CPS President’s Annual Report 2019

President’s Annual Report

March 2018 to March 2019

 

Summary

The year March 2018 to 2019 has been a good one for the society. A survey of members (Appendix 1) run in August shows that the membership is largely happy with the current program. Our main communication channels, eNews, website, gallery and Facebook audiences are growing steadily as we increase our use of electronic and social media to engage with our members and the community. Membership is steady/increasing slightly, providing sufficient income to cover our expenses, leaving us in a financially healthy position.

The Exhibition and Critique nights continue to be our most popular regular event made possible by the generous contributions of a variety of judges. The society hosted an interesting set of external and member speakers who spoke about various technical and aesthetic aspects of photography at our presentation nights. During the year the society offered a range of other activities such as special interest groups, workshops and excursions which each catered to different sectors of our membership.

A significant part of our program is the provision of opportunity for our members to show their work to the wider community in external showcases. This year we put on two exhibitions, “Different Views 4” in Telstra Tower and “The Natural World” at CSIRO Discovery. Both were well received by the public. The venues for both were provided gratis by the host agency which helps both our costs and our profile. Many thanks to CSIRO and Telstra Tower.

While our focus as a society is helping our members achieve their photographic potential through collaboration and sharing, we also work to encourage excellence. Those who have demonstrated significant achievements were recognised throughout the year at our Exhibition and Critique nights, Portfolio Competitions and Image of the Year events.

Our program would not be possible without the input of members, committee members, judges, presenters and hosts. To all our supporters, many thanks.

 

 

Report

During 2018 the Canberra Photographic Society continued to work towards supporting its members in the goal of “reaching their photographic potential.” All of our activities and events are made possible by the contributions of members, especially those on the committee, as well as the judges and presenters who donate their time. I thank everyone who has contributed during the year.

Exhibition and Critique Nights

Exhibition and Critique nights continue to be our most popular activity. Thanks to Expo night Director Eva van Gorsel and her team including Tony Mason, Matt James, Michael Taylor and Lenuta Quraishi for running these evenings. The success of our Exhibition and Critique nights, Portfolio Awards and the Image of the Year Awards is also highly dependent on our volunteer judges. We thank all our judges for their generous provision of time and expertise. We aim to provide a variety of judges with different points of view and different backgrounds to give a diversity of feedback to members to help them on their photographic journey.

Month Set Topic Judge Judge Affiliation
Feb 2018 Open only Doug Hall Professional Photographer/AIPP
Mar Faces Kris Arnold Professional Photographer/AIPP
Apr Pattern Peter Ranyard PhotoAccess Tutor
May HEDDA Print Portfolio Karleen Minney Fairfax/Canberra Times
Jun Life up close Grace Costa Defence Photographer
Jull Place Scott Leggo Professional Photographer/Gallery owner
Aug Projected Portfolio Chris Holly Creative Consultant
Sep Time and Motion Lib Ferreira Professional Photographer/AIPP
Oct Reflection Chris Meadham ANU/ANBG Friends Artists group
Nov Inside Canberra Member Panels CPS
Dec IOY Robert Coppa, Ben Kopilow, Hilary Waudhaugh Professional Photographers/AIPP
Feb 2019 Open only David Paterson Professional Photographer/AIPP
Mar 2019 Architecture David Flannery ACT Heritage Council

 

Presentation Nights

The theme-based approach to the development of the program continues to be well-received. Each theme runs for a month and usually involves a presentation night, a workshop night and the Set Topic for the following Exhibition and Critique night. Attendance at Presentation Nights and Workshop Nights (coordinated by Michael Taylor, Eva van Gorsel and Paul Carpenter) has been variable but generally good. A new feature introduced in 2018 was to hold some presentations jointly with the AIPP, the first being in October. This boosted attendance and provided an opportunity for members to interact with a broader photographic community.

Implementation of the program relies on the involvement of committee members, members and external speakers to provide presentations, lead workshops and coordinate excursions. We thank both our external speakers and members for helping us deliver an interesting and varied program.

Presentation night speakers in 2018 were

Month Theme Presenter Presenter Affiliation
Feb Faces Robert Coppa Professional Photographer, AIPP
Mar Patterns Stephanie Herbert CPS
April The Future of iphoneography Brad Nichols CIT
May Life up Close Marwan El Hassan CPS
June My Place Ian Marshall CPS
July Sequences and Series Matt James, Judy Parker and Helen McFadden CPS
August Time and Motion Tom de Jongh CPS
September Reflection Joanne Smedley Australian War Memorial
October Inside Canberra Geoff Comfort Professional Photographer/AIPP
November Making a difference John Reid ANU

 

Communication

Our regular eNews (compiled by David Maish) is now sent to over 521 Members and Friends (up from 500 in 2018), 42% of whom (on average according to Mailchimp) open the emails. The CPS membership has increased slightly to around 86 people (up from 80) and Mailchimp reports that around 62% of members open emails sent just to members (down from 85% last year). The CPS Facebook page (thank you Michael Taylor) now has 558 followers (up from 462 last year) and continues to deliver items of general photographic interest as well as news about CPS activities. We have started to make greater use of Facebook advertising to boost posts for special events as print advertising is losing its reach.

The website and image galleries present our face to the world. Traffic to our website is about the same as last year (about 240 unique visitors per week as measured in February 2019).

The Smugmug image galleries continue to work well and appear to serve our current needs. The tablet-based viewing system linked to Smugmug for Exhibition and Critique nights is now well established and working well. This year the committee considered purchase of a new projector but the specs of the currently available projectors did not appear to be significantly better than our current model so a purchase was deferred for the time being.

Many thanks to Eva van Gorsel who is now Exhibition and Critique night coordinator and manager of the image galleries. She is assisted by Tony Mason, Michael Taylor and Lenuta Quraishi.

Thanks to Ian Marshall and Eva van Gorsel for website maintenance and to Murray Foote who is an advisor for the CPS blog.

A special thanks to Alan Charlton who, with the assistance of Alex Petkovic and a team of helpers, sets up the room and takes care of the logistics for all our events.

