RPS Northern Region Newsletter

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NORTHERN

NORTHERN NEWS NORTHERN NEWS Issue 13

September 2019

March 2019 NORTHERN NEWS

Issue 11

ISSUE 14 DECEMBER 2019


Northern Diary Details of events for 2020 will appear in the next newsletter.

Visit the Northern pages on the new RPS Website where details will be posted

https://rps.org/regions/northern/

All bookings should be made via the Northern Region Events page on the RPS website

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NORTHERN NEWS

Message from

Issue 14 December 2019

Carol Palmer ARPS Regional Organiser Northern Region

THE NORTHERN TEAM Regional Organiser Carol Palmer ARPS northern@rps.org Deputy Regional Organiser Geoff Chrisp ARPS Treasurer Bob Turner ARPS Secretary Bob Gates ARPS northernweb@rps.org Cover Image Š Geoff Chrisp ARPS NORTHERN NEWS INFORMATION Š 2017 All rights reserved on behalf of the authors. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the written permission of the copyright holder. Requests for such permission must be addressed to the Editor. The Royal Photographic Society, Northern Region and the Editor accept no liability for any misuse or breach of copyright by a contributor. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the RPS or the Northern Region.

We finish our 2019 newsletter with more successful panels from Northern members and my congratulations to Val Corris & Pat Corris for achieving their LRPS with an excellent selection of images. Julia Richardson achieving an ARPS with a stunning selection of wildlife from Scotland and last but certainly not least Geoff Chrisp with his superb ARPS Travel panel from Newcastle upon Tyne. It definitely shows you don't have to travel to far flung places for ARPS portfolios as Julia and Geoff have shown. This is my last newsletter as Regional Organiser and It has been a real pleasure to have had the opportunity to be at the helm of our region for the past three years. Since we took over my team and I have introduced photographic workshops which have been a real success story as every single workshop was sold out. We have also had some excellent walks in the region which have also encouraged members from other regions to get involved. We have had some great talks with excellent photographers and a first for our region, a Fellowship Advisory day. We have continued to hold Advisory Days for LRPS and ARPS advice which are always very popular and it has been wonderful to see members coming along first as spectators then following that up with advice for their portfolios and seeing their successful distinctions in our newsletters. I am leaving our region in the very capable hands of John Devlin and his team who I am sure will continue to keep our region at the forefront of 21st century photography and I wish him every success. All that is left for me to say is a big thank you to my team of Bob Gates, Geoff Chrisp and Bob Turner for their support as well as the many helpers who have contributed to our success. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Editor: Bob Gates ARPS northernweb@rps.org

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"An experience I would not have missed" says

Geoff Chrisp ARPS In October 2017, I was awarded the LRPS distinction for my portfolio of images which successfully demonstrated my ability as a photographer, I was absolutely delighted. The real achievement of getting the award spurred me on to want to develop my skills further and move up to the next level. I knew that I wanted to do a Travel portfolio yet I wanted to do something a different to some of the ARPS panels I had seen before. During my attendances at RPS Advisory Days, I had seen a lot of panels in vibrant colours of exotic places across the world with people going about their lives, all very inspirational. I decided though that I wanted to stay closer to home in a familiar environment. This would give me the opportunity to revisit the places again and again until I got the images I wanted. So, I chose Newcastle upon Tyne, 20 miles from my home and a city that I know very well. My starting point for this body of work was to visit the RPS website which provides excellent information on the Associate Criteria. There are also galleries of successful portfolios to view so that you can see the standards required and learn from others. I also attended several RPS Advisory Days and learned from the feedback given by experts to other photographers. I could not recommend this enough, I learnt so much. I wanted to portray a personal style to my images so I decided from the outset that I would not use images of a busy city but would concentrate more on the architecture that so many locals and tourists admire. When I was composing images in my mind I always thought ‘solitude in the city’ and tried to use people to scale the images and provide additional interest where possible.

