Musselburgh Camera Club

Nature Photography Workshop, Scottish Borders 23rd Sept

The club has received the following advertisement from wildlife photographer Laurie Campbell. If you are interested in the workshop, please contact the Harestanes Countryside Centre directly using the telephone number provided, or contact Laurie using the email address he provides below.

I am pleased to announce that on Sunday 23rd September I will be staging a one-day nature workshop in the beautiful surroundings of Harestanes Countryside Centre by Ancrum, close to Jedburgh in the Scottish Borders TD8 6UQ. The venue has conference facilities, an art gallery, wildlife garden and extensive mature woodland that provides easy access to a rich variety of subjects.

The aim of the workshop will be to demonstrate a range of techniques used to photograph nature as creatively as possible with the emphasis being on covering close-up details and landscapes.

With a maximum group size of six, the workshop is open to all, we are confident of offering bespoke tuition to all, whatever their abilities, on a one-to-one basis throughout the day that begins at 9.30am and closes at 5.00pm.

The cost of the workshop, including tuition, all refreshments and lunch is £115.00 and bookings are being taken by the Centre who may be contacted by telephone on 01835 830 306

If you would like more information before making a decision to book, then do please contact us via this email address laurie@lauriecampbell.com

With best wishes,

Laurie Campbell

Andy Rouse Nature/Wildlife Photographer Lecture – 8th November

A reminder that this weekend is the last opportunity to sign up as a club member for the lecture by well-known wildlife photographer Andy Rouse taking place in Penicuik on 8th November 2018. If you are interested please email Steve Williams at sgpwilliams@outlook.com.

If you haven’t decided yet, you can still buy a ticket when they go on sale to the public, but the tickets may sell out.

 

Welcome to the 2018-2019 season!

I would like to welcome everyone to another season with Musselburgh Camera Club. Thank you to all who came along to this week’s opening night, especially to the potential new members who I hope we can make feel at home. If you signed up to follow the club on the web site and received this post as an email message, congratulations. It worked!

The season didn’t start without its teething troubles, and unfortunately the wrong version of the syllabus was printed. If you are wondering what the actual 2018-2019 syllabus looks like, click here for a copy.

MCC_Syllabus2018-19

You can print this out for yourself, and I’ll also bring some copies along next week. You will notice our first 4-way competition takes place on 1st November. This is happening early in the season, just like last year, so I would urge everyone to find your best images and email them to George to help the club. You don’t need to wait until the competition submission date. In fact, the submission date for the digital images competition is just 2 weeks away, so you’ll need to start looking for good images anyway.

Talking of competitions, here is a copy of the guide to club competitions I handed out to new members during the opening night.

MCCCompetitionInformation

Some announcements of photographic opportunities coming up soon (click for more details):

Finally, I would like to draw your attention to the club’s privacy policy, which explains how we use the contact information you provided when you signed up. It should be fairly straightforward, since we don’t pass on your information or use your details for any other reason than running club activities.

MCCDataPrivacyPolicy

I look forward to seeing you next week, when we will be inspired by a CD of high quality competition images. Can you guess which one will win…?

 

Opening Night and Musselburgh Communities Day Event

The summer has gone by so quickly! I look forward to seeing you all at our opening night at 7:30pm at the Fisherrow Centre on Thursday, 6th September 2018. There is a draft syllabus on the web site (being finalized by Jack as I write this).

In the meantime, the club has a stand at the Musselburgh Communities Day Event, taking place from 11am to 3pm next Saturday, 1st September 2018 at the Brunton Hall. Please come along for a chat. There will be many other clubs and organisations there. Stephen and I would also be grateful for  volunteers willing to help look after the stand for short periods.

 

Computer Speakers Available

Martin and Helen Lunden have a set of external computer speakers they no longer need and are offering to club members. They also have some unwanted copies of “Outdoor Photography”. If you are interested please contact Martin at maluvtd@gmail.com.

 

Open Global Charity Photographic Competition – Invite to Photographers

The club has been made aware of the 2018 “Zero Footprints” charity competition, which is looking for entries on the theme of the environment, the climate and our impact on it. There is an entry fee of £5 to enter one image or £15 to enter up to 4 images in each of 3 categories. Click the following link for details:

https://www.zerofootprints.org/Competition/2018

The closing date is 15th August 2018, so there is hardly time to book a holiday to an exotic location to capture the kind of images they are looking for, but perhaps you already have something in your collection, or you can find something closer to home?

