2022 – Bi-Monthly Round 3 Results – May 23rd.

Throughout the year SYPC have a schedule of 6 bi-monthly competitions where members can optionally submit 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, 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.
Unfortunately, our scheduled external judge wasn’t available and at short notice we turned to our SYPC President, Ray Grace (ARPS DPAGB), who “volunteered” to lead the critique of the images and judge our projected digital submissions via a Zoom meeting. Ray’s prowess and proficiency at Photography, Post Processing and mentoring is second to none. He is well known within the photography community, we are very lucky to have him as our President at SYPC and for him to be our judge for Round 3.
Ray critiqued and constructively commented on 30 images submitted by our members, giving each author potential areas for improvement and tips on the processing necessary to improve. After selecting his favourite image from each pair of images and explaining why he preferred that image this set of 15 were submitted into the next Round for consideration as winners.
Ray had also submitted two of his own images to this Competition but it was the turn of the members to critique Rays 2 images and select their favourite to move into the next Round.
Ray then selected his Top 8 images and the members voted where Ray’s image sat within the 30 images in that Round. Giving us a Top 9 images.

Below is a Table of the Top 9 images and their authors..

Round 3 Digital Image TitleAuthorPlace
Leopard 1Annette Wakefield 1st. Place
Harbour DuskJohn Portlock2nd. Place
SerenityRay Grace=3rd. Place
Freezing FogEric D’costa=3rd. Place
Collecting PollenPeter Alford4th. Place
Spooky GraffitiEve Aylott5th. Place
Early DaffsKevin James6th. Place
FrozenDavid Clarke7th. Place
Walking in the landscapeLinda Parker8th. Place

Below are copies of the Top 3 Projected Digital Images.

1st Place – “Leopard1” by Annette Wakefield
2nd. Place “Harbour Dusk” by John Portlock

=3rd. Place “Freezing Fog” by Eric D’Costa

=3rd. Place “Serenity” by Ray Grace

Additionally the Top 8 Digital Images and a copy of the Top 3 Prints can be seen in the Competition Tab of this website at –http://www.sypc.org.uk/gallery/index.php/2016-Competitions/2022-Competition-Results/2022-Bi-Monthly-Round-3-Digital-Images

7th April 2022 – Cate Barrow – “Finland”

Last Monday evening Cate Barrow joined us with her new talk “Wild Life in Finland”. Cate has been to SYPC on 3 other occasions with talks on Nature and Butterflies in the UK and an awe-inspiring talk on Underwater Photography. This new talk on Finland didn’t disappoint one tiny bit, on the contrary it was outstanding photography taken at times in unbelievable and demanding circumstances.


Cate had split the talk into the seasons –
• Part 1 – Wild Life Finland in the Spring and Summer
• Part 2 – Wild Life Finland in the Autumn and Winter
. Clearly this second section was also Cate’s favourite as she commented “you will not be disappointed” and we weren’t.

The talks were centred around Northern Finland in an area of Lakes and outstanding beauty called the Vaala. Here Cate had the opportunity to photograph, Ospreys and their Chicks, Three Toed Woodpeckers, Divers both Black and Red Throated, Black Grouse Lek, Capercaillie Lek and Musk Rats. Another area that Cate was keen to visit, but was very close to the Russian border is Martinshelkonen. This area would give her the opportunity to photograph the European Brown Bear and Wolverines . More Bears and Butterflies were to be found at another venue Lieksa.

How does Cate capture her ‘up-close’ shots of Ospreys? In hides where she will spend all day in searing heat, outside the hide is an area infested with mosquitoes (so dare-not venture out) and minimal toilet facilities within. If she isn’t at the top of a hide on stilts she is semi submersed in a floating hide taking shots of divers. Some hides are just canvas and in frozen conditions Cate wants to capture fantastic images of Black Grouse, Divers and the Capercaillie. An unbelievable uncomfortable and demanding environment – but the results achieved made up in spades for all that discomfort.


