Last year a small group of SYPC members visited the North West Bristol Camera Club (NWBCC), in order to share with NWBCC some typical work of our SYPC members. This year on April 11th. 2017, NWBCC attended our club, in order to share with us some typical work of their membership. Effectively a reciprocal arrangement to share and exchange views. Without a doubt the latest evening was a complete success and SYPC was enthralled with the Professionalism, Enthusiasm, Quality and Range of the material presented. Below is a short summary of the 4 topics presented together with a small sample of the digital images.
Sandie Cox (ARPS,CPAGB) – Sandie is no stranger to our club, we have already seen Sandie as a judge in 2017 and in 2018 Sandie is scheduled to talk to us about one of her many Photographic Trips. Sandie presented a collection of ‘some’ of her favorite prints. We were fortunate as we were able to observe a judge critiquing her own work – fascinating. The prints were exceptional and it was clear that Sandie was most at home with her Natural History Wild Animal work, particularly the larger animals like Elephants and Cheetahs to name just 2. So we all look forward to seeing more of that in 2018.
Phillipa Crabbe – Phillipa treated us to a fascinating presentation of Macro ‘like’ bugs and insects. She did warn us before she started the presentation, but in truth they were all quite sweet and cuddly ! We saw a variety of quite beautiful bees, hover flies, butterflies and many other flying insects.
It was clear that Phillipa was enthralled with her topic and was both passionate and extremely knowledgeable about the whole subject. We were also intrigued that Philippa managed all these exquisite digital images, hand held with a small compact Canon camera. This just shows what can be achieved with patience and a passion. As we have said many times at our club it isn’t all about Pixels, but Composition and Patience plays a huge part.
Phil Jenkins – showed us about 20 digital images based in and around the Somerset and Dorset Railway Trust and the West Somerset Railway. One of the highlights of the presentation was clearly Phil at the controls driving a REAL Steam Train.
It was abundantly clear that Phil’s first love was as a Steam Rail enthusiast. His technical knowledge of the Steam Trains and their history was second to none. Phil’s enthusiasm was infectious so much so that I’m certain that some of us will be taking a trip to Minehead to explore the West Somerset Railway at first hand.
Ralph Snook (ARPS EFIAP DPAGB) –We also know Ralph quite well at SYPC as he has judged and presented to us before. Ralph walked us through an excellent set of digital images taken on a recent photographic trip to Bulgaria. Whilst presenting the images Ralph articulated a number of humorous stories about the frustrations associated with trying to capture fast moving birds (Hoopoe and Bee Eaters) and small mammals (Souslik). However that said the images were truly outstanding and as a presentation package it was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
SYPC holds an Annual Exhibition of Prints. This year we returned to Yate Library where our members have selected and displayed 43 framed prints. All these prints can be viewed by the public free of charge. The exhibition was opened on the evening of March 27th. and will be available to view, in Yate Library, from March 28th. until April 22nd.
This year we invited Cllr. Matthew Riddle to open the exhibition. Cllr. Riddle is the leader of South Gloucestershire District Council and the Councillor for Severn. As well as formally declaring the exhibition ‘open’ Cllr. Riddle was asked to review the prints on display and to select his favourite 3. The winning print, selected by Cllr. Riddle, will form the basis of the cover on our 2019 annual handbook. Additionally the winner will have their prints displayed in ‘pride of place’ at our annual exhibition in 2019.
Cllr. Riddle reviewing some of the Prints on display
Cllr. Riddle complimented the membership on the variety and high standard of the prints on display.
His favourite 3 prints (in reverse order) were –
3d. place – The Copper Coast by Dave Bruten
2nd. Place – The Sermon by Pete Atkins
1st. Place – They come in all Sizes by Eileen Scantlebury
Please come along and view the prints and leave any comments in the visitor’s handbook, the book will be in a prominent position. The exhibition will remain on display for 4 weeks until April 22nd.
