A truly wonderful evening filled with breath-taking images, interesting facts, tips and the demystification of ND filters!Peter Haworth is an extremely talented photographer with a down to earth and engaging style of presentation. Peter’s dedication to his art means being in the right place at the right time. We learnt that those right times are often an hour before sunrise or 2 hours before sunset. The right places?
Well, they range from the Second Severn Crossing to the Persian Gulf!
We learnt about the many variations and benefits of ND and graduated filters and how to turn a misty background to our advantage by using it to take the viewers’ eye away from distracting backgrounds.
Members particularly enjoyed Peter’s take on when to shoot in B&W as opposed to colour, which Peter demonstrated to great effect by displaying relevant imaged first in colour, then in B&W.
We also benefited greatly from Peter’s interesting section about the use of contrasting colours.
Another wonderful evening, interesting and educational. Come back soon Peter!You can view a huge selection of Peter’s images at his Flickr page by clicking on this link –
Dr. Nigel Hicks (FBIPP) is a highly experienced professional photographer, specialising in commercial photography, travel photography, landscape photography, nature photography, and architectural and interiors photography.
The evening opened with Nigel telling us that he “Sees the world in pictures” and that as a child he captured the world around him in drawings before moving onto photography following the gift of a Brownie box camera. How pleased we are that little box camera enabled Nigel to move onto greater things.
Nigel gave us a fascinating overview of his huge range photographic interests before moving onto his wonderful portfolio of stunning landscapes, subjects and locations. We learnt that Nigel’s advice that concentrating on simple composition is a critical key to grabbing attention and to drawing a viewer’s eye to the main subject in the image is the key to producing interesting and thought provoking images.
Nigel Hicks is based at Teignmouth, in South Devon, conveniently close to Exeter, Torbay and Plymouth. He works not just throughout southwest England, but all over the UK, and also internationally. Many of his photography projects and commissions have taken him all over the world, from the Himalayas to the Philippines, to Iceland to Patagonia, while others have seen him photographing closer to home.
Nigel runs a programme of one-day and overseas photography workshops and tours, the former mainly in southwest England, and especially in Devon. He also publishes his own photography as books, prints and greetings cards.
You can view a selection of Nigel’s images and much more about his services and publications by visiting his website:
Tim Knifton attended SYPC to deliver his talk on the Art of Urban Exploration. This talk comprised of a set of over 150 photos taken from many of the countries that he has visited since photographing abandoned buildings. The work included different viewpoints of scenes of dereliction both home and abroad and included places such as churches, car graveyards, castles, homes, hospitals and old historic buildings. These scenes were shot in places many do not visit and are almost always away from the public eye.
(I’ll sleep when I’m dead)
by Tim Knifton
Nowadays, the terms of street and urban photography are often used interchangeably, both referring to the art of capturing cityscapes and people within them.
Yet, urban photography is still a relatively new word or expression, coined within the last decade. Its place and role in the history of photography might be a bit perplexing and undefined.
Tim Knifton (LRPS, CPAGB, AFIAP, AWPF PSA*6), changed all of that with his stunning presentation of abandoned and decayed buildings that are largely unseen places that are away from the public eye. We were treated to stunning images from European, pre-soviet and Scandinavian locations that are locked in the past, but are being digitally preserved by Tim and other like-minded photographers that Tim often joins forces with.
Tim has been photographing for many years. His passions are urban exploration, travel and landscape photography. He particularly likes using High Dynamic Range (HDR) photography, with the majority of his work being captured in this way.
He is a fan of capturing more than the camera can capture in one exposure. The science behind revealing as much of the scene as possible is by capturing as much in 3, 5 or 7 brackets appeals to him and is a technique he uses to great advantage.
Tim is a regular on the photography exhibition circuits and is accredited under several photographic bodies including the Royal Photographic Society, Welsh Photographic Federation and Federation International de I’art photographique (FIAP).
You can view a huge range of Tim’s images at the locations below.
This year’s programme got off to a fantastic start with another stunning evening in the company of professional photographer Robert Harvey BA ARPS EFIAP. Robert is a Chartered Natural Scientist and Associate of the Royal Photographic Society, Robert leads photography tours throughout Britain.
