Dateline 6 March 2016 

 

How I Selected My Winners – Members Presentations – 8 February 2016

Report by Peter Flower

Three of our most experienced members made this joint presentation, talking about their methods of selecting their best photographs for submission into club competitions, attempting to sell them or entering them into international salons and competitions.

Tony Peacock is best known for his excellent landscape photographs. During the course of his talk he showed many of his prints and explained his method of working. A number of us in the audience will have gone with him on his photographic field trips where we were able to see at first hand his methods in action and to benefit from the advice that he gave. The first of these were run in April 2013 and involved small groups of members accompanying him to the Stepping Stones, near Box Hill, Dorking, on successive weekends. Subsequently, there was a visit to the Seven Sisters which is another of Tony's favourite locations for photography. The following images at this location were taken on different visits to this location.

Seven Sisters - © Copyright Tony Peacock

Although the location is the same the opportunity has been taken to visit on numerous occasions and to record the scene under different lighting conditions.

Tony explained that he got many of his ideas for interesting locations from Outdoor Photography magazine. Interestingly, one of his earliest successful pictures, Mesa Arch, taken in the Canyonlands National Park, Utah, was published in that magazine.

Mesa Arch - © Copyright Tony Peacock

 We were also shown images (originally taken on film) of the slot canyons from this same National Park.

Slot Canyons - © Copyright Tony Peacock

For readers not familiar with this location it should be explained that the brightness of these images is the result of long exposures with the camera mounted on a tripod. As Tony said, the entry into this very dark location is not without hazard. The guides explained that snakes and scorpions were possibly present and that although the ground had been checked it was inadvisable to touch the walls where they might lurk!

An example of Tony's methodical approach to taking and selecting his best pictures is illustrated by the collage of images that he took of the Inglis Folly, located on the top of Reigate Hill, and the chosen print. It will be recalled that this was the one which appeared as the January image of Surrey 2013 calendar.

Inglis Folly images - © Copyright Tony Peacock

Tony explained that he puts a number of images on the Alamy stock photos web site. He reckons to sell about 6 pictures per year using this service. However, he also stressed that the site contains 65 million pictures, so competition is fierce and the chances of your picture being selected over hundreds of similar ones are not great!

Summing up, his approach to successful landscape photography is to plan ahead, carrying out research on potential subjects beforehand and to be familiar with the camera and its capabilities. As mentioned before, he will revisit sites in order to capture the best light or to experiment with different views. Final advice, use a sturdy tripod!

Dave Lyon used projected images for his section of the evening's talks. Although he is also well known for his excellent landscape shots he did show some very different images as well. When considering an outing for landscape photography he does carry out a lot of planning beforehand. This involves referencing a wide range of information which will, hopefully, enable him to be in the right place at the right time and with ideal lighting and weather conditions. He mentioned a number of the information sources that he uses. These include – Google Earth and Street View, weather forecasts, tide tables if going to the coast, and photographer's ephemeris which will show how the light will fall on the land, day or night, for any location.

Having said that, he only needed one source of information (the weather forecast) in order to take some of his most memorable photographs, two of which are shown below.

Anyone who was a member in 2013/2014 will almost certainly remember the first one. It has won a number of awards but the most notable was in the Landscape Photographer of the Year where it was a winner of one of the main categories in the competition. My photograph shows Dave posing alongside his picture when we visited the National Theatre, London on 3 January 2014

Nice Day For A Cruise - © Copyright Dave Lyon

Dave Lyon at the National Theatre – Photo by Peter Flower

The second stormy sea photograph was one which we used in our recent Albany Cup panel (coming a close second)

Faces In The Storm - © Copyright Dave Lyon

The following photograph was one that Dave took at a Biggin Hill Air Show. During the course of the day he had taken a large number of images but this was one that he particularly liked. He explained that he had cropped the original image to this 'portrait' style in order to make this dynamic composition.

Pitt Special - © Copyright Dave Lyon

The final image is one that he took at a point-to point horse race meeting. He set up a camera with a wide angle lens at a point close to the jump. It was triggered by remote control, resulting in this exciting image.

