I went to the L&CPU Mentoring Advisory Day last Sunday with Paul Hill and Bob Brown and we met Stephen Coyne there in Eccles. Stephen wants to achieve his DPAGB and the rest of us are aiming for the CPAGB. The audience was limited to 37 photographers who had to register before the event. Photographers aiming for a CPAGB had submitted 10 photographs and those after a DPABG submitted 15. There was no charge, not even for the coffee and biscuits!

The event was overseen by Christine Widdall and 5 other experienced and highly qualified photographers supported her. They were Gwen and Phil Charnock, Adrian and Jane Lines and Terry Donnelly.

Jane started by explaining what awards were available, CPAGB, DPAGB and the MPAGB and how the scores were achieved. This was followed by examples of successful images that had gained their author an award. Then we got down to the business of the mock adjudication.

The 6 judges viewed each image until all of them had given it a mark out of 5. If the total mark was 20 or other it had qualified for a CPAGB panel, but 24 was the aim. So the total of the 6 would need to be over 200 for them to achieve the award.

The work I submitted for a CPAGB would just scrape through with 201, Paul had a good pass score and Bob fell a bit short, but we all know what we need to do. The standard for the DAPGB which Stephen entered was exceptional and he fell a little short, but could see why.

After the images had been scored the judges explained how some of the border line images could be improved to increase their score. It was an excellent event which was very well run and professional. We all benefited from the advice and it was an eye opener to the standard of work expected. We all agreed that it was incredible that an event like this was ‘free’. Plus, of course 6 experienced photographers giving advice and guidance.

I’m sure some more of our members would be interested in achieving an award. If there’s enough interest we could work together to encourage each other to work towards it. Members who have already achieved one may like to offer some advice to those working towards it. Don’t forget the L&CPU have a mentoring scheme where your images can be assessed by one of the judges.