Although Robert has photographed wildlife and landscapes in many of the world’s most renowned wildlife destinations such as Yellowstone, Serengeti, Pantanal, Galapagos and Falklands, he also displayed some of the spectacular images that he had captured at the World Heritage Site of Avebury, which is close to his home on the Marlborough Downs in Wiltshire
His astrophotography regularly includes stars, planets, galaxies, aurorae and eclipses. We were fortunate enough to be able to enjoy a wide range of these images that he had selected from his incredible portfolio.
A sample of the images can be found at his website by clicking on this link –
The evening of Monday December 18th was the last SYPC club meeting of 2017. As usual the last meeting of the year is reserved for Presentations, an American Supper and of course our Photographic quiz.
This is always a fun evening and this year it was no exception. The evening followed the usual format of Presentations, our Buffet Supper, a Raffle and finally our Macro Photographic quiz put together by our own Brian Pountney.
Brian has a knack of finding everyday objects and turning them into obscure images by photographing them from an unusual angle and highly magnified. The 20 strange images that we puzzled over were studied, with varying degrees of success. Our winner this year, with a healthy score of 19, was Eric D’Costs. The score of 19 was even more impressive when you consider that some of us didn’t even make double figures !
The main purpose of the evening was to present all our 2017 Competition winners with their certificates and trophies. We hold 6 Bi-monthly print and digital Image Competitions throughout the year as well as 8 annual Competitions.
Below are the winners and runners up for all these competitions –
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.
Hilary Britland was the external judge for the 6th. of our 6 Bi-Monthly Competitions. It was obvious that Hilary had put a lot of work into reviewing and preparing for the evening – this resulted in an excellent narrative describing the best bits of the image and offering constructive feedback for improvement, all of which was much appreciated by our membership. Hilary critiqued and constructively commented on 78 images (28 prints and 48 digital images). Hilary opened the meeting by explaining to the membership how much she had enjoyed reviewing all our work and that we had some excellent images submitted, many of which could do well in External Competitions.
Below is a Table of the TOP 8 images and the Authors in each Section.
Round 6 Digital Images
Small Cut Flowers Study
Bass Rock Open Boat
Beezy at Work
Round 6 Prints
Michael Jackson Tribute Act
Up and Over
Artist In The Field
A Girl Named Alison
Storm Over Tynemouth
Below is a copy of the 1st. Place Digital Image
“O.J.” by Eileen Scantlebury
Below is a copy of the 1st. Place Print
“Feed Me” by Ray Grace
Additionally the Top 8 Digital Images and the Top 3 Prints can be found in the Competition Tab of this WebSite
At very short notice Ian McGuire, a local South Gloucestershire freelance wildlife educator, stepped into the breach (due to the planned speaker having to cancel), with an extremely thought provoking talk on how to convert your average domestic garden into a haven to attract all manner of wildlife (mammals, birds and insects) to name just a few.
For over 20 years Ian has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of the conservation of wild owls and other birds. More recently he has added Gardening for Wildlife into his range of talks. We were treated to his talk “Gardening for Wildlife – Part 1”, we wait in anticipation to see if we can persuade Ian to come back to SYPC with his Part 2 talk on the next stage of this intriguing, interesting and thought provoking project .
Ian treated us to a journey of images narrated as to how to convert a normal garden to become a haven and attraction for all manner of wildlife. Ian walked us through and demonstrated with images how he has encouraged a massive list of visitors to his garden including kingfishers, badgers, tawny owls, common newts, slow worms, all sorts of insects, moths and butterflies and over 50 species of bird.
It is true to say that Ian’s passion for Wildlife and conservation shone through during the whole of his presentation, his enthusiasm was quite infectious and yes we would all love to see that Kingfisher, Badger or even a slow worm appearing in our own gardens and foraging for the odd peanut.
We all look forward to Ian joining us again with his next installment.
The evening began with Martin’s Burma travelogue. Martin takes pictures that he feels have something of merit. He will then work to create a salon-style end product. His presentation comprised of a digital presentation with some example prints to view during the break.