In Pursuit - © Copyright Dave Lyon

Les Dyson gave the final presentation of the evening. What might be called 'And Now For Something Completely Different'! As might be expected we were treated to a variety of highly modified images, achieved with the aid of various post-editing applications.

Recent visitors to Redhill, perhaps on their way to the station, may well have shuddered at the recent décor update at McDonalds. Les combined a couple of interior images and converted them into funereal black in order to provide even less appeal to eating in this place. He should be sued for misrepresentation for his picture title!

Comfort Zone - © Copyright Les Dyson

The second image is one that was recently entered in the 'Stripes' competition. Les explained that the face was, in fact, 'mirrored' giving that symmetrical appearance, before desaturating the left-hand side and the background and adding the stripes

Barcode - © Copyright Les Dyson

There were numerous examples of image variations that Les could come up with as a result of originally photographing what he called 'Stick Men', graffiti on a wall in Chichester. We show the original with a couple of these variations. Perhaps the best was the one which contained a series of Mrs Dysons lined up in military style, overseen by a couple of Stick Men sergeants.

    Stick Men at Chichester                    Atten Shun                     Photos - © Copyright Les Dyson

We finish with yet another 'Stripes' entry and an example of the way in which Les uses subtle layering.

                                 Panthera Tigris                                      Eco Warrior © Copyright Les Dyson

Les ended his talk with a brief mention of Snapseed Grunge. I thought that he was too decent a fellow for that sort of thing, but apparently he's 'into' it in a big way!

Following on soon after the previous joint presentation by Jill Flower and Hannah McGettrick in early January this event was yet further proof that we have a wealth of members with the talent to inform and entertain us. All three of the presenters are to be congratulated on showing us a range of really high quality images and providing an interesting commentary on the way that they go about their photography.

Albany Cup

PF

For the benefit of members who may be new or unfamiliar with the format of this inter-club competition it should be explained that the host society, Guildford, holds this on an annual basis. A number of invited clubs compete and Reigate is one that has taken part over a long period of time. The competition format requires the submission of four prints, and that these should be the work of at least three different members. The prints are initially judged individually, with a maximum score of 10 points each. Then the four prints are mounted as a panel on a board and judged as such, with a possible score of up to 40 points. On this basis the maximum total score for any entry would be 80 points. The panels are judged on coherence both visually (such as colour, matching images and presentation) and their success in presenting a common theme according to the panel title. Needless to say, balancing the individual image quality with adherence to a coherent panel theme is not easy. In this lies the challenge.

Albany Cup Competition - 15 February 2016

Burpham Village Hall - Home of Guildford Photographic Society

Judge Bob Turner FRPS

Report by John Fisher ARPS

It was a packed house for the judging of this friendly annual competition between invited clubs in the area. This year there were eight but some were surprised that Dorking and Bookham weren't there.

There were teams from Bracknell, Farnborough, Godalming, Guildford, Kingston, Molesey, Reigate and Windlesham & Camberley (the 2015 winners).

The first half of the evening is the judging of each print individually and seeing them all set out beforehand was a slightly chilling experience as they were all of very high quality. Everyone tries to spot the ones that will go together as panels for the second half, although this is normally fairly obvious.

The Bracknell Panel was entitled 'Peter's Passions'. It was four portraits - The Yachtsman - The German Student - The Ballroom Dancer - The Gardener.

In the event they scored 7.5, 8.5, 8.5, 8.5 respectively.

The Farnborough Panel was entitled 'Skomer Puffins' which, not surprisingly, were pictures of Puffins entitled Spring Cleaning - Lovers Dirty Weekend, Two Puffins, Puffin with Sand Eels. These scored 7.5, 8, 9, 8 respectively.

The Godalming Panel was entitled 'Two Birds' and again the title was self explanatory. We had Snowy Egret harassed by Gulls - Egret Cormorant & Mullet - Female & Male Common Kingfisher - Gannet's Courtship. They scored 9, 10, 9, 7.5 respectively.

