Photographers Wanted for Blitz Dress Rehearsal

The club has received the following message from Jane Renton of Musselburgh Amateur Musical Association. about their new show “Blitz” at the Brunton Theatre.


Our show is rapidly approaching again, and as usual, if any club members would like to come along and take some photographs at our dress rehearsal that would be great. The dress rehearsal is at the Brunton Theatre as usual on Wednesday 10th April. We will probably be starting at about 7:00pm. As the show is set during the Blitz there will probably be some challenging lighting conditions for folks to contend with. In addition, please note that the aisles in the theatre will be being used for stage access so please keep these clear.
If anyone interested could email me at   so I have an idea of who is coming that would be great.
Many thanks,
Jane Renton

21 March 2019 (Set Subject Competition – Street Photography)

This week our 3-part set subject competition reached its climax with the final competition on the subject of street photography, judged by Stephen Williams, the winner of last year’s competition. Stephen began by describing his vision of what street photography means: a candid style of photography which documents human life in the street or elsewhere. He will be looking for photographs which show emotions, interactions and actions and which tell a story. The subject works equally well in colour or black and white. 18 members entered a total of 54 images. Most of the images showed people or street performers going about their business. Jim Tod’s image “Photobombed” raised a laugh, showing a lady taking a selfie with a pigeon sitting on her head! In most competitions the judge would recommend cropping out unwanted distractions but in this competition there were many images that were too tight in the frame and needed to show more of the scene to tell the story. Is this person really a hat seller if there are no hats in the picture? Who is the artist painting this picture? Where is the audience interacting with this performer? Some images with distracting colours would have worked better in black and white, although Steve Barber’s “London Transport” had been colour-popped to good effect. There were some beautiful portraits, creative abstract images and stark images of buildings, urban landscapes and street furniture which were good images but were lacking the story needed to make a good street image. The best images were the ones which captured a moment in someone’s life and made the viewer think. The top scoring images were:

  • Scrap Lady (George Todd) – 20 points
  • Edinburgh’s Finest (Mike Clark) – 20 points
  • Resting (Jennifer Davidson) – 19 points
  • London Transport (Steve Barber) – 19 points
  • Levitating Band (Steven Beard) – 18 points
  • Mobile Sweet Shop (George Todd) – 18 points
  • Pushy Lady (Mike Clark) – 18 points
  • Out shopping (Catriona McKay) – 18 points
  • View From Up Here (Gordon Davidson) – 18 points
  • Waiting (Steve Barber) – 18 points

There was a spread of high scoring images amongst all members, but it was those who were consistent who achieved the better overall score. The highest total scores were:

  • 5th place (47 points)
    • Lorraine Roberts
    • Jim Tod
    • Catriona McKay
  • 4th place (49 points)
    • Steven Beard
    • Gordon Davidson
  • 3rd place (51 points)
    • Mike Clark
  • 2nd place (52 points)
    • Jennifer Davidson
  • 1st place (53 points)
    • George Todd
    • Steve Barber

Congratulations to George Todd and Steve Barber for their joint win. In this situation the winner who did better in the other two competitions is the one who judges next year, which makes Steve Barber next year’s judge.

The final result of the 2018/19 set subject competition looks like this. The trophy is won by the member who (unless judging) has entered all 3 competitions and has the highest combined score in their two best competitions. The top overall scorers are:

  • 5th place (100 points)
    • Mike Clark
  • 4th place (101 points)
    • Jennifer Davidson
    • Gordon Davidson
  • 3rd place (102 points)
    • Steven Beard
  • 2nd place (103 points)
    • Steve Barber
  • 1st place (112 points)
    • Jim Tod

Nobody managed to get a high enough score to overturn Jim Tod’s lead from the first two competitions, so Jim wins the trophy. Also well done to Steve Barber, who moved up to take the silver medal. It is also good to see Sandra Crowhurst, Catriona McKay and Gordon Davidson submitting some really good images to this competition.

 

21 February 2019 (Human Portrait Print Competition)

Here, at last, are the results from the human portrait competition which took place on 21st February 2019. The competition was judged by Neil Spowart of North Berwick Photographic Society and the results read out on the night by Mike Clark. I missed the competition but I understand Mike put on a good show for those present.

35 images were entered by 12 members. The top scorers were (in reverse order):

  • 4th place (51 points)
    • Malcolm Roberts
  • 3rd place (52 points)
    • Jennifer Davidson
  • 2nd place (53 points)
    • Jim Tod
    • Steve Barber
  • 1st place (59 points)
    • George Todd

Well done to George for winning the competition with an almost perfect score! The top images were:

  • Yadana (George Todd) – 20 points
  • Baraha Temple Priest (George Todd) – 20 points
  • Blue Rinse (Malcolm Roberts) – 19 points
  • Marching To My Fate (Jim Tod) – 19 points
  • Distracted (George Todd) – 19 points
  • Balancing Act (Jennifer Davidson) – 18 points
  • Andy (Jim Tod) – 18 points
  • Arms (Kevin Johnson) – 18 points
  • Halloween (Steve Barber) – 18 points
  • Mysterious Lady (Steve Barber) – 18 points

 

Borders Digital Challenge 2019

Apologies for the late notice, but the Borders Digital Challenge competition takes place this Sunday, 17th March 2018 from 2pm to 5pm at the Tower Mill Cinema, 2 Kirkstile, Hawick, TD9 0AE. The event is being hosted by Hawick Camera Club. The Tower Mill Cinema is part of the Heart of Hawick, and there is a cafe on site. Musselburgh Camera Club won this competition last year. Can we do it again?

