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NEWSLETTER APRIL/MAY 2018 / VOL. 3 / NO. 4

CONTENTS 01 Editorial 02 A Week in Andalucia by Steve Hartley 04 Stonehenge Dawn Shoot Late afternoon walk on the beach, Harris

Š Fiona McCowan LRPS

06 A Pleasing Lack of Sharpness by Pauline Benbrook LRPS

Editorial Welcome to the April/May newsletter, and my last as editor. Mick Rawcliffe will be my successor, while I shall continue as Web Editor. This edition features articles by Steve Hartley, recounting his recent trip to Andalucia and by Pauline Benbrook. Inspired by conference speaker Steve Gosling, Pauline describes her first foray into the world of pinhole photography. In addition, there are two event reports. The first the dawn shoot at Stonehenge, which I was lucky enough to attend. The second is from the group's first holiday, to the Isles of Lewis and Harris. Finally, my thanks to everyone who has contributed to the newsletter over the last two years or so, whether it has been article or an image for the Members' Gallery. Your contributions are always welcome. I am sure you will join me in wishing Mick the best in his new role. He will be taking over the landscapenews email address, so there is no change in how you make your submissions. With kind regards Jim Souper, Newsletter Editor

07 News Round Up 08 Group Trip to Lewis & Harris by Fiona McCowan LRPS 10 Members' Gallery 13 What's On 14 Events

Submissions The deadline for submissions to the next newsletter is Saturday 9th June. Please note that it may be necessary to hold some submissions for a future newsletter. If you have an idea for article, please send a brief synopsis of the purpose and content of the piece. Please submit your images as jpegs, sized to 72 dpi with 1200 pixels along the longest edge and borderless. Please send all submissions by email to: landscapenews@rps.org

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A week in Andalucia by Steve Hartley LRPS

The weather forecast for the next day was good so we headed for the Alpajuras, an area of deep valleys, picturesque whitewashed mountain villages and the most amazing almond blossoms. I had seen pictures but the sight of thousands of trees in full bloom was truly breath taking. We hit that side of the valley late in the afternoon and the trees were mostly backlit, which made the blossom really glow. We returned to base and headed for yet more tapas with a real buzz.

Every year Jane and I take a week away in February, sometimes its Cornwall, sometimes its Suffolk but this year Jane said she needed a bit of late winter sun. We had seen a number of TV programmes about Granada and I was aware from Light & Land’s tempting adverts that the almond blossom was in full bloom in Andalusia around Valentine’s day. A quick look on Expedia and we were amazed to find a deal with flights, hotel and hire car for under £700 for the pair of us. The extras, like seats and baggage meals bumped it up a bit but not certainly an expensive week away. The hotel was bang in the centre of Granada and our room looked out over the city centre; perfect for exploring. Day one was a case of orientation and a wander around the city streets. Some street photography around the cathedrals and alleyways was a nice starter. I had read that Plaza de San Nicholas was the place to go for a sunset picture of the Alhambra. Quite frankly, it is the only publicly accessible place for ‘the’ picture. We visited but the light was not good. The tapas bar for dinner was a great recommendation and amazing value.

Alpajuras almond blossom I

Alpajuras almond blossom II

Alhama Olives

On day two, we drove out of the city to explore some old towns to the west of Granada recommended in the guidebook we had. They turned out to be huge disappointments, but the area where they were was covered in miles and miles of olive groves and deep valleys, which looked promising. The weather was not great but the mist made for a bit of atmosphere and some late sunshine allowed some nice shots in and around Alhama de Granada and its gorge. More tapas for dinner and again, a very reasonable bill.

A visit to the Alhambra was always planned but what we had not realised is that to visit on your own you need to book about a month in advance. We ended up on a guided tour, but we were picked up at the hotel and the guide made the tour very enjoyable. A word of warning – do not expect to have the Alhambra to yourself! We were one of the first groups in the morning and it was full of people. The beauty of the place is indescribable but good ‘fine art’ photos will require much Photoshop ‘murder’ of the crowds. On the guide’s recommendation, we had a long lunch on the terrace of the Parador Hotel, which was lovely – outdoor dining in February. That night we returned to San Nicholas as the sunset looked promising. It was very busy but I got ‘the’ picture and some great coffee from the little take away shop just below the square. On the way back, Jane pointed out a different viewpoint and I think I prefer the less clichéd picture.