The second part of the evening allowed us to look at some recent salon-style end products from many and varied locations. We were privy to a breakdown as to how he worked his magic, often involving numerous 20-plus layers in Photoshop.
Martin has traveled to much of Indo-China. He enjoys traveling light. He carries just a Nikon and one lens.
We enjoyed the sights of Rangoon, Mount Popa, and Mandalay. Martin’s quote of the evening was “There were pictures to be had everywhere you looked, including scores of temples, but after all it’s about the people”. This phrase had a big impact on Martin’s audience and drew our eyes to the overpowering character etched on the faces of the people in his images that seem to say so much about the locations of his subjects.
This was a jaw-dropping evening. Members left feeling inspired and in awe, describing the evening as “Another wonderful evening of travel and technology.”
Martin is a very modest yet extremely accomplished photographer, one who’ll take a lot of time perfecting his images. You can see more of Martin’s work via Facebook, flickr and pinterest.
Another extremely active and successful President’s evening on September 25. Our President, Ray Grace (LRPS), led the membership through a ‘hands on’ interactive Macro session. As usual Ray’s willingness to share his knowledge and to demonstrate the ‘how’ and ‘why’, lived up to his usual high standard.
“Ray – explaining his kit and technique”
Ray commenced the evening by setting up the first Macro group and walked us through his preferred equipment for close work. Ray uses a Canon (a very wise choice), full frame camera and a Prime Macro lens. He then moved on to describe his tripod and the adjustable Macro Slide. He explained that with such a wide aperture and hence narrow depth of field, a single shot may not be sharp through the image. Hence his preferred method is to take a series of images at different focus points by moving the Macro slide and then blend the stack of images (say 5 or more) in Photoshop. The objective, after post processing, is to have 1 sharp image throughout the whole depth of the subject.
“A more detailed discussion”
Having completed that discussion, we were then walked through the various LED lights Ray prefers, the back drop frame and the various back drops were displayed as were the clamps for holding the specimens in place. Finally we were shown a simple plant sprayer (filled with water), to give the specimen plants tiny water droplets to add to the quality of the composition.
Ray then proceeded to take a series of shots of his specimen Rose, moving the adjustable Macro slide, until he had enough images to blend together to produce a single sharp shot. Ray promised to Post Process the Photo Stack in his own time. We look forward to seeing the finished product at our next members evening in November.
For the rest of the evening the members had the opportunity to practice their Macro techniques using various objects, flowers, poker dice and a moving pocket watch to name just a few.
“Something not right here”
Additionally Ray was seen to be walking round the various tables with his usual enthusiasm to answer any queries on Camera and Photographic techniques.
Another excellent ‘hands on’ learning evening at SYPC – with special thanks to Ray for taking us so clearly through the Macro topic.
Brian opened the evening by describing himself as a “Holiday Snapper – somebody who enjoys taking record shots.” He told us that he doesn’t go out “On a Mission”, but that he admires people who do – from the warmth of his bed !
We heard that Brian had realised some years ago, that practising photographers who get out with their cameras at every opportunity, and who enjoy entering or viewing competition images, naturally develop a ‘Photographers Eye,’ something that no amount of money can buy. Brian’s current equipment bag contains 1 camera body and a single lens, a Nikon D5500 and a Nikkon 18-200mm VR Lens. This allows him to travel light. He shoots hand held, doesn’t use a tripod, because he feels that the combination of such a superb, class-leading brand of camera, coupled with a 18-200mm vibration reduction lens, gives him, in his words – ‘About 4 extra stops.’
by Brian Wetton
This equipment combination, coupled with his down-to-earth philosophy of “Take pictures of what you like and be happy with your photography” proved to be the gateway to an evening of spectacular prints, digital images and two mesmerising audio-visual presentations.
Brian’s images were breath-taking. They were Jaw-droopingly sharp, and superbly composed.
By Brian Wetton
Every image had something special, either in vivid colours, beauty or location. Our virtual journey took us to many exotic locations that included Nepal, Uzbekistan, Turkey, Egypt and Essex!
This was another wonderful evening of superb photography and entertaining presentation style that was thoroughly enjoyed by members.