Presentation Evening – May 14th 2024

With our scheduled presenter unfortunately feeling unwell and unable to give his talk, we had to rapidly improvise our plans for the evening. After some general discussion of club matters, we then explored some YouTube materials on photography basics; how to use histograms and ‘exposing to the right’ in order to obtain as much detail in the shadows as possible, without any of the highlights losing information along the way.

We followed this with materials on portrait photography tips and portrait composition ideas, which provide plenty of food for thought. To conclude the evening, we watched some WCPF audio visuals from previous years submissions.

We will try to reschedule the planned talk at a later date which will be in our 2024/25 programme as the current season is drawing to a close.

Audio- Visual Evening – April 30th 2024

A large selection of the audio-visuals submitted to the WCPF annual AV competition were viewed and once again included a diverse range of subjects and special effects, including girl band animations and avatars.

The AVs were classed into three categories i) Short – around 2-3 minutes ii) Long – up to 10 minutes and iii) Photo-harmony which emphasised the transitions between images and the sound accompaniment.

Having viewed many of the contenders in each category, we concluded what proved to be a long but enjoyable evening by watching some of the winning entries and we were generally in agreement with the judges decisions. We will keep any unwatched AVs in the locker for a rainy day or until some available time exists during a members evening.

Competition #4 – April 16th 2024

Our final competition round that contributed to the award of the Mayor’s Cups at the end of the season featured “Open” and “Portrait/Self Portrait” subjects for prints and digital projected images. With several contenders still able to top the points table, the competition was keenly contested and Steve Field from Bristol Photographic Society had the challenging task of selecting the winning entries.

“In an alley” by Dave Garmont won the “Portrait/Self Portrait” print category and a delightful flower print ” Daf, Hellibore and May Blossom” by Jim Bullock won the “Open” category.

Both the projcted image categories were won by Peter Hodgson with a “Moroccan jewellery salesman” portrait and a candid shot “No damn wifi here” winning the Open category.

Trophies to the overall winners will be presented at our Awards Evening on June 18th along with trophies for the forthcomong Annual Competition which features three categories.

Cricklade Battle – March 5th 2024

Our annual Battle with Cricklade Camera Club was hosted this year by Cricklade and judged by Pam and Eddy Lane. Each Club entered 30 open subject images, with the display orfer having been randomised. Half the images were critiqued before a brief interval, after which the judges re-engaged with their challenging task. The quality and diversity of images was impressive and one quarter of all the entries received the maximum points score from the generous judges.

At the end of the evening the clubs were separated by only 8 points and Cricklade CC ran out winners. An invitation was extended to Cricklade to lock horns again next year on our home ground.

AGM – February 20th 2024

Our Annual General Meeting was well attended and elected the Club officers for the forthcoming year. The roles of Chairman and Secretary, which had previously been amalgamated into one role, were separately appointed and will enable smoother running of the Club. The broad shape of the programme for the nexrt season was discussed with foucus on how to make Our Members Evenings applicable across a broad range of interests.

After the AGM, Roger Smith took us back in time with an impressive assembly of images that charted the development of Wootton Bassett since the 1800s and featured some of the display materials that are housed in the iconic Town Hall building on the High Street.

A Skillen Presentation – January 4th 2024

Those who were able to attend the talk by Andy Skillen entitled “Tales from the Bush”, which was hosted and jointly sponsored by Swindon Photographic Society, had an evening to remember. Andy is an intrepid wildlife photographer with over 25 years experience of photographing and recording wildlife in remote locations. His talk whisked us around the globe and across five of the seven continents. Much of Andy’s work is focused on commissions and he supplies stills, articles and video clips to well known institutions and publishing houses.

He started by sharing his experiences in Africa photographing lowland gorillas and forest elephants with the latter having provided many heart stopping moments when their behaviour became unpredictable and resulted in him being charged on several occasions. Hyenas, buffalo, musk oxen, wild dogs, many species of bears, wolves, cheetahs and the elusive show leopard featured in the wide collection of images and videos during the evening.

Andy explained what is was like to work on specialist commissions, and how this shaped the style of images that he pusued. His ability to understand the behavioral traits of certain animals enabled him to build a relationship with an individual animal and this in turn allowed him to work at distances most of us would never contemplate, nor consider sane. Wildlife conservation features prominently throughout Andy’s work and he finished the evening with an emotive video showing the beauty of the animal kingdom and the plight it faces.

Prints Exhibition – August 12th – 26th 2023

Our display of the prints entered into the Annual Competition can be viewed in the RWB library during their opening hours. In addition to the 31 prints being exhibited, the digital entries for the Annual Competition are being shown as a slideshow on a wide screen tv.

Visitors are encouraged to sign the Visitors Book and add their comments on the display. There is also the opportunity for visitors to vote for the two images that most appeal to them and post their completed slips into the collection box.

Details of the Club’s programme for the forthcoming season are also available and Club members will be on hand during Saturdays and Wednesdays to answer any questions and provide further information as required

Summer Photoshoot 3 – July 25th 2023

Image

With an optimistic weather forecast in place, a small group of members ventured to the historic market town of Devizes for our third summer photoshoot.

Congregating by the Market Cross, with its gothic architectural style, tempted everyone to remove their lens caps and seek an advantageous viewpoint of the memorial. We then moved to the nearby ornate stone fountain erected in 1879 in memory of the local MP. From there we walked to the Wharf Centre and along the towpath enjoying the late evening bursts of sunshine that occasionally penetrated through a rather sullen sky. With several narrow boats moored at the wharf, some sun-bathing ducklings and canoeists on the canal there were plenty of photo-opportunities .

On reaching Caen lock we returned to the town centre noting the blue plaqued buildings along the way before taking some refreshments in the Bear Hotel. Just as we were leaving a photographer and her friend arrived outside and started taking some images for posting ahead of the subject’s upcoming wedding in Poland. So we enjoyed an added and unexpected bonus opportunity for some portrait photography in a street setting.

Pavement photography

Competition Evening – March 7th 2023

We hosted our annual Battle with Cricklade Camera Club which was judged by Peter Weaver from Hanham Photographic Society.  Each Club submitted 30 open subject images and half were viewed before a short interval and the remainder thereafter. Each image was scored out of 20 points and scores ranged from 14 points to a couple of 20 point maximums.
At the halfway stage Cricklade had opened up a lead and they never gave this up during the second half to run our winners on the evening and take the cumulative battle scores to 3-2 in their favour.
After the competition, we discussed the various photography training workshops which Cricklade have set up over the spring and summer, to which we were invited to attend.  These ranged from critiquing images, PhotoShop, camera basics, mounting images as well as some specific genres like landscape photography, bird photography etc.