Consultation

An annual program review in August is now a regular feature of the CPS calendar and provides an opportunity for members to make comments and suggestions regarding the CPS program. This year we ran a survey of members via Survey Monkey. The committee felt that they needed to canvas views about the format of the Exhibition and Critique nights, which have now been running for two years (as an evolution of the formerly named Competition Nights), and to find out if our program meets member needs and desires.

A summary of the results of this survey is at Appendix 1. A big thank you to all (27 respondents) who took the time to participate and to provide comment. Because the comments were provided in confidence they have not been published but I thank respondents for providing much valuable input, comments and suggestions. The committee has considered all comments and acted on several of the suggestions provided.

Special Interest Groups

Several different groups of members meet to enjoy various aspects of photography. The Hedda group for women and students (coordinated by me and Judy Parker) meets monthly and the Personal Projects group (coordinated by Andrée Lawrey) meets every second month. Thanks to Telstra Tower management for provision of space to hold these meetings.

Weekend Workshops and Excursions

In association with Heritage Week, Alan Charlton organised an excursion to photograph antique boats on Lake Burley Griffin. In April the annual coastal weekend workshop and preliminary workshops were again run by Phil McFadden and his team. The weekend was fully subscribed almost as soon as it was advertised. Participants reported that they found the experience valuable and said that the sharing of images both before, during and after the weekend provided valuable learning opportunities. In spring Marwan El Hassan hosted an excursion to the Botanic Gardens which was well attended. Unfortunately there were no takers for excursions offered out of town to Kiama to photograph sea birds (Gerard Jenkins) and to Temora to photograph an air show (Paul Carpenter). The Annual Photochallenge was not run this year.

External Exhibitions

In 2018 the CPS held two external exhibitions. “Different Views 4” opened during Heritage Week and featured images of Canberra and surrounds. It was held in the ground floor of Telstra Tower. Many thanks to the Management of Telstra Tower for provision of the exhibition space. We are currently planning for “Different Views 5” which will open at the end of May, 2019.

The Natural World” at the CSIRO Discovery Centre ran for a month from 20th August 2018. We thank CSIRO for providing the space at no charge. The theme was chosen to be as broad as possible while also aligning with the science-based nature of CSIRO. This exhibition proved popular and CSIRO was pleased with the number of visitors it attracted. As a result our exhibitions coordinator Judy Parker has been invited to hold a solo show at the Discovery Centre in 2019 and we plan to hold another group show there in 2020.

We did not hold an “Out There 2018” because we were unable to secure the space but have been successful in our application to hold “Out There 2019” later this year. The “Out There” series of exhibitions has run for many years and provides an important vehicle for all members to showcase their work to the ACT community without restrictions on theme or genre. In order to be able to do these exhibitions well we have decided to aim to hold biennial rather than annual “Out There” exhibitions. Many thanks to Judy Parker who continues to coordinate and inspire our external showcases.

Mentoring

We often get asked to provide education about photography, camera use and image processing. In response we have set up informal mentoring sessions. Marwan El Hassan runs these sessions approximately monthly at the Australian National Botanic Gardens for people who are looking for advice on how to use their cameras. This is open to all. Paul Carpenter and Eva van Gorsel are trialling a workshop discussing post-processing techniques. For this year, this workshop requires a commitment and a nominal fee to cover the additional rent.

Finances

Many thanks to our treasurer Ian Marshall who monitors our membership and financial situation and reports monthly to the committee. Our auditor for our 2018 Financial Year is Annette Cheeseman. We thank her for undertaking this important role for the society for the second year.

From the Treasurer’s report you will see that we have an annual turnover of approximately $10 – $12K. Our primary source of income is membership fees. Where the committee considers it appropriate we also charge for a special activity (such as a workshop series or coastal weekend) where we aim for a modest profit. Major expenses are rent, insurances and costs associated with staging our exhibitions. To ensure that we are accessible to all independent of a person’s financial means, we offer reduced fees to Student, Corresponding and Concessional members and also have provision for Honorary membership that can be conferred at the discretion of the committee.

Governance

Work on governance and strategic planning has been slow this year although we have introduced a Code of Conduct for the Committee and a Code of Conduct for AGMs. Areas that we need to work on in 2019 are improving the management of potential conflicts of interest, risk and developing procedures for working with vulnerable people.

Committee

The CPS relies on many people to make it work. I thank the many members who have volunteered to assist in many ways large and small. I thank committee members Andrée Lawrey, Alan Charlton, Judy Parker, Tony Mason, Matt James, Eva van Gorsel and Murray Foote (resigned during the year) for their contributions. A special thanks to office bearers Public Officer Michael Taylor, Secretary David Maish, Treasurer and Vice President Ian Marshall, and Vice-President Marwan El Hassan, who have made significant contributions to the Society over the years. A special thanks to Eva van Gorsel for coordinating the Expo nights and the galleries. I thank you for all your support.

2018 Image of the Year (IOY) Awards

To encourage members to expand their photographic horizons and to recognise a range of photographic achievements and contributions to the society, we have gradually been evolving our suite of awards. We removed some awards in 2018 (People’s Choice for IOY Images and the Photochallenge) as the IOY Program was getting really busy. We expanded our Annual Awards Showcase judging team to three with two judges (Ben Kopilow and Robert Coppa) selecting the winning images and Hilary Waudhaugh examining the books. All judges did a great job.

We also had our selection panel (Helen McFadden, Ian Marshall and Marwan El Hassan) who decided on the Panel Awards outlined below. The selection criteria for these awards are published on our website. A call for nominations (members could nominate themselves or others) was put out with nominations to be sent to an independent email address (to allow for confidential nominations). Entries were discussed by the panel. No panel member was nominated for an award. Although we received some nominations, more involvement from general membership in nominating others for awards would be welcome. Recipients of IOY Awards must be financial members of the CPS. A full list of award winners is at Appendix II.