P.S. We successfully transferred the library exhibition from Prestonpans to Craigmillar this weekend. It’s looking good. Click here for the dates and locations if you would like to see it for yourself.

 

Newhaven Heritage Calendar Photo Competition

The club has received the following information about a photographic competition organised by Newhaven Heritage.

Hello

I am writing to you on behalf of Newhaven Heritage, a Scottish Registered Charity which is seeking to acquire the iconic Victoria School on Main Street, Newhaven, the oldest working school in Edinburgh, to become a Heritage Centre and community hub when it becomes vacant in 2020 once a new larger school is built on Western Harbour.

In order to publicise our campaign, we are holding a photographic competition which will also result in our producing a calendar to be sold for funds to swell our war chest to help cover the cost of essential professional fees – legal, architect, surveyor, etc.

Newhaven is a photogenic opportunity for the keen photographer and we are looking for the thirteen best landscape pictures to be included in the calendar that shows off the village in all its diversity to fullest advantage.  We are contacting local camera clubs such as yours to draw attention to this free competition. At the end of the competition, we will be having a public display of the thirteen finalists, i.e. one image for each month plus a cover shot voted by public acclaim to be the best of show which will earn the talented photographer a voucher valued at £100 from WEX Photo Video.

Click here to see the competition rules and terms and conditions.

Up to five LANDSCAPE format entries per person can be emailed to photos@newhavenheritagecentre.org.uk before August 19, 2018.

I hope this may be of interest to you.

Good luck!

Gordon Young
Public Engagement officer
Newhaven Heritage

Volunteers Needed for ArtsFest18

We have just received the following message from Vibrant Musselburgh, who are looking for photographers to cover their arts festival at the Fisherrow Centre this weekend (18th and 19th May 2018). It’s very short notice, but if you are interested the contact details are in the following image:

Three photography competitions

Members may be interested in two photography competitions which are open for entries at the moment. Click on the links below for more information:

Go Wild Scotland photo competition : Send in photographs captured on the “Sustrans” national cycle network. Closing date Monday, 18th June 2018.

Scottish Portrait Awards : The Scottish Portrait Awards are open to anyone born, living or studying in Scotland, and 16 years old by 1 October 2018. Entries close on 30 June 2018.

The following competition is not yet open, but watch this space:

Scottish Photography Awards : Scotland Photography Competition and Regional Photo Awards. To qualify for entry in this regional competition, any photos you wish to enter, must have been taken in Scotland.

 

 

SPF Insurance & Club Outings

At the AGM we referred to the post made a year ago which clarified the club’s insurance coverage under SPF policy. To save members having to delve back through the archives, here is a link to that original message:

https://musselburghcc.wordpress.com/2017/04/30/4568/

If you are arranging a group trip on behalf of the club (i.e. a trip where all club members are invited), please contact the SPF General Secretary or the SPF Treasurer, as described in the original message.

 

Musselburgh Camera Club AGM – 26th April at 7:30pm

The Musselburgh Camera Club Annual General Meeting and presentation of prizes will take place in the Fisherrow Centre room G3 at 7:30pm on Thursday, 26th April 2018.

All members should have received a copy of the papers for the meeting. If you were missed and would like a copy of the papers, please email Steven Beard at StevenMBeard@aol.com.

Please come along, have your say in the running of the club and share some end-of-season refreshments with fellow members. There will be a collection box for ideas for next year’s set subject competitions, and there will be some surprises!

 

Two more volunteers needed to help with the MCC library exhibition

Thank you to everybody who has volunteered to help transfer our library exhibition during the summer. Most of the slots are now covered, but we need two more volunteers:

  • Somebody to help Clive Davies with the move from Gullane to Port Seton on 16th June 2018.
  • Somebody to help Steven Beard with the move from Prestonpans to Craigmillar on 14th July 2018.

It doesn’t matter if you have never transferred the exhibition before. Clive and I will show you what needs to be done, and you’ll get a special preview of the exhibition. It takes about 2 hours on a Saturday morning. If you are able to help, please contact John Knox (85newhailes@supanet.com) who is finalizing the rota sheet.

