Challenge 2018

CW feather
The subject set for January was 'Detail' and many club members posted their images on Devizes CC facebook.
The 'Challenge' is for members pick up their cameras or phones and take a photo during the month that fits the chosen subject.
It's always surprising what members come up with - this month we had a wide range from boiling mud to sweet wrappers, a blue car door handle to a dozing duck and a computer hard drive to teasels.
Members sometimes find that they need a bit of inspiration especially during the winter months so having a 'Challenge' often results in some interesting images.
The favourite January image was Caroline's raindrops on a feather shown left which was taken with a phone. An excellent image which probably would not have been taken if Caroline hadn't been looking around for something to fit the subject 'Detail'

The subject chosen by Caroline for the month of February is 'New Beginnings' so members - please get thinking and post your photos in the facebook Album.

If you are not yet a member then apply to join Devizes CC facebook as it is a good way for members to share photos and communicate with each other on photographic topics. PM


Light on the Wiltshire Landscape 30 January 2018   
This week we welcomed Stephen Davis to the Devizes Camera Club to hear his talk entitled Light on the Wiltshire Landscape. Stephen had travelled right across Devizes to share his photographic love affair with the Wiltshire countryside, especially that within easy reach of a curtain twitch on a day with enticing light.
SD aveburyHe told us that he moved to this area about 20 years ago and joined Wiltshire Wildlife Trust about 6 years ago. He has always been a naturalist and enjoys exploring meadows and woodland in search of landscapes, wild flowers, trees and butterflies. He said he likes making prints and tries to envisage the finished output at the time of planning and taking his images. Stephen explained that his presentation would follow the year from January to December and that the majority of the images were taken in the Pewsey and Marlborough Downs area.
True to his word, his first images were of Avebury Stone Circle in the January frost with dramatic skies. (left)
He followed this up with some snow scenes taken in Savernake Forest in 2013. He stated that we don’t often get a good amount of snow these days and advised us to get out quickly when snow does settle as it is likely to have melted by lunchtime!
Martinsell is one of his favourite spots when there is mist in the Vale. He showed us several excellent images and explained that he often likes to take this sort of landscape image with his 70-300 lens because different zoom lengths can provide a completely different feel to the same scene. Other images from February and March included Starling murmurations at Lavington vedette and Silbury Hill with a fabulous dawn sky.
SD locksIn April, Stephen was in the Pewsey Vale with an image of Woodborough Hill. He confided that the field around the clump of trees was a haven for Green Winged Orchids in the first two weeks of May. He showed us several images of Fritillaries taken at Clattinger Farm, explaining that he liked to have just one flower in sharp focus with the rest, in front and behind in soft focus. He also had images of Marsh Marigolds, taken at Drew’s Pond, Bluebells at Gophers Wood and West Wood, and Wild Garlic taken near Castle Coombe.
For June and July he had several images of wild flower meadows, especially extolling the virtues of Clattinger Farm meadows as some of the best in the country. In August, a time that he  regards as the worst of the year for photography, he had a lovely image of stooks of corn (left)  and returned to Martinsell to take some more misty images at 300mm. In September, he headed for Caen Locks shortly before the equinox, to capture golden light in the mist at the bottom of the flight.(right)
SD stooksFor October, he had a wonderful sunrise image taken through some trees across the road from Silbury Hill. Then there were a series of lovely compositions with autumn colours taken in Savernake Forest. He showed us a wonderful sunrise image taken at Langford Lakes and by December we were back in the Pewsey Vale with some original shots taken from the Pewsey Downs between Oare and Walkers Hill. Stephen ended his talk back where he started with some more stunning images with dramatic skies taken at Avebury.
During the break we had an opportunity to take a closer look at many of the images he had presented displayed as prints.
After the break, Stephen showed us samples from Wiltshire Wildlife Trust’s book, entitled Wild Wiltshire, on which he and 12 other photographers had collaborated. Some of the memorable shots, amongst a range of stunning images, included a Sparrowhawk, taken from the photographer’s kitchen window; Pewsey Vale in the snow, taken from Walker’s Hill; a fiery Firecrest; Waxwings taken in a car park in Wroughton; and swans, deer and otters taken at Lower Moor Farm.
A lively ‘question and answer’ session followed Stephen’s presentation during which it was clear that the audience had been inspired by Stephen’s images. When asked where is favourite location was, Stephen tactfully said that different places gave him different pleasures. His  list of favourites WWT reserves included Clattinger and Lower Mill Farms, Jones Mill, Morgan’s Hill, Coombe Bisset Down, Ham Hill and Conigre Mead.
The Chairman thanked Stephen for an inspiring evening and the audience backed that up with a warm round of applause.DF
GB Cup Results 2018   

RH kingfisher Devizes CC entered the 2018 GB Cup Open and Nature Projected Image competitions. These competitions are held annually by the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain who organise photographic events for photographic Clubs in England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland.