 

 

Appendix I. Survey Results October 2018

Edited Feb 2019

27 Responses

Qu 1. At the end of 2018 it will be two years since we changed the format of the Competition night to the current Expo night format. If you have suggestions for changes or comments please add them in the comments box below. Are you satisfied with the current Expo night format?

YES – 22 NO – 5

Qu 2. We seek your views regarding the continued use (or not) of grades for Expo nights. Currently new members enter B-grade and can apply to move up to A-grade. B-grade is designed to be a “safety-net” for less experienced photographers and we ask judges to be more lenient with B-grade entries. We also offer a “Comment Only” category that is open to everyone where images are not scored. Please select options below that match your views and also add comments if you have further suggestions.

Retain A- and B- grades but change the rules so that new members can elect to start in either A  or B-grade according to their experience and B Graders can change at any time. 73.08%

19

Retain A and B grades but rename them to be less hierarchical (suggestions below please)

7.69%

2

Abolish A and B grades

19.23%

5

Retain the “Comment Only” category

19.23%

5

Abolish the “Comment Only” category

26.92%

7

Q3. With the gradual decline in the number of members who print images we are considering holding the Hedda Print Portfolio Award and the Projected Image Portfolio Award on the same night. Members could enter both awards. Do you support this suggestion?

YES 17 NO 9

Q4. The aim of the CPS is to help members achieve their photographic potential wherever they are in their photographic journey. A proposal for next year is to encourage creativity by having an annual open-format “Creative Licence” event (possibly to be held in place of one of the Portfolio Award evenings) where members bring any photographic-based work for critique. This could be a conventional print or projected image, a print on another medium, a book, a collage, a digital presentation with moving elements, or something else. These could be critiqued by an external judge or member panel, given a score or not. Do you support the introduction of a “Creative Licence” event?

YES 22 NO 5

Q5. Currently the CPS program is developed around monthly themes. A suggestion for themes for 2019 is to choose accomplished photographers whose work could provide inspiration for our work in particular genres (street, portrait, landscape) or modes (colour, monochrome, abstract, large print, experimental). Do you support the use of photographers as the basis for the themes for 2019?

YES 18 NO 8

Q6. Under the current system, selection of winners of our Annual Awards can be by an external judge, by an Awards Subcommittee or by the President on the advice of the Awards subcommittee. Details of current Awards are on our website CPS Awards Criteria. Do you think our current system of awards gives appropriate recognition to member achievements in photography and in service?

YES 20 NO 4

Would you like to see different awards? If so, please give a brief description. (100 characters):

Q7. What do you think can be done to attract and retain new members and make them feel welcome? (100 characters)

Q8. Would you like to provide any other suggestions or comments (100 characters or email enquiries@cpsaus.org)

 

 

Appendix II – Image of the Year Awards

Print Awards (Robert Coppa and Ben Kopilow)

This year there was a good range of Print Images – 25 colour and 11 mono prints

                Colour Print of the Year – Eva van Gorsel, Winter is Coming

Highly Commended – Eva van Gorsel – Night Falling

Highly Commended – Robin Yong – Bagnati di Senigallia

Monochrome Print of the Year – Judy Parker, Sheep Music

Highly Commended – Judy Parker – Home Grown

Highly Commended – Robin Yong – Kecac Dancing.

Projected Image of the Year

There were 19 Projected Image entries

Winner – Marta Yebra – Mates (monochrome)

Highly Commended – Marta Yebra – Fun in the rain

Highly Commended – Leisa Condie – Remarkables.

Book of the Year (Hilary Waudhaugh)

This award is for the best Photobook or paper-based book-like project entered as part of the Images of the Year competitions. Photobooks should be based on photographs taken by the author.

Winner – Eva van Gorsel – #TINYDREAMIMAGES

Highly Commended – Matt James (Lisa)

Highly Commended – Julie Garran (Passing by Narayan)

Photo Project of the Year Award (Panel)

This award is to be made to the best photography-based project conducted during the year. The aim of this award is to recognise members who pursue photography creatively and who achieve a significant outcome with photography. A “project” is loosely defined, but can include an exhibition, a series of lectures, a presentation, a new activity or some project that involves photography and a tangible outcome.

Nominees (Alphabetically): –

Murray Foote for his travel blog in which he has systematically documented his travels over many parts of the globe and over many years. This blog has many followers and is a great source of information for photographers looking to go to interesting places on the road less travelled.

Andrée Lawrey for the development of her new restrained and elegant photography website.

Judy Parker for her set of prints “Project to Print” which collates all her winning entries from CPS Projected Image Portfolio Competitions held over the years and presents them as a coherent boxed set of prints.

Eva van Gorsel for her Instagram Project of 100 images that led to being an invited participant in Ovation, an exhibition and market held by the Canberra RAW Artists at the Albert Hall in August.

Grant Winkler for his project on the deserted streets of Brindabella Park that formed part of the Personal Projects exhibition at PhotoAccess.

                Photoproject of the Year Winners: – Murray Foote and Judy Parker

Russell Hunt Award (Panel Award)

The award honours the memory of former CPS member, Russell Hunt. It seeks to recognise exceptional, sustained service to the society. The award is to be made to a member who has demonstrated leadership, creativity and commitment in the development and delivery of the Canberra Photographic Society program.

Nominees for Russell Hunt Award:-

Alan Charlton for the reliable and consistent logistics support that underpins all our meetings – that’s at least three per month – four if you include the committee meetings, where Alan also serves. He undertakes a significant workload in hanging our external showcases. It is no exaggeration to say the without Alan, they would not have made it on to the wall.

Andrée Lawrey for her ongoing commitment to the support of our external showcases by participating in selection panels and in the curation and hanging teams over several years. Andrée is also convenor and leader of the Personal Projects group that provides guidance and encouragement to those seeking to develop their photographic practice by pursuing a project and seeing it to completion.

Judy Parker, a previous winner of the Russell Hunt award, continues to provide the backbone for our external showcases. This workload has increased over the years as we now run two exhibitions a year and now run selection procedures for each. In addition, Judy helps newer members with printing and frequently prints a lot of the material in our external showcases. She is also the primary coordinator of the print display at our monthly Expo nights.