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I also attended several RPS Advisory Days and learned from the feedback given by experts to other photographers. I could not recommend this enough, I learnt so much. I wanted to portray a personal style to my images so I decided from the outset that I would not use images of a busy city but would concentrate more on the architecture that so many locals and tourists admire. When I was composing images in my mind I always thought ‘solitude in the city’ and tried to use people to scale the images and provide additional interest where possible. I also wanted to achieve a consistent colour palette across the images so that they looked like a coherent body of work. My aim was that the Assessors would be able to tell that all the images were produced by the same individual, a personal style. After a year or more had passed and many enjoyable trips to Newcastle had been made, I finally had a body of images that I was pleased with. I produced a panel of 15 images, plus a few spares, my ‘Statement of Intent’ and forwarded them to the RPS for ‘online advice’. I tried to make the statement as simple as possible and not include anything ambiguous that may affect the outcome of the assessment, my images had to match my intent.

I received some really constructive feedback from a Travel Panel member and was able to use this to finally refine my panel and get it ready for assessment. For the panel I used white mounting boards which really helped to emphasise the images and the best quality fine art paper to achieve consistent results. Although I was a little nervous on the assessment day it was so rewarding to hear the positive comments from the Assessment Panel on my work. The feeling when the ‘Chair’ called my name and said that my portfolio had been recommended for the distinction was amazing. For me the whole learning process to produce a successful ARPS portfolio was very enjoyable and rewarding, an experience I would not have missed. 5


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Geoff Chrisp: ARPS Travel Panel: ‘Statement of Intent’ Newcastle upon Tyne has transformed over the years from its former industrial based heritage into a vibrant, modern city. Through time the city’s architecture has evolved to meet the changing needs of the modern world. It is generally a busy city however when exploring many quieter areas can also be found. The cities architecture is admired and enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. My aim with this portfolio is to capture a sense of time and place showing Newcastle upon Tyne as it is today, by concentrating on images of the cities mix of classic and modern architecture.

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Barra Para Handy's Hunting Ground...! John Devlin ARPS In the not-to-distant past, it was estimated that by 2017, 1.2 trillion photographs would be taken that year. Almost double since 2013 and 85% of those by smart phones! As social media and the mighty internet grow at a ferocious rate, it’s little wonder that we are seeing more and more images from places we had only seen or heard about in geography lessons at school or on maps! The isles of Skye, Arran, Lewis and Harris are typical of such places and becoming ever more popular. But why are these remote islands (Skye & Arran aside) growing in popularity? Tourism and photography of course! Abandoned crofts and barns are turning in to holiday cottages and you only have to flick through photography magazines, both hard and digital copy, to find countless photographic tours and workshops. Our five-hour trip ferry from Oban on the west coast of Scotland passed with surprising pace and to be honest not a trip I was looking forward to given the length of time stuck on a ferry. Barra, our ultimate destination, with its Chrystal clear waters, barren landscape, and pure white sands, nestles in the southern end of the Outer Hebrides; an area synonymous with fishing and that masterful captain, Para Handy. Castlebay, the main town (in fact the only town on the island) stocks all basic needs from a CO-OP to a heritage centre – oh and a couple of bars in between! It also boasts the only commercial airfield in the UK whose flights depend on a tidal runway! Aircraft arrive daily from Glasgow airport.

Fishing Boat, Lobster Pots, Low Tide, Barra

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Kisimul castle owned by the clan MacNeil, stands guarding Castlebay on a rocky promontory and is the bays focal point. The land is pretty much barren but spattered with crofts. I found few trees (maybe I didn’t look hard enough) and only one woodland. The elements can play havoc with your hairstyle on Barra, especially on the west coast which faces the Atlantic and all she can throw at you– Next stop USA! But I found that was all part of an invigorating experience and what we wanted from our trip. I’d never seen beaches so vast and white. The sky at night as black as can be with millions of stars – providing the clouds were at bay, which on a really good day, graced us with raindrops the size of golf balls. Which brings me to clothing and all good things to keep you dry! Good waterproofs are recommended and to be honest, that goes without saying. And although the height of summer temperatures reach between 12 & 15 degrees, the wind can be the issue. If you think of the old adage ‘There’s no such think as poor weather, just poor clothing’, then you can’t go wrong!

