Tag Archives: kendal

Speaker: Phil Drayton

On Wednesday 10th November, club member Phil Drayton gave a fascinating presentation on his passion of Astrophotography.

Starting with the types of equipment needed and the apps he uses to plan a night shoot, through to camera settings and how to edit the resulting images, Phil gave us a detailed and very useful guide to different aspects of Astrophotography including star trails, light painting and how to successfully capture images of the Milky Way.

Castle Star Trails by Phil Drayton

The best time to do astrophotography is on a crisp, clear, winter’s night when the stars are visible in all their glory. I’m usually tucked up in bed by 9pm, but Phil’s fabulous pictures made me want to make a renewed effort to put on my thermals and get out after dark with my camera! Our thanks to Phil for a great first half to our evening and his presentation is kindly available as a handout in the Members’ Section of our website.

After a short break, the Club listened to feedback from Settle Photographic Group on a selection of our images. It’s always fascinating to hear how other Clubs view your photographs and the critique on the whole was positive and constructive, though a recurring theme appeared to be that we over-process our pictures!

This Wednesday we’re in for a lively evening in our annual Club PDI knockout competition. As last year, this will be held via Zoom with voting for each picture taking place through a show of hands, though members are also welcome to attend Castle Street Community Centre in person to watch and take part in proceedings via a large screen. Guests and new members are always welcome – see our Membership Information page for details.

Competition: L&CPU Annual Knockout 2021

Each year, our Federation which is the Lancashire & Cheshire Photographic Union (L&CPU) hold a Knockout competition. Up to 8 images from each Club can be entered, though usually only 4 are used by the Federation due to the high numbers of images sent in, so as a Club we have to decide which of our 8 images should be shown as the first 4. These 4 images can be on any subject but must be by 4 different authors. The images are then either kept in or knocked out during several rounds of judging, culminating in the final round of highest scoring pictures.

On Saturday 13th November 2021, Kendal took part in the Knockout for only the second time and I am beyond thrilled to say that we came joint 2nd out of 42 Clubs 😮 and double 😮. Congratulations to Jo Knight, whose image ‘Queen Bee’ made it to the final judging round.

Below are the 4 images which were used by our Club. Seamus Bryans’ ‘Batman’, Jo Knight’s ‘Queen Bee’, Jeff Bagnall’s ‘Bir Hakeim Bridge’ and Russell Millner’s ‘Polar bear at sunset’.

We would also like to thank Dylan Reynolds, Maureen Smith and Gordon Mills whose excellent images were part of the Club selection but unfortunately not used by the Federation in the competition due to the volume of images received.

There are some superb and very successful Clubs within the L&CPU federation and it’s a huge achievement to have come 2nd out of 42 Clubs in this regional competition on only our second entry. Massive congratulations to the authors of the entered images! I’m off to celebrate with a brew and a Twix 😁.

Tutorial: Manipulating Colour in Photoshop

On Wednesday 3rd November, club member Jo Knight DPAGB QPSA BPE1* EFIAP gave a whistle-stop tutorial on how to edit our images using colour in Photoshop. Starting with a basic Hue/Saturation adjustment layer, Jo showed us how to change the overall colours in our photographs as well as make more selective hue and saturation changes.

She then went on to discuss various ways of adding tones to pictures, which can help convey mood and emotion, including the use of gradients to add both simple colour washes and more complex split tones.

Following a short break, Jo spent the second half of the evening showing members how to blend the component parts of composite images together using various techniques, including the powerful and awesome ‘Blend If’.

Big thanks to Jo for a thought provoking and useful, albeit mind boggling, evening! Colour in Photoshop is a vast topic and there was a lot of information to take in, so a handout is available in the members’ section of our website (scroll down to Helpful Tips) and a a video of the evening will be available shortly on our members only YouTube channel.

Next week we’re very much looking forward to club member Phil Dayton taking us through his speciality of Astrophotography. Members are also reminded that entries for our annual fun knock out PDI competition should be sent to Jeff Bagnall by Saturday 13th November at the latest. Look forward to seeing everyone next week 😊.

Competition: Song Titles

North Fylde Photographic Society returned for a second visit this season, with Paul King CPAGB judging our Members’ Evening PDI competition on Wednesday 27th October via Zoom. The set theme for the competition was ‘Song Titles’ and although we were expecting the winners to sing us a few bars, every cat in the neighbourhood was thankfully spared the ordeal 😁.

With over 90 varied and diverse pictures in both colour and monochrome Paul had a tough job which must have taken hours ahead of the competition to analyse, so our thanks go to him for all his dedicated hard work.

Starting this blog post in reverse order with the results of the Advanced League (colour), big congratulations go to Russell Millner for ‘You can’t catch me’, who shared the top spot with Dave Nelson’s image ‘Cold as Ice’. It was Russell’s night, though, as not only was he chosen as overall winner he also scooped joint second place for his images ‘Arctic Dreams’ and ‘Into the Light’. Well done Russell!

Russell’s success continued in the Advanced Mono section where he was awarded first place with his image ‘Under a big sky’, with Dave Nelson’s ‘Jet’ in second place with 19 points.