The second half moved to the Autumn and Winter season. Whilst the mosquitoes may have gone, Cate now has to contend with the cold (at one point -27degrees C), short days (about 6 hours of light) and the cold, ice and snow makes it difficult travelling around, but that didn’t deter her.
This part of the talk was centred around Oulu, Vaala and Kajanni, here Cate was captured stunning shots of Nutcrackers, Waxwings, Northern Hawk Owls, Golden Eagles and Goshawks.
Moving on to Kuhmo and Karelia where Cate was looking to capture Pine Grosbeak, various woodland birds, Red Squirrels, Ermine, Wolves and Wolverines in the snow– again another successful capture although Cate admitted that sometimes the light was grey and dull. On another trip to a “cold” hide this time no heat so 2 a hour stint capturing the birds was as much as Cate could cope with. All the shots were mesmerising but the ones of the rare white ermine stoat captured in the snow was without doubt one of our favourites.

One shoot Cate mentioned that must have tested her patience was trying to photograph the Wolf. Cate was sat in a cramped hide for 3 days to photograph the European Wolf but only managed a few photographs.
Then onto the Kussamo and Posio regions and an 8 hour drive to see “Monster” Black Woodpeckers, Willow Grouse, Great Grey Owls, Norther Hawk Owls and of course the Northern Lights.
This was an outstanding evening of Nature Photography taken in extreme weather conditions by a dedicated Cate Barrow.

For More information please have a look at Cate’s website –

https://www.catebarrow.co.uk/
Cate will be returning to Finland to refresh her work and gain even more shots of summer wildlife in the Vaala area and hopes to also go to the Martinshelkonen region for the Brown Bears.

We look forward to seeing Cate Barrow at SYPC for her 5th talk and even more stunning shots from Finland


2022 – Round 2 – Bi-Monthly Results – March 28th.

Last Monday night we held our second Bi-Monthly Competition for the year. All our members are encouraged to submit entries to our Bi-Monthly Competitions as we gain valuable constructive critique from the experienced judges we invite to judge and evaluate our submissions. Unfortunately during this time of continued Video Links and the difficulty handling prints when we aren’t meeting Face to Face, these competitions are only for Projected Digital Images.

This was an Open competition so no theme. Each member can submit 2 digital entries which the judge assesses and comments on. The judge chooses which image of the pair moves forward to the next Round from which the judge then selects their favourite Top 8 images, basically the winners. Kirsty Ralfs (ARPS), was our Round 2 judge. Kirsty is a professional photographer and through the power of Zoom was sat in her office in Herne Bay.

Kirsty evaluated 32 of our members images all her comments were helpful and constructive she is clearly a lady that has a passion for photography. With each image she brought out the good to great areas and offered suggestions for improvement – all of which were gratefully received.

Thank you Kirsty (ARPS), we thoroughly enjoyed your approach to judging, wish you well in your photographic journey and perhaps you will return to us again as a judge or presenter.

Below is a table of the Top 8 Images and their authors chosen by Kirsty Ralfs

Round 2 Digital Image TitleAuthorPlace
River WharfeRay Grace1st. Place
York MinsterRichard Parker2nd. Place
The BoatmanAnnette Wakefield3rd. Place
Singing His Heart OutGraham Harlin4th. Place
Enchanted GardenEve Aylott5th. Place
Blea TarnAlan Connor6th. Place
Wareham misty dawnStuart Lewis7th. Place
Museum StairsLinda Parker8th. Place

Below are copies of the Top 3 Digital Images

1st. Place “River Wharfe” by Ray Grace
2nd. Place “York Minster” by Richard Parker

3rd. Place “The Boatman” by Annette Wakefield

Additionally the Top 8 digital Images selected by Kirsty can be found here – http://www.sypc.org.uk/gallery/index.php/2016-Competitions/2022-Competition-Results/2022-Bi-Monthly-Round-2-Digital-Images

At the moment SYPC hasn’t returned to Face to Face meetings. We continue to use Zoom for all our club meetings. However we monitor the situation regularly and hope to return to Face to Face meetings in the very near future.

14th March 2022 Sally Sallett – “Never underestimate an old woman with a camera”

On Monday evening Sally Sallet (ARPS CPAGB AFIAP BPE3) was our guest speaker with her talk “Never underestimate an old woman with a camera”. An interesting title but in fact the talk is really about Sally’s photographic journey and impressive it is as well. Sally’s talk really concentrated on the last 12 years of her life – or put another way, ever since she took Photography more seriously when she joined a local camera club. However, Sally has always taken pictures starting very young with the trusty black plastic Brownie 127. A camera that many of us had as our introduction to taking pictures.
At Sally’s second visit to her Camera Club (Wakefield), in 2011, she entered an A4 print competition – and her early morning canal picture was voted FIRST place. The competitive nature is immediately apparent and what an encouraging start to her journey with her new Camera Club.


