Blackwood Photography Club News

Picassa and Gimp Workshop – Free Image Software – Chris Schultz & James Allan

Angel 1dFor those who would like to follow the instructions of the GIMP exercise, (The painted angel) there is an article posted in Camera clips that will take you through the steps.

Create a Grunge Angel In Gimp. James Allan

And for those interested in some basic Picasa use – have a look at Chris’ slides from last Thursday on YouTube


Minilimist, Milinimist……Minimalist…got it!

Jennifer Williams_On Reflection_Set

Jennifer Williams_On Reflection_Set

Minimalist Landscape ….tricky to say, even harder to define and apparently almost impossible to actually select pictures for which truly fit the category!

Perhaps we needed to go back to school and have a lesson on what a Minimalist Landscape is! We created a bit of a headache for judge, Suzanne Opitz, in trying to decide which images were “in category” and which were not, as only around half of the images submitted for the set subject truly qualified as both “minimalist” and “landscape”!  Jennifer Williams nailed it with “On Reflection”, and Huw Rosser dabbling in the waters of the Novice section with “On the Edge”, taught us a lesson in Minimalism.

Huw Rosser_On the Edge_Set

Huw Rosser_On the Edge_Set

Suzanne seemed relieved each time a section switched from Minimalist Landscape to the Open category (and not just because “minimalist” is a bit of a tongue twister). Then her self-confessed penchant for vignetting and cropping came out as she urged us to get in tighter and darken our edges.

It was great to see some newer members venturing into competition and other members demonstrating their developing processing skills.

Click on the links to see the rest of the Top Prints and Top Projected Images.

We might have struggled with Minimalist Landscape, but I predict we’ll all be experts on the next set subject – “The 7 Deadly Sins” :)




Mt Lofty Botanical Gardens

Another brick

We had a great excursion on Sunday to the Mt Lofty Botanical Gardens.  Head on over to Camera Clips and you can check out the gallery of images that has been submitted by those attending. Click here


Music in our souls – 12-Mar-2015

Ashley Hoff - Precision Bass - Set The competition – Music.

The images – 116 incredibly varied photographs.

The judge – David Smith.

The Outcome – BPC members with music in their souls!


About 45 BPC members and visitors attended on a night with colourful and intriguing images of music being performed, danced to, instruments close ups, musicians in action and lots more. Some images obviously came from the archives (a very young Cliff Richard was observed). And some images were so fresh they had titles like Music 1 and Music 2. Mad March in Adelaide supplied a lot of the images from the Clipsal 500, the Adelaide Festival of Arts, the Adelaide Fringe and WOMAD. There was something for everyone! Even beer (well – a picture of beer).

Judge David Smith worked through the images with care despite the large number, giving constructive critique and a fairly large number of 10s in the process. Not that the recipients complained!

Ron Hassan - Sunset - OpenTwo things stood out tonight:

  • The high quality and creativeness in the novice competition – well done!
  • Ron Hassan’s Sunset image



I’ve delayed publishing this whilst I chased images – but not all have turned up. Check out the ones we did get as usual at our Top Prints and Top Digital pages.

Keep on dancing to the music!

Chris :)


Composing in Black and White – Arthur Farmer – (author James Allan)

Arthur Farmer was guest speaker at our March meeting.  I can say that I really enjoyed his presentation.  He gave a talk on Black and white photography.  Arthur has a preference for monochrome slides.  With the switch to digital media it is getting a lot harder to do nowadays.  His favourite film has gone out of production and he needs to send it away to the US to print his slides.  I took some rough notes from Arthur’s talk.  I would like to put some of his images into this article.  Hopefully I will be able to add some as they become available.Image20

It was apleasure watching the skillfully crafted images.  Arthur mixed his slides with explanations of his approach to photography.  “Photography is representational and not just representative”.  He quoted widely,  Will Nolan, Ken Rockwell, Ansel Adams, Edward Weston. “Simplify and Exclude” was the mantra of Ken Rockwell.  The ‘s’ from simplify and the ‘ex’ from exclude make the acronym sex.  “Removing colour stripped back an image to its elements”, Arthur explained, “black and white is the essence of the subject, the root of art.”

Arthur exhibits a high level of technical competence.  His landscapes are sharp from the foreground to the back ground.  He handles highlights and dark areas well, preserving detail where possible.  He uses texture to good effect.  Arthur explains, “The first impression of an image is emotional and therefore important and often better than analytical or logical evaluation.”

Quoting Edward Weston he exhorts us to pre-visualize the image before taking it.  Arthur believed in composing pictures.  He uses lines to lead to the subject. Silhouettes can be powerful, as can movement.  Curves, textures, Shadow, foreground details are all important. Real life has too much detail.  The photographer has to simplify things.  Get in close.  It is OK to crop things out of the picture.  Keep it sharp.

A longer article from this session has been posted in Camera clips.  So make sure you have a read.  As said previously, I really enjoyed this session.  It gets back to the joys and pleasures of taking photographs.  To quote Arthur, “’amateur’ comes from the Latin word ‘amore’, meaning to love.  That’s why we take photographs, because we love it.”


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