoor adventures and events to think about! There's kayaking on the northshore through Pittsburgh's venture outdoors (https://www.ventureoutdoors.org/kayak-pittsburgh-north-shore/). The Pirates may be out of town that weekend but you can walk along the north shore and see PNC park and Heinz Field home of the Steelers.

 

Image courtesy of Melanie Maxwell google search  

 

 

The free shuttle from the Wyndham will take you 3 miles around the hotel and let me tell you that will take you far. If you ask to go to Penn Ave in the strip you have food, shopping and a unique historical area to tour.

 

Image courtesy of madeinpgh.co  

 

 

Lastly if you just want to walk around the hotel vicinity there's Schenley park and plenty of unique food choices including Peace Love and Little Donuts!

 

Image courtesy of fineartamerica.com google search  

 

 

 

We look forward to seeing you there!

 

Heather Carmello,CRA,OCT-C,COA

General Chair, 2017

Mid Year meeting Pittsburgh,PA  

 

Don Kuitula, CRA,OCT-C

Education Chair, 2017

Mid year meeting Pittsburgh,PA

Tags:  blog  education  Educational Meeting  Mid-year  PDC  Pittsburgh  Special Events 

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Things to do while in Singapore

Posted By Alan Wee, Friday, February 3, 2017
Updated: Friday, February 3, 2017
Singapore is a great introduction to Asia, everyone speaks English, taxis are reasonable to travel around in, the streets are clean and SAFE (you can wander around alone pretty much anywhere at any time of the day), food is good and reasonable.  We are a major financial hub for South East Asia, so we have all nationalities here, in addition to the native Chinese, Malay and Indian population.  This means you can get anything from a fantastic grilled Japanese eel meal, craft brewed German beer, Swiss rosti, authentic Italian, Middle Eastern cuisine and pretty much anything in between.  Our multi-cultural background promises lots to see and experience.
 
 
First, around SNEC
 
You can get food around the hospital, but its still hospital food.  If you have some time, the surrounding areas have some gems.
 
Tiong Bahru Market
This is one of the oldest wet markets in Singapore.  If you stay around the SNEC area, make it a point to go to Tiong Bahru market in the morning for breakfast before the day's work starts and see how we locals start our day.  The first floor houses the stores that sell meat, fish, vegetables, spices and household items.  It's quite a special experience to walk around and take in the sights, sounds and smells.  
The second floor has all kinds of food stalls selling Chinese, Malay and Indian food.  Walk around the second floor and have a look at what the locals are eating before trying out something.  Good recommendations might be fried carrot cake (savory radish flour cake fried with eggs), traditional kaya jam on toast (sweet coconut jam), Soya milk made fresh (Teck Seng Soya Milk is the bomb! http://ieatishootipost.sg/teck-seng-soya-bean-milk/)
The Tiong Bahru area is slowly gentrifying so you find nice upmarket food options like the Tiong Bahru Bakery, PS Cafe, Open Door Policy etc.   There are a fair number of quaint shops to poke around in as well. 
 
Nylon Coffee Roasters
Widely recognized as one of the best coffee places in Singapore, they are owner-run and roast their own coffees in house.  Dennis and Jia Min take great pride in seeking out the best green coffees they can get their hands on and presenting them in a way that shows off the coffee's attributes.  They don't serve food but have lots of neighboring shops that do a nice meal. 
 
Highlander Coffee
These guys have probably been around a long time in the coffee scene.  They also serve their own house blend that is sensibly dark roasted and tasty. They have nice sandwiches and wraps.
 
There is a nice cluster of food places about 10 minutes from SGH that is worth exploring.

 

Man Man Unagi restaurant serves Japanese grilled eel.  They fly in live eels from Japan.  The head chef has 20 years of experience preparing unagi.  They dispatch the live eel in the window and grill it to order.   This rivals some of the best grilled eel meals you can get in Japan: crispy on the outside and meltingly soft on the inside.  Excellent stuff, but there is a queue that starts from 11:30am and doesn't really die down till 1:30pm or so.  Last orders for lunch are at 2:30pm. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Man-Man-Japanese-Unagi-Restaurant/185009705272373

 

Apiary ice cream is set up by 2 young guys and is 2 minutes walk from Man Man. Try my favorite Ferrero Rocher Ice cream which I happily drive across town for when the mood strikes.  Or they have an excellent selection of ice creams that they prepare in house.

https://www.facebook.com/apiary.sg/?fref=ts

The Botanist is an excellent coffee place that serves a refined lunch menu. It's botanical themed interior helps with escaping the heat as well!

https://www.facebook.com/botanist.sg/?fref=ts

 
There are also many excellent dining options on Keong Saik Street near SGH.