Sally has become quite renown for her “arty” flower pictures but claims not to like or do Studio, Sport and Action, Landscape, Wildlife, and Birds. Despite that claim we then saw pictures from Studio, Sport and Action, Landscape, Wildlife, Birds and all the topics that Sally doesn’t really like! Sally summed up her likes and dislikes by stating that she doesn’t really like things that move, so perhaps this explains her love of statues, objects, still life, flowers and well-presented graphic Graffiti.
Insects was a topic she enjoyed during lockdown so we were treated to Macro and Close-ups of Butterflies, Moths, Ladybirds, Flies (greenbottles) and Dragonflies. During this section Sally displayed her pictures as Panels and groups –probably a throwback from her successful RPS panel submissions.
Sally continued to take us through more areas that she “doesn’t like to do” but by now we had all worked out how competitive by nature Sally really is, if there is a Competition, no matter what the topic, she will enter it.


A visit to an area she previously lived in was an interesting set of images. Over a period of about 2 days the whole street was converted into a Victorian scene for a BBC Drama, complete with horse drawn carriages. The Mono pictures captured by Sally created a typical Victorian scene.
Iphone pictures played a part as well – a picture from Skipton of a narrow road lined with blue bins – this picture has been accepted in exhibitions and won a FIAP ribbon. So, the message from Sally is “never underestimate a Phone picture”.
Flowers are now beginning to creep into her talk, which is clearly Sally’s passion. Some interesting pictures using the Pep Ventosa technique – where the photographer walks around the subject taking pictures, then in post processing they are stacked in layers and blended. An interesting result.
Ragged Victorians was another topic that has served Sally well in Competitions.
Still Life and her love of “arty” flowers– Sally’s passion and you can see why.


Finally, we move onto the section where Sally explains her awards and distinctions –
• 2013 her LRPS Panel
• 2014 CPAGB awarded – even here one of the pictures was from an Iphone
• 2016 ARPS – a flower theme of 15 A4 prints
• 2017 BPE3 was awarded
• 2017 AFIAP – including a PSA Gold medal

I quote from Sally –
“I get as much pleasure from FAFFING about with images in post-Production as taking them”.
Sally – likes to win but then her ethos is “it’s photography, enjoy it, it is fun, Oh and by the way I shoot everything”’
The whole evening reminded me of the CatchPhrase –

“Jack of all trades and master of none” – in Sally’s case this is turned on it’s head and becomes “Jack of all trades and master of them all”…

If you enjoy photography, no matter what the topic this talk is for you. It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening, the comments from our members was a clear indication how much it was enjoyed by all. Let’s hope we can see Sally at SYPC with her next talk about the 2 years in Lockdown.

For more about Sally – https://wakefieldcameraclub.org.uk/photo-gallery-page/sally-sallett/

21st. February 2022 OLIVER HERBOLD – “A landscape Photographer and the Lockdown”

On Monday evening Oliver Herbold was our guest speaker. Oliver was also our guest speaker in January 2021 with his talk “Long Exposure Photography” (See our report at – http://www.sypc.org.uk/2021/01/18th-january-2021-oliver-herbold-long-exposure-photography/). We enjoyed that first presentation so much we wanted to see his latest talk on how a Landscape Photographer coped when not able to enjoy his craft through the recent Covid-19 enforced Lockdowns.
During lockdown travelling was prohibited and Oliver decided to seek new opportunities and challenges that would take him out of his comfort zone and so leave behind his passion for Landscape photography to seek challenges closer to home.


Oliver initially turned to Macro Photography and a 100mm Macro Lens that he hadn’t really used since it was purchased second hand many years ago. Oliver’s initial attempts eventually delivered a unique image of the tip of a wood screw with a water droplet containing a reflection of a can of WD40. Unique!