Michael Taylor for several years of committee service, particularly as Treasurer. In this role he has streamlined our procedures and has improved our membership and financial  records procedures. Michael has also led our Workshop evenings that provide support to newer members in an informal atmosphere.

Russell Hunt Award Winner: Alan Charlton

President’s Medals for Service (Panel Recommendation)

These awards are made at the President’s discretion (on recommendation of the Awards Panel) to reward exceptional service or outstanding photographic contributions to the Society.

President’s Medal Winners:      Michael Taylor

Andrée Lawrey

Photographer of the Year Award (Panel Award)

The award of Photographer of the Year recognises overall photographic excellence.
The award is to be made to a member who, over the year, has given the best demonstration of photographic excellence in platforms within and outside the society, such as society competitions and activities, society-sponsored and other exhibitions, external competitions and other photographic achievements. Demonstrated photographic excellence in previous years may also be considered.

In order that sustained excellence within the Society also be appropriately recognised, the panel sought to ensure that members who have achieved excellence in society activities were considered for an award. This is something that has been done as long as I have been a member of the CPS and it is now a routine part of panel deliberations. While we no longer run an aggregate competition, the panel looked at and sought to reward excellence in Expo night scores, Portfolio Competitions and selection of images for our external showcases (Different Views at Telstra Tower and The Natural World at CSIRO Discovery).

Nominees for Photographer of the Year Award:-

Tony Brown. Tony achieved the highest number of fives at Expo nights and was awarded the most Images of the night in 2018. He also participated in the Natural World exhibition and sold one of his exhibited images. Tony received several bronze awards in the international 2018 Epson Pano Awards and 6 Silver and 8 Bronze Awards at the from the Focus Awards (An Australian Landscape photography competition with over 2000 entrants and over $35,000 in prizes). One of the Silver images placed 3rd in the Sunrise/Sunset category in the Focus Awards.

Murray Foote. Murray was (very)close behind Tony in number of fives and images of the night at Expo nights (These two were well ahead of the rest of the pack). He is also a regular contributor to our external showcases: this year was no exception. Murray won a (joint) Photo Project of the Year award for his photoblog. Earlier this year he held an exhibition of his music-based work at Smith’s Alternative Bookshop.

Brian Jones. Brian won the Projected Image Portfolio Award and was awarded one Image of the Night. Brian contributed to our external showcases and has excelled in external international competitions with images recognised in the 11th Pollux Awards, the 11th International Color Awards, the 13th Spider Awards, Wildlife Photographer of the Year and the 5th Biennial of Fine Art and Documentary Photography in Barcelona. Brian gave two lectures to the U3A photography group.

Judy Parker. Judy continues to demonstrate photographic excellence, particularly with success in CPS Portfolio Awards (2 x HCs). This evening she has won the Monochrome Print of the Year Award and also been awarded a Highly Commended for a Monochrome Print. She is also joint winner of the Photo Project of the Year.

Eva van Gorsel. Eva has shown remarkable growth as a photographer this year and has backed up a solid performance at Expo nights with a Highly Commended in the Projected Portfolio Awards and in her performance this evening where she achieved Winner and HC in Colour Print of the Year and also won the Book of the Year award. She had the greatest number of images accepted for “The Natural World” showcase and was nominated for the Photo Project of the Year.

Robin Yong. Robin is unusual in that he processes his images on his iPad and doesn’t own a camera system. This year he was admitted as professional member of AIPP and won several APPAs including a silver. Robin’s photography is also widely awarded in significant International Competitions in places such as Tokyo, Paris, Istanbul, Sienna. Robin is a regular participant in Expo nights where he has won one Image of the Night. This evening he has been awarded two Highly Commended Awards for his prints.

Photographer of the Year, 2018:               Eva van Gorsel.

President’s Medals for Photographic Excellence (Panel Recommendation)

President’s Medal Winners:                      Tony Brown

Robin Yong

 

Images of the Year 2018

The evening opened with a welcome to Judges Robert Coppa and Ben Kopilow (Images) and Hilary Waudhaugh (Books) who selected the following awards.

Print Categories (Robert and Ben)

There were 25 colour and 11 mono print entries.

Winners

Colour Print of the Year – Eva van Gorsel, Winter is Coming

Highly Commended – Eva van Gorsel – Night Falling

Highly Commended – Robin Yong – Bagnati di Senigallia

Monochrome Print of the Year – Judy Parker, Sheep Music

Highly Commended – Judy Parker – Home Grown

Highly Commended – Robin Yong – Kecac Dancing.

Book of the Year (Hilary)

This award is for the best Photobook or paper-based book-like project entered as part of the Images of the Year competitions. Photobooks should be based on photographs taken by the author.

Winners

Book of the Year – Eva van Gorsel – #TINYDREAMIMAGES

Highly Commended – Matt James (Lisa)

Highly Commended – Julie Garran (Passing by Narayan)

Projected Images (Robert and Ben)

There were 19 entries in this category

Winners

Projected Image of the Year – Marta Yebra – Mates (monochrome)

Highly Commended – Marta Yebra – Fun in the rain

Highly Commended – Leisa Condie – Remarkables.

PANEL AWARDS

The following awards are made on the recommendation of the awards panel, which this year was Helen McFadden, Ian Marshall and Marwan El Hassan. No panel member was considered for an award to avoid conflicts of interest. The panel called for nominations for the following awards and members could nominate others or themselves.

Photo Project of the Year Award

This award is to be made to the best photography-based project conducted during the year. The aim of this award is to recognise members who pursue photography creatively and who achieve a significant outcome with photography. A “project” is loosely defined, but can include an exhibition, a series of lectures, a presentation, a new activity or some project that involves photography and a tangible outcome. Examples could be a personal exhibition or participation in a group exhibition where the photographic contribution of the member is significant. It could also be production of a magazine or electronic book, a website or a community activity involving photography. While this project could be focused on the member’s own photography, we also aim to reward projects that involve the work of other photographer(s) either wholly or in part, such as a community event, group exhibition or publication. Where the photography is not the members’ own work, the contribution of the member to the group activity should demonstrate creativity and be significant.