Click here for information on the venue.

Click here for a map and directions.

 

 

07 March 2019 (Pecha Kucha Night)

This week we had our annual Pecha Kucha night, which gives as many members as possible the opportunity to give a short presentation and show 10 images on any subject of their choosing.

Before the evening began, we completed last week’s “abstract” set subject competition by showing 3 images from Kevin Johnson which had not been included. The result gave Kevin one of the top images (a spectacular image of bubbles called “Bubs”, which received 19 points). Kevin’s score of 49 points puts him in joint 4th place and gives him a place on the league table (click here for details).

9 members had brought collections of images, which was just enough to fill the evening with interesting presentations. Joe began by showing some of his travel images from the past and told us the story behind each one (including how he once lost the location of his hotel when staying in New York). I showed my first photography project with a digital camera, in which I borrowed the Bill The Pony cuddly toy from a, now defunct, Tolkien web site called “Imladris”, which featured photographs showing the pony enjoying a tour of the world. Gavin showed us photographs he took during a training exercise for the Scottish Marshalling rescue service, showing how the team need to cover for both the ambulance and fire service. Mike showed us some of the street photography images which he hadn’t submitted for the next set subject competition. Malcolm and Lorraine showed us some fabulous images from their recent holiday in New Zealand, and Jennifer showed us a selection of her wildlife images. Alan showed us some historical photographs from his veterinary career and a large print made with some poster making software. Catriona and Sandra showed images from photographers they admired and would like to emulate. Finally, Liz had brought along a collection of hundred year-old postcards for members to look at while having tea. Overall it was an entertaining and enjoyable evening with a good mix of subjects.

For those of you who saw the pinhole lens I was showing during the tea break, you might find one in the UK by inserting the words “pinhole lens for Nikon” or “pinhole lens for Canon” into a search engine. My own lens is made by Skink Pinhole Pancake in Germany, who are (unfortunately) no longer selling them via Amazon.

Next week we have a members evening. Simon Wilkinson, Ken Sharp and Mike Clark have offered to show us some of their work.

Please don’t forget to sign the tea list. We wouldn’t have had any tea this evening if it wasn’t for Jennifer kindly rushing off at the beginning of the evening to buy us some milk.

 

Pecha Kucha Night this Thursday

A reminder that it is Pecha Kucha night this Thursday, 7th March 2019. Pecha Kucha is a presentation format where speakers present 20 slides on a topic, speaking for a maximum of 20 seconds on each slide, allowing lots of topics to be covered in one evening. We have a half-length Pecha Kucha, where speakers show 10 images for 20 seconds each, which allows more members to take part.

Please bring along 10 images of your choice (on a data stick) to show other members. These can be images of any subject, and by any author. You can show a collection of your own images, show images from a photographer you admire, present images from a favourite magazine or from a web site, etc… Digital images are preferred, but if you need to bring along prints (e.g. you only have a printed copy of a magazine) then bring them along and we can show them at the end.

If we don’t have enough images to fill the evening, there will be an opportunity for a “show and tell” at the end. If you don’t have any images to show members but, for example, you own a cool photographic gadget you’d like to tell us about then bring it along.

See you this Thursday for what I hope will be a fun and entertaining evening.

 

More info about the club trip to Harris & Lewis around October 2019

Back in January, Jim Tod circulated a suggestion for a possible club trip to the western isles later this year. Jim has been researching the possibilities and has sent us the following update. If you are interested in going please contact Jim ASAP so he can make the booking.


Harris & Lewis Trip Update

The proposed dates for the trip are Saturday 2nd November 2019 until Friday 8th November 2019, arriving on Harris from Skye on Saturday 2nd about 8pm and leaving from Harris on Friday 8th about 4pm. I am just firming up but these are the most likely dates currently.

The hotels will require a deposit of 50% of the accommodation cost 3 months prior to arrival (i.e. end of July 2019). Since this is well before the start of the new season in September, we will need a deposit before the end of the current season this April. The 50% deposit for hotel accommodation would be £180 per person. Jim will hold the deposit money (or we can ask Steve to hold the money in the club account) deposit has to be paid. If circumstances change, it is possible to cancel the accommodation any time before the deposit is paid by letting Jim know, and the deposit will be returned. Jim can arrange bank details with those interested.

If anyone is interested in these dates can they please email jim@todfamily.me.uk to confirm interest ASAP as Jim is looking to provisionally book the hotel this week.

