Chalk It Up!

Crewe Ps members are helping Cheshire East and Crewe Town Council document some of the events which they have helped to stage in Crewe in recent times and on Saturday 26 August the two-day event Chalk It Up started with the artists getting to work on their creations. Thankfully a warm, dry day was promised as they sketched things out. There were a variety of approaches from the geometrical construction to the impressionistic splash – all looking great. It will take all day and perhaps  more for some of the more detailed works to be finished but by midday there was already plenty to see. In the afternoon a major work will be underway outside the Lyceum which you are all invited to contribute too, while on Sunday youngsters especially are invited to have a go themselves in a pavement artist competition.

 

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September’s Monthly Theme is ‘Water’

As I’m way during the turn of the month I’m giving members advanced notification of September’s theme. So you can get your photographs ready early. You may even take some for the upcoming competitions.

water is a fascinating subject to photograph and can be captured in many different ways. Do you like your water to freeze or flow? It can make a good reflector or even a lens. Back lighting brings it to like and coloured filters can be very creative.  With the new season rapidly approaching here a good opportunity for you take and show some exciting photographs.

Please don’t enter your water photographs until 1 Sept, but you can still show us your garden photos in our August theme.

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CPS Members photograph an Alan Turing play


Members of Crewe Photographic Society who had registered as volunteers with Cheshire East were invited to photograph the preparation and the play about the trial of Alan Turing and Arnold Murray. The play is being held as part of Knutsford’s Heritage Open Days.

Alan Turing was a mathematician, code breaker and pioneer in computer science. He decoded German messages at Bletchley Park and it’s thought his dedication shortened World War 2 by two years and saved 14 million lives. After the war Turing was prosecuted in 1952 for homosexual acts with Arnold Murrey. “Gross indecency” was a criminal offence in the UK and he accepted chemical castration as an alternative to prison. He died in 1954 from cyanide poisoning thought to be suicide, but it has been noted that the known evidence is also consistent with accidental poisoning.

The play takes place in the actual courtroom in Knutsford where Turing was sentenced and explores the external pressures and the internal thoughts of the people in the courtroom.

Ian McNab and I were invited to take documentary photographs of the first rehearsal last Saturday in the courtroom recording the preparation and rehearsal. The photographs are to be used on social media to advertise the play and CPS will be given credit and a link to our website.  Some of the photographs have already been posted on the ‘Re-Dock’ Flickr site at Re-Dock Flickr Site

Their Twitter site is: Re-docks Twitter site

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Oliver Wright

We had the pleasure of listening to Oliver Wright speak at the Birdfair in Rutland this week. It would be hard to imagine anyone more helpful than Oliver and he was quite happy to extend his talk into a demonstration afterwards.

I think we were all most interested in focus-stacking, and Oliver has become a foremost exponent of this technique, achieving some astonishing results which can be seen on his website.

He used the 65mm Canon 5:1 macro lens in some of his shots. This remarkable lens, unique in the macro field, changes length alarmingly as you change the magnification. There is no focussing, you set the magnification and then move the camera to focus. The depth of field wide open and at full magnification is a tiny fraction of a millimetre, but, thanks to stacking and his practised technique, Oliver can get a high success rate. Eschewing a tripod or any mechanical support, which are too inflexible with moving quarry, Oliver supports the lens with his finger at the end of the barrel. When he is near enough to the closest focus point he fires off frames in continuous mode whilst gently pushing the lens against his resting finger. That tiny movement, as the flesh resists movement, is enough to cover the field required. He then processes the shots in Lightroom (do just one in the series then copy the adjustments to all shots) then he processes the stack, usually in Ps. With the 5DS – the camera with no anti-aliasing filter and 50MB images, you can imagine the time this takes the computer and how big the finished assembly can be – 120GB was mentioned – obviously all this can be compressed into a normal sized jpeg in the end. Oliver does a lot of deleting!

There is now a blog on his website in which Oliver is going to discuss focus stacking specifically.

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ARK

ARK is a collection of sculptures installed in Chester Cathedral until 15 October. There are some 90 works from 50 different artists including some of the leading figures; Barbara Hepworth, Elisabeth Frink, Eduardo Paolozzi, Antony Gormley,

Did you know David Bailey was a sculptor?

This is a very enjoyable collection, dotted around the entire cathedral, which itself, of course, is also a work of art.