Nominees (Alphabetically): –

Murray Foote for his travel blog in which he has systematically documented his travels over many parts of the globe and over many years. This blog has many followers and is a great source of information for photographers looking to go to interesting places on the road less travelled.

Andrée Lawrey for the development of her new restrained and elegant photography website.

Judy Parker for her set of prints “Project to Print” which collates all her winning entries from CPS Projected Image Portfolio Competitions held over the years and presents them as a coherent boxed set of prints.

Eva van Gorsel for her Instagram Project of 100 images that led to being an invited participant in Ovation, an exhibition and market held by the Canberra RAW Artists at the Albert Hall in August.

Grant Winkler for his project on the deserted streets of Brindabella Park that formed part of the Personal Projects exhibition at PhotoAccess.

Winners

Murray Foote and Judy Parker

 

Russell Hunt Award

The award honours the memory of former CPS member, Russell Hunt. It seeks to recognise exceptional, sustained service to the society. The award is to be made to a member who has demonstrated leadership, creativity and commitment in the development and delivery of the Canberra Photographic Society program.

President’s Medals

These awards are made at the President’s discretion (on recommendation of the Awards Panel) to reward exceptional service or outstanding photographic contributions to the Society.

Nominees for Russell Hunt Award:-

Alan Charlton for the reliable and consistent logistics support that underpins all our meetings – that’s at least three per month – four if you include the committee meetings. Alan has served on the committee for several years. He undertakes a significant workload in hanging our external showcases. It is no exaggeration to say the without Alan, they would not have made it on to the wall.

Andrée Lawrey for her ongoing commitment to the support of our external showcases by participating in selection panels and in the curation and hanging teams over several years. Andrée is also convenor and leader of the Personal Projects group that provides guidance and encouragement to those seeking to develop their photographic practice by pursuing a project and seeing it to completion.

Judy Parker, a previous winner of the Russell Hunt award, continues to provide the backbone for our external showcases. This workload has increased over the years as we now run two exhibitions a year and now run selection procedures for each. In addition, Judy helps newer members with printing and frequently prints a lot of the material in our external showcases. She is also the primary coordinator of the print display at our monthly Expo nights.

Michael Taylor for several years of committee service, particularly as Treasurer. In this role he has streamlined our procedures and has improved our membership and financial  records procedures. Michael has also led our Workshop evenings that provide support to newer members in an informal atmosphere.

Winners: This year the panel recommended the award of President’s Medals for service to

Michael Taylor

Andree Lawrey

The Russell Hunt award goes to:

Alan Charlton

 

Photographer of the Year Award

The award of Photographer of the Year recognises overall photographic excellence.
The award is to be made to a member who, over the year, has given the best demonstration of photographic excellence in platforms within and outside the society, such as society competitions and activities, society-sponsored and other exhibitions, external competitions and other photographic achievements. Demonstrated photographic excellence in previous years may also be considered.

In order that sustained excellence within the Society also be appropriately recognised, the panel sought to ensure that members who have achieved excellence in society activities were considered for an award. This is something that has been done as long as I have been a member of the CPS and it is now a routine part of panel deliberations. While we no longer run an aggregate competition, the panel looked at and sought to reward excellence in Expo night scores, Portfolio Competitions and selection of images for our external showcases (Different Views at Telstra Tower and The Natural World at CSIRO Discovery).

Nominations for Photographer of the Year Award

Tony Brown. Tony achieved the highest number of fives at Expo nights and was awarded the most Images of the night in 2018. He also participated in the Natural World exhibition and sold one of his exhibited images. Tony received several bronze awards in the international 2018 Epson Pano Awards and 6 Silver and 8 Bronze Awards at the from the Focus Awards (An Australian Landscape photography competition with over 2000 entrants and over $35,000 in prizes). One of the Silver images placed 3rd in the Sunrise/Sunset category in the Focus Awards.

Murray Foote. Murray was (very) close behind Tony in the number of fives and images of the night at Expo nights (These two were well ahead of the rest of the pack). He is also a regular contributor to our external showcases: this year was no exception. Murray won a (joint) Photo Project of the Year award for his photoblog. Earlier this year he held an exhibition of his music-based work at Smith’s Alternative Bookshop.

Brian Jones. Brian won the Projected Image Portfolio Award and was awarded one Image of the Night. Brian contributed to our external showcases and has excelled in external international competitions with images recognised in the 11th Pollux Awards, the 11th International Color Awards, the 13th Spider Awards, Wildlife Photographer of the Year and the 5th Biennial of Fine Art and Documentary Photography in Barcelona. Brian gave two lectures to the U3A photography group.

Judy Parker. Judy continues to demonstrate photographic excellence, particularly with success in CPS Portfolio Awards (2 x HCs). This evening she has won the Monochrome Print of the Year Award and also been awarded a Highly Commended for a Monochrome Print. She is also joint winner of the Photo Project of the Year.

Eva van Gorsel. Eva has shown remarkable growth as a photographer this year and has backed up a solid performance at Expo nights with a Highly Commended in the Projected Portfolio Awards and in her performance this evening where she achieved Winner and HC in Colour Print of the Year and also won the Book of the Year award. She had the greatest number of images accepted for “The Natural World” showcase and was nominated for the Photo Project of the Year.

Robin Yong. Robin is unusual in that he processes his images on his iPad and doesn’t own a camera system. This year he was admitted as professional member of AIPP and won several APPAs including a silver. Robin’s photography is also widely awarded in significant International Competitions in places such as Tokyo, Paris, Istanbul and Sienna. Robin is a regular participant in Expo nights where he has won one Image of the Night. This evening he has been awarded two Highly Commended Awards for his prints.

Winners: This year the panel recommended the award of President’s Medals for photographic excellence to

Tony Brown

Robin Yong

Winner of the Photographer of the Year for 2018

Eva van Gorsel.