 

Burnt Ends is extremely well respected among the fine dining crowd and serves a really excellent lunch.  Not cheap but worth the money!
 
Smith Street, Temple Street, Mosque Street
This is an area of nearby Chinatown that is nice to explore for the shops and food along with the Chinese and Indian temples (for the shutterbugs).  You can spend a few hours wandering around, shopping and eating.  There are a whole cluster of shops on Temple Street that supply equipment to the F&B industry (Sia Huat, Lau Choy Seng), you can look inside and gawk at the huge size and variety of cooking tools & vessels and pick up some nice buys
 
Haji Lane, Arab Street, Sultan Mosque, NOX, MRS PHO
This area has lots of nice shops selling quirky interesting fashion, knick knacks and good food.  It is a traditional Malay area and houses the spectacular Sultan Mosque which you can visit and photograph. I'd definitely recommend checking this area out, it's a crowd-pleaser for both the guys and the girls.
  
NOX is an interesting concept (since we're all "eye" people).  It's a restaurant where you dine in pitch darkness and are served by visually impaired wait staff.  You can tell them what you don't eat, but otherwise everything served to you is a mystery which you then discuss with your dining friends and finally talk with the sighted wait staff at the end of the meal.  Quite an experience and you should make reservations.
MRS PHO is an authentic Vietnamese eatery that is cheap, good and comes complete with slightly rushed and brusque service.  I really like the food here.
 
 
Once the day's activities are done, some food recommendations to go try with friends:
 
Artichoke
These guys serve amazing food and are one of the more exciting culinary concepts around.  They serve modern Middle Eastern cuisine that has big flavors and makes people happy when they eat it. Definitely worth going in a group so you can try lots of stuff!

Nude Seafood
This place is run by a really passionate team with lots of heart.  One of the owners comes from a seafood trading background, so they have access to really excellent quality seafood.  They use modern cooking techniques and serve up seafood in very exciting and tasty ways (they smoke their salmon in-house and it tastes unlike any of the commercial stuff you might be used to) 
 
Chye Seng Huat Hardware
Contrary to the name, this is actually THE groundbreaking coffee establishment in Singapore.  They setup shop in a traditional industrial area (hence the name) and totally renovated the building.  It's now a hip cafe on the ground floor.  They have a coffee roastery and coffee academy on the premises.  At night, it's a buzzing craft beer spot. 
 
Night Safari and the Singapore Zoo
The Night Safari is something I recommend people check out, simply because there are not many night zoos around the world and I think we do a good job.  Most people will come about  7pm, but I recommend coming about  9pm and plan to leave by 11pm+ (it closes at  midnight).  You can take a tram around the zoo but there is sometimes a long queue.  The night safari is designed so you can walk and explore it as well.  It's fairly cool at night so this can be a nice option.
The Singapore Zoo is really good too if you can spare the time during the day to visit.

 

For the shutterbugs among us - here's a list of photo venues I highly recommend checking out!
 
Cultural: Little India, Chinatown:There are a good number of Indian temples and Chinese temples to take photographs at in addition to the authentic shops and eateries.
 
Tiong Bahru Market: In addition to the good eats around this place, there are also interesting market activities to take photos of. I like watching the fishmongers expertly fillet the various fishes using a big old Chinese cleaver. 
 
Architecture: One Fullerton gives a nice view of the marina bay and the Marina Bay Sands casino (looks like a ship on top of 3 buildings), you can also admire the Fullerton hotel which used to be the general post office during British colonial times.  Take a short stroll over to the Victoria Concert Hall and the Cavenagh Bridge for old British architecture. And then it's another short walk to explore the national gallery which is pretty big and always has a few exhibitions going on.
 
