Graham Smith ARPS presented his retrospective “60 Years of
Following my Eyes” at our recent meeting. Graham has judged our competitions in
the past but this is the first time he has given a talk to our club.
60 years is a long time to maintain a hobby and Graham is
congratulated in so doing – the changes over that time are reflected in the
methods used in giving such a presentation. Imagine a presentation to
Storrington Camera Club in 1955. Would it be a magic lantern show or possibly
35mm (0r two and a quarter square) slides – with half of them the wrong way up
? Or would prints be handed round like we did in the presentation about the
Monaco Grand Prix a few years ago?
It being 2015 Graham was able to come along with his
presentation on just a memory stick to work on our laptop and digital projector–
all surely devices beyond science fiction in 1955.
The first half of Graham’s talk showed photographs from his
early life – I imagine they were scanned in from prints as they had that subtle
sepia-ish shade which I find so hard to get right in Lightroom. Photos of his
family reminded me, and I’m sure all of us, of family prints – ours are in shoe
boxes upstairs awaiting cataloguing which, in my case, I’m sure will never get
This evening we were very privileged to have Vanda Ralevska who gave us a talk entitled ‘Landscape Photography’, a very ordinary title for an extraordinarily evening full of many Ordinary things photographed Extraordinarily.
Vanda was born in Czechoslovakia in a very industrial and mining area which was dirty, noisy and smelly to use her own words. There was music in her home, but no art as such. However there was a family film camera which Vanda, when very young, opened with a film in it and was not popular! Later, when she was in her early ‘teens, her Father gave her her first camera, which she still has as a reminder of him. This marked the start of a remarkable journey.
Vanda studied I.T. and came to the UK to go to university. She now works as a programmer in London and calls England her home, She fell in love with it starting with her first sight of the 'White Cliffs' coming to England for the first time.
The whole evening was really a story of her life in pictures with lots of quotes from poets and other famous people to kick off her illustration of the topics and subjects which she photographs.
Two of our members had individual success at Saturday’s
County wide competition (18 clubs took part) and our team results were none too
The competition was held in Burgess Hill and although only 5
of our members went along to see the judging that was a better turn out than
many other clubs managed. The competition has 2 divisions – development and
open. It seems there is no particularly clear division between the 2 except
that anyone who holds an RPS distinction (or similar) must only take part in
the open division. The judges said they could not distinguish much difference
between the work in the divisions – I’ll leave you to draw your own
Roger Crocombe ARPS returned to us to give us a very detailed and well prepared talk on how we should approach any subject that we want to photograph by preparing ourselves in advance in a structured way. He showed us a series of slides showing the procedures which I will not try to repeat here as Roger said that he would make his talk available with slides on our website.
We were all sat round tables with about four of us at each with a set of forms which we then went on to complete as the evening went on. I felt like I was back at school especially as the evening progressed and the children became more and more noisy!
After Roger had run through his slides showing us the procedure we had to do a series of tasks starting with a brainstorming session where we all had to put our ideas for our next set subject competition 'The Ordinary Made Exraordinary' on 'post-its'.
This is when the noise started to kick off! From all our ideas we then had to agree on the best of our suggestions to build on, and so it progressed wth each team having to reveal its plan. The most bizarre was for 'a Camel train to be crossing a Viaduct', so look out Chessington Zoo!
The whole evening got everyone thinking and talking to each other with a lot of laughter and was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
“First catch your hare” – the famous recipe instruction applies equally well to Nature Photography – be the quarry animal, vegetable or mineral. Our nature photographers travel the world in search of great shots of elusive prey – some even venturing to Norfolk. Last night’s meeting showcased the club’s nature photography with the first half dedicated to the work of Derek Grieve LRPS with the second half of shorter presentations from four others.
Derek’s presentation was unlikely to appeal to arachnophobes, entomophobes or ornithophobes as creepy crawly followed creepy crawly interspersed with birds of every feather. And no aspect of their lives is hidden from Derek’s lens. I found myself humming along - “Birds do it, Bees do it, even educated flees do it” – can’t think why!
we met again for the start of a new season, and a new format for
Dunmall DPAGB joined us for the first time as our judge. Hailing from
Bexhill-on-Sea, he and his wife Sonia, who came along as well, are
very involved in the working of the Sussex Photographic Federation.
His photographic interests include music, fast cars, glamour and
sport! It was lovely to see some more new faces, and everyone seemed
to enjoy a fun evening, with humour in the photography and Paul's
comments. His style of judging was new to us, with a comments
session, then scoring of all the images at the end of each half. At
the end of the evening, he was keen to point out that he enjoys
judging because he loves to see other peoples pictures, and that he
also learns from the experience.
with the PI's in the first half (two from each member), there were 8
images scoring well. My image 'The Bluebell Wood' scored an opening
18, commended for the crop and framing with trees.
Ray, our vice-chairman, was in charge this evening as Chris is away with his family for a while.
He introduced our guest speaker, Lisa Beaney, who came to judge one of our competitions last season. Lisa hails from Steyning, and is a Wedding Photographer, together with her Husband Phil, and is an award winner in Wedding photography, Fashion and Glamour, and Portrait photography, together with an ARPS with the Royal Photographic Society. According to Ray she is ‘certified’ to instruct in Adobe Lightroom!
Ray had requested some images from our members for Lisa to illustrate how Lightroom could be used to enhance and improve them. She also used some of her own stunning wedding images to show us various aspects of the amazing way you can batch process a series of images, all taken in the same lighting conditions; storing your images; changing the perspective of buildings which appear to be falling over backwards, and do so many other things with your photographs. We were also shown how to use the many menus for all the many different things one can do.
Well here we are again, after what can only be described as a very mixed summer. The first meeting was very well attended and we welcomed six new faces, who we hope will join as members. I would ask them to come to some more meetings before they make their minds up, as the first meeting of the season is hardly typical. New folk are sometimes put off by the sight of big mounted prints. We are a bunch of friendly people who enjoy their photography, but who do not take things too seriously. Photography is to be enjoyed.
Our Chairman Chris kicked off with a very comprehensive run throughout the make up of the new season’s content. He told us of the new arrangements for our internal competitions and also a bit about our external comps. The subjects for the set subject competitions will be: ‘The Ordinary made Extraordinary’ for the PIs and ‘Minimalism’ for the prints, so that will make us all put our thinking caps on! Chris then introduced all the members of the Committee that were present, and included me as the Club Sage! I have always thought they were wise, not this one.
The meeting was not very well attended, but we welcomed a new member, David Richardson, who had been a member of the club in the 1990s. I arrived a little sad as I has heard that at least three members were leaving us, but left much happier.
Chairman Chris decided to kick off with the presentation of the cups.They were awarded as follows:
Edmunds APSA, EPSA, EFIAP/s, ABIPP, ARPS, APAGB joined us to judge our Best of Year. A very highly qualified photographer, he explained that his favourite set of letters was receiving recognition from the USA. He remarked on how many good strong images the club was fielding
for our best of year competitions, with a lot of monochrome. There
was a good selection, and a relatively narrow band of marks. At the
end of the evening Glyn showed us a real variety of his work, which
was a real treat.
started with the prints, with six being held back, and eight other
18s. Single 18 honours went to Anne Nagle for 'Harvest Mouse' a fun
critter in a typical pose with minimal depth of field, and Robert
Mitchell's 'The Storm Waits on Windmill Hill' a beautiful quality
sizeable print with the path leading in from one corner.
Would you like to know more? Take a look at our current programme to see what we get up to then either fill in our contact form, call our chairman Chris West on 01903 744571 or come along to our next camera club meeting.