Many thanks to our esteemed judges. We appreciate the time and expertise that they donate to us. Thanks also to all who helped with the IOY celebrations. A special thanks to Capital Wines for donating the wine gifts for the judges.

Winning images below are by Eva van Gorsel (Colour Print Winner and HC), Marta Yebra (Projected Image Winner and HC) Judy Parker (Monochrome Print and HC),  Robin Yong (HCs in Colour and Monochrome Prints) and Leisa Condie (Projected HC).

autumn mood – Version 2into the nightLORES_IOY2018_Yebra_M_Mates-X2IOY2018_Yebra_M_FunUnderTheRain-X2IOY_Parker_J_2_SheepMusic2018-X2IOY_Parker_J_1_HomeandGrown-X2Robin Yong_Bagnatti di SenigalliaRobin Yong_Kecas DancingIOY_Condie_1_Remarkables-X2

 

Design Matters: Canberra Times Sunday 19th August 2018

Tony Trobe talks with Helen McFadden, President of the Canberra Photographic Society, prior to the opening of the society’s latest exhibition.

Lichen Reclaiming by Judy Parker

Lichen Reclaiming by Judy Parker

TT Hi Helen, tell me something about the Canberra Photographic Society and why it is relevant in an age when we are surrounded by smart phones and bombarded by images?

Humans are visual creatures who love to capture and look at images. It is true that cameras are now ubiquitous, but it is the eyes, mind and heart that are essential for creating great images. We at the Canberra Photographic Society are passionate about growing our photography and helping others achieve their photographic potential no matter where they are on their photographic journey.

Why do you consider this to be of benefit to the community?

Many people enjoy having a creative outlet and photography has wide appeal. Photography can be as simple or as technical as you would like and we welcome all types of photographer. Many members find that the act of making photographs has a meditative quality that can be beneficial when dealing with health and life issues. Photography can also take us beyond recording places and experiences and allow us to explore and communicate ideas and emotions and even influence change. Photography can take you to places at home and away that you may not otherwise have visited or even considered. Some members travel extensively and share images of wonderful places when they return while others focus on local subjects and make beautiful and thought-provoking images from the apparently ordinary.

TT Where does your upcoming exhibition fit in with this vision?

This exhibition features members’ photographs that show the beauty and importance of the natural world. Our environment is changing rapidly with humans’ need for resources putting pressure on built and natural systems, wild places and wildlife. Some of the landscapes depicted in the exhibition, such as our magnificent eucalypt forests, are disappearing. Animals, such as the black rhino, are critically endangered. Pollinators are in decline. All are essential for our physical and emotional well-being. Sadly, in some instances photographs may be all that we have to leave for future generations unless we can reduce negative human impacts on our planet.

I understand that the Canberra Photographic Society was formed in 1945 and has seen a lot of changes in the way photography is practiced. Has the society itself changed much with the times?

I like to think so. We now have more emphasis on sharing, participation, collaboration and learning than on competition and our membership now is more diverse than it was. We run a full program (www.cpsaus.org) with our main event (on the first Tuesday evening of each month) being an Exhibition and Critique night. Visitors are welcome.

Why is this venue special for you?

I spent most of my career as a CSIRO scientist and I worked for a time in a laboratory in the Discovery Centre building where the exhibition is being held. Architects Daryl Jackson Alastair Swayn Pty Ltd won the AIA Canberra ACT Medallion in 2000 for the centre’s innovative design. In addition to the gallery and cafe most visitors come to the Interactive Discovery Centre to learn about Australia’s role in the fascinating world of science and research.

“The Natural World” is on at the Discovery Centre, CSIRO Black Mountain, from 21st August to 27th September 2018. The gallery is open from 9 am to 4.30 pm Monday to Friday.

Enquiries: enquiries@cpsaus.org

 

Comments by Chris Holly on CPS Projected Portfolio Awards, Aug 2018

The Venice Carnivale

Great framing and light. Whether posed or captured, the series joins together well.

Alas the use of vignettes is hiding the scene. While a useful device for drawing a viewer’s eye to the subject, in this case, the vignette may not have been needed at all as the framing and backgrounds add context and depth to each image.

 

Graffiti Walls

Excellent portfolio and wonderful and comedic timing of passers by both in terms of interaction with the walls and in every day observations of people in the city. The framing is brilliant to use the backgrounds as backdrops so well.

The series hangs together very well. Great presentation with the drop shadow and white border – almost as if they are matted prints. The borders add a strong finish and tie the series together very well.

 

Newborns

Very crisp definition with choice of background and composition. Diffuse lighting lends well to the softness and purity of the newborn subjects. These are a very high standard of images and ones that any parent would be delighted to receive. A healthy nod to Anne Geddes and classic modern newborn photography.

 

Impressions of Kingston

Such simplicity and continuity. Very well seen and photographed.  Using water in this way to abstract is clever, decisive and distinct. While reflections work for some subjects, this series uses reflections of buildings to a marvellous effect. This is definitely a body of work to continue to explore and refine. The series hangs well together and the images are captivating both up close and at a distance. The acuity varies depending on viewing distance and this playful way of exploring is what makes this portfolio really engaging.

 

Winter Trees

Very pleasing images and selection of snow gums and snow scenes. The solitary tree invokes both isolation and shelter. Having spent many years in the snowy mountains backcountry, these are all excellent landscapes and it is a challenge to find clean snow and isolated trees, not to mention shooting in the cold. It may be interesting to rotate the camera and explore a vertical aspect for the panorama to explore different dimensions and scale for the trees.

 

Scotland

Images tie in nicely as a series. I liked the way roads, huts or humans provide scale. A square format provides a different symmetry and feel for the landscapes which are often shot in a traditional landscape or portrait format. The colours and weather provide a pleasing continuity to the series.

 

Pollinators

A solid series exploring and refining macro insects on flowers. These are tricky subjects to make portraits of. There is a range of views with insects as what the focal point of the subject should be (i.e. eyes or other prominent body parts). As with all series and all subjects, keep exploring and developing and refining your technique.

