The first week back after the Christmas break was an informal gathering at Barry Camera Club, and it gave members the opportunity to select images for use in forthcoming competitions.
On January 12th Barry Camera Club welcomed Phil & Enid Bennion with an audio visual presentation entitled “Cycle Tours and Garden Images”. The slideshow of images were set to background music with a recorded commentary and featured scenes of busy market squares, picturesque streets and gardens and beautiful landscapes. The images were captured during their many cycle tours and were attractively presented on the evening. There is an art to putting together a good slideshow. The music sets the mood and Phil & Enid did a great job of selecting just the right music to accompany their images.
Jenny Hibbert (MPAGB, EFIAP/b, AWPF) was the guest speaker on 19th January with a talk about her migratory expedition to Mongolia. The Mongolian people she was following walk for 19 miles a day for 5 consecutive days in order to find a food source for their livestock. The daytime temperatures were -26 falling to -35 at night. They pack all of their belongings onto trucks and Camels and start their trek. They make their way up through the mountains, along with Cows, Goats, Sheep, Dogs and their precious Eagles who are bundled up in blankets and tied to the Camels to ensure they survive the journey. The images featured some stunning landscapes and beautiful portraits of the Mongolian people. Most poignant were the pictures of the children blowing homemade bubbles. Having never seen bubbles before their faces were a pure delight.
Once again the month concluded with their monthly competition night. This month the judge was Brian Coleman (AFIAP, AWPF). He gave a detailed and very thorough critique to every shot. He explained at the start of the evening that it was difficult to separate the marks as the overall standard was very good. But he did a sterling job and the results were as follows:
Monochrome Print: Third place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Seats Among the Flowers”, second place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Resting Place” and first place went to Glenn Porter for “Kitesurfing on a Wave”.
Colour Print: Third place Glenn Porter for “Mountain Biking on Hot Stepper”, second place John Dudley for “Precocious Daughter, Proud Mum, Tired Horse” and first place went to Glenn Porter for “Keep Your Head Above the Wave”.
The Projected Image section was, as usual, the most contested section. Third place Brian Trego for “Tintern Farm”, second place Glenn Porter for “Mountain Biker” and first place went to Glenn Porter for “Windsurfing”.
Congratulations to all the prize winners, but particularly to Glenn who went home with all three trophies this month.
Nik Software Update
Look alive, Nik Collection fans: the software suite is back from the (mostly) dead. It will change hands from Google to DxO, who will continue to offer it as Photoshop and Lightroom plug-ins, as well as incorporate it into their own software. DxO will offer a new flagship application called PhotoLab, a version of OpticsPro that will incorporate Nik Collection’s U Point technology.
We spoke with Aravind Krishnaswamy, a Google Engineering Director, and DxO founder/CEO Jerome Meniere about the acquisition. Krishnaswamy mentioned Google’s need to focus on its Photos application, but that they want the Nik community to have a future, and a place to continue using the suite’s tools.
That’s where DxO picks things up. The Nik Collection in its present state will continue to be offered for free – for now. Meniere hints that this may not always be the case, and DxO plans to develop a new “Nik Collection 2018” for mid-next year. Meniere also mentions that they’d like to work with the Nik community to take the software in a direction that they’d like to see it go.
Not surprisingly, Nik-developed Snapseed is not included in the transaction, and will remain with Google. The company plans to continue actively developing and improving the mobile image editing app.
Head to DxO’s dedicated Nik Collection site if you’d like to snag free versions of the plug-ins while you still can.
Barry Camera Club welcomed Tim Knifton (AWPF, CPAGB, AFIAP, PSA*7) on the 6th October. This was the third visit from Tim in as many years and, as always, he proved to be a popular and well received speaker. Tim specialises in Urban Exploration Photography which is the art of photographing abandoned places or buildings. His images convey the remnants of a life that was once lived. His pursuits have seen him visit countries such as Italy, Belgium, France, Portugal and, perhaps most poignantly, the city of Chernobyl. His photos are sometimes bleak, but also beautiful, fascinating and thought provoking. Tim spoke passionately about what he does and explained how, through photography, he is trying to document and preserve these buildings and their history before they disappear forever. You can view Tim’s exceptional work via his Flickr page: https://www.flickr.com/photos/timster1973/
The wildlife group paid a visit to Margam Park on 6th October. The weather was unseasonably warm and there was plenty to photograph. The gothic architecture of the abbey ruins and the house proved popular. The scenery and plant life were beautiful and all members felt privileged to see and photograph the resident Deer during their rutting season. All rounded off with a lovely lunch in the café. Thanks to Phil Stillman for organising these trips.
They had a special guest on Friday 13th October. Harry Gardiner from Tenby delivered a presentation he called “Art and Photography – Vision and Reality”. Harry is an artist who uses painting and pastels as well as photography in his work. It was a fascinating talk and far from unlucky, considering the date. He took members on a whistle stop tour of art, starting with the cave paintings of ancient man and taking in Michelangelo, Goya, Turner, Renaissance and abstract work along the way. He used their work to illustrate how artists used perspective and composition in a variety of ways, how this changed over time and how they manipulated reality to create their art. He invited members to consider what this might mean for photography and how, in turn, photography has influenced the way in which other art forms were created. He took members out of a purely pictorial form of photography with the aim of encouraging and thinking of other ways of ‘seeing’. All of this presented in a humorous and engaging style, full of enthusiasm. A good night was had by all.
On the 20th October there was a friendly battle between Cardiff and Barry Camera Clubs. Each club submitted 10 prints and 10 digital images. The judge for the evening was Trevor James (BA (Hons) Photography, ARPS, AWPF). An appetising buffet was laid on by the members of Barry Camera Club. Barry came away as the victors with 367 points to Cardiff’s 357 points. Thanks to the members of Cardiff and Barry for ensuring an enjoyable and good humoured evening.
Once again the month concluded with their monthly competition night. This month the judge was Dave Bennett who gave a detailed and thorough critique of every image, awarding a good range of scores. The winners were as follows:
Monochrome Print: Highly Commended: Barbra Archdale-Smith for “A Good Drying Day”, John Dudley for “Outhouse, Tree, Gathering Storm”, Third place Rob Owens for “Tracks to the Hills”, second place Rob Owens for “At Elgol” and first place went to Glenn Porter for “A Wall of White Water”.