Regards

Jim

28 February 2019 (Set Subject Competition – Abstract)

This week we had the second of our 3 set subject competitions, following on from the “Seascapes” competition, which took place in October 2018. The competition was judged by Mike Clark, who won the “Movement” competition last year. Mike began the evening by showing us the definition of abstract photography, which he would be using to judge the images. He also showed us a collection of his own abstract images, which would also have been strong contenders in this competition.

Members submitted a total of 39 images. The “abstract” subject gives members a chance to be creative in their work, and Mike said he had been inspired to try some of the ideas. Images included a spectacular arrangement of oil drops on water, streaks of light, creative collections of everyday objects viewed from unusual angles, reflections, bubbles, striking rock formations, unusual landscapes, lighting displays, strange portraits taken through glass or cloth and a glowing neon tiger. One images which stood out from the rest was a spectacular macro image of water droplets covering the centre of a flower, by relative newcomer Sandra Crowhurst. Well done Sandra, you nailed it with that image! Mike was baffled how some authors achieved their effects, and there was a lot of discussion during the tea break.

The top scoring images were:

  • Water Droplets (Sandra Crowhurst) – 20 points
  • Glacier Nebula (Jim Tod) – 19 points
  • Bubs (Kevin Johnston) – 19 points
  • Emergence (Jim Tod) – 18 points
  • Winter Gloaming at Luskentyre (Jim Tod) – 18 points
  • Riveting (Gordon Davidson) – 18 points
  • Pine Cone (Sean Conner) – 18 points
  • Resting Place (Steve Barber) – 18 points

Jim Tod stole the show with a great set of 3 images, but it was the 17-point images which made a difference to the rest of the placings when the scores were added up. Steven Beard achieved 3 x 17, Jennifer Davidson achieved 2 x 17, and Lorraine and Malcolm Roberts each had one 17 point image. The highest total scores were:

The highest scorers were:

  • 5th place (48 points)
    • Malcolm Roberts
  • 4th place (49 points)
    • Jennifer Davidson
    • Sean Conner
    • Sandra Crowhurst
    • Kevin Johnston
  • 3rd place (50 points)
    • Gordon Davidson
    • Steve Barber
  • 2nd place (51 points)
    • Steven Beard
  • 1st place (55 points)
    • Jim Tod

The winner normally wins the privilege of judging next year’s competition, but as Jim Tod also won the “Seascapes” competition and is already judging next year, the task falls to me in second place.

The set subject trophy will be won be the member who has the best combined score from their best two competitions. The league table after two competitions looks like this:

  • Jim Tod (57 + 55 = 112)
  • Steven Beard (51 + 51= 102)
  • Gordon Davidson (51 + 50 = 101)
  • Steve Barber (50 + 50 =100)
  • Joe Fowler (54 + 44 = 98)
  • Mike Clark (49 + judging)
  • Jennifer Davidson (47 + 49 = 96)
  • Malcolm Roberts (47 + 48 = 95)
  • Kevin Johnston (43 + 49 = 92)
  • Sandra Crowhurst (42 + 49 = 91)
  • George Todd (45 + 46 = 91)

Jim Tod is way ahead, but only a few points separate the rest. Entries for the 3rd competition “street photography” are open now. George has extended the entry deadline by a few more days, so if you would like to enter please send 3 JPEG copies (scaled to 1600 pixels on the largest side) to George (georgetodd1957@me.com) this weekend. The deciding competition takes place on 21st March 2019.

 

SPF Print Championship 2019

For those interested, the Scottish Photographic Federation Print Championship takes place tomorrow (17th February 2019) at the Stirling Court Hotel, Stirling University, Stirling FK9 4LA. The ticket desk opens at 9:30am and the competition finishes at 4:30pm. If you haven’t already found the information, here is a link to the details on the SPF web site:

https://www.scottish-photographic-federation.org/spf-print-championship

A timetable of the event is available at the following link:

https://www.scottish-photographic-federation.org/sites/default/files/downloads/print_championship_timetable_for_the_day_2019.pdf

14 February 2019 (Match That Image)

On 14th February 2019 we hosted North Berwick Photographic Society for a “Match-an-Image” evening. This is a competition format we have not tried before, and it turned out to be great fun. Each team brings along a bank of 40 images. Teams in turn display one image, and the other team tries to match it with a similar image. Points are scored when the other team can’t find a match, or when the judge declares that your team have the best matching image.

The competition was judged by Joe Fowler, who tried hard to be unbiased even though he came from Musselburgh and had to judge several of his own images! This was an informal competition where banter and comments are encouraged. At one point the audience were astonished that an image of a herd of elephants was judged to be a match to juggling man dressed as a monkey! Well, they both have an animal theme.

North Berwick are masters at this competition, and matching their images turned out to be a lot harder than anticipated. Musselburgh had a few lucky breaks, but North Berwick had a really devious collection of opening images, and in the end North Berwick won by 33 points to 24. We learned a lot about the competition tactics by watching North Berwick, and we should be able to give them a closer competition next year. Some obvious changes we need to make next year are:

  • Make sure our team sits in a place where they can actually see the screen.
  • Print out some thumbnails of your images so you can actually see them.

It’s little things like this that make all the difference.