 

UK and Europe Black and Whites

The series combines as black and white, however it appears undecided whether the series s of street and water scapes or architectural icons and edifices. It may be interesting to explore the series from one or the other, or look for a story that ties the images together. Great range of tones and good contrast for each image.

 

Lioness

A well spotted and timed series of expressions that show either a relaxing lion or a despondent beast in a zoo. While difficult to achieve from a set standpoint observing such behaviour, it is a good thing to practice and develop watching backgrounds and elements in the frame. While the lion is not moving too much, the logs and wood could be reduced to strengthen the viewer’s eye to remain with the lioness by cropping the images slightly or watching through the viewfinder as the images were made.

 

Colour Infra Red

A great series showing IR colour landscapes. This would be a great educational series to show how colour IR behaves under different ambient light, scene brightness range and vegetation types. It also  hangs together as a travel series in what looks like South Australia and the Flinders or Gammon Ranges. There’s an interesting connection of decay, raging and ruin from human presence on the landscape.

 

Montreal Cats

A quirky and cool cat expose of travel photography. Great to see little or no human presence bringing the cat as subject of the portrait. The composition and timing is great to have cats where one might expect people and that the cats are doing what appears to be very human things relaxing in a cafe or waiting at the hairdressers. Well conceived as a series.

 

Forest Blur

An excellent start to what can become a trademark or signature technique. The series shows a range of zoom and motion techniques to blur the trees and does it well. Perhaps consider how to tie the two techniques together by sharing a common set of trees or consider a series exploring one of the techniques. As with all series and techniques, keep refining, developing and most of all practicing to improve your skills.

 

Varanasi Noon

Very interesting series. I had to sit with the images for some time. Time being the operative word. The scenes are very quiet in terms of human presence and the use of what appears to be a similar viewpoint shows a slight change between frames to emphasise or diminish the activity and daily happenings. The subtle differences between frames is what makes this series work well.

 

Lady Blues

Performances are a challenge and a delight to photograph. With the busy stage and constantly varying lighting, the timing and composition of an image provides a clue as to the nature of the performer, and can hint at the type of music and how dynamic the performer was on the day.

Definitely keep pursuing this opportunity. These images work well as a series of performers at an event, and while it can be challenging to get god angles with crowds and shooting position, explore as many options and take as many shots as you can to gain a range of emotions and stage antics.

 

Street Scenes

Fantastic travel shots and views into rainy and wet weather in a foreign city. The textures of the walls and streets are softened by the rain and the vibrant elf umbrellas and fashion show careful observation and thing to capture these images – especially the range of moments, movements and interactions from people. The author appears to be unobtrusive given that the people in the images appear to be unaware of the photographer’s presence. Great series.

 

Multiculturalism and Urban Space

Healthy to provide and artist’s statement for this. The use of the hat in most frames works as a theme well. The images from observers looking out of windows didn’t quite give me a sense of darkness of our condition, however it did provide a divergence of relationship between the hat images and the street observers. The narrative through the series could be further explored by the hat appearing more often to refine and clarify what the relationship is between multiculturalism and urban spaces. I’m left wondering who is a local and who is a foreigner in this place…

 

Round (wish) Squared

An excellent series in both concept and construction. Using the same size in the frame provides an intriguing removal of scale while maintaining the circular outline shows things as a whole, but in one plan view or transverse plane. Objects in this way appear to be something different until one makes a closer inspection. The presentation is very scientific and objective su a fruit could be a planet, or a microscopic diatom magnified thousands of times. The choice of mon (black and white) further enhances the ambiguity and simplicity – when all appear equal, one must look carefully to find a difference.

 

PIHA

An interesting catalogue of a place at different times and at different scales. The progression from a high and wide viewpoint to a ground level framing provides a documentary approach to the rock and provides the viewer with a sense of mood, scale and comparison between frames. Perhaps explore how the series or portfolio would hang together with a similar treatment (i.e. all colour or all mono) to guide you viewer to the rock itself and not so much on the changing conditions between each frame.

 

Winter is coming

A beautiful series of landscapes reminiscent of Eliot Porter or other north american landscape artists of the last century. The series shows the pallid and cold conditions that signal winter through trees as a measure of seasonality with deciduous colours and the first snows. The structure of each frame is bold and simple keeping the emphasis on either the colour of leaves, or the lack of leaves – a smart way to tell a story of many words in single frames.

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing and Learning: a worthy goal

Last night Steven Shaw won the Ted’s Hedda Morrison Portfolio competition with a magnificent set of portraits of mountain gorillas. Julie Garran was awarded a Highly Commended for her portfolio of Indian men and Matt James received a Highly Commended for his portfolio of textures from Uluru. Congratulations to the winners and to all the entrants for the high standard of entry. We thank judge David Paterson for his considered and insightful comments on all the work and we thank Ted’s in Petrie Plaza for sponsoring the competition and providing the prizes.

Last night I asked the audience present for feedback and suggestions regarding CPS programs and services. I asked for suggestions as to what our goals are and for ideas for activities, themes and set topics. I asked people to identify what they liked and what they didn’t like. Eleven people responded – many thanks to those who took the time to write a note.

One response identified the first meeting of the month as a favorite activity because of all the discussion. Another member liked the local excursions best followed by competition nights and then talks by specialists. A third liked the combination of training and competitions and liked having a Set Topic each month. Printing and Portraits were mentioned as topics of interest.

There were four requests for more technical workshops on post processing and printing.

One member suggested that we hold an orientation evening once or twice a year for new members unfamiliar with the club structure.

There was a request for something more in April for those not going on the Weekend Workshop (which was aimed at new members and less experienced photographers). There was also a request for more weekends away.

There was a suggestion that we publish a list of good locations for photography in Canberra for animals, architecture, landscapes etc. so that visitors and new photographers have some ideas about where to go.

One person suggested that we use the hearing loop for those with poor hearing.

One response requested that we not mess with the Competition scoring.

