An opportunity for members to discuss the moment of capture of some of their pictures; Including the why, the how, the feel, and the hope of that moment.
This club meeting took place both in the hall and over Zoom, with the IT gremlins staying at a reasonable distance for most of the evening. We had six members submit photographs for the evening, a total of around 15 images. These spanned about 20 years since capture, from local shots to worldwide locations, and from the carefully composed to the snatch shot of an elusive and fast moving insect.
First up was an autumn sunset shot taken in Glasgow, where Andy was trying to get a quick shot both of the stunning colours in the sky, together with the silhouette of the buildings in the foreground. The image has not been subject to post processing, but Andy was pleased with the captured colours in that striking sky scene.
Next up was a portrait of a man enjoying his coffee and the atmosphere on the riverfront in Richmond, accompanied by his dog. Joe had been walking this path when he was struck by the scene he was passing, especially the character of the man in the chair. Having asked permission he proceeded to take this image in the shade beneath the tree, and was pleased with the resultant picture.
Alfred was next to present this image from an animal farm where feeding stations had been set up. He took the photograph with a wide angle lens and small f/ number, and fired off several shots in quick succession. This particular image with the cow’s tongue showing motion blur was the most effective of those recorded.
Brian showed us an example of an image taken using intentional camera movement (ICM) during a visit to a sunlit woodland. He tells us he took several hundred shots during this session, and proved to himself just how difficult it can be to achieve an effective ICM shot. He told us that perhaps three attempts produced reasonable results during what was probably a 30 minute session.
Andy showed us a tightly cropped portrait of a lion staring straight into the lens, taken on a visit to a cat sanctuary in Kent. The tight crop was used to remove the obvious fencing behind the animal. Andy tells us he took ‘thousands’ of shots of these animals during the visit in order to capture a satisfactory image.
A second photograph from Joe was of a hummingbird moth feeding on nectar from a flower head. Joe explained that this picture was taken during a holiday in Turkey. The moth kept returning to the flower head, and Joe spent some four hour in the hot sun, trying to protect himself from that sun , whilst trying to get a successful capture with less than ideal hardware. I am sure that experience is seared into his memory.
Alfred’s next picture was of feral dogs recorded in Mumbai, taken on film about 20 years ago. The temperatures on the day were up to 45⁰C. Alfred tells us that the most memorable feature of this image is that he submitted it to an SPA competition many years ago, and it achieved the lowest score he has ever received for any picture.
Brian then introduced us to a picture of El Capitan in Yosemite, taken to reveal the splendour of the rock face as well as the trees at the base of the mountain. He went on to explain that in order to get this shot he had to get to the park at 4:45am (from some distance away), whereupon he found every available vantage point filled with large RVs and other vehicles, as visitors were each seeking their own Ansel Adams masterpiece taken from the original spot. He did describe it as an extraordinary day, and a very pleasing image.
Next up were a series of images from Dave S showing a flooded former slate quarry named Llyn Peris in the Snowdon mountains. The lakes here have been converted into a pumped storage hydro-electric generating scheme (Dinorwig).
Dave was experimenting with the inbuilt pre-sets of a new camera at the time, and had to arrive before dawn to get the pictures he wanted.
Dave showed us a couple of the pre-set shots he recorded, and also one of the images that had been post-processed using a fairly unusual technique called ‘surface blur’. He finished his description by saying that he has never again been able to duplicate this appearance in any other picture.
David A talked us through his picture taken of the Old Man of Storr on Skye, explaining that the vantage point for the shot is some 30 or 40 minute walk from the car park. This is a popular vantage point even at dawn on New Years Day, with lines of people trekking through the field of view having to be cloned out of the final image. He had to queue among other photographers in order to find a position to open out his tripod for the shot. But undoubtedly worth the effort.
The final image of the evening was Sunset over Lake Tai by Brian. This was taken at the end of a visit to a lesser know megacity in China, where his hotel was located in the furiously busy centre of the metropolis. However, a short walk behind is hotel took him to the shores of a lake and the sight of boats moving across the water. He was able to take this shot using a restricted field of view, and has produced an image giving the impression of tranquillity itself. Even the aerial pollution in the view adds to the sense of quiet isolation.