It is free to see, though you need a guide list (£2) and it is only fitting to respond to the request for a donation and a modest further £2 is all that is suggested.

Featured is my shot of the very striking Stubbs (Absorbed) by Michael Joo; a life size Zebra based on a Stubb’s painting.

 

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August’s Theme is Gardens

The monthly theme for August is Gardens. You might want to get in close and photograph an individual flower or photograph the whole garden. Perhaps you’d prefer to concentrate on the garden’s wildlife or how people enjoy it. Don’t forget the lighting is as important as the subject. What technique you choose we’d love to see and discuss your work. Join the club!

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Gold Medal at the PAGB Inter-Club PDI Championships 15 July 2017

Ian Whiston’s Cheetah with family was the Gold Medal winner in the PDI Nature section of the 2017 Inter-Federation Competition and his award was presented at the PAGB event yesterday. In the picture he is photographed by Terry Donnelly (himself an award winner (in fact THE award winner with “best in Show”) while PAGB President, Gordon Jenkins, in his over-exposed white shirt, finds his place in the script.

It was another great event and marked by being the tenth anniversary of switching to PDIs from slides. Smethwick were the winners (Wigan 10 second) and the “second division” Plate Trophy was won by Dumfries CC.Marking was high (pushed up by the judges being told not to award anything less than 3) which actually made things more exciting!

Explanations: 1) The Inter-Federation competition is an annual competition, organised by the PAGB, between all 15 Federations – the number of entries based on the size of the Federation. How the selection is made is up to each Federation but the L&CPU entry is selected from the Annual Individual Competition images. The prints are exhibited at various venues during the coming year and the PDIs are available on CD.

2) The Inter-Club PDI is also for all Federations, this time two clubs are selected (in the L&CPU case from the Club Annual successes) and they take part as a team. There are two opening rounds, using 8 images each from each club. The top 8 scorers then compete for the CHAMPIONSHIP TROPHY in a further larger round and the rest of the clubs compete for the PLATE TROPHY in a further single round. The top 8 that year are automatically invited to take part the following year so this year the L&CPU had 4 clubs; Wigan 10 and Chorley PS because they were finalist last year and North Cheshire and The Evolve Group as the two selected clubs.

 

 

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L&CPU Exhibition 2017

Ian Whiston receives his gold medal from President Garth Tighe while Comp Sec Bob Robinson prepares the remaining medals.

 

July 8 2017 brought the opening of the 2017 L&CPU Exhibition and the presentation of awards for successes in the Club Annuals in March and the more recent Annual Individuals’ Competition.

The exhibition includes prints by Wallace Baxter and Kath Hill. My “Connoisseur” is also there, having been used in the 2016 PAGB competition.

It is at Urmston Library and parking is easily available in the adjoining Sainsbury’s car park, which is free for 3 hours. You will get an excellent impression of what does well in regional club competitions these days – and there were many genres represented.

After inspecting the prints we were assembled to see the awards presented and the highlights for us were the Commendation to Stephen Coyne for “That Cigar Moment” and the first place and gold medal to Ian Whiston for best performance in the nature digital section.

Urmston Library, 34 Golden Way, Urmston, Manchester M41 0NA until 29 July. Open Mon – Sat 10am to 5pm Except Tuesday and Friday when it closes at 7pm and Saturday 4pm.

The panel which includes Kath’s eventing picture (bottom, right).

Panel including Wallace’s print (top, right).

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July’s Theme is Summer Time

Summer is a great time to get out with your camera and take some wonderful photographs. You can just capture the beauty of summer plants or a summer event or sport. How does summer make you feel? Can you express that in a photograph? Have a go and show us what summer means to you. Please read the post heading the monthly theme for details on posting images.

Thanks, Peter.

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June’s Theme is ‘Photobook Selection’

I apologise for my last message being mistakenly short so I’m expanding a bit on that now.

As you know Crewe Photographic Society celebrates it’s 70th anniversary this year and Sharon is to create a photobook of members work. So we wouldn’t leave it to the last minute I’ve decided to dedicate this months theme to your photobook selection. So please feel free to submit your choice or ones you decided not to enter for discussion in this month’s theme. Please resize them to 650px long side @72ppi before submitting them to the website.

I’m looking forward to seeing them and having some healthy discussions.

Thanks, Peter.

 

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