Good things come in threes for club event

A Walk along the Wansbeck by Sue Dawson.
A Walk along the Wansbeck by Sue Dawson.

Morpeth Camera Club

Morpeth Camera Club welcomed Geoffrey Bradford, a member of Alnwick and District Camera Club, to announce his results and give his comments on images entered for this season’s Three Of A Kind print competition.

Prior to the evening, members had been invited to submit panels of three separate colour and monochrome prints on any subject. Prints were to be judged as sets of three, which must have a link or theme to connect them.

Each set was judged on tonal uniformity and had to be cropped and mounted in the same manner, and although they had to be linked in some way, no one image could stand out from the others.

Having had the photographs for the two weeks, Geoffrey said he was impressed by the presentation of the images and by the use of colour.

Among the nine monochrome sets were towering bridges, textured and layered patterns of the Crumlin Road Jail, snowy scenes on the Wansbeck, and St Mary’s Lighthouse interior and exterior.

Looking for good linear perspective, the same weight and tonal intensity in each of the three images, Geoffrey announced fifth place to Paul Appleby with Media City UK, which he admired for its blocks of reflected glass, soft grey tones, and the use of good quality paper.

Fourth place was given to Sue Dawson for Churchyards, Geoffrey describing it as filmic, dramatic and summoning up nostalgic memories of 1950’s black and white movies.

Glyn Trueman was given third place with London Tunnels, with curved ceilings and converging lines. The judge said that although it was abstract, it had detail and softness.

Davy Bolam was second with Treescapes, skeletal branches of trees taken from below, with trunks converging, likening it to a pen and ink drawing. Geoffrey said it was an intelligent set of images, simple, but not simplistic.

He continued by saying that his first place was always going to be the one as soon as it came out of the box. This year’s Three Of A Kind monochrome section winner was Leisure Centre Abstracts by Peter Downs, which the judge admired for its stark blocks in abstract black and white, describing it as “about a subject, rather than of a subject” as it encourages the viewer to use their imagination.

The judge continued with the 20 sets of images in the colour section, which included snow-laden hills with lovely pink skies, colourful glass paperweights, bubbly circles of vibrant colours formed from oil on water, rubbish layers on Lynemouth Beach, 60’s style graffiti, autumn leaves, abstract sand patterns and cityscapes.

The judge said he was looking for good primary and complimentary colours and went on to announce four highly commended sets.

They were National Museum Scotland Abstracts by Glyn Trueman, which was beautifully observed with seductive mirror images; Ghost in My Machine by Davy Bolam, described as the most cohesive, organic with mechanical implications; Catkins by Karin Jackson, for its use of soft colours, a perfect set of three with a realness about them; and Street Art Underground by Davy Bolam, big and bold graffiti with a range of textures and colours, which worked as a set.

In fifth place was Pat Wood with Fractalius Grasses, studies in orange and green, which Geoffrey said resembled fireworks. With the shapes and patterns, his eye darted from one to the other. An interpretation of the same object in three different ways was a simple idea well executed.

Jewel Personality by Sue Dawson was given fourth place, a set of three jewelled handbags set against complimentary backgrounds. The judge recognised that care had been taken to meld the images together. Well made and mounted, all three interacted with each other.

Third place was awarded to Dave Bisset for Eroded Stone Abstracts, images flipped four times to create abstract patterns, which the judge said resembled insects or crustaceans, adding that the set was faithful to the original subject and made one question how they were put together.

Second was Paul Appleby for Sweet Peas, the delicate blooms jumped out against a solid black background; the judge enjoyed their simplicity and fine detail and the velvety paper used to compliment the subject.

Geoffrey announced that the winner of the Three Of A Kind Colour Section was Sue Dawson with A Cold Walk Along The Wansbeck, snowy scenes of the church and bridges. He enjoyed the soft colours reminiscent of a Bruegel artwork, busy, but simplistic, he admired the graphic quality and detail.

At the beginning of the evening the judge had said that he intended this to be an interactive evening and true to his word he asked each author to comment on their work as it was displayed. What could have been a daunting experience, Geoffrey, in a considered manner, went through aspects of their work that could be improved upon, stressing that minimalism must be perfect as there is nowhere to hide and that uniformity and care should be taken with format and presentation.

At the conclusion of a very interesting evening, the judge was thanked by Chairman Mark Harrison for his in-depth analysis and for taking the time to offer advice and recommendations, after which coffee was served and club members were able to look at the photographs in more detail, which had been displayed around the room.