Sharing and learning was identified by one respondent as their goal. Given that our currently stated mission is to “help members achieve their photographic potential” I hope that means that we are on the right track, although there is always room for improvements.

If you would like to add something or comment on these suggestions please reply to this post, talk to one of the committee members or drop me an email (president[at]cpsaus.org).

All suggestions are welcomed and the CPS committee will follow up on each one. In response to the requests for more technical workshops talking about processing images we will introduce a “Processing Demo” at the beginning of each Workshop night. A member will choose one of their own images and demonstrate the steps that they employed to go from an initial capture (most likely a RAW file) to a final image. I will start off the series at the upcoming workshop on 17th May. I expect the demo to last about 15 minutes, after which members will show and share their own images. The theme this month is Photojournalism and workshop attendees are asked to bring a favorite news image and some of their own “images that changed your world”. This topic aims to encourage people to think about the impact of photographs as an agent for change both globally and personally.

Clubmen Characters

Clubmen Characters

No, this is not an article about those odd people who frequent sporting or licensed clubs playing sports or the poker machines, propping up the bar or feeding in the bistro. It is actually about some of the men who have been members of the Canberra Photographic Society (CPS) over the years – some are still members. Yes, photographic clubs have clubmen characters too!

Take Murray for starters. Now there is a real character. Murray hails from New Zealand. That makes him different for a start. He used to own and use a CAP 40 colour print processor and go bushwalking with a view camera. When he was CPS President he used to deliver delightful Presidential reports at annual meetings whilst stroking his long beard. He wore John Lennon glasses when he lost his contact lenses. And took pictures with a Widelux. Definitely a character.

EPSON MFP imageMurray Foote

I think this image of Murray and all the others below were taken by either Alan Chapple or Jim Mason on one CPS meeting night. Jim is 90% sure they were all taken by Alan.

What about Orlando? We were amused when he first showed us a picture and told us the exposure time was “two cups of coffee”. Who else would put their camera on the still warm bonnet of their car to photograph a tree lit by a street light when the temperature was close to freezing? We used to wonder if he realised cameras worked by daylight too. He became a complete expert on night imagery, had a one man exhibition of night photos and could even make night shots look like they were taken in daylight. Another bearded character he was.

EPSON MFP imageOrlando Luminere

Keith was the one who was most likely to enter into debate with the judges. When you’ve been involved with photography as long as he had, why shouldn’t you take the judges to task? “I know Mr Kodak has made it possible to record every colour of the rainbow, but do we have to have them all in the one image?” Keith was a most suitable subject for photographic character studies – grey hair and beard, glasses, pipe smoker, and a well-rounded figure. A good place to capture him was at the arts and crafts market at Gorman house when he was selling his own black and white prints. There was no such thing as colour in Keith’s photographic world!

EPSON MFP imageKeith Bogg

Fred was another bespectacled and bearded character who had been around the game for a long time. He really liked to stir up judges too. Montages of numerous postcard-sized commercial prints joined together to create an overall impression of a place. Or why not a laser copy print rather than one produced using an enlarger? Anything for a stir.

EPSON MFP imageFred Doutch (I think that’s right)

Ian, on the other hand to Keith, was a colour worker only. Didn’t sport a beard either. Graduated tobacco filters warmed his cool skies. Speed filters made static objects move. Trees and people were known to grow during Ian’s exposures. Statues of athletes began to perform like the real persons they represented. Bold black shadows created patterns over colourful flower beds when Ian’s camera or enlargers worked their montage magic!

EPSON MFP imageIan McInnes

Maurie managed to capture his images in both colour and monochrome. He loved the high country, especially when it was covered by snow. And he didn’t mind whether it was in Australia, Switzerland, France or wherever. He loved it and that love showed in his photographs of it. Told us he was working on a ten year project to document the Kosciusko National park region in all of its seasons. Hoped to publish a book about it one day. Lectured for us occasionally – quite esoteric and moved well. Wore a beard too!

EPSON MFP imageMaurie Weidemann

Bob’s main claim to fame was that he was the shortest, bearded member of the club. In terms of physical height that is. For some curious reason he was also interested in the Society’s history and was able to provide, or extract, odd snippets of information from our archives from time to time. Bob didn’t take as many photos as some of us and the unkind were known to make sarcastic remarks when a placing in the monthly competition revealed his camera had been used.

EPSON MFP imageBob Legge

Denis was a lawyer so I must be very, very careful with what I say about him. He didn’t have a beard, loved cats, had raced bicycles and had a habit of putting captions under some of his prints. Once he even did a photo series illustrating the adventures of a toy exploring parts of Canberra. Reminds me a little of that other member who photographs a spoon in odd places. I hope I’ve avoided a lawsuit.

EPSON MFP imageDenis Jessop

Trevor was another member, with a touch of what one might call rotundity. He liked to photograph cars and planes. Fast cars, fast planes. On display and static. Or doing their thing. Trevor only ever sported a moustache. Does anyone remember his surname?

EPSON MFP imageTrevor

Colin was a dentist. Not that that has anything to do with his photography. Except that he had been known to photograph the shadows of his dental equipment on the wall of his surgery. Actually Colin was quite keen on photographing shadows generally. Perhaps it came from having x-rayed shadows in teeth? Another clean shaven member.

EPSON MFP imageColin Rickard

I could go on for ever. There was another Peter and a couple more Johns. There was Ross, Bruce, Brendan and yours truly. I don’t know all the names to go with the images, so if you can help with identifying someone please let me know.

EPSON MFP imagePeter Dawson

EPSON MFP imageJohn Coen

EPSON MFP imageJohn (Jack) Clarke

EPSON MFP imageRoss Yarnold?

EPSON MFP imageBrendan Mulhall

(advice from Jack Clarke received in October 2019)

EPSON MFP imageAnd who was this?

EPSON MFP imageYours truly Brian Rope

As you can see all these men made quite good character studies when cameras are trained on them by other members. And, yes, I know we have women members too in the club – and none of them have beards. But, as they say, that’s another story.