RW Fairy GlenThe competition is judged during January by 3 judges who can each award up to 5 points for each image.
In the Open competition we scored a total of 154 points for our 15 images and finished 50th out of the 75 clubs who entered which was slightly higher than last year. Our top placed image was ‘Fairy Glen’ (left) by Richard Watson LRPS with a score of 13.
Sue Wadman and Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP both did well with scores of 12.

In the Nature competition we entered 19 images and were placed 35th out of the 88 clubs who entered.
Highest scoring image was ‘Kingfisher with Catch’(right) by Robert Harvey with Dave Gray, Gill Cardy, Richard Atkinson all having images scoring 12 points.
The club scored a total of 116 points from the top 10 images which counted towards the result which was higher than the 109 scored last year.

Thanks to Battle Secretary Frank Collins for organising the club's entry and for to those members who chose the images to be entered.

See the results


Landscape Print & Projected Image Competitions 2018 23 January 2018   

The judge for the 2018 Annual Landscape Competitions was John Tilsley ARPS DPAGB APAGB who travelled from Dorchester. John is a very experienced judge and is himself a very competent landscape photographer and when he saw the glorious sunrises and sunsets depicted in many of the entries he quipped that it usually rains whenever he goes to photograph landscapes! RH wembury
It was no surprise that many entries showed classic scenes taken in the Isle of Skye as the club had a group visit to the area last year and were lucky to experience wonderful weather. John knew first hand many of the locations so knew how difficult it can be to wait to get the best light to show the landscape at its best. John remarked on the magnificent skies members had managed to portray in many of the images.
There were seventeen print entries and John remarked on the high standard. Most of the images depicted the glorious scenery found in Scotland but there were a few from other parts of the world as well. It is always difficult for a judge to choose the final winners and John joked that he would only delight those entrants whose images were awarded first place!  John had looked through the entries in great detail and gave very helpful comments on each image but he preferred to wait until he saw the prints under the print stand lights to decide on his order of awards.
SH sunriseFinally, a dramatic Devon seascape titled ‘Wembury Point’ (right) by Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP was chosen as the judge’s favourite print. John commented on the dynamism shown in the image and the way the light enhanced the dramatic foreground rocks and the slow shutter speed used to give a sense of drama to the waves.
In second place was ‘Sunset over Sgurr Nan Gillean’ (left) by Steve Hardman with the judge stating that the glorious colours in the sky gave a remarkable effect. Third was another Skye image – this time ‘Early Light, Old man of Storr’ by Dave Gray. Two prints by Robert was also awarded Highly Commended and Gill Ford Pier the third HC.
RH buttermereThere was a good entry for the Landscape Projected Image Competition in which images had to be taken in the British Isles. Again many of the 35 images entered were from the group visit to Skye
with some of the images taken from very similar viewpoints so John waited to see how the images appeared when projected to make his final judgement.
Again Robert gained first place with ‘Buttermere at Dawn’ (right)  – this time a tranquil scene taken in the Lake District which the judge described as having a beautiful subdued lighting.
TP cloudsSecond place went to ‘Passing Clouds at the Quirang’ (left) by Tim Pier with the judge remarking on the superb lighting on the interesting rock strata.
Third place went to Robert with ‘Durdle Door at Sunset’ which perfectly captured the setting sun through the rock arch with the whole shoreline of Swyre Head.
Nine images were Highly Commended with one each going to Robert and Tim, two going to Dave Gray, two to Sue Wadman and one to Caroline Wright.
Special mention goes to Roly Barth for his HC for a delightful local scene of winter trees. Roly is in the Beginners section having only fairly recently joined the club. Very well done to all.

