ON Tuesday, November 26, club vice chairman Glyn Trueman presented the results of his Autumn Challenge – Creative Close-ups of Flowers from Buds to Berries – which could have included seeds, fruits and nuts.
The aim was to capture images from unusual angles or choose part of the subject; selectively, focusing and limiting depth of field or, conversely, maximizing depth of field and possibly by using focus stacking.
Those taking part were encouraged to try different forms of lighting, such as experimenting with off-camera flash, torches and reflectors and, if available, to use macro lenses or other close focusing aids (e.g. close-up lenses, extension tubes or reversing rings). The photographer can also distort perspective by using a wide-angle lens very close to the subject.
This challenge provided opportunities for members interested in still life, garden and natural history photography to practice and possibly extend their skills by trying something different.
In order to encourage the photographer to increase the range of images they produce, Mr Trueman said it would be preferable for at least two of their images put forward to feature berries, seeds/seed heads, fruits or nuts rather than flowers in bloom.
The challenge also involved writing a short description of their images to include what they were trying to achieve, what techniques were used in capturing/processing the image, what they had learned from the exercise and what improvements they could make.
Twelve members submitted a total of 50 images and members were invited to comment on each photograph. A lot of thought and imagination went into the entries. The use of dyes and chemicals on petals, elongation to create abstract forms, chestnuts and montbretia in stages of development, Rowan berries, acorns, teasel heads, blackberries, poppy buds, a still life of fruit and nuts’of the metal variety were all included to great effect.
Authors were encouraged to explain their methods, which included the use of a reversing ring, magnifying glass, desaturation, high key effects and chemicals.
Mr Trueman awarded the Most Imaginative Images title to Davy Bolam, Most Amusing Images to John Barnes and Most Artistic Images to John Thompson. Highly Commended were Dahlia by Jeremy Cooper, Sycamore Seed and The Last Seed by Steve McDonald, Flowerscape by Mr Bolam and Black Hamburg by Mr Thompson.
Myra Jackson was awarded fourth place for her Cross Dresser Blue on Yellow entry, Clematis Tangutica Seedhead by Sue Dawson was third and second went to Mr Bolam (Flower Power).
The overall winner was Dave Bisset for Conkers.
Mr McDonald, Morpeth Camera Club Chairman, thanked Mr Trueman for his excellent presentation and for planning the challenge.
The raffle and coffee rounded off another great evening at the club.