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The following day we took a drive to the coast – the Costa Tropica sounded quite promising and morning coffee on the beach at Almunecar was quite pleasant. As we drove east along the coast the scenery changed to wall-to-wall polytunnels on a truly epic scale. It was quite disturbing to see what the drive for all year strawberries and the like has done to the landscape – take a look on Google Earth if you don’t believe me! Eventually we arrived at Almeria, which was much more photogenic with a very nice ruined fortress on a hill. The Alcazaba is not on the scale of the Alhambra but it is nowhere near as busy either. The drive back to Granada took us through some very odd-looking landscapes, not dissimilar to Death Valley in the USA. This may be why they used the area to film the Spaghetti Westerns.

Alhama Gorge

Almeria Walls

The return home was uneventful but I must give one tip, take out full collision damage waiver – every car in Andalusia has a dent or four! Ours came back with three panels dented and would have been the full 1200 euro excess, had we not taken out the waiver. So, would I recommend Granada and Andalusia for a photo visit – YES! Try to go when the almond blossom is in full swing and be prepared to eat lots of tapas. The food and drink is very reasonable. Whether it is better to stay in Granada and travel out for day trips, or stay in the Alpajuras and visit Granada is a moot point but either way, the area has lots to offer.

Alcazaba Fortress

On our final day, we did some more exploring around Granada city. A visit to the ‘hidden’ market hall was great if you like fishmongers and we found the elusive Moorish Bath House and villa (not well signposted for tourist attractions, and consequently pretty quiet). The villa had a reasonable photo exhibition inside, which was a pleasant surprise. A couple of visits to churches and the cathedral were rather underwhelming to be honest. As it was out last night, we decided to forego yet more tapas and went to a highly recommended ‘high end’ restaurant. It was superb and really not that expensive for the quality of food and wine served.

Alhambra at dusk

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Stonehenge Dawn Shoot It was still dark when the first Landscape Group members arrived for our dawn shoot at Stonehenge. This year's event coincided with the start of British Summer Time, meaning an hour's less sleep for what was already an early start. The upside was that, notionally at least, the sun would rise part way through the shoot. There were 18 participants on the day. After a short coach ride from the Visitor Centre, the group arrived at the stones just before 6:30. It was an overcast morning and, while it gradually got lighter, there was no sight of the sun. Nevertheless, members made the most of the hour's photography available before returning to the Visitor Centre at 7:30.

© Amy Robinson LRPS

© Ray Grace ARPS

© Andrew Gasson ARPS

© Jay Warren

© James Woodend ©ay Grace

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© Michael Herrmann LRPS

© Michelle Richardson

© Sandra Roberts

© Brian Flemming LRPS

© Amy Robinson LRPS

You can view a gallery of images from the day here. © Brian Flemming LRPS

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A PLEASING LACK OF SHARPNESS by Pauline Benbrook LRPS I was inspired by a talk and presentation given by Steve Gosling on pinhole photography at our Conference in 2017. Steve's images had an ethereal and atmospheric quality to them. They inspired me to want to explore this effect. A pinhole camera is a simple camera without a lens but with a tiny aperture, a pinhole - effectively a lightproof box with a small hole to one side. Light from a scene passes through the aperture on the opposite side of the box, which is known as the 'camera obscura' effect. Not wanting the expense of buying a pinhole camera, I converted my DSLR into a pinhole camera by having a body cap laser precision cut by Pinhole Solutions (www.pinholesolutions.co.uk). As pinhole lenses use very small apertures the depth of field usually extends from around 50 cm to infinity and, although the image will not be as sharp as a glass lens, it has a quality all of its own. High contrast lighting on the subject will often give better results than low contrast ones. It was trial and error to start with taking, meter readings to ascertain correct exposure. Consequently, I now think about my shots and lighting in a more careful way. The four images shown are my first attempts and I think pinhole photography will help me become a better photographer. It is fun and creative to use.

All images Š Pauline Benbrook LRPS

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News Round Up Weather Photographer of the Year The AccuWeather / RMetS Weather Photographer of the Year 2018 competition is now open. AcuuWeather and the Royal Meteorological Society are looking for the best photographs from around the world that depict weather in its widest sense. This could range from weather phenomena such as clouds, lightning, rain, fog and wind through to the impact of weather on man, cities and the natural landscape. Entries close at 12 noon on Tuesday, 5 June 2018 see here for more details.