Flora & Fauna:  The Singapore Zoo is fantastic for the greenery and natural enclosures for the animals. The other good spots for greenery are the Gardens found nearby the bay, in addition to the Singapore Botanic gardens (a UNESCO heritage site). The botanic gardens are worth a visit because they are fairly accessible, and there are amenities like a cafe.  It's free to enter and explore but you can also arrange a small group and contact the botanic gardens directly and they might be able to host a small group to move around the gardens.

 

This is only the smallest sample of what Singapore has to offer visitors and I think you will enjoy your visit!

 

Google Maps is an amazing program - I was able to create a custom map of the different locations mentioned above. This map includes extra places to visit in addition to the places mentioned in the article. Look forward to seeing you all at ICOP!!

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Efo4VspCZ5n0A3HKZDFNplIkML4&usp=sharing

Alan Wee runs around for his work most of the time visiting hospitals and clinics in his role as a service and applications engineer with an ophthalmic equipment company. He manages to find time to explore the many eateries and interesting spots around Singapore.


Tags:  blog  education  Educational Meeting  ICOP  Singapore  Special Events  Travel 

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Discovering the OPS

Posted By John Hensel, Monday, December 12, 2016
Updated: Wednesday, December 21, 2016

There have always been two sides to me, the artistic and the scientific. As a professional photographer and artist based in Boston, I have passionately pursued my artistic side. Yet I've always found myself spending much of my leisure time reading about science, and imagining what it would be like to make a contribution in that field. So I was delighted to come across the field of Ophthalmic Photography. It offered the opportunity to apply my photographic knowledge to the pursuit of medical advances and to do something good in the world. I was so intrigued that I took the plunge, signing up for the OPS Annual Program to learn all about the field and see whether it could be a good fit for my passions (to make a long story short it was all that I hoped it would be!)

In prepping for the conference, I found the OPS Lending Library as well as the OPS Website to be wonderful resources that allowed me to learn the basics of eye anatomy and ophthalmic photography as I eagerly anticipated getting to the conference to learn more. Sarah Moyer Armstrong was extremely helpful, thorough and informative in her responses to my inquiries on course selection. With Sarah's advice I took the Crash Course, as well as intro courses and workshops on Fundus Photography, Fluorescein Angiography and OCT-A as well as the stunning course "Best of the Best". Upon meeting Sarah at the conference, her warmth, encouragement, and introductions were invaluable. I cannot thank her enough.

 

Myself with Sarah Moyer Armstrong, CRA, OCT-C, FOPS at the OPS Business Meeting (Photo by Alan Frohlichstein, CRA, FOPS )

 

Crash Course Class of 2016. It was a lot of fun! (Photo by Alan Frohlichstein, CRA, FOPS)

 

As a "newbie" I was amazed at the generous amount of hands-on and small group training, not to mention the one-on-one interactions I was able to have with experts in the field; a special thank you to Bob CavicchiSarah Moyer ArmstrongHouston Sharpe IIIHoang NguyenJim Soque and many others.

I also especially appreciated the combination of lecture courses with associated workshops as it satisfied my curiosity on the science/context/history and how it related to the "how to".

 

 Great Hands-on Training with Instructor Adeline M Stone, COT, CRA, CDOS (Photo by Alan Frohlichstein, CRA, FOPS)

 

There were also the fascinating special events such as the Scientific Paper Session and the reception where I was warmly welcomed by my instructors, fellow students, and committee members. I felt excited by the potential to join this community of highly engaged photographers.

And for a fun break and mixer, there was the photo scavenger hunt! Here is my team, literally embodying the OPS!

 

My Scavenger Hunt Team.  (Photo by Chuck Hamm, CRA, OCT-C)

 

Lastly, one particular highlight I will always remember… the incoming President Michael Kelly took the time to give a lecture in the Crash Course. He spoke of the fascinating detective work that goes into imaging difficult cases. I was intrigued by the iterative methodology of combining techniques and subtly altering standard methodologies to get to the bottom of unusual cases. He was speaking my language, and of my dreams to use my photographic knowledge to make a contribution to medicine/science and to helping patients.