Throughout the year SYPC have a schedule of 6 bi-monthly competitions, where members can optionally submit 2 prints and/or 2 digital images. All the bi-monthly competitions provide an excellent opportunity for members to hear an experienced judge assess their prowess, both technically and artistically. All our members are welcome, indeed encouraged, to participate in the competitions as it is an excellent way of showing their work to others, and of getting constructive feedback from a competent judge.
Sandie Cox (ARPS, DPAGB) was the external judge for our 2017 Bi Monthly Round 2 competition. Sandie critiqued and constructively commented on 76 images submitted by our members. After selecting her favorite image, from each pair of images and explaining why she preferred that image, Sandie then selected her Top 8 Digital and Top 8 Prints announcing the results in reverse order.
Below is a Table of the Top 8 images for the Print and Digital Image sections together with their authors.
|Round 2 Prints
|Wild West – General Store
|Early Morning Light
|The Bard’s Resting Place
|Ooo I Do Like This Ride
|Sleeping On The Job
|Round 2 Digital Images
|A Day At Didcot Railways
|Me and My Phone
|Stothert and Pitt Model Beam Engine
|Clearing mist at sunrise
Below – is the first place Digital Image –
“A Day At Didcot Railway” by Rob Webb
And a digital copy of the first place Print –
“Lakeland Barn” by Adrian Smithson
Additionally the Top 8 Digital Images and a copy of the Top 3 Prints can be seen in the Competition Tab of this website.
Roger opened the evening by taking photographs of club members preparing for this much anticipated evening. He also shot a short video of members sat together in the audience. Roger then proceeded to give a series of short but gripping lessons on how to prepare these images for inclusion in an Audio-Visual display using the wildly available software PicturesToExe.
Roger covered every aspect of the process. He also gave us very clear and concise advice about the laws relating to audio copyright.
The audio for this evening of AV preparation came from none other than our very own Club Secretary Clive Rushton.
It was wonderful to be able to see and enjoy the finished product. Roger started the evening with nothing, but ended it with an A-V that we were all part of. Members thoroughly enjoyed being part of this unique A-V creation.Roger’s experience, calm patience and humor took away much of the mystery surrounding the creation of an audio-visual presentation to a professional standard. He clearly inspired many members to have a go at producing their own audio-visual presentations.
The evening closed with one of Roger’s personal audio-visual presentations, the hugely entertaining and very funny A-V – ‘The Street’.
Visit http://www.wnsoft.com/en/picturestoexe/help/ for more tutorials and guides to picturesToExe.
Derwood went back to his hobby of photography with a vengeance after retiring just 5 and half years ago. He developed his interest in portraiture armed with just a Nikon D80 and a spare bedroom. He quickly progressed from what he described as ‘Basic’ images to what we in the audience would consider as complex and compelling.
Derwood showed digital and print images from his performance photography collection that captured the essence of all that is graceful and emotive in ballet. His images were characterised by light, graceful movements that were captured at just the right moment.
We also enjoyed a selection of photographs that were captured using models photographed in a wide range of derelict environments such as a disused swimming pool that has been preserved as a studio and other derelict factories. Some of these images were inspiring examples of what can be achieved using gentle compositing skills.
Another outstanding evening that was enjoyed by members of all different ages and abilities.
You can see more of Derwood’s work by visiting his website using this link: http://www.derwoodphotography.com/
Come back soon Derwood!
Who could possibly have known, following the intentional beaching of a small fleet of semi-redundant timber lighters (boats) in the winter of 1909, to strengthen the nearby eroding canal bank, that the Purton Ships’ Graveyard would eventually number some 81 vessels and in turn represent the largest collection of maritime artefacts on the foreshore of mainland Britain today.
We were treated to a wonderful narrative and pictorial display of the fascinating history of the ships that were part of the fabric of the area, so many of the ships wrecked in Purton have their own unique history.
