August Camera Clips


I have just published the  August Camera Clips.  The banner this month comes from Ron Hassan, “A lovely time of day”.  This was an open entry from the August (people at work) photo competition.    I suspect it is an image from his recent trip to North America.  I have also collected articles from Helen Whitford (Tips on zoo photography) and Eric Budworth (Digicam control – free software that will run your camera) as well as myself (Focus stacking using digicam control, Phone Apps for photographers and Art Photography – quotes from the art photographers).  Lastly I have compiled a photo essay of images from the successful zoo excursion.

It has been a busy month in the club so have a look at what we have been up to.  I hope you enjoy this edition.



An interesting subject for our July competition and one that resulted in some clever and creative images. On top of this we were yet again left highly impressed with the range of photos presented in the Open Category.

To work one by one through the 75 images from 17 members (that is a 25% participation rate, our target is 33%) we were fortunate to have the well-recognised and highly valued critique of judge, Keith Siedel. The ‘Judge Co-ordinator’ for the SAPF, Keith is also a member of the Edwardstown Photography Club and has over 30 years of photo club experience. It all began for him with a Pentax Spotmatic at the age of 13 years.
For him the two key ingredients to photography are:

  1. First and foremost, ENJOY what you are doing;
  2. Photograph things that excite you. Photographing what excites others is just a bonus.

Some of the tips I picked up as he took us on a journey that evening included in no particular order:

  • Too many bright spots in an image “deflect focus”.
  • Tone back any brightness in the background.
  • Birds ideally are photographed in total relief eg. for a bird its outline needs to be free of any obstruction such as tree branches across the tip of a wing or similar.
  • For furry animals the sharpness of the nose, whiskers and eyes is the most critical thing.
  • For flowers it is preferable to concentrate on one flower and get that right, then concentrate on the remainder.
  • The most difficult part of double portraits is to get the lighting comfortable/balanced.
  • For animals the eyes are most important as they tell a story then it’s the details all over the head such as fur and highlights.
  • Sometimes consider changing an image from landscape to portrait as it could remove distracting backgrounds in some cases.
  • Children – getting all of the face is important eg. don’t want the face cut off at say below the lower lip such that you can’t see the chin.
  • Children – sometimes a vignette can help create greater focus for the viewer.
  • Give space around the subject eg. if it is a leaf, space around it will add to the image.
  • Among the hardest photos to take are of babies.
  • Black and white needs strong contrast.
  • Strong character faces needs strong focus on the face so that distractions are very much in the background.
  • A good portrait tells something of the character of the person.
  • When considering an image and how to present it, it is sometimes valuable to just look for the strongest section of the image for use.

If you find value in just one of the above tips then I’m glad I put them in. Photography is certainly a step by step process.

Now let’s have a look at the images presented on the night beginning with the set subject of ‘Worms Eye View’:

B12_Steve Wallace_Lamella Close Up_Set

Steve Wallace – Lamella Close Up

The following are from the Open Category:

C14_Adrian Hill_Hallett Cove Beach Railway Station Dusk_Open

Adrian Hill – Hallett Cove Beach Railway Station at Dusk


Looking forward now to our next competition night on Thursday August 25, with the subject ‘People At Work’.  But before this we have an excursion on Sunday August 7 to Victor Harbor / Pt Elliott, so expect to hear more soon from James Allan who is putting this one together for us. I believe he’s ordered a sunny day with a bit of cloud🙂

Click these links to view other Top Prints and Top Digital Images.

Botanical Gardens – A worms eye view

Frances-3I have just added a photo essay about the Botanical Gardens Excursion.  This proved to be a fungus finding expedition, thanks to help from my daughter Charlotte.  Perhaps the perfect anecdote to a troubled election. You can find this article in the June Newsletter.  Regards James

June edition of Camera Clips

Lake Bonney Banner

It’s the end of June – and I have finally produced the June edition of Camera Clips, the club newsletter.

We have some photos from the recent club camp away at Barmera organized by Alberto Giurelli.  (Including Alberto’s take on the weekend).  This included an evening of star photography.  so have a look at our “how to guide”.

We are heading for a federal election so we have taken a look at political portraiture.  What do the photos show about our politicians?

There is also a “how to guide” for blurring backgrounds in photoshop.

I hope this edition stimulates your photography.

Here is the link –

Regards James

NB – We may have a supplement or two as further articles come to hand – so keep watching the site.

• Photo Journalism competition • 33% participation target set

While the recent Photo Journalism competition was a great night, it was unfortunate that only 18 members from a possible 69 (26%) joined in. This has prompted club President, Chris Schultz to call for all of us to take a more active part and has set us a participation rate target of 33% as a starting point. While we had 77 photos to show, 50% of these came from just 5 members. Without these members it would have been a relatively poor showing and an early night.

With the style of judging consistently provided in a positive mode, we all have every reason to put photos up. There is much to be learned, even if we don’t always agree with the score or comments. When it’s your photo being critiqued you most definitely take greater notice of what is being said and this can only lead to improvements in your photography.  From my own experience I’ve found everyone to be extremely positive, supportive and encouraging even when I’ve put up photos that I would now look at and cringe…..that’s learning. So let’s make this 33% target a reality.

With that said and my fingers crossed that you will all participate (just one image will do) let’s have a look at the successful night the Photo Journalism competition was.  We have plenty of enthusiastic support from members attending and this night was no exception.

We were privileged to have as our Judge David Smith of the Eastern Suburbs Photographic Club. David is a highly qualified photographer and provides a well-balanced and considered approach to his judging and always has plenty of positive suggestions. I really enjoyed that he verbalises his thinking as he assesses each image. This is valuable for everyone and as mentioned earlier, particularly for the photographer.

At the top end ten images were given a full score, a further fourteen scored nine and fifteen scored eight. That’s an impressive 56% scoring highly and reflects well on the skills of the club.

In the Photo Journalism categories there were a total of 6 images that scored 10/10.

Sam Savage showed us with an excellent mono image what it looks like to live on the streets in Spain and provided us with a view of a somewhat darker side of life.

Sam Savage - Home Street Home

Sam Savage – Home Street Home

Helen Fletcher provided a stunning  and colourful portrait within a street scene in Vietnam, entitled ‘Bac-Ha Woman’.

Mark Pedlar’s ‘Graduation’ image was one of strong colour contrast set in a mood of graduate celebration.

James Allan’s ‘Is It True’ captured beautifully the Anzac Centenary Memorial Walk as an ex-serviceman gently touches it to ensure it is indeed true

A bright red Ford Thunderbird, photographed by Ashley Hoff, shone brightly in the early evening light as a part of the Tanunda Cruise (hot rod) event.

The final full points photo of the category was from Alberto Giurelli, entitled ‘International Horse Trials’ and portrayed a horse receiving some close veterinary  attention.

In the Open Categories the winners started with Theo Prucha’s beautiful image ‘Abandoned Farmhouse’ in the Album Prints Category. This was followed by James Allan’s ‘Corella’s Play’ in the Colour Prints and Alberto Giurelli’s stunning mono image ‘The Violinist’. Finally Ashley Hoff presented ‘The Bass Player’ in the Projected Image section.

Of course credit goes to everyone who put their excellent photos up on the night; every one of them would have gained some benefit from doing so.

Our next competition is entitled ‘Worms Eye View’ on Thursday July 15, but before then we have an excursion on Sunday July 3 at the Botanical Gardens where the goal will be to capture images for this upcoming competition.

Finally, let’s all aim to put at least one image in and make sure we hit the 33% participation target or better.

Click these links to view other Top Prints and Top Digital Images.



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