• Walter Benzie FRPS

    We were extremely pleased this week to welcome back Walter Benzie to our club. Since his last visit five years ago, Walter has been extremely busy in his position as the President of the Royal Photographic Society - a role from which he stepped down only recently. Walter came to talk to us about the RPS and the three levels in the Distinction process to which photographers everywhere may apply.

    Walter began by explaining that the main aim of the RPS is to promote excellence in photography and image making by supporting photographers and enabling them to reach their full potential irrespective of their level of knowledge, equipment or skills. Founded in 1853, the RPS has pursued these objectives tirelessly for more than a century and a half, and was granted a Royal Charter in 2004 in recognition of its good work. Walter also explained that the society's main photographic collection, including a vast number of historic prints, was moved last year from the National Media Museum in Bradford to the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

    The Distinction process was explained and illustrated in great detail by Walter including a slide show in which we saw some very impressive examples of photographs submitted by successful applicants. We learnt about the three levels of accreditation in the process: Licentiate, Associate and Fellowship. Walter then went on to take us through the expectations of applicants at each level which included print panels and sequences of digital images, both becoming increasingly more demanding at each level. For example, at the Licentiate level applicants must submit a panel of ten prints demonstrating a variety of techniques, at the Associate level it is fifteen prints and to gain a Fellowship the expectation is a panel of twenty prints.

    Walter explained that the RPS provides very good support to both members and non-members through advisory days that are held around the country in which there are opportunities to view successful submissions and receive personal guidance on the standard and preparation of one's work. There are also a number of special interest groups for members to join which focus on particular areas of photography and image-making. For example: Archaeology & Heritage, Contemporary, Creative, Audio Visual.

    Overall, we enjoyed a most interesting evening - Walter is such a gifted communicator and a great enthusiast and advocate for the RPS and photography in general. We were also greatly inspired by the quality of the images shown by Walter to illustrate his talk. The evening concluded by a short question and answer session followed by a sincere vote of thanks given by society President David Nicholls.

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  • Paul Ubsdell Wildlife Trophy

    Our annual wildlife competition this week provided those present with a great show of digital images - fifty five in total submitted by eleven members. They depicted a wide variety of subjects including birds, mammals, insects and plants as well as a number featuring big cats !

    A warm welcome was extended to our judge for the evening, Roy Budden erstwhile of Petersfield Photographic Society and shortly to join Woolston Camera Club after his recent move to Southampton. Following the usual preview, each image was displayed for Roy to comment upon and give a mark out of twenty. Throughout the course of the evening some helpful feedback was given by Roy, including some suggestions aimed at helping members to improve the composition and overall quality and of their wildlife pictures.

    For example, the importance of showing a creature being active rather than static, (eg feeding, hunting etc); how a strong vertical line on the right hand side of an image can encourage the viewer's eye, naturally scanning from left to right, to be brought back into the centre of the picture; avoiding black backgrounds in wildlife photography and making every effort to show all six legs when photographing insects !

    By the end of the evening nine images had been awarded high marks, thus gaining certificates of merit for those members.

    Of those, the following six received eighteen marks:

    MOUNTAIN BACKDROP by Richard Clarke-Adams

    SNATCHING A BITE by Martin Thomas

    FIVE BAR SWORDTAIL by Graham Ainge

    DON'T YOU EVER LOOK LIKE THIS by Graham Ainge

    EGG LAYING by Dave Johnson

    STARLING by John Jeyes

    These two gained nineteen marks:

    COMING THROUGH by Bob Hoare

    FLEDGLING ROBIN by Dick Read

    Finally, Roy announced that the evening's overall winner would be:

    ARCTIC TERN by Graham Ainge

    The evening concluded with club chairman Tony Storey offering a vote of thanks to Roy Budden, to the evening's winning member, Graham Ainge, and to all the members who had contributed their work for what had been another interesting club night.

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  • Welcome Evening

    Our 2017/18 season began with a flourish last Monday when twenty five members and visitors attended our traditional "Welcome Back" evening.

    The session began with the chairman warmly welcoming everyone and presenting the following trophies to three members who were unable to attend July's annual dinner:

    • The Selsey Camera Club trophy to Tony Tomlinson, the winner of last season's monochrome print competition.

    • The John Sayers landscape Cup to Steve Newman, the winner of our annual PDI landscape competition.

    • The Peter Clarke Trophy to Jim Sheridan, the winner of the panel competition for PDIs.

    The main programme for the evening got underway with a series of ten minute PDI presentations given by various members with five of these scheduled either side of the interval, as follows:-

    • David Nicholls began with some fascinating pictures of celebrities he had photographed in the course of his work as a press photographer. Among the many famous faces were members of the royal family !

    • John Wadd followed this by showing us some images he had taken locally which he had processed with some new software.

    • Richard Love also showed us some local images, including views of the now demolished Lifeboat House , along with some holiday pictures.

    • Martin Thomas showed us a selection of views from his recent holiday in Norway, followed by some pictures showing the demolition of Selsey's old Lifeboat House.

    • Tony Tomlinson finished the first half of the evening with an audio-visual presentation of the colourful gardens at West Dean.

    We then enjoyed a break for refreshments served by Louise Satturley and Joan Taylor, a welcoming chat with our visitors and an opportunity to view four photoboards brought along by Joan Taylor, David Nicholls and Jacquei Mitchell. Before settling down again for the second half, Bob Hoare called out the winning numbers for the club raffle organised as always by Beryl James.

    • The second half began with Steve Newman's excellent selection of big cat photos taken at the Big Cat Sanctuary in Kent.

    • Bob Hoare then have us an amusing account, along with some pictures, of his recent though rather bothersome holiday in Turkey.

    • Louise Satturley followed this with a series of pictures taken during her biking holiday on the Isle of Mann.

    • The penultimate show was given by Chairman Tony Storey who showed some images of steam locomotives working in the south during the early 1960s contrasting with similar preserved machines currently working on the Watercress Line.

    • The final presentation was given by Dick Read who took us on a photographic tour of the lively scene and very colourful stalls to be found in Borough Market in London. Dick also finished with several very dramatic images of aircraft seen at a recent air show.

    Thus ended a most enjoyable evening which was rounded off with the Chairman thanking all the contributors together with a reminder to everyone about the our forthcoming PDI wildlife competition and encouragement to members each to enter up to five images.

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