 

Photoshoot at Musselburgh Lagoons – 19th April

This Thursday, 19th April we will be meeting at Musselburgh Lagoons for our end of season photoshoot. We will meet at 7pm at the car park beside the boating lake, as shown the map below. You can reach the car park from the B1348 at the far side of the race course. Turn left after the race course onto the coast road and look for the sign post to Levenhall Links just after the end of the 30mph zone. Keep going to the end of the road, as shown in red. The final part of the road is often full of pot-holes. If the pot-holes are a problem, you can park at the side of the road and walk across Levenhall Links. There is also some parking at the side of the B1348 beside the houses (you can walk to the lagoons through the gate at the side of the road).

George Todd will be picking up members who would like a lift from in front of the Brunton Theatre at 6:45pm. Please contact George (georgetodd1957@me.com) if you would like a lift. Please note we will not be meeting at the Fisherrow Centre.

Click here for a Google map

Musselburgh Lagoons contains a bird reserve, where birds can be seen coming home to roost around sunset. There are also ducks and swans on the lake. Bring a long lens and a tripod for the wildlife photography. There will also be trees, wild flowers, old masonry and landscapes to photograph.

The current weather forecast for Thursday evening is “sunny intervals with an 8% chance of rain”. So far so good.

The Colour Blue – Tomorrow Evening

A reminder that we have our last competition of the season tomorrow evening (Thursday, 12th April) at 7:30pm. Please bring along 1, 2 or 3 JPEG images on the theme of “The Colour Blue”, on a CD or data stick. If you are bringing images with you, please try and come early so we have time to load them before we start. If you have already emailed your images to George he will load them onto the laptop for you. The images will be judged by members on the night, and there will be a prize for the best image.

If the weather is kind to us, there will be an outdoor photoshoot next week (19th April). I will be asking for ideas on possible evening locations around the Musselburgh area.

There are still some empty slots on the library exhibition rota. If you can spare a couple of hours on a Saturday to help transfer the exhibition between libraries during the summer, please sign the sheet in room G3. We need two people per slot.

 

Tips I Learned From Laurie Campbell

Here is a list of the hints and tips I learned from the wildlife photography workshop with Laurie Campbell last month:

http://www.lauriecampbell.com/

1) Photographing birds in flight.

The best way to photograph a bird in flight is to have your camera set to manual mode (M). Point the camera at a neutral subject, such as a grey wall or patch of grass. Dial up a fast shutter speed (such as 1/1000th sec) and a moderately fast ISO (such as 640) and use the camera’s meter to choose an aperture which gives you a good exposure. If there isn’t enough light, increase the ISO. Take a test shot of the neutral subject and make sure the histogram looks ok. If the bird has light markings on it, take another test shot of something with highlights (such as a cliff with white bird droppings) and make sure the highlights are not blown out. If they are, increase the shutter speed until your test shot looks ok. Now set your camera’s autofocus mode to continuous servo (AF-C on a Nikon camera) with a single focus point in the middle of the frame. If your lens has vibration reduction, turn it off (it’s not necessary when the shutter speed is much higher than the focal length, and it interferes with the autofocus). Set your shutter release to continuous shooting. Now look through the viewfinder and track the bird. Try to keep the bird in the centre of the frame while holding the shutter release halfway down. When the autofocus kicks in, take a series of shots. Keep trying. If you find it hard to lock onto the bird, you can change the autofocus mode to 9-points or 21-points.

Some of us had a problem with this technique when the bird flew in and out of a shadow. Laurie told us in this situation you program the camera for one type of lighting (shadow or sun) and only take shots when the bird is under that lighting. (I am wondering if an auto mode with spot metering and exposure compensation might help you follow the change in lighting?)

2) Macro photography

Laurie gave us a number of hints and tips about macro photography. He uses a large heavy tripod to hold his camera and lens. The problem with most tripods is that they hold the camera and lens in only one place, which allows the lens to wobble slightly around that pivot point. Laurie solves that problem by pushing a rubber door stop into the gap between his lens and tripod. (This works if you have a large lens and large tripod head, like Laurie.)

Laurie uses manual focus for most macro work, and he focusses by moving the camera back and forth.