Colour Print: Highly Commended: Glenn Porter for “Mumbles Lighthouse and Industrial Port Talbot”, Rob Owens for “At Loch Sunart”, Brain Trego for “Landed”, Third place Malcolm Downes for “Dark Side of the Moon”, second place John Dudley for “Bugatti in the Rain” and first place went to Rob Owens for “Trees at Cray”.
The Projected Image section was, as usual, the most contested section. Highly commended: Josh Watts for “Feathered Beauty”, Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Dust Trail”, Gareth Williams for “Llantwit Sunset”, Third place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Torn Man”, second place Gareth Williams for “Ethereal Rocks” and first place went to Phil Stillman for “Barbary Apes Delousing”.
Congratulations to all prize winners but in particular to Rob, Glenn, John, Gareth and Barbra for multiple successes.
Barry Camera Club started the new season with an informal members evening. This gave them the opportunity to catch up with old friends and welcome new ones.
On the 8th September they had a visit from Alyn Wallace who is a Landscape Astrophotographer. He specialises in photographing the landscape of Wales under the night sky. They were shown images taken at Southerndown, Nash Point, Brecon, Anglesey, the Elan Valley and the Gower. He has also photographed sites in England and Iceland, including the Aurora Borealis. He proved to be an extremely knowledgeable young man, not just when it came to technique and camera settings, which he was kind enough to share, but also about the weather, the sun and moon and everything astronomical. He also gave advice about the apps he uses to assist him in his endeavours. His work has won him recognition and has been used by NASA. His stunning imagery was much appreciated by everyone who attended on the evening and all were very impressed by his mastery.
On the 15th September Barry Camera Club welcomed Les Loosemore who gave a talk entitled “A Tribute Evening with Les Loosemore”. Les was a close friend of Chairperson, Mike Lewis, who recently passed away. Les came out of retirement to give this talk, which he did out of respect for and in honour of Mike. The evening was spent viewing some beautiful work, which included landscape and nature images, whilst reminiscing about and remembering Mike.
Mike Lewis was born and brought up in Barry but lived in Rhoose in latter years. He had an immense passion for photography. As a committee member of Barry Camera Club for over 30 years he held, at various times, every committee post including Treasurer, Competition Secretary and Chairperson. For over 20 years he organised the club’s annual competition and the Barrian Cup, which regularly attracts entries from more than 20 clubs from South Wales and the South West of England. He was also a member of Gwynfa Camera Club and Cymru Monochrome. For many years Mike was also active in the Welsh Photographic Federation and, following his term as President, his years of service were rewarded with the Honorary Fellowship of that organisation.
Mike enjoyed travelling, including trips with Barry Camera Club to Prague and Venice among many closer to home. He was always one of the first to sign up for an outing.
Mike also enjoyed walking in the countryside, particularly in mountain areas and had reached the summits of all the high peaks in Wales and the highest mountains in England, Scotland and Ireland. Mike also managed to walk the majority of the Welsh Coastal Path in recent years. The many photographs he took on his travels were successful in monthly club competitions and in national and international exhibitions. He attained the distinction of Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society (LRPS), for whom he became the Regional Organiser of the South Wales branch two years ago.
In Spring 2016, appropriately at Lacock Abbey which is the home of British photography, Mike became a member of the National Trust and enjoyed visiting its properties.
Despite regularly saying “I’m not buying any more books”, when Mike visited exhibitions and talks by other photographers, he frequently came away with a book or two to add to his considerable collection!
Mike seemed to thrive on being involved with everything. Many often thought he had too much on his plate, yet he always managed to come up with the goods. He was supportive, giving encouragement to members new and old, and always had a smile on his face. He was energetic, organised and was a calm head to rely on. He was never happier than when out taking photographs or attending something photographic. He died on June 17th, at the untimely age of 62, whilst out walking and taking photographs in the Elan Valley.
The recent successes of Barry Camera Club owe a huge debt to Mike’s efforts in promoting the club and encouraging members. Through photography Mike made many friends and he will be very sadly missed by all. He remains in the hearts and minds of all its members. This is his legacy.
Mike’s daughter, Jay, recently ran in the Great North Run in memory of her Dad and Grandad, with donations going to the British Heart Foundation. She has far exceeded the £400 target she set for herself. Les kindly donated his fee for the night to that cause and also gifted Barry Camera Club with a beautifully mounted and framed photograph to be raffled to raise further funds.
On 22nd September the club met to choose images from a large selection of prints to go forward and do battle with other clubs from around Wales. Thanks to Roy Carr and John Dudley for organising this.
Once again the month concluded with their monthly competition night. This month the judge was Ed Cloutman (EFIAP) who gave a detailed and thorough critique of every shot. The winners were as follows:
Monochrome Print: Third place Glenn Porter for “Let‘s Talk”, second place Rob Owens for “Viewing the Exhibition”, first place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Seating Arrangement”.
Colour Print: Third place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Crime”, second place Brian Trego for “Holding On”, first place Glenn Porter for “Windsurfing at Lake Garda”.
Digital Projected Image: Third place Brian Trego for “Incoming Tide”, second place Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Pigeon in Flight”, first place Tina Haydon for “Mitch”.
Congratulations to all prize winners, but in particular to Barbra, Brian and Glenn for multiple successes. And huge thanks to Ed Cloutman for a superb evening.
Whitmore & Jackson Exhibition
We are pleased to announce that a selection of members’ images of Barry and Barry Island are on display at Whitmore and Jackson, Friars Road, Barry, CF62 5TJ. By agreement with the management, our images will be on display until June 2018, and are available for sale from the venue. Displayed images will be refreshed at regular intervals.
Whitmore and Jackson are open daily from 9am to 5pm.
It is with great regret that we have to announce the sad and sudden death of our Chairman Mike Lewis on Saturday 17th June 2017. Mike passed away unexpectedly whilst out doing what he loved best, on a walk in the countryside taking photographs.
Mike was a passionate fan of all things photographic, and will be greatly missed by all. His passing will be a great loss for Barry Camera Club and the Welsh Photographic Federation, both of whom he served diligently for a great many years.