The Guildford Panel was entitled 'Fleeting Beauty' which turned out to be pictures of butterflies and moths. Male Lime Hawkmoth - Marbled White on Verbena - Elephant Hawkmoth - Glass Wing Butterfly. They scored 7, 9.5, 7, 10 respectively.

The Kingston Panel was entitled 'People in Focus' which consisted of monochrome pictures of small groups of people taken in far away places. We saw Break Time - The Old Monk - Karo Tribesman - Can we start all over again? The scores were 10, 8.5, 8.5, 7 respectively.

The Molesey Panel was entitled 'Underground' and the titles were Minding the Gap - To Infinity & Bakerloo - Deserted - Waiting. The scores were 7.5, 8, 8, 10 respectively.

The Reigate Panel was monochrome and entitled 'Stormy Weather' although the Judge said that a title was 'unnecessary, he could have guessed.' This consisted of Faces in the Storm - Water Spouts - Wave at the Lighthouse - Big Splash at Rottingdean. The scores were 8.5, 8, 7.7, 9 respectively.

The Windlesham and Camberley Panel was entitled 'Domes' and we saw St Peter's Basilica - Blue Route to St Pauls - Eastbourne Pier - Millennium Bridge. The scores were 10, 7.5, 8.5, 9 respectively.

I felt that the Judge did an excellent job and the pictures that got 10 were truly excellent and deserving of the applause that they got. Colour has more impact as individual pictures but maybe makes panelling more difficult.

So at the end of the individual scoring the total were:-

1. Godalming

2. Windlesham & Camberley

3. Kingston

=4. Guildford & Molesey

=6. Bracknell & Reigate

8. Farnborough

Although the total scores were similar, the Reigate Team (i.e. Me) didn't see much reason for optimism and were beginning to think about the local pub. However, there was work to do and with the help of a kindly Guildford member I pinned out pictures in the requested order onto the board with Number 7 on it. These are at what was the back of the hall.

Then all the chairs are turned round while everyone takes tea and biscuits and my carefully chosen seat in row three is now in row 23.

The first Panel is moved into position and a picture falls off! All sorted out and the judging begins.

The scores out of 40 were:-

Bracknell 35, Farnborough 33, Godalming 30, Guildford 30, Kingston 34, Molesey 32, Reigate 38. OMG from next to last place we are now in the lead.

But then Windlesham & Camberley 40. Despair.

I thought about protesting that Windlesham & Camberley was really two clubs and their score should be halved but there were about 20 of them and most were well over 6 feet tall, so I decided to keep quiet. As a consolation a very nice lady from their Club who had been sitting next to me, helped me take our pictures down from the board, so all was forgiven.

So the final result was :-

1. Windlesham & Camberley 75

2. Reigate 71

= 3. Bracknell & Kingston 68

= 5. Farnborough, Godalming & Molesey 65.5

8. Guildford 63.5

As the excellent hosts of the event, I think we should expect a fight back from Guildford next year.

Thanks to everyone involved in running what is becoming for me, a must attend event. I am pleased to see that it will be in our programme for next season in it's own right, so I hope that many more of you will come and enjoy it.

John's image of our panel follows -

 

Message from Nicholas Bale (Guildford PS)

Congratulations to Roger Hoyle and his team from Windlesham and Camberley Camera

Club for winning the trophy for the second year in a row. Their panel "Domes" was

the only one to score a perfect 40 out of 40! Reigate came second with Bracknell

and Kingston tying for 3rd position.

Next year’s Albany Cup is scheduled for Monday 20th Feb 2017 and we look forward

to welcoming you to Guildford Photosoc again next year.

I enclose a few photos of the winning team, together with Paul Graber, Guildford PS Chairman and Bob Turner who judged.

Presentation of the Albany Cup (image supplied by Guildford PS)

 

Pentax K-1 Full-frame DSLR

Peter Flower

Regular readers will recall the announcement by Techman in Newsletter No. 77 of hints by Pentax that a new full-frame model would be available shortly. This was confirmed by the official release of the K-1 at the CP+ show (25-28 February) in Yokohama. Following years of development, parent company Ricoh has made the Pentax K-1 available. The gestation period has, indeed, been extremely long. A visitor to the show noticed a prototype, labelled as a K-1 in a glass case, dating from Photokina 2000!