The Club Colour section was strong with some great conceptual ideas for Song Titles, and our congratulations go to Phil Drayton who was awarded first place with his creative picture ‘Stairway to Heaven’. Second place was shared between Gordon Bramwell with ‘Free as a bird’, Kim Rigg with ‘Ice Ice Baby’ and Liz Bagnall with ‘Please release me’.

Last but not least is our Club Mono section, where 20 points was shared between Kim Rigg with ‘The Boxer’ and Peter Kennedy with ‘Walking in the rain’. Peter was also awarded 19 points and second place with his image ‘Pedal your blues away’, which was jointly shared with Martin Rowe’s ‘Black Rose’. However, our congratulations go to Kim whose Boxer picture was declared by the judge as overall winner.

Next week club member Jo Knight is once again diving into the often bewildering world of Photoshop, this time focusing on colour. Her previous tutorials have been aimed at beginners, but as the Club is made up of a range of abilities this time she will be including slightly more complex techniques which she hopes will include useful editing tools for all members of the Club. Guests and new members are always welcome – please see our membership page for more information. See you all on 3rd November!

Members’ Achievements: IPA

Club member Jo Knight has been awarded in the 19th International Photography Awards which “conducts an annual photography competition for professional, non-professional, and student photographers on a global level, creating one of the most ambitious and comprehensive competitions in the photography world today. The IPA recognizes photography’s leading talents who are creating, shaping and defining the world of photography.”

There are many diverse categories within the IPA, ranging from Advertising through Editorial to Fine Art and Nature and sub categories within each section, eg. Nature/Macro, Fine Art/Portraits, Editorial/Press and Advertising/Beauty, so opportunities exist for photographers right across the spectrum, both amateur and professional.

When entering competitions Jo is usually classed as an amateur as she doesn’t make more than half her living from photography, however in the IPA the rules are slightly different and anyone who has been widely exhibited is classed as a pro, therefore Jo entered the professional category. Three of her images were awarded: ‘Gravity’ in the Fine Art/Still Life section, ‘Child Bride’ & ‘Lockdown’ in the Special/Digitally Enhanced section – click on each picture to see the image on the IPA website.

There were nearly 14,000 images from 120 countries entered in the 2021 IPA and the standard was world class. Pictures included a portrait of Barrack Obama and a creative photograph of Angelina Jolie, so for a Cumbrian photographer to receive recognition for not 1 but 3 photos is worthy of celebration. Our congratulations go to Jo on her achievement.

Speaker: Dave Mason

We had a real treat on Wednesday 20th October with a Zoom visit from Dave Mason. Dave is known for his surreal street photography, much of which captures life in London and the south east of England, and he has an enviable talent for finding the extraordinary in the ordinary.

Dave was modest about his ability to see the absurd in mundane life but he has a way of capturing moments in camera, often humorous, that would pass the rest of us by and we saw numerous examples of his unique and finely honed skill. Alongside a fast paced narrative and some tall tales the time flew by and our thanks go to Dave for a fun and interesting evening.

Our next club night, on 27th October, is our first themed competition of the Season with a set subject of ‘Song Titles’, the hand-in deadline for which has now passed. Competition nights are always popular with members and it’s a great chance to see each other’s work and to receive constructive critique which helps us learn as photographers. Guests and new members are welcome – please see our membership page for details on how to join in.

Tutorial: Low Key Portraits

We had a lovely evening on Wednesday 13th October at Underbarrow Village Hall, which played host to our second portraiture workshop led again by club member Seamus Bryans.

Seamus gave an excellent, knowledgeable talk supported by the use of a presentation which he’d prepared. The talk covered all aspects of Low Key Portraiture, which as Seamus explained is predominantly made up of dark tones although still covering the full range of tones. Lighting styles were discussed and practical examples given using the models Seamus had brought along. We used continuous lighting, rather than flash, so that we could all see the effect of different lighting placements in creating the different styles.

After a break we were given guidance on how to ask the models to pose and the do’s and don’ts and then we were invited to have a go ourselves. We had been asked to bring our cameras and Seamus had recommended which lenses might be best. Generally we were shooting with as wide an aperture as possible, in manual mode and exposing to the ambient about 2 or 3 stops down. This meant that when lit with the studio lights, the subject’s faces were correctly exposed while the background dropped away to black. Everyone had a turn, some a bit more confident than others and the hardest bit was probably directing the models and knowing what made a good pose. Below are some of the resulting images from Heather Mallinson, Jeff Bagnall and Kim Rigg.

Special thanks again to Seamus but also to his two models, George and Isobel, family members who willingly put up with our efforts to capture some worthy images of them. More pictures from the evening taken by members can be found in our Facebook Photoshoots group.

This Wednesday we look forward to an evening via Zoom with Dave Mason, who will be speaking about Street photography. Guests are welcome – please see our membership page for more information. Members are reminded that the hand in date for our next competition on the theme of ‘Song Titles’ has been brought forward to 20th October. See you all on Wednesday!