The post-mortem took place for Mike on Friday 23rd June. The verdict confirmed that Mike had Ischaemic Heart Disease. If you want more information on this condition, please view the following link.
The family have thanked everyone for their well-wishes and kind thoughts, but request that this information is not spread using Facebook.
Our thoughts go to his family at this difficult time.
The first meeting of the month was on Friday 5th May, and the guest speaker booked for the night was Gareth Martin AWPF, CPAGB who gave a talk entitled “From My Doorstep And Beyond”. The images, presented to Gareth’s usual immaculate quality and small size, were a study of the immediate environment around and about his home. They were mostly landscape images but also included a few oddities as he has a penchant for taking pictures of restrooms which made for some interesting images! Gareth is very fond of his dog “Pugwash” who accompanies him on most of his expeditions and featured in several of the photos. After our coffee break he showed us a selection of digital images, and also demonstrated how he chose to edit each image so we saw the images from start to finish which was insightful. His dry sense of humour was evident throughout the evening and the members seemed to enjoy the presentation, particularly the prints which were absolutely stunning quality images.
May 12th saw us at the Wenvoe Castle Golf Club for our Annual Dinner and presentation of prizes. The judge this year was the vastly experienced Les Loosemore ARPS, AWPF who expressed his pleasure with not only the quantity of the entries, but also the quality and awarded prizes as follows:
The Hansen Cup for Monochrome Landscape/Seascape Print
First Place – “Beech Avenue” by Glenn Porter
Second Place – “Footprints In The Sand” by Mike Lewis
Third Place – “Boat House – Llyn Ogwyn” by Rob Owens
Highly Commended were “Nash Point” by Glenn Porter and “Tyre Tracks” by Mike Lewis
Commended was “The Shortest Pier” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
The T.J. Lewis Cup for Monochrome Portrait Print
First Place – “Eye Contact” by John Dudley
Second Place – “JP – Tax The Heat” by Glenn Porter
Third Place – “Shadow Dancer” by John Dudley
Highly Commended was “Doreen” by John Dudley
The Major Arthur Hammond Cup for Monochrome Miscellaneous Print
First Place – “Look At The Leaf” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Second Place – “Let Me Tell You” by Glenn Porter
Third Place – “The Old Bathroom” by Mike Lewis
Highly Commended were “Fishing Huts and Boats” by Mike Lewis.
Commended were “Spray” by Brian Trego and “Autumn Long Shadows” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
The Jill Nicola Rose Bowl for Colour Landscape/Seascape Print
First Place – “A Cold Penarth Pier” by Glenn Porter
Second Place – “Estuary Maze Drop Off” by Brian Trego
Third Place – “Neuadd Winter” by Rob Owens
Highly Commended was “Track Walkers” by Mike Lewis
Commended “The Rowing Boat” by Mike Lewis
The President’s Trophy for Colour Portrait Print
First Place – “Take Off” by Brian Trego
Second Place – “Fledgling Robin” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Third Place – “The Look” by Mike Lewis
Highly Commended was “Sandy Sparkle” by Rob Nicholas
The A.M. Dimond Trophy for Colour Miscellaneous Print
First Place – “Love In A Mist” by Tina Haydon
Second Place – “Six” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Joint Third Place – “Buoy and Chain” by Trian Trego
Highly Commended was “The Directors Chair” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Commended was “Caerphilly Castle” by Brian Trego
The Pauls Trophy for Landscape/Seascape Projected Image
First Place – “Holding Back the Dunes” by Nicola Thwaite
Second Place – “Bodmin Formation” by Catherine Charlton-Whitaker
Third Place – “Pier Pre Sunrise” by Glenn Porter
Highly Commended were “Storm-clouds over Cribyn” by Catherine Charlton-Whitaker and “West Pier Dusk” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Commended went to “Nash Point” by John Dudley
The Cliff Dimond Trophy for Portrait Projected Image
First Place – “Yellow Billed Kite” by Catherine Charlton-Whitaker
Second Place – “Pensive Mood” by Tina Haydon
Third Place – “Happy Fidler” by John Dudley
Highly Commended was “Headmistress” by Mike Lewis
Commended were “Looking To The Light” by Gareth Williams and “Mitch” by Tina Haydon
The Dan Evans Trophy for Miscellaneous Projected Image
First Place – “Birds On A Wire” by Catherine Charlton-Whitaker
Second Place – “Blowing in the Breeze” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Third Place – “Interior Design” by Mike Lewis
Highly Commended were “Bluebell Keyhole” by Gareth Williams, “Bathing in Shadows” by Nicola Thwaite and “Multi-coloured Dwellings” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
Commended were “Corrado in Motion” by Gareth Williams and “Shadows of the Past” by John Dudley
The Richard Hopkins Shield for Best Monochrome Print In The Competition
“Look At The Leaf” by Barbra Archdale-Smith
The Randall Cox Trophy for the Best Colour Print In The Competition
“A Cold Penarth Pier” by Glenn Porter
The Projected Image of The Year Trophy
“Holding Back the Dunes” by Nicola Thwaite
At this final stage of the proceedings the Chairman thanked Allen for a judging the images and congratulated all prize winners, finishing with his thanks and a call for a round of applause for the management and staff of the Wenvoe Castle Golf Club who hosted us admirably and fed us extremely well. Congratulations to all those who went home clutching their trophies and certificates, and it special congratulations must go to our lady members, who this year scooped up most of the trophies!