The K-1 has a 36.4MP CMOS sensor, 5-axis sensor-shift image stabilization, an optical viewfinder and 33-point AF system with 25 cross-type points. The 3.2" 1.04M-dot LCD uses a new flexible tilting design which allows for horizontal, vertical and diagonal movement while keeping the screen in alignment with the lens axis. The following images show the very unusual screen adjustment mechanism in operation.

The Pentax K-1 doesn't have a conventional anti-aliasing filter. Like the K-3 II it provides a simulated AA filter by way of minute sensor vibrations. The K-1's sensor is capable of moving in all directions, supporting Ricoh's Pixel Shift Resolution system. This does not increase linear resolution, but as in the K-3 II, it shifts the sensor slightly to record full colour information at each pixel, utilizing a motion correction function in an effort to neutralize the effect of moving subjects in the frame. The following image attempts to show the comparative improvement in quality when the shift resolution system is used. This may not be very evident here, due to the limitations of capture from the official Ricoh examples, but the originals can be viewed at

http://www.ricoh-imaging.co.jp/english/products/k-1/ex/index.html (Sample image 5)

 

This facility does have limitations in that it is ideally only suited to static subjects and would be require the best quality lenses to ensure that advantage is taken of the potential afforded by this image capture method.

It may seem strange that the decision has been made to stick with conventional optical viewfinder design at a time when there is an increasing move towards mirror-less cameras. It has been explained that this was done in order to enable the continued use of legacy lenses, even those dating back to the film camera era. Some new lenses have been announced but for the time being potential purchasers of the K-1 would be largely reliant on the ability to use existing ones from the range available. Some of these are shown in the following image from their web site.

I discussed this with Stephen Hewes who is the owner of two digital Pentax cameras (the K-r and K-5, both with APS-C sensors). In addition to fairly modern D FA model lenses he has at least one, known as a K-mount, dating back to the film era. The problem is that the older K-mount lenses do not provide the degree of automation (e.g. focus and aperture control) and lenses for the APS-C sensor cameras would show vignetting on the K-1.

The Pentax range of DSLR cameras have received excellent ratings in recent reviews. The degree of interest in this new model is indicated by the fact that there was at one time a queueing system with a 110 minute wait in order to handle one at the CP+ show!

The Pentax K-1 will be available from April at a cost of £1599 body-only, a very competitive price.

Pentax cameras

Comment from Stephen Hewes

Resulting from our phone conversation, Stephen sent the following information.

I thought you may be interested in a shot of my collection:

In the middle is my first proper camera, a K1000 which was an 18th birthday present – so not that long ago. Interesting to read it was in production from 1976 to 1997, so that doesn’t narrow it down much. A distant relative of mine also had one which survived a house fire, so they are certainly durable! The only electronics was an exposure meter.

On the left is my Z1 film camera, launched in 1991. This was their top of the range 35mm at the time – I bought mine while I was working in Switzerland where VAT of just 6% helped. Looking at it now, it’s interesting to note that the aperture lock and twin thumb-wheels (in film days covering aperture and shutter speed) are identically placed to my current camera.

On the right is my K5 DSLR. This is my 3rd DSLR – I managed to drop my first, a K10D, on my first day in Iceland, and sold it on Ebay as a non-working camera to a guy in the Ukraine (everyone who looked at it seemed to be from the ex-Soviet block). My second – bought in Iceland is a K-r, and this took the photograph. Cost-wise I really wouldn’t recommend buying photography equipment in Iceland unless you need to!

We spoke about lenses – the 50mm f/2 lens from the K1000 would fit the new K1 full frame, obviously with manual aperture and focus. The 50mm f/1.4 lens from the Z1 is still in the current product range. Life moves reassuringly slowly in the world of Pentax...

More new cameras

Reports by Techman

A significant number of new models released in January and early February were listed in my previous report in Newsletter No. 77. Resulting from the CP+ trade show at Yokohama there have been yet more announced.

