Not the chairman’s notes
We started 2008 with Peter Morss A.R.P.S.showing us some excellent prints. Peter organises holidays but with so many comments about bad weather on his trips he didn’t sell them a strongly as he could!
Some of us ventured to North Mundham for the Chichester advanced workers exhibition which was superb. Some of the images on show were obviously taken on one of Peter Morss’ holidays. There were a variety of images on show and it was well worth travelling to see, it was also quite busy, the organisers should be pleased with the exhibition and the number of people who came to view it.
Our “touch of red” competition didn’t disappoint either, although some may have been taken aback by the marks. Our marking system works at its best when a decently wide range of marks is used, and Trevor Gellard F.R.P.S. certainly made use of the marks available to him. Often most of the entries score between 15 and 20 and we end the season with there being very few points between the winners and the rest of us. Our competitions would be helped if more judges could be persuaded to do the same as Trevor and spread the marks over a wider range. If you are feeling down about your marks in this competition take heart, nearly all of us were given at least one low mark, and some of us who are supposed to be good at this got some very low marks.
Looking forward we have some excellent evenings ahead of us with a mix of tutorials and top photographers showing us their work. And then there’s the competitions – I’m off to find some shadows now…
2007/08 Projected Image Competition No 3
As with all ‘Set Subject’ competitions this event caused some controversy. The criteria for the subject “A touch of red” had been clearly laid down well in advance by our Programme Secretary, who stated that “the colour red should appear only once in the image, this should be taken literally i.e. a red striped deck chair would be OK if it had only one red stripe! Likewise, if you have a picture of a field with one red poppy in it, fine, but one more poppy would disqualify it”.
Clear enough one would think but a few authors chose to ignore the requirement. Even the judge – Trevor Gellard FRPS – seemed to make a very liberal interpretation of the criteria and although not actually disqualifying images, did severely mark down a few that he thought were “pushing their luck”. The range of marks awarded (from 8 to 20) was much greater than in most competitions over the last few years, seldom going below 14. A greater spread does seem a more sensible practice.
The judge gave his appraisals with a fair amount of humour and although he had prejudged the images at home he clearly only decided on the marking after he had viewed the images on our club screen. 18 marks were awarded to images by Daisy Kane, Martin Tomes and Jean MacWhirter. The single image gaining 19 marks was ‘Common Tern’ by new member Roy Powell – well done Roy. Three 20s were given – ‘Eagle with Prey’ by Paul Hayward, ‘English Roses’ by Peter Michell and ‘Red Breasted Bee Eater’ again by Paul Hayward and this image was declared the overall competition winner. Congratulations Paul – a great achievement.
The total scores for the season at the moment put Jean MacWhirter in the lead with 107 marks, closely followed by Paul Hayward 105, David Burns 104 and both Mike Davison & Jane Cooper with 103 marks. There are also a number of members just 3 to 5 marks behind the leading group. The last 2 competitions (the final one being another of the dreaded ‘set subjects’) could easily completely change the winning order.
The last Newsletter was published before the results of the Sussex Photographic Federation Slide Convention were known. This took place on 2nd Dec and 16 clubs competed (down from 19 last year). Two years ago we came bottom (but won the raffle!) and last year 9th (jointly winning the Saxon Trophy for the ‘most improved Club’). This year we came 2nd just 2 points behind the winners Eastbourne who got 97 points. This was a great show by SCC as we are one of the smallest clubs competing. The event was a further triumph for our club when the winner of the Portman Cup was announced – this is awarded to the author of the best image in the competition – and was given to Jean MacWhirter for her ‘Gentoo Penguin & Chick’. In the 25 years that this cup has been awarded this is the only time that it has been won by a member of our club.
2007/08 Print Competition No 3
Our Judge Trevor Gellard, FRPS, a fine art dealer from Brighton and member of Brighton CC (Where the very elite Sussex photographers hang out), was a colourful character with Eric Morcombe specs and a sense of fun about him. He shook a few people (including me) with some very low marks by really marking out of 20, instead of a very narrow band of 15-20, as most of our judges do these days.
As a consequence he awarded only three 20s, one 19 and one 18. Fittingly enough, he awarded our chairman for the evening Martin Tomes with first place for his extremely skilful picture of red wine being poured into a wine glass entitled ‘A splash of Bordeaux’. It really was a very good photograph; however, Trevor said that he really would rather not have had to pick a winner as the other two 20s were also very good indeed. Mike Davison’s ‘Bottle bank’ was the next 20, which was of a log jam of plastic bottles being washed along in a stream or river with just one red one, and the other 20 was awarded to Peter Michell for one of his nude lady studies with the model holding a red rose. The lighting and subtle contrast in this picture were a delight to behold. Those top three pictures really were all exceptionally good.
The only 19 was awarded to Mike again with his ‘The red ‘Y’ fronts’, and the only 18 was given to newcomer Jim Hutchings with his ‘Red eyed Shelduck – Slimbridge’.
Very well done to them as well.
Then on to the en prints. We had them all displayed at once and Trevor picked the winning three pictures. 1st. Max Burns’ picture of a bright red balloon in front of a very Black and White skyscraper—a very eye catching picture. 2nd was a very nice picture of a field of poppies from Sue Worsfold, and 3rd. was another B&W print from Max Burns of a chilli in a glass. Max is a very new member, so very well done Max, as in one leap you are now second after ‘Little Jane’ in the competition.
Set subjects always cause a lot of controversy, especially with our Chairman Peter and his vice comrade Paul. However, Paul was in Australia and Peter was recovering form some minor surgery, from which we all hope he will recover quickly. So they were spared any distress!
The results after our third competition leave our Champion Ian in the lead, but with Mike Davison now snapping very closely at his heels, followed by Peter Michell. Martin Tomes and Daisy Kane follow at a safer distance, tying in fourth place. The Race is on.
The Regnum Print Competition
3rd November 2007
Considering the fact that we won this competition last year and were first equal the year before, the chances of winning once more were slim.
However, we started of well with Martin’s ‘Wing walker’ getting 17 marks. This was followed by Ian’s ‘Stranded Iceburg’ getting 20 and Peter Michell’s ‘Sam’ getting 17. Very good so far – at tea break we were 2nd following Chichester.
In round Four, Mike’s ‘In the shade’ got 19 and we were First equal with Chichester. We really began to smile.
The Judge had been remarking on bits of unwanted ‘stuff ’ in some of the prints, and having started off by telling us that he had never seen “a sharper picture of a Hibiscus in his life” as in our next picture, Daisy’s ‘Hibiscus Profile’, he then said he did not like the bits of green foliage round about the flower head, and proceeded to mark it right down with a 14. I personally think that they complement the picture and we all agreed that he had been very hard indeed with his mark. Finally, Ian’s ‘Fur Seals play fighting’ collected 19 and we ended up in 4th place with 106 points, behind:
- 1st Chichester with 113
- 2nd Mid Sussex with 111
- 3rd Steyning with 110
which all of us who attended thought was a very good show.