Friday the 19th saw a showing of all prize winning images at the club, where Les Loosemore was able to give a far more detailed critique of each of the images, giving both encouragement and advise for improvement in equal measure. Thank you Les, for a good job well done! The Competition Secretary also announced the annual prizes for points scored across the entire year and the results were:
First Place – Mike Lewis with 149 points
Second Place – Glenn Porter with 147 points
Third Place – Brian Trego with 133 points
Joint First Place – Barbra Archdale-Smith with 149 points
Joint First Place – Glenn Porter with 149 points
Third Place – Brian Trego with 138 points
Digital Projected Images:
First Place – Tina Haydon with 147 points
Second Place – Roy Carr with 145 points
Third Place – Glenn Porter with 141 points
Highest Cumulative Score Across All Three Categories:
First Place – Glenn Porter with 435 points
Second Place – Mike Lewis with 429 points
Third Place – John Dudley with 402 points
The last Friday of May is traditionally the date of our Annual General Meeting and this year’s AGM brought an end to our Winter season. We have a full summer season planned, taking advance of the weather to make photographic visits to various locations across the locality as well as informal club nights. The Summer programme starts on June 2nd with a members’ evening at the clubhouse where we will gave a general evening discussing the work of the members and the more experienced members will be giving feedback and advice to the newer members. For Friday June 9th we have planned a visit from Brian Haggerty, LRPS who will give us a talk on the use of layers in Adobe Photoshop, and on Saturday June 11th we will be holding the annual Barrian Cup and Dave Cowdrey Trophy. Twenty three clubs from Wales and the West of England will be competing for these trophies and anyone who wants to see some first class photography should come along to the Millennium Centre, Porth-Y-Castell to this event. Throughout the remainder of 2017 and into 2018 we have a full programme of talks, demonstrations, photographic expeditions, competitions and inter-club battles planned. New members are particularly encouraged and will be made most welcome with a programme being prepared especially for the new and less experienced photographers to allow them to quickly gain more proficiency and satisfaction from their hobby.
Our month started on Friday 7th and was our annual David Hunt Trophy evening. This trophy is dedicated to our late member David Hunt, a doyen of Barry Camera Club who served the club over many years in all offices and capacities. David was particularly interested in Natural History and the competition subject then is “Natural History”, presented in prints (both monochrome and colour) and the projected images, with one image being selected as overall trophy winner. There are no second and third places in this competition, just one outright winner and competition this year was very keen! Our judge this year was Allen Lloyd ARPS, AWPF who is himself a natural history enthusiast and his applying a somewhat restricted definition of the subject, this led to him awarding one or two unusually low marks which some members found disappointing. However he expressed his pleasure at both the quantity and quality of the entries, and was pleased that the subject is so well supported by the members at the Club. After giving a thorough discussion to every image presented he gave the following points:
Prints: Seventeen points to Mike Lewis for “Puffin”, Eighteen points to Brian Trego for “Landed” and nineteen points to Glenn Porter for Nash Point”
Projected Image: Eighteen points each to Sarah Savage for “Pose For A Picture”, to Kathy Edwards for “Spring Daffodil”, to Phil Stillman for “Blue Morpho” and to Mike Lewis for “Egret”.
Nineteen points each to Steve Everitt for “Male Scorpion Fly”, and to Tina Hayden for “ Great Crested Grebe”.
Last year’s winner Philippa Evans presented a very strong group of entries gaining one sixteen point award, four seventeen point awards and with a perfect 20 points retained the David Hunt Trophy with an exquisite shot of a dragonfly entitled “Beautiful Demoiselle”. Congratulations to Philippa for such a strong showing and retaining the trophy, and equally special mention should be made of our newest junior member Josh Watts whose entries out-scored a lot of the far more experienced members. Well done, Josh!
Friday 14th was planned to be a visit from Brian Haggerty giving a talk on the use of layers in Adobe Photoshop but unfortunately had to cancel due to illness and we will re-schedule this talk for later in the year. However, we were lucky enough to secure the services of John Burns from Newport Camera Club who gave us an introduction to Adobe Lightroom. He showed us how to use a simple workflow to import our pictures into the program, how to make changes using the ‘Develop’ module and how to print them. After coffee John used sample files brought in by the members to demonstrate how much can be accomplished with Lightroom, which is a sister program to the well-known (and much more expensive!) Photoshop. Many thanks to John for standing in at such short notice and he will be with us again later in the year with a talk concentrating on the image improvement aspects of the program.
The following week saw a visit from Alan Squires FRPS, AWPF a committed close-up and sports photographer and doyen of the Gwynfa Camera Club. Alan’s talk was entitled “My Sports Scene” and we were presented with an evening of projected images of Alan’s sports work. Unlike most sports photographers who tend to concentrate on the three most popular sports of football, rugby and cricket, Alan’s work encompassed a wide number of minority sports including motorcycling in several different styles, fishing, cycling, track and field athletics, powerboat racing, canoeing, rallying, power-boating and cycle-cross. Perhaps most interesting was the portion of the night that Alan allocated to his shots covering the 2012 London Paralympics. We saw a lot of images in a style that simply does not make the mainstream media and Alan gave us a fascinating insight into what one has to go through to cover the photography of such an event.
Once again the month concluded with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Johnnie Rogers, ARPS, AFIAP, AWPF who did well to arrive on time despite horrendous traffic problems. Johnnie was impressed with the strength of the images he had been given and gave a through critique to every shot. He awarded marks and prizes as follows:
Monochrome Print: Breaking tradition, Johnnie did not award the usual twenty points to any of the monochrome prints. Instead nineteen points and first place was granted to Glenn Porter for “Nash Point G”, eighteen points and second place to Mike Lewis for “Nash Point M” and Mike was also awarded third place and seventeen points for “Sky, Sea And Sand”.
Colour Print: Johnnie awarded twenty points and first place to Glenn Porter for his action shot “Mast High Wave”, second place and nineteen points to Glenn Porter again for “Flying On Hot Stepper” and eighteen points and third place to Brian Trego for “Dewstow Display”’. Highly commended was “Sun And Shadow” by John Dudley which was also awarded eighteen points.
The Projected Image section was, as always, the best supported section and Keith made the following awards: Gareth Williams gained an outright first prize scoring twenty points for his “Dan Pier”, Tina Haydon was awarded nineteen points and second place for “Been Digging For Worms”, and third place with eighteen points was awarded to John Dudley for “And Your Old Traccy Bottoms”. Highly commended images, each scoring eighteen points were “Flight Of The Emperor” by Philippa Evans and “It’s A Sign” by Steve Everitt. Congratulations to all prize winners but in particular to Glenn for such a show of successes this month.
May sees the end of the Winter programme with the Summer programme due to start on Friday 2nd June, including with the annual Barrian Cup and Dave Cowdrey Trophy on Saturday 10th June. Approximately twenty clubs from Wales and the West of England will be competing for these trophies and anyone who wants to see some first class photography should come along to the St. Francis Millennium Centre to this event. Throughout the remainder of 2017 we have a full programme of talks, demonstrations, photographic expeditions, competitions and inter-club battles planned. New members are particularly encouraged and will be made most welcome with a programme being prepared especially for the new and less experienced photographers to allow them to quickly gain more proficiency and satisfaction from their hobby.
