We were expecting something special from Melvin and he did not disappoint. The landscape images, supporting narratives, practical advice and humorous anecdotes grabbed attention and did not falter as he took us on an extensive geographic tour that climaxed in Iceland with a string of striking images. Melvin clearly has a deep, loving relationship with rugged and wild places and his seascapes and landscapes demonstrated that the best images come from a commitment to perfection, a willingness to return again and again to the same location, and an unending determination to shoot early and late, in difficult weather conditions.
Our second trip to the butterfly house this year included chameleons, blue-tongued lizards, snakes and cockroaches as well as butterflies. This is a great opportunity to use different lighting techniques in a natural setting. We are considering a further visit in March 2018.
On Monday evening the Butterfly House and its inhabitants presented a huge challenge and promised rich rewards for those determined to overcome the lighting issues, the high humidity and the shy and at times, uncooperative creatures. All those present had an enjoyable, learning experience, and are intent on returning to capture competition winning images. A return visit is planned for early spring and we will keep members posted on dates and times when these are agreed. Our thanks to Brad for organising the event.
On Tuesday evening we gathered at the White Cross for our Christmas Dinner. Many thanks to Colin for arranging a splendid evening, in a great venue that will become our close neighbour and social gathering place in the new year. The large turnout, excited, noisy conversation, empty wine bottles, colourful complexions, and wide smiles signalled the success of the evening.
The experienced and confident judge, Paul Williamson, provided us with a useful introduction to his journey with the camera and his specialisms in architectural and mono photography. Paul then guided us through the 59 colour and 46 mono images selected for inclusion in our third competition of the year, ‘Fauna and Flora’. Paul supported his judgements with thoughtful analyses of the images, direction on how images could be improved, humorous interjections and at times strongly held personal preferences. (poor seal pup!!!) Paul did not pull his punches and was particularly critical of the images included in the mono section. This is an area where he has a particular interest and there was much said that was helpful and could be taken away and applied both in the field and in the digital darkroom.