Already Oliver found that he could address his passion of digital art but now applied to a unique Macro approach. Dandelion seeds with water droplets were his next project. However Oliver wasn’t satisfied with the results so moved to larger objects for his water droplet refractions. When these larger refractions were perfected Oliver moved back to the Dandelion Seeds and other household objects to produce quite stunning results for his “Macro Abstract Art”.

Taking Refracted light to another level, Oliver demonstrated another set of effects with light moving through air and water with more household items.


Next Oliver took a short walk around his wooded area to photograph wild flowers but unusually with a 400mm Prime lens! The benefit of the long lens was to compress the background to produce a smooth effect, the downside was the 3.5 metre minimum focus distance – good eyesight needed !

The second half commenced with some Night Sky Wonders and here we had another treat. Oliver’s plan was to photograph the arch of the Milky Way over May Hill. A real challenge as the area has a large amount of light pollution. These images were accompanied by a Time Lapse of about 2 hours taken on a separate camera whilst Oliver was working on his more conventional shots.


Our next example was a Panorama of 48 images to capture the sky and foreground of the River Severn horseshoe from Symonds Yat Rock. These images were blended to reduce noise.



Lockdown temporarily over – so Oliver return to his passion of travelling to take landscapes and seascapes and adding his magic of digital art.


“Magic” Mushrooms now in the Forest of Dean. These mushrooms appear to have light emanating from the inside. Stunning yet again. Technical details on ‘how to’ can be found on Oliver’s You Tube Channel.

“No matter how long a lockdown last – It will always come to an end” – Oliver Herbold 21/02/2022 at SYPC.

An outstanding evening of fantastic images and techniques. His willingness to share the “how” and “where” and “why” just made the whole evening a memorable experience.
Thank you Oliver – we look forward to your 3rd. visit to SYPC.
Oliver’s website can be found at – https://www.herboldphotography.com/




2022 – Round 1 – Bi-Monthly Results – February 14th.

Last Monday night we held our first Bi-Monthly Competition for 2022. All SYPC members are encouraged to submit entries to the Bi-Monthly Competitions as we gain valuable constructive critique from the experienced judges we invite to these sessions. Normally our Bi-Monthly competitions have 2 categories, Prints and Projected Digital Images and members can submit 2 pictures in each category. Unfortunately during this time of continued Video Conferencing and the difficulty of safely handling Prints, when we aren’t meeting Face to Face, our Bi-Monthly Competitions are only for Projected Digital Images.

For the 1st. Bi-Monthly competition of 2022 there was no theme as it was an “Open Competition”. Caroline Preece was our judge. Caroline was a new judge to SYPC but she made such an impact we will be hoping to persuade her to return and judge again for us. The unique and constructive style Caroline used to suggest potential improvements was well received. Using the “Mark Up” facility within Zoom we were able to see immediately the areas that could be improved.

Caroline commented constructively on 34 digital images, for each image she was able to identify areas to improve the story and composition, perhaps declutter or simplify and many other constructive suggestions.

Thank You Caroline, we look forward to seeing you later in the year with your talk “Tools not Rules” and hopefully a return to SYPC in 2023 as a judge.

Below is a table of the Top 8 Images and their Authors

Round 1 Digital Image TitleAuthorPlace
Tea BreakJohn Portlock1st. Place
Whitby BayRichard Parker2nd. Place
Harbour WallLinda Parker3rd. Place
Taking a BreakGraham Harlin4th. Place
WatersplashPeter Range5th. Place
Harvest MouseAnnette Wakefield6th. Place
West Burton FallsRay Grace7th. Place
Bubble of JoyEve Aylott8th. Place

Below are copies of the Top 3 Digital Images

1st. Place – “Tea Break” by John Portlock

2nd. Place “Whitby Bay” by Richard Parker

3rd. Place “Harbour Wall” by Linda Parker

Additionally the Top 8 digital Images selected by Caroline can be found here – http://www.sypc.org.uk/gallery/index.php/2016-Competitions/2022-Competition-Results

At the moment SYPC hasn’t returned to Face to Face meetings. We continue to use Zoom for all our club meetings. However we monitor the situation regularly and hope to return to Face to Face meetings in the very near future.