Competitions: Novice Cup & Oldham Mono

Kendal Photography Club is part of the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain (PAGB), which has over 40,000 individual members all over the UK. PAGB affiliated Camera Clubs are grouped into regional Federations and Kendal PC falls under the Lancashire & Cheshire Photographic Union (L&CPU) which is one of the most successful Federations in the country.

Every year, the L&CPU hold competitions for individual camera club members in their region with images chosen by the author, and also for Clubs as a whole with images chosen by each Club’s committee usually from those which have done well in that season’s Club competitions.

It’s a huge honour to have an image picked to represent your Club at Federation level and if an image does well in a Federation competition it can be used in that Federation’s portfolio, used in inter-Federation competitions against other regions, used to represent the Federation in nation-wide PAGB competitions, or even to represent your country in global competitions such as the FIAP world cup. It’s a great way to get your name known by your Federation or even the PAGB and gives kudos to your Club.

Last year, Club member Russell Millner was awarded gold with his Bears on Baffin on his very first entry into the L&CPU Novice Cup, which is a Federation print competition designed for members without any photographic qualifications or distinctions, and goes to show that our Club members have as much chance of success as anyone else in our region.

It was, therefore, disappointing to see the low number of entries from our Club in the 2021 annual Novice Cup. We could have entered 12 images but we only had 10 entries, which meant that our combined score was low compared to the other Clubs who had all submitted the maximum amount of photographs.

A big “thank you” to Kim Rigg, Liz Bagnall, Phil Drayton, Ann Dallaway and Heather Mallinson who made the effort to enter and a selection of whose images are below, and to club Secretary Maureen Smith who helped with the printing of the entries.

Oldham Mono

Each year, Oldham Camera Club invite all the clubs in the L&CPU Federation to enter a monochrome competition, which is usually a print competition but this year changed to PDI and held via Zoom due to the ongoing Covid pandemic.

Judges who visit our club often comment on the strength of our monochrome pictures and again it was disappointing that there weren’t more entries from Club members, so our thanks go to Russell Millner, Derek Mackie, Maureen Smith, Jeff Bagnall, Gordon Bramwell and Peter Kennedy for taking the time to submit images, a selection of which are below:

We did well as a Club in last year’s Federation competitions coming mid way down the leader board despite our region containing some of the most successful Clubs in the country, so although we’re small we have the potential to pack a punch and I hope that next year we see more members submitting entries into Federation competitions and helping the Club to succeed.

Speaker: Caroline Preece

We were treated to a fascinating zoom talk on 6th October from London based photographer Caroline Preece, who encouraged us to look in a different way at photographic composition.

Entitled ‘Tools Not Rules’, Caroline explained that photography is a visual language in which we communicate our own personal take on the world through our images. She explained the psychology behind how people interpret the visual elements within photographs, which helped us understand how to make informed choices when composing our pictures, ensuring they convey feelings and emotions and have visual impact.

We’re often told about the rules of composition, but this was the first time I’d heard an explanation of why and how they work. A good image isn’t one that’s technically perfect but soul-less, it’s one which makes us feel something and Caroline empowered us to make different choices when composing our photographs to help convey our personal message during a very informative night.

This week Club member Seamus Bryans is holding a Portrait Workshop at Underbarrow Village Hall. Seamus is an accomplished portrait photographer who will be offering guidance and tuition on low key portraiture, with the opportunity to put skills learned into practice by photographing models at the event. Please note, this is an in-person workshop and not available on Zoom. Further information will be emailed to members.

Competition: Open

Our first Members’ Evening competition took place on Wednesday 29th September and had an open theme. Judges for the evening were club friends Dave Bibby & Paul King of North Fylde Photographic Society, who delivered the scores and comments from their members who had their work cut out wading through our 93 entries!

We began with the Club mono section, and our congratulations go to Kim Rigg who scored 20 points with her image Askham Fell Pony, while 19 points was shared between Alvina Labsvirs with Loughrigg and Elaine Elrick with Textured.

Next up to be judged was the Club colour section, where Kim Rigg continued her winning streak with Me and My Mouse. Coming joint second with 19 points was Phil Drayton with Barbary Macaque Playing, Ann Dallaway with Mary Eric and I, Bill Lowis with both Bluebell and Working Hard, and Elaine Elrick with Winter Sun.

We then turned to the Advanced mono section, and big congratulations go to Jeff Bagnall who scored a double 20 pointer with his images Starling Family and Gear Wheels. Joint runners up with 19 points were Dylan Reynolds with Embrace and Russell Millner with Photographer and Starlings.

We ended the evening with the Advanced colour section, won by Jo Knight with Trio of Tulips who also shared second place and her image Evacuee with Jeff Bagnall’s Sea Defences.

Next week we’re very much looking forward to welcoming guest speaker Caroline Preece whose Zoom talk is entitled ‘Tools not Rules’. We recently had an evening on the rules of composition, but Caroline aims to get us thinking in a different way about photography and composition, using psychology to empower people to make informed decisions as opposed to worrying about rules and whether to break them. Guests are welcome for a small fee, please see our membership page for details and to book a place.