Robert was presented with both the Silver Birches Print Trophy and the Derrick Turner Memorial Trophy for Projected Images by John Tilsley. Many congratulations to Robert who retained both of the landscape trophies he was awarded in 2017.
Thanks to John for taking such time and trouble looking through all the landscape entries and giving his comments and judgement.
Thanks to Caroline for sorting the entries and running the competition and also thanks to all the entrants who showed us such a range of stunning landscapes. PM

   Full results                                                     All the awarded Landscape images can be seen in the Galleries


Photographic Competition that members might be interested in  
Oxford Brookes University 'Think Human'  Photography Competition.
Photographers of all ages, backgrounds and experience levels are invited to enter their best images for a chance to win, and entry to the competition is free.
The competition is now open for entries and runs until 31st March 2018.
The four themes are: IdentityEmpowermentProvocation or Empathy. 
There are three competition categories, with prizes of £50 each. The overall competition winner will receive a prize of £100.   details

'The Secret Forest' 16 January 2018   
There was a very good turnout at the Camera Club to welcome Betty and Tony Rackham (both FRPS) for their presentation entitled The Secret Forest. During the club’s introduction it was mentioned that both Tony and Betty had been photographers most of their lives, starting out on a Box Brownie.
Betty started by saying that both she and Tony had been brought up in the New Forest, had been to school there and ended up lecturing at Brockenhurst College, where Tony became Head of Technology and Betty Head of Photography.
She gave us a potted history of the Forest’s existence, explaining the various influences that had made it what it is today. From Saxon times, when it was just common land; through William the Conqueror, who enclosed it as a hunting forest; its use as a resource for timber in the middle ages; and the re-establishment of common rights in the 19th century.
Betty explained that she and Tony would take it in turns to show various habitats in the New Forest and give us a close-up view of flora and fauna that most people would miss. She started with Ponds and said that, while you can see some unusual plants in these habitats, some are wild and others have been introduced and cultivated. We saw images of Royal Fern, which has clearly been planted on the edge of some ponds as ornamental features, but has also managed to establish itself in other areas as a wild plant. She said that white water-lilies are usually wild, but pink ones will have been introduced. She showed us close-up images of unusual and, in some cases, rare plants, including Burr Reed, Water Horsetail, Lesser Spearwort, Frog-bit, Bog Pimpernel and Pillwort.
Tony took over to talk about Streams and Rivers and Boggy Areas. He started with an image of baby Pond Skaters, followed by one of a forest of red Damsel Flies mating above a section of water weed. He then went on to say that many plants in these wet areas are insect eating because of the poor quality of the soil. He illustrated this with a series of images of various Sundews, including the English Sundew, which is larger than other sundews and, other than the New Forest, is more normally found in Scotland. Also Bladderwort, which catches organisms under water and Common Butterwort, which normally grows on mountains and whose leaves fold over insects that land on them.
There was a series of images of Gentians which, he said, flower in profusion some years and do not appear in others. Studies have suggested that the plants are there each year but do not always flower. Tony then presented an image showing that Brown Moth Caterpillars like to eat the buds and wondered whether this might be an explanation.
As the first half drew to a close, it had become clear that some plants that grow in the New Forest are not found anywhere else in England. This was again illustrated by Tony with an image of Club Moss which is rare and normally grows in mountains such as the Alps.
Betty began the second half talking about Plantations and Ancient Ornamental Woodland. She explained that, over many years conifers had been planted in stands amongst the ancient deciduous trees, but that this practice is being scaled back. She showed us some lovely images of woodland in autumn, together with pictures of coppiced Alder, Chestnuts, Crab Apples, ferns in the frost and flowering gorse covered in snow.
She also had shots of lichen in the autumn and a whole series of different fungi. Betty lamented the fact that many people come into the Forest and pick large numbers of fungi, perhaps to be used in the restaurant trade. She expressed her concern that this could prevent plants from reproducing and lead to a serious reduction in numbers and even extinction of some species.
Tony took over to talk about Heath and Lawns. He explains that some of the heathland had been cleared of undergrowth to provide Lawns of grass for the ponies and donkeys to graze on. In some areas the heather is beginning to re-establish itself. In these habitats we saw images, not only of pony and donkeys, but also various species of deer and reptiles. He was keen to tell us that 10% of adders in the New Forest are black adders.
Tony likes to take images of the Forest floor in close-up - what he calls “Fragments of Nature”. He shared some of these, including Nail Fungus, Heather florets and a lichen that presents tiny red fruiting bodies in winter.
During questions at the end, they were asked whether they have seen evidence of widely publicised plant diseases such as Ash dieback. Tony answered that, while some evidence can be seen from time to time, the plants usually recover well and the problem is not wide-spread anyway. Betty suggested that the biggest danger to the well-being of the Forest is the number of people that visit and their behaviour.
During the evening, it was clear that both Tony and Betty have a passion for the New Forest and their enthusiasm and knowledge made this a very entertaining evening. The audience showed their appreciation with a warm round of applause and, as they were leaving, could be heard discussing the excellent prints that had been displayed. DF
Projected Image League-results   9 January2018     

RH Arctic lightCompetition Secretary Caroline Wright has done all the calculations for last weeks Projected Image League Competition and Richard Watson LRPS read out the results at the meeting.
(See last weeks write up about the competition below)
Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP was declared the winner of the Hewitt Cup Trophy and Robert's set 'Arctic Light' was the set with the most points - an image from the set of 5 shown right.
Robert's other two landscape sets  'Through the Arch' and 'Lake District in Autumn' were placed among the top seven sets.
Tim Pier was in second place and Dave Gray in third place.  
Special mention of Craig Purvis in 4th place, Heather Collins in 8th and Bruce Chappell in 10th place who are all from our Beginners section so very well done to those. 
Sixteen members entered 3 sets each so there were 48 sets awarded points out of 10 by fellow members.