March this year unusually has five Fridays and this month’s programme started with a visit from Steve Littlewood AWPF who gave us a presentation entitled “Using Lightroom CC To Process Digital Images”. Steve is an old friend of the club and has given many interesting talks, this one being no exception. Using the Adobe Lightroom program Steve gave a thorough demonstration of the opportunities that Lightroom can offer to improve the digital image before making the final print. Even those of us who use Lightroom on a regular basis learned a few ‘new tricks’ that we can apply to our own work. Perhaps the most constructive feature of the whole evening was the way Steve demonstrated his own personal workflow through Lightroom and finally into Photoshop, giving us a valuable insight into how to use the program most efficiently. Post production of digital images is becoming more and more important in photography and this was a very well-constructed presentation of great interest to the members.
The following week we had a presentation from Gary Shinner LRPS, EFIAP/s, Hon FWPF entitled “Success And Failure Path Since 2007”. Gary is a widely experienced long serving photographer who has garnered many awards and distinctions throughout his career. However not all has been plain sailing and his talk showed us not only the successful images but also those that failed to impress the judges. He has concentrated on architecture and cityscape but showed us a wide range of work in both colour and black and white, presented in both panels of prints and digital images. It is rare for a speaker to show anything but his best work and this was a refreshing, often amusing presentation which gave us all a great deal to think of.
On the evening of the 17th we were expecting a visit from Jan Cawley EFIAP/s, Hon FWPF who was going to explain what judges look for when assessing and marking our work. Unfortunately Jan was unable to attend due to illness so this particular evening will be re-arranged for the near future. Instead we had a DVD presentation of images recently entered to the Tom Crowe competition held at Thornbury Camera Club. Unusually, and very welcome, was an accompanying audio track from the judge giving a critique for each image and explaining how she had determined the marks awarded. The competition was tight and we were pleased to see that Barry Camera Club came joint third along with hosts Thornbury Camera Club in a very strong field. The image content was very varied, and at times somewhat unconventional but always top quality and the night was well received by all members.
On the evening of the 24th we welcomed guests from the Rhondda and Gwynfa Camera Clubs for a three way print and digital images. Judged by Johnnie Rogers ARPS, AFIAP, AWPF, DPAGB, the competition consisted of two rounds, firstly of prints then digital images. Johnnie gave a very comprehensive critique to each image and explained his conclusions when assessing the marks to be awarded, which ultimately showed that the Devil is very much in the detail! Rhondda and Gwynfa jointly took the first section with 110 points each, with Gwynfa’s very strong digital images winning the second round with 111 points. Overall then the winners were Gwynfa by six points with Rhondda second and Barry, unfortunately, in third place but one consolation was winning the first prize in the raffle which went down very well the next evening with a Fettucine Alfredo and pasta salad!
Once again the month concluded with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Gareth Martin AWPF, CPAGB who gave a detailed and very thorough critique to every shot. He was most impressed by the overall standard of the work presented to him and was unable to separate the marks into a wide spread due to this, so many of the images got a very high mark. He awarded marks and prizes as follows:
Monochrome Print: This was a closely fought contest with Glenn Porter coming out on top with 20 points for his “Beech Avenue”. Glenn was also awarded second place and 19 points for “The Joys Of Sightseeing”, with third place and 18 points being awarded to Mike Lewis for “Jar And Flowers”.
Colour Print: First prize and 20 points went to Glenn Porter for “Ripping It Up” with second place and 19 points going to Brian Trego for “Eye Protection”. Third place and a further 18 points was taken by Glen Porter for “Cliff Watcher”.
The Projected Image section was, as always, the most keenly contested section and Martyn found it very difficult to differentiate between the higher marked pieces. Ultimately first place with 20 points was taken by Tina Haydon for “Love In A Mist”. Second place and 19 points was awarded to Mike Lewis for “Headmistress” and third place with 18 points was awarded to Glenn Porter for “A Need For Speed“. Congratulations to all prize winners, particularly Glenn for multiple successes.
Battle with Rhondda and Gwynfa Camera Clubs
On Friday 24th March, Barry hosted the annual battle with Rhondda and Gwynfa Camera Clubs. The judge for the evening was Johnnie Rogers ARPS, DPAGB, AWPF, AFIAP, who gave an entertaining and informative critique of each piece of work submitted by the three clubs in 12 rounds of prints and projected images. On the night, 5 separate pieces were awarded the maximum score of 20 points – congratulations to each of the photographers.
The individual and overall scores are here.
February started with a talk from club stalwart Dave Green entitled “So You Wanna Be A Gig Photographer?” Dave’s first photographic love is events photography, in particular music and musicians and he showed us some of his work involving folk, jazz and pop concerts. Dave explained in great detail how his interest developed from an initial request from a work colleague to picture his son’s group, which turned out with very pleasing results. From there Dave’s interest increased and he was soon turning up at the local pubs and clubs, photographing the acts performing there. Dave gave a very detailed and interesting rundown of the equipment he uses, the techniques he has to employ to get properly exposed images and highlighted the problems he faces in overcoming the difficult surroundings he regularly has to contend with. These issues range from initially getting permissions to enter the premises, permission from the act to be photographed, the physical access to the stage area and the problems of metering under rapidly changing stage lighting. The subject lends itself to unorthodox and experimental treatments and Dave showed us many examples of how post-processing techniques can make a relatively mundane shot into a more dynamic image. This was a very entertaining and interesting evening that was well received by the members. Well done, Dave!
On the 10th of February we visited the Vale Camera Club at Ystradowen for our annual seven-way print battle. Each club entered four Colour prints and four Monochrome prints. The competition Judge gave a constructive and critical assessment of the prints and expressed his pleasure at the overall quality of the photography on show. The worthy winners on the night were Merthyr Camera club, giving all six remaining clubs something to think about for next year! Unfortunately this year Barry did not do too well in the photographic stakes but as some consolation, members of the Barry club won both raffle prizes!