9th Epson International Pano Awards

Committee Changes A number of changes have been made to enable the landscape group committee to deliver its programme to the next Annual General Meeting. The role of Communications Manager is being broken down into three roles.   

Mick Rawcliffe will take over as Newsletter Editor, Jim Souper will continue as Web Editor Robert Brittle has joined the committee as Magazine Editor, aiming to produce a print magazine later this year

Full details of who's who on the committee can be viewed here.

A Chance for Fame winner announced Congratulation to Janice Payne ARPS, whose image has been selected to be printed on one the Society's pull-up banners.

Early-bird entries to the 9th Epson International Pano Awards are now open. The competition was founded in 2009 by Australian landscape photographer David Evans (2015 AIPP Australian Landscape Photographer of the Year) with the support of Epson Australia. The aim is to give the genre of panoramic photography its day in the sun, especially via the showcase of winning and top-scoring entries to media around the world. There are Open and Amateur categories for Nature/Landscapes. The closing date for early-bird entries is Monday 9th July and for later entries Monday23rd July. For full details of entry fees and how to enter, visit thepanoawards.com.

After the Storm, Sandymouth Bay

© Janice Payne ARPS

Thank you to all who entered the competition.

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Group Trip to Lewis & Harris

Our inauspicious start at Traigh Ghioradail in the pouring rain was followed by a week of long days in mainly good weather (for Scotland). It was reminiscent of the Crowded House song ‘Four seasons in one day’, which meant numerous opportunities to photograph rainbows.

by Fiona McCowan LRPS

Callanish, Lewis

Evening Waves, Bagh Stenigidh, Harris

© Carole Mortimer

The Outer Hebrides. Located on the edge of Europe. Exposed to the Atlantic wind and waves. A place I have always wanted to visit. Lewis and Harris is one island, but thought of as different islands as each has its own distinctive landscape. This dramatic landscape steals your heart. It includes a striking mix of moorland, peat bogs, hills, sandy beaches, dunes, rocky coasts, cliffs, sea lochs, inland lochs and lochans. I fell in love with the stunning views, spectacular sandy beaches and the lochans.

Our trip was split, with three nights in Lewis and four nights in Harris. From Lewis I will particularly remember the rainbow appearing for our dawn shoot at the ancient standing stones at Callanish (where the inner stone ring dates from about 2900BC); the stunning deserted beach of Traigh Uige and the distant view at sunset from the cliffs above the restored Blackhouses at Gearrannan.

Traigh Uige, Lewis

Wellyboot Rock, Bagh Stenigidh, Harris

© Fiona McCowan LRPS

© Peggy McKenzie

© Tim Parish LRPS

Tim Parish led our trip. Tim’s knowledge of and passion for his adopted home was obvious as he drove our small group of four. We travelled from the northern most point on Lewis, the lighthouse at the Butt of Lewis (the windiest place on the coast of the UK), to the southernmost point on Harris, near the 16th century church of St Clement’s in Rodel and all points in between!

Traigh Mheilein & Caolas Scarp, Harris

© Jeff Worsnop LRPS

On Harris, we had an adventurous day out to Traigh Mhelein, overlooking the Isle of Scarp and the turquoise waters of the Kyle of Scarp. A thirteen mile drive along a single-track road to Hushinish was followed by a vertiginous trek to the beach. The blue sky, sunshine, white sands and azure water fooled me into thinking I was in the Caribbean but a quick paddle in the sea soon put paid to that idea!

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from the Golden Road, Harris

© Carole Mortimer

Other memories from Harris include the iconic beach at Luskentyre; the beach side graveyards; the patterns made by the neglected lazybeds (parallel banks of ridge and furrow); our dawn shoot on Scalpay with views over to Skye in the soft morning light and the numerous abandoned houses.