Top 10 results & top 28 sets            Images of the top placed sets from the top 10 photographers.

Projected Image League 2 January 2018   

Club Chairman Richard Watson LRPS welcomed members back after the Christmas break. It was a shame less members than usual were present but maybe the wet and windy weather was to blame or some may still have been getting over the New Year or maybe just forgot it was a Tuesday but anyway they missed seeing some excellent images.
There were 48 sets of members images entered with a wide range of subjects. A well as the more usual stunning landscapes from Britain and around the world there were many sets of  nature images including birds and insects. There were also some rather more unusual subjects including horse racing, a car on fire, big boys toys and even telephone boxes!
Wells Cathedral, Oslo Opera House, London and night shots of beautiful Ghent and Bruges were some of the architectural subjects. 
Altogether there were 240 individual images for those present to see. After each set of 5 images were projected members were asked to score the set out of ten taking into account the quality and presentation of the images, the appearance as a set and how well the images fitted the title. The results of the competition will be announced next week as the calculations have to be worked out. Scores for each set have to be averaged and each entrants 3 sets have to be added together to finally give the winner of the Hewitt Cup.
Thanks to all the members who put their sets of images together and entered the competition.

During the evening members were able to see the club’s entries chosen for the forthcoming Battles. Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP explained the merits of each image and how the battle entries are selected. Images for the Battles came from members of all 3 sections of the club with about club 18 members represented.  Battles entered are the Western Counties Digital Projected Image Competition (DPIC), the GB Cup Open and Nature Competitions which is a National Photographic competition for clubs from throughout Britain and Warminster Camera Club annual print competition. Hopefully the judges like the images  that the club has selected and we do well in the Battles which take place during February.  PM


Salon Results for 2017
RH orchidCongratulations to Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP for retaining the Ryder Rathband trophy for the forth year in a row.
The Trophy is presented annually to the club member who gains the most acceptances in Salons.

RH snow moonSince the last Salon update Robert has been awarded a PSA Ribbon for his image 'Monkey Orchid' (right) in the Nature section of the Smethwick International Salon. The Monkey Orchid is a very rare in the UK and is unusual in that the flowering spike opens from the top.
Robert was awarded an NCPF ribbon for 'Snow Moon, Oks Fjord' (left) in the Northern Counties International Salon Photo Travel section.
Robert has recently gained 23 acceptances in the Greek Olympic Circuit and 4 acceptances in the Yorkshire International. During the year Robert has been awarded a total of 94 acceptances in Nature, Travel and Open categories.

During 2017 Richard Atkinson AFIAP has 27 acceptances and Kevin Ferris LRPS, Hilary Eagles and Gill Cardy FRPS EFIAP DPAGB have all gained acceptances during the year. Very well done to all.
Thanks to Richard for compiling all the results. There is more information about how to enter Salons on the website see Salons

Full results for 2017 pdf.

Look out for Challenge 2018 - a different subject each month to inspire you to go out and find something new to photograph during the month.
Subject for January is 'Detail'  Members can post their  images on the DCC facebook. If you have not viewed the club facebook then have a look now and request to join.

In 2016 the club ran a weekly ‘challenge’ which many members enjoyed and produced many interesting images that they might otherwise not have taken.
For 2018 members suggested that a monthly challenge would give more time to explore each topic. The idea is to take new photos during the month and post your best 5 in the monthly Album. Join in and you may be inspired to go out of your 'comfort zone' and try something a bit different! You may not have taken many photographs lately so you may be inspired to dust off your camera (or phone), find new subjects indoors or out, experiment with new ideas and above all have fun!!

We invite constructive criticism and you can ‘like’ your favourites. The top 3 most ‘liked’ mages by members will be shown on the club website and the winner might like to choose the next subject. 

New on the website is a 'What's On' Calendar on the Programme page - this shows local events that photographers might be interested in and locations where interesting subjects might be found. Please send in any information you might have on local photographic events and venues of interest to others to add to the page.