Fishing Boat Wreck, Barra

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Of course, the good thing when travelling by ferry is there are no weight restrictions and as such, providing your mode of transport has the room, you can take as much or as little camera kit as you please. For the landscape photographer there’s images available around every corner and with the island being fairly small (11 mile x 6 mile) locations for sunrise/sunset are fairly obtainable. Sea Otters, Birds of Prey, Dolphins and Whales are all possible for the wildlife photographer too. And that’s it. So if you want to stay clear of the crowds – for the time being at least, have beaches to yourself or star gaze the night away with a bottle of your favourite vino, you won’t go far wrong with Barra. CalMac Ferry: Tel: 0800 066 5000 (www.calmac.co.uk) Twice daily from Oban. Car & two Passengers £200 return (But car dependant)! Accommodation: Price varies per unit. Our cottage was £600 for the week, which is average. Flights from Glasgow: Times are Tide dependant. Prices from £90 Average Temps: Winter 4-7 degrees. Summer 12-15 degrees. Average rainfall: Winter 100mm. Summer 40mm.

Rocky Outcrop, Barra Airport

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Eoligarry, Barra

Lobster Pots, Low Tide, Barra

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Dusk, North Shore, Barra

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My ARPS Journey Julia McNeill-Richardson ARPS

Having achieved my LRPS in October 2017, I felt that working towards my ARPS was a natural progression. For me, Natural History was the obvious choice of category and Scotland, with its variety of both wildlife and vistas was my choice of location. I visited Scotland several times over a period of two years photographing wildlife across the different seasons, in their natural habitats and from the coasts of Mull to the top of the Cairngorm Mountains and everything in between. I collated a variety of images then worked on selecting the ones that worked well together and that created the storyboard that I wished to achieve. I personally liked the balance that the 3, 5, 7 hanging plan afforded. This layout allowed me to show three winter scenes and gave me scope for a balanced and beutiful panel which built on itself. I opted for a smaller print size of 10x8" whilst keeping the mounts at 20x16" and chose to mount the images horizontally in a vertical mount to allow the panel a more unique and artistic feel. My panel was assessed as a successful panel in September 20129.

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Statement of Intent My intention with this panel is to show the beauty and variety of wild species in their natural environment through the different seasons, ranging from the coastlines and seas of the Scottish Islands to the tops of the Scottish Mountains.

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Street Photography Workshop with Dave Mason Dave Mason a renowned Street Photographer from Canterbury lead an RPS workshop for 11 of our members in October in Newcastle City Centre. Not knowing the area Dave well, Dave was shown around the city by Peter Dixon ARPS prior to the event to help him suss out good locations with interesting backdrops so that images taken on the day would be able to tell stories. Dave wanted to show those attending how he approached his photography and for the first hour he gave a presentation and that was followed by everyone getting out with their cameras. It was decided to split into smaller groups with each group getting a chance to be with Dave. This worked well although by the end of the day a couple had “got lost” and went for a pint instead. Feedback was excellent from all those attending, and Dave has agreed to give the Northern Region another workshop in 2021. Check out the events page of the Northern webpage nearer the time. A selection of images from Bob Turner, ARPS, John Dilworth, Paul Hood LRPS and Tim Moor LRPS.

The Wall © John Dilworth

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What time do you call this? © Tim Moor LRPS

© Bob Turner ARPS

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© Paul Hood LRPS

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Sinners © Tim Moor LRPS

© John Dilworth

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© Bob Turner ARPS

© Bob Turner ARPS

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Double Distinction Success Valerie Corris LRPS & Patrick Corris LRPS

Patrick Corris I am a Civil Engineer but in my spare time I have a passion for overseas travel and photography. I enjoy a variety of photographic genres, including wildlife, travel, portrait and landscape. I also enjoy scuba diving and underwater photography which I find particularly rewarding and challenging. I have been on a number of specialist underwater photography workshops with Martin Edge to Bunaken, Lembeh, and Maratua Atoll in Indonesia. More recently I have also taken up drone photography. Valerie Corris My day job mostly involves working with numbers (as an NHS data analyst and epidemiologist). In my spare time I enjoy planning our holidays, usually designed to optimise opportunities for photography, which I took up after meeting Patrick in 1995. I particularly enjoy wildlife photography, but I also like travel photography and would like to improve my macro photography. As I spend most of my day at work in front of a computer, I’m really not keen on spending hours editing photos so have to try to get them right in camera. I am retiring shortly so hope to have a lot more time to spend on this hobby, although I think life’s too short to bother about Photoshop.