Our next talk came from log-serving club member Roy Carr on the 17th of the month. Roy has recently gained his AWPF certification having presented a panel of monochrome prints on the theme of ‘Near The Water’. This acceptance came as no surprise to us as Roy’s work has always been of unfailingly high standard and immaculately presented. Roy’s talk was entitled “40/40 Prints” and comprised of showing and discussing forty black and white prints, followed after coffee by forty colour prints. Roy took us through his methodical approach he takes before each photographic expedition. Weather forecast, sun position, access and sunrise/sunset times are all carefully researched which allows him to have a good chance of getting the shot he had envisaged before going out. Unlike the rest of us, who of course depend largely on luck!! His equipment was discussed and Roy emphasised the importance of the tripod in enabling him to get sharp shots at long exposures. Roy has always had a particular love for landscape work and this showed through in the prints displayed but he also showed us some very carefully taken portraits of extremely high standard. This was one of the best evenings for some time and we all wish him well on taking this talk out to other camera clubs.
The final meeting of the month was, as always, our monthly competition and the guest judge on this occasion was Robert Mitchell MA, of Swansea University. Rob gave measured and constructive criticism during the evening and expressed his pleasure in the overall high standard of the entries which inevitably led to the marking being very close in all three sections, as there were no entries of obviously low standard.
Best Mono print scoring 20 points was judged to be Brian Trego’s “Rising Mist”. Second place, also scoring 20 points, was Glenn Porter’s “Let Me tell You” and third place once again scoring a full 20 points was awarded to Mike Lewis with his “Fishing Huts and Boats”. It is highly unusual for full marks to be awarded to more than one image, let alone three in the same competition, but the judge felt the standard of the images warranted full points and could only split the placings based on personal choice.
Colour prints were equally tightly marked. Barbra Archdale-Smith was awarded first place with 20 points for “Fledgling Robin”. Mike Lewis did rather well gaining second place with 19 points for a nautical study entitled “Buoy And Chain” and a further 19 points and third place for his “The Old Kitchen”.
The projected images section did, as always, attract the largest entry and Rob again found it difficult to separate the highest scorers in this section. Mike’s earlier print successes were eclipsed by Philippa Evans who gained 20 points and first place for “Solna Centrum” and a further 20 points and second place for “In a Flap”, Tina Haydon gained third place and 19 points for “Missed By All Who Knew Him”. Congratulations, Ladies!
After the excesses of Christmas and the New Year celebrations, the year started for us on the 6th of January when we welcomed John Tilsley ARPS, DPAGB, APAGB of Dorchester Camera Club who gave us a talk entitled “Street Photography and Candid Portraiture”. Street photography is one of the niche interests in photography and it was very welcome to have such an accomplished practitioner show us his work. The prints he displayed were taken at a wide range of events in his locality and were mostly in Black & White, some taken as long as thirty five years ago on film cameras. Some of the images he had taken on cameras that are today considered very ‘low-tech’ were of fabulous quality which proves more than anything that it is the photographer that is more important than the equipment. John let us into his secret to successful street photography, which is to keep on trying and keep returning to places until we get a feel for the people and the event. This was a very interesting evening presented by a most accomplished speaker and was very well received by the membership.
The 13th of the month was a new departure for the club: we had a presentation from a Llanelli-based duo who call themselves “Sleepy Robot Photography”. The members did not know what to expect from the evening but were very pleased to see an evening devoted to experimental photography based mainly around compositing and post camera processing using the ever popular Photoshop program. One interesting project has been their using themselves as models to create shots that are in the style of famous artists including the extremely popular Jack Vettriano, however they also undertake more mainstream work such as ballet, landscapes and natural history subjects putting their own slightly unorthodox style to the finished work. One or two of the members seem to feel that their work was an ‘acquired taste’ but the majority were very interested in their unusual and original style.
On the 20th of January we were shown the ‘highlight images’ from the Cheltenham International Salon 2016, presented by Richard McCleery of the Cheltenham Camera Club. The Salon is an important annual competition open to professional photographers and amateur clubs across the country and abroad with an open subject matter and this year has attracted nearly seven thousand entries. We were shown images from the Travel, Creative, Monochrome and Nature categories all of which were absolutely first class and gave us much to aspire to. Success in Salon events is a prestigious achievement and we are very pleased to see one of our members, Tina Haydon, having acceptances for the second year running. Well done, Tina!
As always the month concluded with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Keith Sharples, CPAGB, BPE2* of the Monmouth Camera Club. Keith felt that some images had been a little over-processed resulting in a ‘noisy’ finish but made very favourable comments on the overall quality of the work presented to him. He went on to explain how hard it was to separate the very best of the images as they were all of extremely high standard, however he eventually decided to make the following awards:
Monochrome Print: Commenting on the very good number of entries, Keith awarded first prize and 20 points to Mike Lewis for “Brecon Winter”. Barbra Archdale-Smith gained second place and 19 points for “Look At That Leaf” and third spot with 18 points was taken by Glenn Porter for his “JP – Tax The Heat”.
Colour Print: This was a closely fought contest with some very high marks being awarded, however Keith finally settled the competition by awarding 20 points and first place to John Dudley for “Evening Flight”, second place and 19 points to Barbra Archdale-Smith for her “Trio Of Colourful Homes” and third place with 18 points to Hugh Winnan for “Watching The Watchers”.
Projected Image: This section was, as always, the most contested section with thirty four entries this month. The winner with 20 points was Tina Haydon for “Beauty Sleep”. An excellent showing from our resident Natural History expert Steve Everitt gained him second place scoring 19 points with a shot entitled “Elusive Bittern” and also third place and 18 points for “Good Morning”.
Congratulations go to all award winners this month, but special mention should be made to Steve and Barbra for multiple successes. February promises to be an interesting month with visits from Dave Green and Roy Carr, a seven-way battle at the Vale Camera Club, Ystradowen and our monthly competition.