 

Thank you Michael Kelly, FOPS (Photo by Alan Frohlichstein, CRA, FOPS)

 

I take my hat off to the incredible all-volunteer effort that produced a conference that was well organized, educational, welcoming, and inspiring. Thank you!

I also have some exciting news since returning home from the conference. I will be beginning my first Ophthalmic Photographer position at Massachusetts Eye and Ear in January, 2017! I can’t wait!

 

Bio: John Hensel has a BA in visual arts from Oberlin College. Currently he is a professional photographer, business owner, and artist living in Boston, MA. He is very excited to begin a career in ophthalmic photography!

Tags:  2016  AAO  blog  Chicago  education  Educational Meeting  Ice Breakers  Professionalism  Special Events  Study  Travel 

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History of the InterContinental Chicago

Posted By Kirsten Locke, Tuesday, September 20, 2016
Updated: Sunday, September 25, 2016

Now is the time to make plans for the Annual OPS Program in Chicago  

If you have managed to not attend the annual program in Chicago 2012 or 2014, you should strongly consider doing so this year. Besides the fantastic educational experience and valuable networking with coworkers and friends, the meeting hotel, the InterContinental is well worth a visit. If you have any interest in history, you can satisfy your curiosity in the photo gallery on the Upper Fifth Floor, take a swim in the original pool and visit many of the restored ballrooms. The hotel offers all the modern facilities within an elegant old-world frame work. Please take a few minutes to review the interesting history provided by the hotel.  

We hope to see you there.

History of the InterContinental Chicago

 

 

The InterContinental Chicago was built in 1929 by the Shriners Organization as the Medinah Athletic Club. The exotic gold dome originated as part of a decorative docking port for dirigibles before the Hindenburg disaster changed the country’s mind about the future of travel by blimp and the docking structure was never used. Years later, the building would lose several feet with the dismantling of an ornamental canopy on the small turret north of the dome. This chimney-like structure was originally intended to assist in the docking of these air ships, but was never used. Inside the dome a glass cupola and spiral iron staircase resembling the top of a lighthouse led down to the hotel’s upper elevator landing.                              

In the heart of the tower beneath, the club featured a twenty third floor miniature golf course, complete with water hazards and a wandering brook, a shooting range, a billiards hall, a running track, a gymnasium, an archery range, a bowling alley, a two story boxing arena, and a junior Olympic size swimming pool. All of this in addition to the ballrooms, corporate meeting rooms, and 440 guest rooms which were available for the exclusive use of the club’s 3,500 members and their guests.

 

 

The pool, with its blue Spanish majolica tiles and terra-cotta fountain of Neptune on its east wall, is one of the hotel’s few features which to this day remains virtually untouched. At the time of its unveiling, it was one of the highest indoor pools in the world, and its fourteenth floor location was heralded as a feat of engineering. Today it is commonly referred to as the Johnny Weismuller pool, a testament to the famous Olympic athlete and actor who trained in its waters. The rows of seats which remain on its western wall recall the days when swimming was a popular spectator sport.   

The elegant Grand Ballroom, a two story, one hundred foot long elliptical space, was decorated with Egyptian, Assyrian, and Greek ornamentation and surrounded by a horseshoe shaped mezzanine. In its center hung a 12,000 pound Baccarat crystal chandelier, the largest in North America.   The King Arthur Court, a far more masculine room built to function as the men’s smoking lounge, featured heavy timbering, stained glass, and a mural depicting the stories of King Arthur and Parsifal.

Because the club was originally built as a men’s club, there were only designated areas in which women were allowed. They were given a separate entrance and elevator to visit the Grand Ballroom for social gatherings or to access the Women’s Plunge, Lounge and Tea Room. At that time, the women also had access to an outdoor loggia overlooking Michigan Avenue and decorated to evoke the feeling of a Venetian terrace, perched high above the Adriatic Sea.  

When the club finally opened, it was criticized by many for its "wasteful extravagance,” although in time its eclectic mix of multicultural styles would become widely recognized as a genuine historical treasure. With only 32 percent occupancy upon its opening, many saw this elaborate fortress of excess as overly decadent, but it never failed to keep the architectural community talking.  