January 24th. 2022– ANDREA HARGREAVES (FIPF, MPAGB, BPE3, EFIAP/b) – “Art of Metamorphosis (Part 2)”

What an outstanding and totally immersive evening of “Fantasy” pictures we were treated to on Monday night. Andrea Hargreaves joined us last April with her Part 1 talk on “Metamorphosis”. We immediately asked her to return with her follow up “Metamorphosis Part 2” talk and it was that “Part 2” we saw on Monday. We were not disappointed one tiny bit.

Over a relatively short period of time Andrea has had an unbelievable Photography journey. Her first DSLR was purchased in 2008. Since then she has achieved numerous Distinctions and Accolades and last year she received a FELLOWSHIP of the Irish Photographic Federation 2021. Just look at the timeline and her major achievements below.


Andrea Hargreave’s photography challenges everyone’s idea of a comfort zone within the world of photography. Indeed we are well and truly immersed in a truly impressive world of creativity, imagination and photographic art.


Andrea has continuously demonstrated a real determination to learn what is required to take an originally straightforward photo which most club photographers would be more than pleased with and develop an idea into her fantasy world. Countless examples were on show in this latest presentation to SYPC emphasising that no one should be at all surprised by the number of accolades that have come her way.


I’m tempted to say that we were privileged to witness work of true genius.
Particularly impressive was her determination not to take the first image as almost the finished article. Far from it this would merely be the starting point.


We were constantly reminded that every part of each image was in fact her own work and that she had photographed every item included as well as the textures and backgrounds. But that is not enough for this photographer and so she creates her own brushes, too. Because Andrea only works with her own photos and other elements her library is extensive and can be adapted for all future photographic ideas.

Andrea loves her art and continues to take it to the next level. Her enthusiasm is infectious and her fantasy images absolutely outstanding and second to none. Typical of Andrea’s perfection and always striving for the next level is the little video she has created as part of her fantasy world of Dragons.
I commend all of Andrea’s work to you, explore her website, it can be found here – https://www.andreahargreaves.art/

17th January 2022 – Ken Scott (ARPS APAGB MBPsS) “All in the Mind”

Last Monday (January 17th. 2022) we were privileged to welcome Ken Scott (ARPS, APAGB, MBPsS), with his different thought-provoking talk “All in the Mind” or as Ken called it an “An Introduction to Photosycology”. To call the session a talk doesn’t do this particular presentation justice; it was much more than that, it was both fun, interactive as well as thought provoking and the beginning of a learning experience. Ken trained as a Psychologist and became passionate about photography over 40 years ago. He became fascinated when he realised that his academic training related to the art of photography. He was able to bring his Psychology into his Photography wanting to understand such questions as-
How and why, do we see what we see and why do we see these things differently
• How and why do we respond to photographs in a particular way

The initial premise is that Photography is a representation of what we see and we see an image through our own eyes/minds and filters. We also have barriers to seeing objects and images (too much data = overload if we were to take it all in), we make judgements as to what is interesting or important.
If, when we go out to take photographs and we go with a mind to take a specific type of photograph and we fail to find that image we will have missed lots of other opportunities. We would have conditioned ourselves to only look for a particular composition and if we don’t find it then we end up disappointed. Ken doesnt go to a location with the sole purpose of taking a particular photograph.


Photography is about an experience and you “feel” the moment and make memories. If one of our images has captured that moment then when we look at that image some time later we will immediately be able to “feel” that experience again. That works well for our images viewed by ourselves but we need to find a way of having others look at our images and feel or identify our experience. Not an easy thing to achieve.
During this first half we were introduced to several thought provoking and interesting concepts including
1 – Forms and shapes that are relaxing
2 – leading lines that draw us
3 – barriers that stop us
4 – colours that influence us – Red is hot and passionate whereas Orange is warm and yellow cheerful, blue cold
5 – white borders on a print that appear to darken the image
6 – large borders on a digital image can have a detrimental effect – small strokes don’t.