Manais, Harris

© Peggy McKenzie

Rainbow over Dalmore graveyard, Lewis

© Carole Mortimer

On one morning, we had a later start giving our little group the opportunity to explore the village of Tarbert. Our futile search for a main street resulted instead in a visit to the café in the Harris distillery. I can personally recommend their Gaelic coffee and scones. Currently the distillery is only producing Harris gin, which they recommend serving with a slice of pink grapefruit. Their ‘Hearach' Single Malt is planned for release in 2019. Perhaps another good reason to return to the beautiful Outer Hebrides next year? With many thanks to Tim and my excellent companions for the week, Carole, Peggy and Jeff.

Hebridean colours

Traigh Mhangurstadh, Harris

© Jeff Worsnop LRPS

ICM from Bagh Steinigidh, Harris

© Jeff Worsnop LRPS

© Fiona McCowan, LRPS

You can view a gallery of images from the trip here.

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Members' Gallery

Sun and rain over Loch Sunart, western Scotland Nikon D750, with 24-120mm from car window, ISO 500, f16 at 1/250 seconds

© Andy Leonard

Misty morning on the Tresillian River near Truro Cornwall. Nikon D600 with 70-200mm f2.8. 1/640 sec at F14, ISO 1600, hand held.

© Andy Leonard

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Grasmere

High Rigg, Cumbria

© Stephen Pearson ASIS, FRPS

© Stephen Pearson ASIS, FRPS

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Ferry Nab, Windermere

Š Stephen Pearson ASIS, FRPS

Submission Guidelines Please send your Members' Gallery by email to landscapenews@rps.org. Please submit your images as jpegs, sized to 72 dpi with 1200 pixels along the longest edge and borderless. It would also be helpful if you would provide a caption and a note of any RPS distinction that you would like to have included in your credit for the image. The deadline for the next newsletter is Saturday 9th June 2018. Thank you!

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What's On Exhibitions The People's Forest William Morris Gallery, Walthamstow Gayle Chong Kwan’s The People’s Forest is an exhibition of new photographic and sculptural work exploring the history, politics, and people of London’s ancient woodland, Epping Forest. The exhibition is the culmination of Chong Kwan's two-year engagement and research investigating the Forest as a liminal threshold between rural and urban, as a site of historic and recent protest, as a shared and contested resource, and the conflict between capital and common. Continues until 20th May. Michela Griffith - Of Wood and Water Joe Cornish Galleries, North Allerton Of Wood and Water, is the culmination of Michela Griffith's continued dialogue with the rivers and streams in North Yorkshire and the Peak District over the last 3 years. This has evolved to also embrace the woodland and trees along the riverbanks with the results forming the inspiration for this latest exhibition. Continues until 22nd May. Harriet and Rob Fraser: The Long View The North Wall Arts Centre, Oxford Rob Fraser’s photographs and Harriet Fraser’s poetry, together with installations and journal entries, offer a rare insight into seven remarkably ordinary lone trees in Cumbria. Made in all weathers, all seasons, night and day, they give a flavour of what it is to walk to them, repeatedly, and tread the complete 118km between them in one long, sevenday walk. The exhibition runs from 5th to 26th May. Landscape Photographer of the Year Various locations The Landscape Photographer of the Year Exhibition Tour is underway, visiting a major railway stations. The exhibition will be on show at Manchester (to 5th May), Birmingham (7th to 19th May), London Victoria (21st May to 3rd June) and London Paddington 5th to 24th June). The schedule may be subject to late changes and other dates are to be confirmed. Somewhere-Nowhere: The Long View ONCA, Brighton Rob and Harriet Fraser take The Long View (see above) to Brighton, where the exhibition runs from 30th May to 10th June

A selection of exhibitions & events which may be of interest to landscape group members

Voices from the Land The Folly Museum, Settle Voices from the Land brings together the faces, voices and words of farmers across the Yorkshire Dales in 2017. Captured through black-and-white portraits, colour images, audio recordings and writing, this exhibition drawn together by photographer Rob Fraser and writer Harriet Fraser gives a unique insight into farming in the Yorkshire Dales today and shares farmers’ thoughts of what the future may hold. The exhibition runs from 1st May to 8th July. Wildlife Photographer of the Year 53 London This year's exhibition, showcasing the fifty-third year of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, at the Natural History Museum until 28th May 2018. Mark Ruwedel Tate Modern, London Ruwedel's work shows how geological, historical and political events have left their mark on the landscape. The works in this display span 1995– 2012 and include images of abandoned railways, nuclear testing sites and empty desert homes. Showing until December.