Although October 29th of 1929 would become known as the "Blackest Day in Stock Market History,” it would be another four years before the effects of this financial disaster would force the Shriners to file for bankruptcy. In 1934 they lost their beloved clubhouse, and in the decade that followed the building went through various incarnations, including a brief stint as residential apartments. In 1944 it began its life as a hotel, debuting as the Continental Hotel and Town Club, where Esther Williams would swim in the now famous pool. Subsequently it would operate under both the Sheraton and Radisson hotel chains. In 1961 the Sheraton expanded, adding a second tower just north of the existing building and bringing the northern boundary of the hotel all the way to Grand Avenue. During this era, the hotel featured an outlet of the popular Polynesian themed Kon Tiki Ports restaurant chain. A facade of lava rock adorned the northern wall along Grand Avenue, where today only a small section remains visible, tucked at the end of the balcony of Zest’s outdoor café. When the Radisson’s contract ended in 1983, the hotel’s name was changed back once again to the Continental. It would remain open for only three more years before finally closing its doors in anticipation of major remodeling and restoration.

 

In 1989, Intercontinental Hotels and Resorts purchased the property and it went through extensive renovations prior the grand re-opening in 1990. During that time, a former Medinah Club member heard of the renovation and donated a 1930 anniversary yearbook entitled "The Scimitar,” filled with photographs which would serve as reference for much of the work.  

In addition to the guestroom modifications, the balcony of the Grand Ballroom, which had long since been removed, was rebuilt to match its original design. The murals and gold leaf detailing on the room’s ceiling were restored by Lido Lippi, the same man who consulted on the restoration of the Sistine Chapel. On the ninth floor, which had at one time housed the shooting range and billiards hall, renovations included raising the floor two and a half feet to accommodate plumbing for additional guestrooms. In the public areas, designers paid painstaking attention to detail. Photographs of the original carpeting were enlarged and used to recreate its exact pattern, even making sure not to incorporate more colors than were originally available from the manufacturer. Initially, workers utilized a process called cornhusk blasting to strip away the many layers of paint from the marble walls in the Hall of Lions, as traditional sandblasting would have destroyed the intricate details of any etchings beneath. When it was determined that a single marble column would require close to a ton of ground corn cobs, restorers decided to scrub away the paint by hand. The two carvings of lions which were discovered underneath have become an emblem used throughout the hotel.  

When the Hotel Intercontinental Chicago opened its doors to the public in March of 1990, every step had been taken to return this classic beauty to its original splendor. The north tower, which had opened the previous year as the Forum Hotel, now operated as a separate property, although the two shared back-of-the-house facilities. While the Forum catered mostly to business travelers, the Intercontinental continued its tradition of elegance and attention to detail. A decade later, a second phase of renovations would unite the two once again. Remaining open this time during construction, a new entrance and a four story lobby were built, combining elements of both architectural styles. Its grand staircase, which ascends to the banquet space above, is lined with banisters bearing intricate cast bronze ornamentation. An illuminated rotunda is capable of changing colors and creating the illusion of twinkling stars against a night sky.  

Today, the Hotel Intercontinental Chicago is a world renowned destination hotel which embraces the contemporary traveler’s tastes while proudly acknowledging its own rich past. Occupying a prominent place in Chicago’s Michigan-Wacker Historic District, the hotel is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It features 807 guest rooms, over 40,000 feet of meeting and banquet space, and the largest fitness facility of all the downtown hotels.

The building’s creators, in a ceremony which took place on November 5th of 1928, placed within its cornerstone a copper box to commemorate its place in history. Filled with records of their organization, photographs of its members, a copy of the Chicago Tribune announcing the proposal of the building, coins, and other historic data, this time capsule remains sealed within the hotel’s limestone exterior. If given the opportunity to add to its contents, there would be no shortage of memorabilia, gathered over the near century which has passed since that day, to document the impressive evolution of this grand hotel.  

 

With the Medinah Athletic Club in the distance, an airship crosses over the Chicago Skyline circa 1929.

 

History and Images were graciously provided to us by the hotel for this purpose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tags:  2016  AAO  blog  Chicago  cute  education  Educational Meeting  Intercontinental  Special Events  Travel 

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