We usually wind down towards the end of the season with a series of fun, informal evenings. The first of these was the digital knockout competition with a “still life” theme. Still life photographs are images of one or more inanimate objects arranged into a group. Getting a good image requires innovation and an eye for a good arrangement, as well as the skill in lighting the subject and taking the photograph. The competition showed just how innovative club members are. There was a fantastic collection of images, including strange food arrangements, flower arrangements, shells, furniture, stones, driftwood, crockery, pencils, buttons and even a group of fish! The images were of such a high standard that it was hard to separate them into winners and losers. There wasn’t a single “turkey” in the bunch: all had interesting subjects with plain backgrounds and no distractions.
The digital knockout is a much more informal competition format, where you get to enter the competition and judge the images at the same time. Images are matched head-to-head and the winner by popular vote going through to the next round. The most popular of the knocked out images are resurrected to guard against the best images being knocked out too early. A special mention should go to Jennifer Davidson’s beautiful arrangement of coloured pencils and pencil sharpeners, which everyone seemed to admire and talk about but was knocked out in the third round. Another lovely image of a violin and bow also fell by the wayside before the final vote.
After three rounds of knockout and one round of popular voting, the winner was Patricia Sharp’s image of a pumpkin soup recipe called “A pinch of salt”. Coming a close second was Jennifer Davidson’s clever arrangement of origami and flowers. Images of a “cheese henge”, and cup of tea and an arrangement of driftwood came in equal 3rd place.
Well done Patricia Sharp, who wins a kit she can use to make a solar filter, which lets you telephoto lens capture images of a solar eclipse or sunspots.
If anyone else is interesting in making a solar filter, it is made using Baader Astrosolar Film (available from Green Witch Astronomy). Here you can find some instructions on how to make a filter.