Canon

The new PowerShot G7 X Mark II digital camera combines a 1.0-inch, 20.1 megapixel CMOS sensor with its new DIGIC 7 Image Processor to help reduce noise and deliver outstanding image quality, even in low light shooting situations. The lens has a maximum aperture between f/1.8 and f/2.8 with zoom focal lengths of 8.8 – 36.8 mm (35 mm equivalent: 24 – 100 mm)

The PowerShot SX720HS digital camera boasts a new 40x Optical Zoom lens (equivalent to 24-960mm), providing outstanding performance, reach and resolution for everyday use and when shooting memorable family events, while easily slipping into a pocket or purse. The sensor is a 1/2.3 type back-illuminated CMOS.

 

In its DSLR range Canon has now added the EOS 80D. This has a newly developed 24.2MP APS-C sensor, 45-point all cross-type autofocus module, updated Dual Pixel AF for live view still and video recording. Canon claims that the new AF module, a notable improvement over the 70D's 19-point system, is capable of focusing in low light conditions down to -3EV at the centre point. Dual Pixel AF now offers continuous focus and all pixels are able to perform phase detection focus while being used for still imaging. Video recording is offered at an improved 1080/60p. The camera has a fully articulated 3" 1.04M-dot touchscreen LCD, as well as built-in Wi-Fi with NFC and a GPS.

Nikon

The company introduced three models in its DL range. These all use a 1” BSI-CMOS 21 megapixel sensor. In this respect they are very similar to the existing 1 Series cameras, although those are fitted with exchangeable lenses. 

 

As can be seen from the illustration the DL24-85, and DL18-50 are fairly compact cameras, with impressive maximum apertures of f/1.8 to f/2.8. The model numbers indicate the equivalent zoom focal length ranges, so it will be noted that the DL18-50 has a particularly wide focal length available. The DL24-500 is more bridge style and whilst it has a much greater zoom range the maximum aperture is limited to a useful, but more restricted, maximum of f/2.8 to f/5.6. The two compact models have tilting rear screens, whereas the DL24-500 has a fully articulating one. All of them are touch sensitive. Lens specifications apart the other features of the models are very similar. However, there is an odd variation that seems hard to explain. Whilst the DL24-85 and DL24-500 both have built-in flash there is none on the DL-18-50. Having said that, all three can have an external flash attached. The two compact models can be fitted with an optional viewfinder.

Sigma cameras

Sigma cameras are noted for two things; their use of Foveon sensors, and quirky design. The latest models, the sd Quattro and sd Quattro H are no exception. The comment about design will become obvious from the following images.

I will just say that the added confusion of having two similar models but with different sized sensors, APS-C and APS-H, just adds to the quirkiness.

 

Pick of the crop

Advance Photographer announced its AP Awards 2016 winners in the 27 February edition. Amongst the winners in the different categories were the Olympus Tough TG-4, Leica Q, Canon Powershot G5 X, Olympus OM-D E-M5 II, Fujifilm X-A2, Fujifilm X-T10, Canon EOS 5DS R, Pentax K-S2 and Nikon D5500. However, Sony picked up the most awards with their Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 II, the Sony 42.4 megapixel BSI-CMOS full-frame sensor, and double awards for their flagship Sony Alpha 7R II. This not only won the Professional Compact System Camera Of The Year award but was also judged AP Product Of The Year.

 

Creative Minds - Presentation by Ian Brash and Mike Bromley DPAGB BPE1 - 22 February 2016

Report by Les Dyson

Mike and Ian were introduced to their audience by John Fisher who explained that Ian had previously visited the RPS as a competition judge, and that this presentation was a ‘double act’ between Mike and Ian showing us in the first half, before and after images, whilst the second half would introduce us to some of their ‘stock items’ and show us how they create their textures used in some of their images.

Mike started by telling us that they had already shown this presentation 31 times this season and I think we could assume from that figure, that they were accomplished in presenting their Photoshop and other software techniques.