Christmas Knock-out Competition                                                                                                                                                            19 December 2017   

SB CaterpillarCP thinkerThe last meeting of 2017 was the Christmas knock-out – a light hearted competition where the images entered are knocked out one by one until just the winner is left.
Master of ceremonies was as ever Frank Collins who donned his Santa suit once again for this annual event. Frank explained to new members that they would have a good work out during the evening as they needed to raise their arms time and time again to choose either the left or righthand  image as they were randomly projected.

Twenty-five of the club members entered five images each which were projected in pairs – members present had to choose which of the two images they preferred and the one with the most hands up went through to the next round and the losing image disappeared never to be seen again.

With 125 images to look at there was a wide variety of subjects with many interesting images which had not been seen in competitions before. It was an excellent competition for members to try out new ideas and see how well they are received by fellow members.

Often two very good images came up together but one had to go - so sadly many of the best images never made past the first round. JR lightOn a few occasions the hands counted were exactly the same for each of the two images so then Frank stepped in and had the final say.
Those that had the biggest show of hands went on to the subsequent rounds until it was down to sixteen then eight and then the last four.

SW sunsetFinally, the favourite image was chosen and it was a monochrome portrait of a pensive looking orang-utang titled ‘The Thinker’ by Craig Purvis. (top left)
In second place was a striking close up of a Buff Tip Moth Caterpillar(right) by Steve Burgess. Third was another monochrome – this time of a silhouetted figure titled ‘Into the Light’ (left) by Janet Rutter and forth was a glorious sunset over Eilean Donan Castle (right) by Sue Wadman.

Well done to all who entered and to those whose images proved to be the most popular.
Gifts were handed to the two top winners by club Chairman Richard Watson shown below with Frank and Craig.

The evening finished with members enjoying the fine spread of festive food.

Thanks to Frank for hosting the evening and to Dave Gray who vey ably used Lightroom to randomise the images and display them in pairs on the screen. PM



Monochrome Print and Creative PI Competitions

12 December 2017 
PM RandolfThe judge for the two competitions was Tony Byram EFIAP ARPS AWPF DPAGB who travelled to Devizes from Bristol on a very cold evening.
It was an evening of contrasting images with the monochrome prints tending to be more traditional and the creative digital images more imaginative.
Commenting generally on the monochrome prints Tony said that he looks for a wide range of tones with a good contrast but some of the prints entered appeared rather all over grey.
EndangeredThere should be detail in the darkest areas and a good balance of light and shade. A few prints looked rather dark and lacked ‘sparkle’ Tony commented but however other prints were praised for their sharpness and good range of tones.

There was a good entry of monochrome prints from members for the judge to give his comments on. Subjects ranged from moody landscapes and interesting architecture to sport, portraits, street scenes and many more interesting ideas that worked particularly well in monochrome.
A sepia toned portrait of a bearded man (left) by Pam Mullings particularly appealed to the judge who commented on the detail and the presentation awarding ‘Randolf’ first place. Another print by Pam – this time in black and white of a white rhino titled ‘Endangered’ (right) was in second place.
‘Talisker Bay’ - a seascape by Robert Harvey ARPS EFIAP was in third place.

Eight prints were awarded Highly Commended including 2 from Kyra Wilson – see the full list PM Sinkingbelow.

Altogether different were the imaginative projected images in the Creative Competition. The club would have liked a few more entries but many of the club’s newer members seemed reluctant to try their hand at something a bit different.

RH gentlemenCreative can be an image taken in camera or an image altered or combined with others using editing software. Again a range of interpretations were entered – some double exposures taken in camera, some images altered using software effects and others combined images to give sometimes amusing and improbable results.
An image by Pam titled ‘That Sinking Feeling’ (left) was an altered reality image of a red-headed lady sinking into a muddy hole and coming face to face with a frog! The judge liked the odd combination and awarded the image first place.
Close behind was an amusing image by Robert titled ‘To Business, Gentlemen’ (right) with penguins made to look like city gents and was awarded second place. In third place was another brilliant idea by Kyra Wilson ‘Pop up Little Owl’ with the bird appearing to pop out of a print.
Hopefully those that entered had fun thinking up new ideas and more might enter next year.

The Syd Holley ‘Pencil of Nature’ Trophy for a monochrome print and the ‘Demiurgic Trophy’ for a creative projected image were both presented to Pam Mullings by the judge Tony Byram.

Congratulations to all who gained awards and especially to the new members who entered.
Thanks to Tony for judging two such contrasting competitions and for giving such helpful comments on each one.

Full results                                         The awarded images can be seen in the Galleries
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