We were treated to an real fizz of enthusiasm and energy on Thursday evening when Sue Sibley took us on her Journey so Far. And what a journey it has been – Sue only took up a camera a few years ago, joining Southampton Camera Club some six years ago, and where she was President for two years. She was refreshingly open in showing some of her earlier photographs and relating how she learnt her trade, and for her, how realising you can ‘create’ a picture not just ‘take’ one was very much to her taste. Images with emotion and narrative are what Sue enjoys most, and the narrative she told about the ways she acquired her very high skill levels was fascinating and informative. Sue was generous in sharing ideas, locations and techniques and particularity encouraging about revisiting older images as our technical skills improve and our thinking expands.
In such a short time Sue has achieved her LRPS and ARPS, as well as her DPAGB, EPIAP and BPE2* and on top of those personal achievements and her role with Southampton Camera Club, Chairs Southampton International Exhibition and most recently has joined New Forest Camera Club as well! We’ve mostly seen Sue recently in her judging role and she is a very popular judge bringing all her enthusiasm and enjoyment to the task, so it was a real pleasure to have her with us telling us about her own photography and sharing her stories and thoughts.
We concluded the evening with presentations to two of our own highly capable photographers as Peter Rocchiccioli in his role as President of the SCPF made awards to Ann McDonald and Sheila Tester – do see the separate post for the details.
Ann McDonald’s Portrait of a Lady won best portrait individual award at the PAGB GB cup for the open projected images
Last night was the second of the two Advanced PDI Competitions of the season and we welcome Lyndsey Green as our judge. Lyndsey, who holds an MA in Fine Art and is Chair Littlehampton Camera Club, has not judged for us before and it’s always interesting to have a perspective on our work from a different source. Andy Dulson scooped the only 10 of the evening with his super image of Vashti Cunningham, caught in a dramatic moment over the high jump. Andy of course has a specialism in sports photography and his access to arenas has provided opportunities to snap many of the athletic greats, including Usain Bolt. This image though was a real gem (you can see it below) full of the drama of the moment and technical competence.
Currently, we only hold two rounds of PDI competitions, but following the discussion at last year’s AGM it was agreed that next season we will trial three rounds and if that is thought to be an improvement, the change will be formally proposed at the 2019 AGM and if agreed will become our practice.
We also heard last night that the forthcoming Sussex Photographic Federation Print Competition has had to be cancelled due to family circumstances for the organisers. The SxPF competitions are reserved by us for our Members from Club and Intermediate Classes, although open to all classes. This ensures all our Members are able to have a wide range of images considered and included in inter-club competitions and despite meaning we compete against advanced members from other clubs we often to very well. Our Selection Committee had chosen the images for submission just last week and so we were pleased to see them during the coffee break. It is probable that the competition will still be judged – further news to follow.
A big ‘thank you’ to the many, many, members who signed my 70th card and wrote such touching messages. It is very much appreciated and also a ‘thank you’ to the lady who pulled it all together, I think I know who you are …
I’m a great believer in celebrating birthdays – ignoring the numbers if they bother you. Time really does march on but it’s thought provoking to realise that I’ve been a member of our wonderful Club for 40% of my years on the planet. And I joined only three years into my photographic life having become a member of the IBM (South Hants) Camera Club in the autumn of 1987. It is a great organisation, a somewhat extended family, and it is very valuable to celebrate the good times and get the support needed in times of illness or when members are called to that great darkroom in the sky.
And now for something completely different! It was a real pleasure to welcome Caroline Colegate to the Club last night, for the third time this season. Caroline was with us as our scheduled judge for the SCPF Print League at the beginning of December, and again at the beginning of January standing in for Ken Scott for the SCPF PDI League so it was particularly enjoyable to have her with us last night presenting her own work rather than judging.
And what an interesting evening it was as she took us ‘365 & Beyond’. Caroline explained that back in 2009 she had rather run out of steam with her photography, feeling that the demands of club photography were giving her no time for her own work and unsure where to go. Inspired by Ken Scott she embarked on a 365 project whereby she committed to taking an image every day for a year. For any of us who have contemplated doing 365 (and a number of our members are in picture a day mode) it was really enlightening as Caroline explored how the process had come to increase both her photographic knowledge and her self awareness.
Grouping her images into genres, such as Landscape and Pictorial, People Pictures (a real challenge she at first found), Desperation Days (simply no time but nevertheless time found!), Abstracts and Patterns and Pre Planned Days, it was so refreshing to listen to someone simply talking about the pleasure they had in photography, if also demonstrating an absolute commitment to meet their self imposed challenge.
But it was work deriving from what became Commemorate my Days type work (Caroline had few of those categories in mind when she embarked on the project) that led on to Caroline’s Associateship panel with the Royal Photographic Society, as that work revealed not just pleasurable times and commemorated happy events but also what she called her darker side. She noticed patterns of dark and moody images that led her on a voyage of discovery around feelings of entrapment that were limiting and which her project encouraged her to explore and to step outside of. Her photography, growing out of the 365 project, became not just a stepping stone to the successful ARPS but also a means of therapy that brought self awareness and self fulfilment. A truly fascinating evening.
Members met up last night to celebrate the festive season with our Christmas Bash, hosted this year by Mike Hancock, with our traditional quiz night. Mike’s new creative round was a particular challenge as he asked for a representative from each table to tear a cow out of a sheet of paper which they had to hold behind their backs. My hotly refuted assessment that Stephen Marsh’s was the most creative was based not upon the shape he presented (which surely should have gone to Richard Ryder’s 3D cow) but on his absolute creativity in declaring it was a shy cow hiding behind a hedge!
Special commendation to tables 4 & 5 for gaining full marks on the Initial Round, and also for scoring the highest (24 out of a possible 30) for Name that Tune. A very special thanks to all those Members who gave me picture of their former young selves for the Who the Devil is it? round, on which table 4 identified all but two and table 2 who managed 8 of the 11.
Despite the strong performance by tables 4 and 5, who came out top in terms of absolute marks, once the scores were weighted to take account of the different numbers on each table, it was table 6 – Charlie’s Angels – that won overall with 102.6, with table 4 in second place with 91.1 and table 2 which took third place with 88.6.
A great evening to conclude the first part of the Club’s season and thanks to everyone, especially Mike, for making it such an enjoyable success.
We meet again on Thursday 4th January when we host our SCPF PDI League round – don’t forget the evening is also the deadline for the second Advanced Print Competition.
All very best wishes for Christmas and success in the New Year!