© Patrick Corris LRPS

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As we both enjoy wildlife photography we’ve been on a few safaris, to Tanzania, Madagascar, Namibia, Botswana and India. Travel photography is another passion for us both, and we’ve spent a lot of time, mainly in Asia including Laos, Thailand, Burma, Indonesia, China, Sri Lanka, the Maldives and Malaysia. Our future plans involve travel to Cambodia, New Zealand and the Asia Pacific area, including Fiji, French Polynesia, and Papua New Guinea where the diving is reported to be amazing with a high bio-diversity of marine life. We have been camera club members since 2010 where we have picked up lots of valuable advice on improving our photography. At the beginning of this year we both decided that we would like to seek an independent assessment of our standard of photography. We were thinking that we were taking photos that were of a sufficient standard to achieve some sort of formal accreditation, as our photography had significantly improved in the last few years. The RPS distinctions are a recognised measure of achievement, so seemed a good option. We attended an RPS advisory day in Spring 2019, which was useful, followed by the assessment day in Bristol in October 2019, where we both managed to obtain the LRPS distinction.

© Patrick Corris LRPS

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© Patrick Corris LRPS

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Images © Patrick Corris LRPS

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LRPS Hanging Plan

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Applicant Name: Patrick Corris Assessment Date: 3 October 2019

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© Val Corris LRPS

© Val Corris LRPS

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© Val Corris LRPS

© Val Corris LRPS

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© Val Corris LRPS

© Val Corris LRPS

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Š Val Corris LRPS

LRPS Hanging Plan

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Applicant Name: Valerie Corris Assessment Date: 3 October 2019

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Smartphone Photography Workshop We were very privileged that Jo Bradford from the Dartmoor area of Devon gave our region two one day workshops. Her approach to smartphone photography was very refreshing and her delivery throughout the day was informative and she showed great depth of knowledge with this medium. Jo went through in detail what our phones can do, and it was surprising to most of the attendees which additional features that their phones had that they were unaware of at all. Then into the field to try out the lessons learned. The Saturday was a super day for photography, but the heavens opened on the Sunday workshop and it spoilt the enjoyment somewhat. Back inside Jo talked everyone through Snapseed and the amazing processing that can be done and everyone had a chance to process their own images. Jo was a brilliant tutor and everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves learning a great deal in the process.

Š Ann Hamblen

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Š Katharine Ainger

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© Geoff Chrisp ARPS

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Cosy Indoors © Mary Thompson LRPS

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© Bob Turner ARPS

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From the RPS Collection at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London

Don’t say you haven’t done it. According to Google statistics, about 93 million selfies were taken per day as far back as 2014, and on Android devices alone. One poll found that every third photo taken by those aged 18 to 24 is a selfie. You take selfies, I take selfies, we all take selfies. Self portraits have a long history back to the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. But our modern day idea of a self portrait originated in the middle ages when mirrors were perfected. Many artists regularly created self portraits including Edward Munch, Leonardo da Vinci and Rembrandt. In fact, Rembrandt created almost one hundred self portraits. The first photo self portrait was taken in October 1839 by Robert Cornelius in Philadelphia using the daguerreotype process. This self portrait from 1910 is by Alvin Langdon Coburn (1882-1966). He was born into a middle-class family in Boston, Massachusetts and at the age of eight, his uncles in California gave him a Kodak 5x4 camera. Eight years later he met his cousin F Holland Day who was already an internationally known photographer. Day encouraged him to take up photography as a career. He moved to London with his mother in 1899. His prints were exhibited at the RPS and attracted the attention of another wellknown photographer, Frederick H Evans, one of the founder members of the Linked Ring. Coburn was elected a member of the Linked Ring on 20 October 1903 and took the pseudonym 'Hustler'. "Mr Alvin Langdon Coburn is one of the most accomplished and sensitive artist-photographers now living", so wrote George Bernard Shaw in an introduction to an RPS exhibition. Coburn was just 23 years old. He moved to North Wales where he spent the rest of his life. In 1931 he gave his entire collection of photographs to the RPS but destroyed almost 15,000 glass and film negatives. He was made an Honorary Fellow of the RPS the same year. Bob Gates ARPS


© Geoff Chrisp ARPS

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