In the second half Ken continued to teach and encourage us to participate –
Themes we covered included–

1 – Perception – and recognising emotion in people – faces allow you to connect and the eye is the window to the soul.
2 – Expressions – include anger, rage, happiness suspicion and pride – all easily identified through facial expressions
3 – Symbols – offer perceptions and meanings for example. A picture of keys in a door – does this offer freedom when the door opens or safety and comfort when closed
5 – We can identify who we are by objects.
6 – How we see ourselves and are perceived by others

The above is just a short summary of some of the areas Ken covered. What made this talk so fascinating was the way that the whole group (on zoom) was able to interact. Probably one of the most fun, interactive, different and challenging sessions we have enjoyed over the last 20 month whilst using Zoom.

An excellent evening thank you Ken


For more information about Ken, his photography and this talk please have a look at his website – http://Home – Touching the Light – Ken Scott Photography

10th January 2022 – David Garthwaite “Fine Art : A Workflow”

Last Monday (January 10th. 2022) we were pleased to host a new guest speaker David Garthwaite, with his talk – “Fine Art : A Workflow”. This was an outstanding presentation and was a great start to our 2022 programme. Not only did we see some outstanding B&W Minimalistic Architectural Images but also a live demonstration of a Photoshop Workflow culminating in the creation of a typical image.


David’s Photographic Journey – started under 5 years ago, he was eventually drawn to the work of Michael Kenna with his fine art B&W minimalistic photography. It’s the Architectural B&W minimalistic studies that David has moved toward and he has been perfecting these and the workflow used to create them over the last 3 years or so.

Typical David Garthwaite Images – David moved to the more formal part of his presentation and took us through a small selection of his own and favourite Architectural studies – this was to “wet” our appetites for what we were to see and create later in the presentation.

Planning – Next we had a detailed explanation as to how David plans, catalogues and executes an actual shoot looking for the best composition to achieve a minimalistic view of single subjects.


A Live Photoshop Edit – Then we moved to the core of his presentation a “live” edit of an image from camera to a finished B&W Fine Art Picture of the Broadcasting Tower (Leeds).
David explained that his Workflow can be broken down into 3 main stages – stages 1 and 2 he prepares the colour image and stage 3 performs the “magic” process to finally create the B&W minimalistic version.

Stage 1 – Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) – was demonstrated to fix horizontals and verticals. The Basic ACR panel to improve the Highlights, Shadows and the overall balance of the image. Moving into Photoshop to clean up the image removing any clutter and marks using the patch, spot healing brush and clone stamp tools. Staying in Photoshop to use selections to selectively edit and balance the sections of the image and with clever use of the crop and rectangular marquee tool to centralise and balance the whole image.

Stage 2 – Predominately Selections and taking localised portions for edits. Starting with the sky, lots of options discussed here, including Photoshop’s own Sky replacement tool or the colour range option, the selection is named and saved for later use. The building is carefully divided into its 4 faces and each selection is named and saved. A further more complex selection is made of the series of vertical groves that run up the building. These groves need to be protected from being subjected to the edits of the faces (else the groves would blend into the panels and not be seen). Luminosity Masks were chosen for this selection and filed.

Stage 3 – Dodging and Burning and replacing the sky using the previously saved Selections. The new sky is carefully placed ensuring that the light is in the correct location (and enhanced) and blends well. Dodging and burning is performed to the building. The technique uses the previously filed selections, photoshop gradients and a 3-layer process to enhance the highlights and shadows giving the effect required. The final touch is to bring detail back into some of the shaded areas and apply a vignette to help guide the viewer’s eye.

Summary – David started his photographic journey in 2017 and what a journey he has had. His website is quite stunning and his B&W work Architectural work is probably second to none. His website contains numerous accolades and awards he has achieved, Paris, Tokyo First place Gold, distinctions and the list goes on….and on. You can’t fail to be impressed by this 5-year journey and Monday’s presentation didn’t disappoint ….

For more details of David’s work please see his website at – http://www.dgshot.uk

22nd. November 2021 – Leigh Preston (FRPS, EFIAP, MPAGB) “Photographic Sequences”.

Last Monday (November 22), Leigh Preston (FRPS, EFIAP, MPAGB), joined us on Zoom as our guest speaker. Leigh talked us through a number of his sequences of images. He stated that in these groups or sequences there should be something for everyone – and indeed there was.