Basically, the aim of the presentation was to illustrate how they use their ‘Creative Minds’ to add ‘a certain something’ to their photography. A ‘something’ that will make competition judges appreciate that this is a worthy and unique award winning image, and to make the image stand out from others and be remembered by the audience.

Many of the treatments used also made the photographs into a piece of art, with the addition of textures and dramatic lighting often more representative of ‘old masters’ than ‘a photo taken on holiday in Spain’.

We were treated to a multitude of ‘before and after’ images, the first of which was the ‘before’ of the Edwardian National Trust property, Polesdon Lacey. Five images comprised the ‘before’. The ‘after’ being a framed and mounted textured canvas with a heavy foreboding sky worthy of a piece of art on any gallery wall.

Polesdon Lacey before – comprised of five separate images

Polesdon Lacey – after

And the examples followed fast and furious from Airbus A.380s at Farnborough, to walkways in Kingston, and street scenes in Spain. There was a child in a lavender field added to an image of a poppy field. Caterpillars found themselves with butterflies for company. Ladies on one street scene had been moved to another street in Spain that had already acquired a bicycle and a mirror image of itself. And the old gentleman in Greece was still standing in places he’s probably never heard of. Such is the world of being a piece of ‘stock art’.

The ploys the duo used that I recall, included the benefits of using RAW and HDR images, taking sky and patches of sky and changing their exposure or lighting to set alternative moods in the image. To crop and to crop drastically presented a whole new image. Adding elements from other images to add an additional focal point. Creating atmosphere, with mist and smoke and dust. Changing the landscape, for example by adding another windmill on the horizon. Adding texture, and emphasising the detail in the picture. All of this plus a multitude of other creative techniques brought the images to life. Their repertoire just went on and on.

Most striking among the many examples shown was the static military helicopter on show at Farnborough.

When suddenly, that helicopter went to the front line

Ian explained about adding plug-ins to Photoshop to create new effects, and taking dark drab interiors taking as a RAW image which allowed him to change the exposure and to add light to all the detail that was available to see within the shot.

And we were shown how they create textures to use in other images from say a basic shot of some rose hips, that are manipulated and turned into a canvas in their own right.

 An example of the rose hip texture

To summarise the evening in a single word, that word would be ‘dramatic’.

All photographs by courtesy of Mike Bromley and Ian Brash

Chinese New Year – 14 February 2016

Report by Stephen Hewes

What our group lacked in size, it more than made up for in agility. The three of us, Steve Colin and yours truly had travelled up on the train leaving at around 8am and arrived in Trafalgar square for 9. We’d found where the Chinese New Year procession was forming up in Dungannon Street, its east/west orientation acting as a corridor for the biting easterly wind. Remembering Grahame Singleton’s wise words of advice from Brighton Pride last year, we made our move to an island in the middle of the road, with just enough room for the three of us. Our neighbours were a FranoChinese couple with a baby son attired in his Chinese costume – I look forward to seeing how his portrait turned out Steve! Thankfully we were out of the vicious wind, and before long the procession commenced.

So we really didn’t have any excuses for not getting some super images - perhaps not being used to such close proximity to the action, and numb fingers?... 10 dragons, lots of lion-like creatures, karate kids and several teams of dancers from Medway towns (why do the Medway towns in particular have Chinese affiliation?) later, the procession had passed and we were wondering quite what we’d managed to catch on camera.

We headed off the Rupert Street on the other side of Chinatown in a bid to try to find the procession again. The carnival route details given on the website were vague (simply Charing Cross road/Shaftsbury Avenue) – and I’d seen the procession end here a couple of years previously. Rupert Street was full of parked cars so the thought of the procession passing seemed unlikely. Time for a coffee – an excellent hand warmer. We later found that the procession did indeed turn into Rupert Street as it disassembled - just in time to grab a few more shots.

It was now close to 11:30 and time for the opening of a pop-up art gallery in the centre of Chinatown. Perhaps it should be ‘pop-down’ as the location was an underground car park. What better place, particularly as a few interesting cars had been left to mingle with what were quite avant garde artworks. And even though we only ventured down to –4, moving towards the Earth’s core had a wonderful warning effect.