December’s programme started on the 2nd of the month with a visit from Tim Knifton (AWPF, CPAGB, AFIAP, PSA*7), a widely exhibited and published travel photographer. Tim specialises in recording and portraying the derelict and abandoned buildings and machinery that he and his team locate in their travels around the world and his programme tonight featured work he recently undertook on a visit to Italy. Tim has a very strict set of rules and never enters a building forcibly or removes anything. Neither he nor his team would vandalise or damage any part of a building and wherever possible he obtains permission to enter these buildings which have been abandoned mainly due to earthquake damage, or sometimes for no apparent reason other than economic. The program started with a series of images of asylums and hospitals, followed by industrial units such as a cotton mill and a knitwear plant which featured some very fine detail in the pictures of the turbine and steam rooms, helped by Tim’s use of high Dynamic Range photography. The evening went on to include images of churches, schools, residential buildings and finally a series of shots of some dilapidated Alfa Romeos. This was a display of extremely high quality work which was much appreciated by the members and we look forward to welcoming Tim again next year.
Friday 9th saw us welcome Royston Packer (DPAGB, AWPF, LSINWP) a native of Pembrokeshire, who is best known for his outstanding wildlife work, but tonight he gave us a presentation entitled “My Journey Through India”. We were treated to some of the best travel photography we have seen for many years, featuring a clever combination of still and Audio-Visual work. The first half of the evening was mostly based on his wildlife work, featuring some stunning pictures of tigers in the wild but also monkeys, elephants and other wildlife indigenous to India. After coffee, Roy showed us his images of the people, animals and lifestyles to be found in the cities of Jaipur and Varanasi. As well as the expected shots of poverty and hardship Roy managed to bring out the warmth of the people through their religious and burial rituals and gave us a fascinating insight to life in modern day India. This was Roy’s first ever visit to Barry Camera Club but I am certain that we will be welcoming him again next year.
John Harvey was our guest speaker on the 16th and presented a talk entitled “A Judge’s Eye”. Over the years, more than a few of our members have wondered how on earth Judges arrive at the conclusions that they do, and in fact even wondered if the Judge was actually looking at the correct picture appraising their effort, so it was interesting to hear from a very experienced judge. As expected, John stressed the importance of composition, exposure, focus selection and presentation quality but above all the pictorial content. This, unfortunately, is the area in which most members tend to fall foul of the judge’s opinion; sometimes a judge has a particular interest in a certain subject which lends itself to him inadvertently boosting his marks, and vice-versa on subject content that he or she has no interest in. On many occasions we have seen technically very good images getting low marks simply because the judge simply ‘does not get’ the subject matter’ and lesser quality images being given unduly high marks. However that is the human condition, and it seems that the old adage of “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” is still as true as ever.
We concluded our December programme on the 23rd with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Dave Russell (AFIAP) from Cardiff Camera Club who gave a detailed and very thorough critique to every shot. He expressed his admiration of the overall standard of the work presented to him and as well as making the usual comments on technical aspects he also make mention of the artistic element. He awarded marks and prizes as follows:
Monochrome Print: This was a closely fought contest with Glenn Porter coming out on top with 20 points for his “A Cold Penarth Pier”. In second place with 19 points was Barbra Archdale-Smith with her print “Six” and Mike Lewis gained third place with a shot entitled “The Rowing Boat”.
Colour Print: First prize and 20 points went to Brian Trego for “Holding Hands In The Spray”, with second place and 19 points going to Barbra Archdale-Smith for her “Inner City, Rome”. Brian scored again as third place winner with 18 points for a print entitled “Incoming Estuary Tide”.
The Projected Image section was, as usual, the most contested section. The winner with 20 points was Gareth Williams with his “Fallen Tree”. Second prize and 19 points was awarded to Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Regatta” and third prize with 18 points was another success for Gareth with his “Cecil Not Forgotten”.
Congratulations to all prize winners but in particular those who had multiple successes.
Our November programme started on the 4th with our annual three-way battle with Merthyr and Rhiwbina Camera Clubs at Rhiwbina’s Cardiff clubhouse. The judge this year was David Lingham, who expressed his pleasure at the quality of the entries. After giving a thorough discussion to every image presented, he awarded his marks, giving Barry Camera Club a well-earned first place. Congratulations go to Barbra Archdale-Smith, John Dudley and Tina Haydon who all scored a maximum 20 points for their entries.
Friday 11th saw our first ever in-house ‘novelty’ competition, entitled “Beatles Competition With A Difference”. The subject was images taken to illustrate song and album titles by the Beatles. The members were asked to guess which song was relative to each image and there were some extremely clever and original images on show; in fact some of the more obscure examples such as “The Inner Light” stumped even the more expert Beatles fans amongst the members present! The images themselves were judged by a member of staff of the Art department at Cardiff Museum; Ken Mayled walked away with first and second prizes and Glen Porter gained third prize. This proved to be a very successful night and our thanks go to John Dudley who organised the event.
The 18th of the month saw Peter Young, CPAGB, AFIAP, APAGB, Chairman of the Welsh International Salon give an audio-visual presentation of some of the many images from the 2016 Salon. There were several categories of images; Photo Journalism, Open Colour, Nature, Open Monochrome, Experimental/Creative and Photo Travel. Somewhat predictably the most popular seemed to be the wildlife and nature images although every category was supported by some very high quality images. Two of our members had images selected into the Salon, Rob Owens had one acceptance and Tina Haydon no less than five acceptances and was awarded a PSA Bronze Medal for her image “Watching”. Well done, Tina!
Once again the month concluded with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Ed Cloutman, EFIAP. Ed is one of the most experienced judges on the South Wales circuit and despite suffering from a very heavy cough he gave a detailed and very thorough critique to every shot, and managed to show how he would have altered some of the images to give an improved score. Ed awarded marks and prizes as follows:
Monochrome Print: Ed awarded first prize and twenty points to Mike Lewis for his shot ‘Homeless’, and also placed him second with nineteen points for ‘The Old Bathroom’. Third place and eighteen points was awarded to Glenn Porter for ‘Hay Bale’.
Colour Print: Twenty points and first place was awarded to Frank Cleland for “Top Gun” and Frank was also judged in second place with nineteen points for “9 AM At The Funfair”. Third place and eighteen points went to Brian Trego for his ‘Estuary Maze Drop Off’.
The Projected Image section was, as usual, the best supported section and Ed made the following awards: First prize and twenty points went to Tina Haydon for a perfectly executed aerial shot entitled “Lockheed Martin F-22A Raptor”. Second place and nineteen points went to Philippa Evans for her evening shot of Penarth Pier entitled “Blue Hour” and third place went to Mike Lewis whose ‘Interior Design’ also scored nineteen points but was felt to be ever so slightly bettered by Philippa’s shot.