Leigh is an accomplished photographer of some 50 years and holds 2 RPS fellowships. He is also a member of the Arena Photographers and the London Salon. He has had several books published and exhibited in 7 UK cities.
Leigh likes to work in series and themes linking subject material together as a cohesive set. This stemmed from an earlier desire to work in Panels for Photographic Distinctions. Sequence work has stayed with Leigh and is at the centre of his photography journey.
1 – Leigh’s first sequence of images was Titled Autumn. Here we saw the expected glorious Autumn colours of mellow gold from both light and foliage. Many of the images were simple “Close Ups” of leaves as they fell, Woodlands in Autumn Colours and up to Rannoch Moor and the famous Blackrock Cottage all in Autumn light.


2 – Next was Georgia – A picture of Mount Kazbegi in North Georgia on the Russian border, was one of our first striking images, with an early sunrise showing an illuminated cloud and the striking mountain. We saw rugged landscapes, glaciers, studies of the local population going about their work and a beautiful picture of Leigh’s Georgian guide Katarina.
3 – Then we moved to a more light hearted sequence of Street Photography with “Dogs and their owners and Eccentrics”. The first image was a pair of “Bulldogs” sat on the doorstep in front of a beautiful door in Santorini. Then we moved to the more humorous section with dogs and their owners. Some of the dogs were almost clones of their owners ! Although almost all of our microphones were muted you could almost here the laughter coming through the ether !


4 – Next section Eccentrics – started with another humorous story around a holiday maker sleeping amongst his luggage, whilst his wife was booking yet another holiday! Followed by more outstanding Street scenes – all with a humorous story. We had pictures from Belfast, Blackpool, Scotland, Wales, Paris, Bath, Grimsby, Birmingham – Leigh states – “When walking around with a camera – just be observant, its amazing what you can see”.
5 – Something Different next – Electricity and Steel. The British Skyline is changing forever but a Photographer can capture those changes. Our manufacturing base has moved into finance and technology. For the last 50 years Leigh has been documenting that change. Electricity Pylons, Coal fired power stations and their Cooling Towers (including pictures from inside a massive cooling tower) all featured. Some people may perceive this as Grim Photography but shortly all of these structures will be removed from our environment never to be seen apart from record photographs and Leigh’s are second to none.


6 – Steel Works – huge sinister looking structures almost something from Sci Fi films. Winter is always the best season for these shots as more drama is created as the smoke and steam moves so high in the sky.
7 – Santorini a wonderful Greek Island in the Aegean Sea. This presentation took on a different look with blocks of 9 square images set on one page. The message from Leigh was to keep the images simple and for the blocks to be sympathetic. A unique way to display a lot of work very quickly.
8 – Still Life – During the recent “Lock Down”, like lots of people Leigh wanted to continue his photography and chose still life. Ties, book pages as a fan, onion rings, a glass Orb set on a white cover, 78rpm record sleeves, map and drawing tools to name a few of these well-presented interesting subjects.
9 – Portraits – Leigh explained that he isn’t really a Portrait photographer, but this set of pictures were quite stunning. Including shoots in a Stately Home, fashion shoots at a college. Many of the studies although simple, were direct, demure and captured the moment. For someone claiming “not to be” a portrait photographer these sets of images were another example of Leighs tremendous depth of knowledge and expertise.
10 – Musicians – some of the shots were of local bands, some folk, Country and Western, tribute bands and even Iron Maiden, Jethro Tull plus some individual singers like Amy Macdonald to name just one. Taking these shots is a real challenge, lots of bright light, movement and people walking across your shot !

11 – Yellowstone – Leigh was initially drawn to Urban or Wilderness Landscape photography. Which takes us to Yellowstone in the Winter of 2017, a winter of extreme snow and the only way to travel was with a guide in a SnowCoach. The whole landscape was covered with pristine clean snow. Pictures included the steam rising from the hot waters and dead trees killed by the Sulphur fumes from volcanic rock, Waterfalls frozen, Landscapes and Hoarfrost.

12 – Leigh also claims not to be a wildlife photographer but still managed shots of Wolves, Bears, Bison and Moose. Another example of his photographic versatility
What a superb evening Leigh pitched his narrative and description of all his shots perfectly made all the better with his natural humour. A report like this doesn’t do justice to the talk from Leigh. It ticked every box and something for all of us to aspire to.
For more information about Leigh and his work please see his website at –
http://Leigh Preston Photography