Conferences, Fairs and Festivals Photo London Somerset House Now in its fourth edition, Photo London has established itself as a world-class photography fair and as a catalyst for London’s dynamic photography community. This year's fair runs from 17th to 20th May. Kendal Mountain Festival Tour 2018 Various Locations This year's tour visits sixteen venues across the UK. Each session will feature speakers alongside a selection of award-winning adventure films.

If you have, or know of, an exhibition you think may be interest to landscape group members, please email landscapenews@rps.org with details.

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Glen Elg location shoot Saturday 2nd June, 8:00 to 17:00

EVENTS Hedd Wyn Heritage Centre and Llyn (Lake) Trawsfynydd Sunday 6 May, 10:30 to 16:00

Snowdonia The recently opened centre is dedicated to the life and work of the famous Welsh Great War poet Hedd Wyn. The farmhouse and centre are beautifully located within Cwm Prysor, with expansive views of the mountain ranges of Meirionnydd and Llyn Trawsfynydd. See here for details.

Norfolk coastal photography day Saturday 12th May, 10:00 to 20:00

Wells-next-the-Sea A day with professional photographer Jon Gibbs shooting the beautiful and varied locations of the North Norfolk Coast. See here for details.

Beyond Visible Light: A workshop on Infrared landscapes with Simon Weir Saturday 19th May, 10:00 to 18:30 Oldbury An acknowledged expert in the field of Infrared photography, Simon's workshop will give you a thorough understanding of the magical world of digital infrared. See here for full details.

Inverness This will be an informal outing arranged by the RPS Scottish Northern Group. Members of the Landscape Group are invited to join up with Highland based members with local knowledge. This outing will be to Glen Elg, which is a part of the Scottish West Coast often missed by those heading to the Isle of Skye. It has some amazing coastal and mountain scenery. See here for details.

Southend and Leigh-on-Sea field trip Saturday 9th June, 10:00 to 18:00 Southend -on-Sea A day at the seaside with the landscape group! See here for details.

Photographing landscape; whatever the weather with Tony Worobiec FRPS Sunday 10th June, 10:30 to 16:30

Bath The purpose of this course is to inspire the participant to recognise that each month in the year offers wonderful opportunities for taking great photographs. It aims to be as broad as possible, and features not just pastoral landscape, but recognises that landscape should also embrace agricultural, coastal, industrial and urban locations. To be held at Bath HQ - see here for details

Urban abstracts workshop Sunday 24th June, 10:00 to 18:00 Newcastle upon Tyne An on-location workshop on urban abstract photography. See here for details of this Group C event.

Circular Walk around Mynydd Margam Sunday 1st July, 9:30 to 16:00 Margam, Port Talbot Circular Walk around Mynydd Margam led by local photographer Gareth Martyn. See here for details. Š Ollie Taylor

Night-time landscapes workshop Friday 1st June to Saturday 2nd June

Portland, Dorset This workshop will teach the basics of innovative night sky photography, including planning, shooting and post-production. There will be a maximum of eight participants. PLEASE NOTE: In order to maximise the chances of good weather, the workshop will take place on either Friday 1 June or Saturday 2 June. If booking you must be available both dates. See here for full details.

Processing landscape images Sunday 1st July, 10:00 to 17:00

Bassenthwaite This one-day workshop will cover post-processing techniques to get the best from your landscape images. Run by Adobe certified professional Carmen Norman at her Lake District studio, the workshop will cover the use of both Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. See here for details of the workshop and the option of a tutored photo walk the previous day.

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Buildings in the Landscape Friday 6th July, 9:45 to 16:30

Long Exposures on the Wirral Coast Saturday 27th October, 9:00 to 17:00

Nottingham University This event is designed for landscape photographers who would like to learn about photographing buildings. Led by professional architectural photographer Martine Hamilton-Knight and Fuji-X travel and landscape photographer Chris Upton, this fully tutored day will provide a wide range of subjects around the campus of Nottingham University. See here for details.

New Brighton The New Brighton coast is ideal for long exposures or, for those without filters, there are endless viewpoints for seascapes. We will photograph around the New Brighton groynes and the Perch Rock lighthouse and participants can practice minimalism and the impact of different exposure time on seascapes. Perch Rock also offers a chance at the broad vista or the Intimate landscape. See here for details.