Congratulations to all prize winners but in particular to Tina for such a good Salon showing and Mike for multiple successes in the monthly competition.
The October 2016 programme started on the 7th with a visit from husband and wife team Roger Parry ARPS, AWPF, EFIAP, EFSIAP and his wife Judith DPAGB, AFIAP who gave us a presentation of prints entitled “Parry’s Pictures”. Both photographers are heavily committed to the hobby, acting as exhibitors, lecturers and judges throughout the UK and Europe. The evening commenced with a wide range of very high quality Landscapes and Travel shots taken in many exotic locations, but their main interest is in portraiture and especially fine art nude photography which was of extremely high quality featuring very attractive models and never verged into the risqué. And whilst nude and figure photography is not really everybody’s ‘cup of tea’, all members enjoyed the explanations and stories behind each picture.
On Friday 14th we welcomed Andy Beel FRPS, with his presentation entitled “Every Picture Tells A Story”. Andy is an established Lecturer on the photographic Club and Society circuit, who enjoys a reputation for producing thought-provoking monochrome work printed in a dark and gritty style. He was kind enough to host workshop on Friday afternoon, taking several of the members on a photographic visit to Barry Island where he demonstrated his photographic style featuring leading lines and low viewpoints, whilst those members present were encouraged to make their own images. The first part of the evening was dedicated to Andy displaying his travel photography, with some stunning work taken in Spain and North Wales and demonstrating his Lightroom techniques on some pictures taken under foggy conditions. After coffee, Andy provided critiques and commentary on the work that had been created that afternoon by the members which was very well received by all present.
The following week Mike Cullis ARPS made his first ever visit to the club to present his talk entitled “A Personal Journey”. Mike specialises in wildlife photography, especially birds. He explained how his passion developed from the age of fourteen when he built his own hide in his garden to allow him to get close to his subjects unnoticed. Since then he has travelled extensively and showed pictures of birds and other wildlife taken in Florida, pictures of cheetahs, leopards and lions from the Masai Mara, and elephants from the skeleton coast of Namibia. This was a display of great variety and depth including some stunning close-up images. We look forward to welcoming Mike back next year.
Once again the month concluded with our monthly competition night. This month the judge was Dave Bennett who gave a very fair appraisal of the work presented to him and congratulations go to all who gained success.
November features a three-way battle with Merthyr Tydfil and Rhiwbina Camera clubs, members will be presenting their efforts based on the subject of The Beatles’ songs, we have Peter Young, Chairman of the Welsh International Salon presenting this year’s salon entries and of course our monthly competition will round off the month.
Throughout the rest of the year and into 2017 we have a full programme of talks, demonstrations, photographic expeditions, competitions and inter-club battles planned. New members are particularly encouraged and will be made most welcome with a programme being prepared especially for the new and less experienced photographers to allow them to quickly gain more proficiency and satisfaction from their hobby.
The first meeting of the new season was on Friday 2nd September where new members were welcomed and the season’s event schedule presented. On Friday 9th we welcomed the highly regarded Margaret Collis EFSIAP, DPAGB, APAGB, ARPS who gave a presentation entitled “An Evening With Margaret Collis”. Margaret, a former WCPF President, is a much-travelled highly experienced photographer specialising in travel photography. She gave a stunning presentation of prints from the United States taken on a recent trip and the images of Bryce Canyon in the Utah National park reminded us all of the scenery in the old John Wayne westerns. Death Valley was another location featured and the images were so realistic that one felt that one could actually feel the heat. Other pictures were taken in Indo-China, particularly Laos and Cambodia featuring street scenes, farming landscapes and the local peoples and some interesting pictures taken in Singapore during a monsoon rain shower.
Friday the 16th saw the arrival of Dave Mason who gave us a presentation entitled “A Slice Of Life”. Dave is an accomplished street photographer who specialises in catching people in interesting situations in public places. Totally un-staged, Dave’s photos made use of what he referred to as ‘borrowed-art’, namely billboards, advertising hoardings, road signs, street furniture such as litter bins etc. and even graffiti. Although working predominantly in Black and White as his favourite medium, Dave used colour when the image demanded it and showed us an interesting series of images featuring yellow lines, brightly coloured graffiti and shop-front signage. Perhaps most unusual was his use of infra-red photography in a street environment; a rare use of this medium which is usually seen in nature and landscape photography. This was a fascinating evening and we look forward to welcoming Dave in a return visit at some time in the future.
The third meeting in September was hosted by our own Roy Carr. Roy is a stalwart of the club and has recently retired from an extended stint as our Competition Secretary which has finally allowed him time to concentrate on putting together his applications for Associateship of the Royal Photographic Society and Associateship of the Welsh Photographic Federation. To apply for these distinctions it is necessary to present a panel of images upon which is judged, and the topic of the presentation was a demonstration of the best ways of making a panel of one’s prints. To gain acceptance it is important to present a group of prints that sit well together as a complete unit, even if they are not necessarily the photographer’s favourite prints, rather than a ‘mish-mash’ of a dozen top quality individual prints that just don’t work together. Roy presented previous distinction winning panels of club members and we all discussed the decisions that had been made, which gave us an insight into how we would go about this if we were to apply for such distinctions ourselves. And on this point we all wish Roy the very best with his applications, but given the high quality of his work Roy certainly won’t need luck!
Friday the 30th, being the last Friday of the month, saw our monthly competition night. The judge this month was Glyn Pooley, a noted events and portrait photographer. Glyn gave a thorough critique to all entries and offered some sound advice to the members whose offerings were not marked highly. The results were:
1st place and 20 points to Hugh Winnan for “Atlantic Cinema”
2nd place and 19 points to Barbra Archdale-Smith for “The Po-Faced Gondolier”
3rd place an 18 points to Mike Lewis for “Calanais Stones”
1st place and 20 points to Barbra Archdale-Smith for “The Director’s Chair”
2nd place and 19 points to Roy Carr for “Corfe Castle Down”
Joint third place and 18 points each to Barbra Archdale-Smith for “Four Birds And Mary” and Glenn Porter for “On A Road To Nowhere”