By the time we left the car park Chinatown was heaving with people so we decided it was time to leave. We headed back toward London Bridge for lunch and found warming curry dishes in a place in Tolley Street – doesn’t food taste even more delicious when you’re ravenous? – and with the year of the Monkey well underway we headed for home.

Some images of the event provided by Stephen are shown below.

 

John Gall

PF

A number of members are also involved with the photography group of the U3A which is organised by Steve Lawrenson. On 3 March we visited Standen, the National Trust property near East Grinstead. I was pleased to meet John who had come along with Steve, and happy to report that he is looking well. In the following photograph which I took at the time you may also recognise a couple of other members!

 

Saturday Natter – 5 March 2016 – Organised by John Fisher

PF

 Denbies images by Jill Flower (using fish-eye lens)

This was another well-attended gathering in the restaurant at Denbies. Jill and I, plus Stephen Hewes, were the first to arrive and set about gathering a number of tables together to enable us to sit around as a reasonably compact group. These natters are becoming increasingly popular, enabling both established and newer members to discuss topics that there are not time for in the regular Monday meetings. We were joined by prospective new member Simeon. I'm not certain of all the topics discussed but I was aware that advice was being given to some newer members by Ian Hunt on the use of Mac computers and Jill on the subject of iPads relating to storing of photographs. One of the main topics of conversation centred on John Fisher's quest for a light, but quality, camera to take on a forthcoming holiday to South America. Steve Lawrenson had brought along his new Olympus PEN-F. Jill had her Olympus PEN E-PL7 and I had my Panasonic GX8 plus a collection of lenses that we can share between the two cameras. Dennis Fletcher had also brought along his new Panasonic FZ300. I'm sure that Ian had his trusty iPhone 6 in his pocket which he used take the photograph mentioned in the following article! At this point John's quest goes on, it being difficult to satisfy the competing objectives of both quality and compactness to match that of his existing Canon G12.

One option that will definitely not appeal is the camera configuration that I experimented with during the meeting! As mentioned previously in Newsletters, the short back-focus distance on mirror-less cameras opens up the possibility of fitting lenses from DSLR cameras with an adapter, whilst still retaining full focusing capabilities. I had come to the meeting with an extreme example of this. As will be seen from the following photographs I had used a simple Fotodiox EOS-M4/3 adapter (which does not retain any automatic functions) with a Canon EF 75-300mm zoom lens, but with an added Kenko 2x Teleplus to expand the focal length by two. The effect of this, bearing in mind that the micro four-thirds camera requires a doubling of actual focal length to give a full-frame equivalent, meant that I was photographing with a 1200mm lens at full length. The photographs taken at the event were hand-held at between 1/50th and 1/60th of a second, so not surprisingly are not pin-sharp.

Subsequently I took some test shots in the garden. The general view (with superimposed arrow) shows the view taken with the equivalent of a 28mm lens. The detailed view, taken at the same distance of about 10 feet, shows the tiny daffodil in detail with the 1200mm lens equivalent.


 

Ian Hunt (unofficial, unpaid photographer for the Surrey Mirror)

PF

I spotted yet another of Ian's photographs as 'Picture Of The Week' in the edition of 3 March 2016. This was an image of Holmethorpe Lagoons Nature Reserve (with the Watercolour Estate, Merstham in the background) taken in the late afternoon sun. When I spoke to Ian about this an interesting story emerged. To quote Ian -

'The picture of Holmethorpe Lagoons Nature Reserve was taken with my iPhone 6 (because I didn't have my Nikon with me) and only adjusted for horizontal alignment.

The following day I took my Nikon D610 to the same location at sunset hoping to get the same lighting. It was not to be. However, later as I checked the images on screen I discovered very small, on the bottom left of one of my pictures a kingfisher perched on a post waiting for it's dinner!'

A reminder that 'The best camera is the one that you have with you!'

 

And finally . . . . . .

Photobombed, big time !! If it was Christmas panto time the cry would go out 'He's behind you!'