Nant Gwrtheyrn and Tre’r Ceiri Hill-fort Sunday 29th July, 10:00 to 17:00 Nant Gwrtheyrn Ancient history, industrial history, mountains and coast - all in one field trip! Two walking options are on offer. The first, Nant Gwrtheyrn, is a secret valley at the base of Y Eifl (The Rivals). The second, Tre’r Ceiri Iron Age Hillfort, is a moderate high-level walk on the two landward hills of Y Eifl. See here for details.

Strathspey location shoot Sunday 9th September, 8:00 to 17:00

Inverness This will be an informal outing arranged by the RPS Scottish Northern Group. Members of the Landscape Group are invited to join up with Highland based members with local knowledge. This outing will be to Strathspey, with its great scenic landscape opportunities featuring lochs, glens and the UK’s highest mountain range. See here for details.

Architecture and Abstracts Sunday 23rd September, 10:00 to 20:00

Manchester A workshop designed to explore shape, texture and composition in the built environment. We will photograph the modern architectural spaces in Manchester including The Hilton Hotel, Spinningfields district, New Islington, Castlefield, Wilmot street and finishing at dusk in Media City, Salford Quays. See here for details of this category C event.

For details of all Landscape Group events listed above and of additional workshops and events of interest to group members, please visit the group's events page.

Glen Affric/Glen Cannich location shoot Sunday 4th November, 8:00 to 17:00 Inverness This will be an informal outing arranged by the RPS Scottish Northern Group. Members of the Landscape Group are invited to join up with Highland based members with local knowledge. By common consent, Glen Affric is the finest of all Scotland's glens. The glen begins amongst the steep, bare mountains of Kintail far in the west. Further downriver is beautiful Loch Affric, at the foot of the highest mountains north of the Great Glen. The middle part of the glen is a national nature reserve, magnificently wooded with Scots Pine - one of the last remnants of the original Caledonian Forest. A fantastic location to capture the autumn colours of the Highlands. See here for details.

RPS South Wales Region Talk and Discussion: Mari Owen and Real Wales Photography Tours Sunday 18th November, 11:00 to 16:00

Port Talbot Following the South Wales Region AGM, all members, visitors, guests and non-members present are invited to a talk and discussion with South Wales based Landscape Photographer, Mari Owen and Real Wales Photography Tours. See here for details

Could you host an event? If you know of a promising and photogenic location in your area, and you would be willing to organise an informal session for other members of the Group, please email to rps.landscape.events@gmail.com. We welcome all volunteers and would very much like to hear from members in all parts of the UK.

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Event categories The categories below aim to help members understand what is on offer at any particular landscape group event. They are also a guide for potential event leaders who might be worried that their photographic skills are not sufficiently strong for them to lead an event. Group A – Field trips where the guide has a good knowledge of the location (e.g. good viewpoints, good subjects, good times of day, tides if relevant etc.) and will have ideas about what to do in case of unhelpful weather or light conditions, but does not wish to offer any advice on photography skills or techniques. Group B - Field trips where the trip leader has a good knowledge of the location (as in Group A) but is also willing to offer general technical support and advice to inexperienced photographers. The leader is NOT expected to be an expert in anything but should be sufficiently experienced to pass on knowledge of the basics. Group C - Field trips that focus on a particular technique – such as long exposures or photographing at night. The leaders of these events will primarily offer advice about technique and location knowledge will be sufficient to enable participants to learn and practice the technique(s) concerned. Group D - Workshops that primarily focus on skills or technique and where location is irrelevant or is a secondary consideration. These may take place indoors or outdoors. The workshop leader may have limited knowledge of the location but will be experienced and skilled in the topic of the workshop.

Booking Confirmations A few members have contacted us because they were unsure as to whether or not they were booked on an event. Here is a brief guide to how you can check this for yourselves. When you book a landscape event through the RPS website, the system should send you a confirmation email. If you have not received it and want to check if you are booked on an event, then login to your account on the RPS website, select the tab labeled events and tick the box for events you are booked on. Any events you have booked will show up in orange.

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Landscape Group Newsletter, April/May 2018  
Landscape Group Newsletter, April/May 2018