A history that Paul and his volunteer colleagues are investigating and documenting for future generations. Sadly the site, as it stands, has no legal protection and it is this that has culminated in the formation of the Friends of Purton, a dedicated group of like-minded individuals who, through an ongoing quest, hope to secure these remains of archaeological interest.
A wonderful and truly inspirational talk that was supported by a fantastic collection of photographs that served to remind us all of days gone by and people who worked and lived on the vessels featured during this exceptional evening.
Another active members’ interest evening at which we were treated to a summary of the work and output from the special interest groups that form part of our Club.
First up was the ‘Thursday Morning’ Photoshop group. Our President, Ray Grace ARPS DPAGB gave an example of how a digital photograph can be manipulated in Photoshop in order to improve light, shadow and clarity. Ray also showed us an example of a photograph that had been altered to include an alternative sky.
This was followed by some captivating audio-video presentations that had been created by the leader of our AV group, Brian Pountney. Brian also showed us the amazing transitions that can be used in the software that the group use – Picturestoexe8.
The evening continued after the break with some stunning examples of images that had been captured using long exposure techniques. Mark Seaman and Hugh Jones showed the club how images can be captured in a unique way by the use of long exposures and Neutral Density filters for landscape and river or water photography, where colors can be transformed, and running waters can be viewed in a totally different way to which we are use to seeing it.
Kevin James rounded off the evening with a display of printed images from his magnificent portrait portfolio. Kevin shared the steps he takes to capture his amazing images and the papers, inks and printer that he uses. Kevin also spoke about lighting and his preferred image manipulation software – Photoshop Elements.
The Club enjoyed yet another ‘Full House’ for this much anticipated members evening. The session began with a discussion about possible locations for a club week or weekend of photography. Iceland, Barcelona, Venice and Bath were some of the places given consideration. Nothing has been arranged or confirmed as yet.
Members formed into small groups to discuss portrait, close-up, still life and action shot scenarios. The groups fed-back their conclusions and the things that they had learnt about setting up their cameras to the defined scenario and hence how they will capture better images in the future.
The evening closed with a discussion about composition that included tips on the importance of lead-in lines, exposure mode and focus points.
Another welcome visit from local historian Jim Elsworth. Jim took us back to the time when Chipping Sodbury was established as a new market town, then onto the events and historical highlights that contributed to the establishment of at least 22 public houses that served and supported events and people such as the drovers that travelled through Chipping Sodbury from Wales to London, the 60 American servicemen that were stationed in the town, and the huge crowds that were regular visitors attending not just the market days and hunts, but also special events such as Harold MacMillan’s visit to the town.
Jim’s presentation included an overview of the style of properties built in the town and the effect that events such as the Great Fire of London and Georgian fashion had on existing and new buildings.
Whist Jim isn’t a practicing photographer, he enthralled members with a combination of his charming and informative manner and his wonderful collection of photographs, digitised film, extensive knowledge and a fascinating copy of a medieval features map that all served to create a thoroughly enjoyable and interesting evening.
Members were treated to a pleasurable and fascinating visual journey through the countryside and towns of Bavaria. This was a trip inspired by a travel guide, but a trip that included fascinating images of the unique architecture of the area.
David Burnett supported his images with a very interesting dialog that included not only a commentary about modern Bavaria, but also many interesting historical events relating to some of the earliest European settlements, Roman times, winemaking, the German Unification Movement of the 1870 and of course, the legacy of German National Socialism.
The journey began with images that had originally been captured on slide film and successfully been transposed to digital. We then travelled digitally through wine making regions and towns of historical interest. We even visited the location of scenes from the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang!
Another wonderful evening of captivating images and commentary which was thoroughly enjoyed by club members and visitors alike.
The guide that inspired David is ‘Back Road Germany, an eyewitness guide.’
The towns featured in David’s photographs were:
Hochheim, Wiesbaden. Kiedrich, Schloss Johannisberg, Rudesheim.
Braunfels. Konigsstein, Bamberg. Bayreuth. Ansbach, Nuremberg.
othenburg ob der Tauber.