You could say that the doctors who are participating in the photography exhibit titled "The Healing Arts" have taken to heart the mantra "Physician, heal thyself."
Through the lens of a camera, each has carved time from his or her hectic schedule to immerse themselves in the nurturing and restorative benefits of artistic expression.
For Wichita ophthalmologist Paul Weishaar, photography offers a chance to get outdoors, spend time with other shutterbugs and commune with wildlife.
"There's an intensity about it, but it's a different kind of intensity," he said. "Part of it is the thrill of the hunt — to get a good picture, catch the right moment, the right light, the right composition."
Weishaar will have nine photographs in the exhibit that opens tonight at Larksfield Place, 7373 E. 29th St. North.
The exhibit was organized by Wichita cardiologist Donald Vine, who recently retired from the faculty at the University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, and Terry Asla, of Larksfield Place.
Other participating doctors are Sam Antonios, Kenneth Kovach, Chau Kovach, Randy Mijares, Sylvia Orozoco-Do, Herman Soloman and Darrell Youngman.
A reception will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. today in the Larksfield Place gallery and the exhibit will be up for public viewing through February.
This is the second photography exhibit by Wichita-area doctors at the retirement community; the first one was in 2008.
Vine, who's pursued photography as a hobby since he was a teenager, said the exhibit reveals considerable talent among the doctors. It's rewarding, he said, to have others enjoy your work and, sometimes, even to sell a piece or two.
"There are only so many places in your house you can hang the pictures you've taken," he said. "To get the feedback that someone likes your pictures enough to buy one is nice."
Vine's photos in the exhibit are black-and-white floral studies. It may seem strange to photograph flowers in black and white, but he likes the challenge of it.
"Have you ever watched TV without the sound? You get a different experience. If you take color away (from a photograph), then you're stuck with texture and patterns and space. Sometimes you see details that you miss in color."
Weishaar focuses primarily on landscape and wildlife in his photos, taking occasional trips to places like New Mexico, Alaska and national parks to get close to his subjects.
"We fly to a place where we're in front of grizzly bears to hike to a place where we're in front of a bunch of moose, and it's great fun to snap them and try to get the right photo," he said.
Besides the camaraderie he gets from being with like-minded friends, he also appreciates being outdoors.
"If I was sitting indoors, taking portraiture, for example, I don't think it would be as rewarding," he said.
If you go>
'the healing arts
What: Photography exhibit featuring works of 10 Wichita-area physicians
Where: Larksfield Place Gallery, 7373 E. 29th St. North
When: Opening reception 5-7 p.m. Friday. Show on view through February. Gallery hours 8 a.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Fri.
How much: Admission free. For more information, call 316-461-8501.