To keep macro subjects from moving in the wind, or to hold extras such a reflector, you can use a gadget called a Wimberley Plamp, available here:

http://www.wexphotographic.com/search/?q=wimberley%20plamp

I was so impressed with this gadget that I am now the proud owner of one. :) It’s the sort of gadget which solves the problem of needing a third hand to hold something. I discovered each plamp can hold a reflector up to 20 inches in diameter. Larger reflectors need to be held by two plamps.

Laurie also pointed me to this inspirational video on macro photography:

http://petapixel.com/2014/11/21/bob-ross-bug-photography-returns-solid-overview-macro-workflow/

You can improve the lighting in macro photography by using a diffuser to soften the light and a silver reflector to lighten the shadows. (The famous plamp can hold the diffuser for you.) If he doesn’t have a diffuser or reflector handy, Laurie sometimes uses a Corex envelope stiffener as a diffuser or a piece of aluminuim foil as a reflector. A piece of foil is particularly useful, as you can mould it to the ground underneath a plant and shape it to reflect the light the way you want. (Note: During the session I used a piece of bubble wrap as a diffuser, and it seemed to work.)

3) General hints and tips

Laurie told us that one of his best value gadgets is a 77mm Canon 500D close-up filter. This is a high quality close-up filter which is more expensive than others on the market, but he believes the extra cost is worth it. He saves money by buying the largest filter size available (77mm) and uses step-up rings to attach it to lenses with a smaller thread size. Using step-up rings means the filter does not vignette your field of view, and you will be using the highest quality central part of the filter. You can use this tip whenever you need to buy an expensive filter – a 10 stop ND is another example. Never use a step-down ring, because this will vignette your field of view. (Note: For wide angle lenses, I think you need to check that the angular field of view of the lens is less than the opening angle of your step-up ring.)

Laurie likes to use Singh-Ray neutral density grad filters.

http://www.singh-ray.com/

He also mentioned that if you can’t afford a very long lens, you can obtain a very high equivalent focal length by attaching a Nikon V1 (which has a very small sensor) to a standard Nikon telephoto lens using an adaptor.

Laurie is always on the look out for new and interesting lenses and gadgets, and he sent me links to some interesting lenses that have recently appeared on the market:

http://photorumors.com/2015/06/23/venus-optics-announces-the-laowa-15mm-f4-the-worlds-widest-11-macro-lens/

http://sgmacro.blogspot.co.uk/2015/06/review-of-venus-optics-laowa-15mm-f4-11.html

http://www.venuslens.net/product/venus-v-dx-60mm-f2-8-ultra-macro-lens/

https://www.wimarys.com/venus-60mm-macro-lens-review/

Did anyone else pick up any hints and tips I haven’t mentioned?

All the best,

Steven.


The Musselburgh Public Art Dabble

The Camera Club has been approached to see if members may want to get involved in this. Tesco has donated funding for a public art project in Musselburgh. The Council has commissioned  ice cream architecture – a Glasgow based community art group to consult Musselburgh ( Fisherrow and Inveresk ) residents about what form they’d like the art to take and where it should go. There has been one meeting so far, a school consultation project and a walk around Fisherrow and the west of Musselburgh to talk about and look at possible sites for art.

The next walk is on Tuesday 23rd June meeting at Fisherrow Centre at 6pm. The walk lasts about 11/2 hrs. Full information about the project can be seen on the Facebook page or the Blog titled The Musselburgh Public Art Dabble. How about projected photographs on public buildings ? Once ideas have been further developed, a short list of artists, selected by the East Lothian Council,  will be asked to suggest possible artworks for installation. The public will be able to decide which they like best. Over to you …….


For Sale Tripod Ball Head

Hi All,

Due to my tripod legs breaking i am selling my Ball head.

It is a Hahnel BH-40 which is 1 year old and in mint condition.

RRP is £30 but i am after £15 for camera club members before i advertise it elsewhere. i can bring it to rosslyn tomorrow if anybody wants a shot.

If interested call mike on 07722887278

thanks Mike


Information for members

Summer 2015  –  Competition Information for next season

A member may submit up to 3 images in each competition. All images must be entirely the member’s original work. No image may be used that is too similar to one used in an earlier competition by the same author. Any subject is allowed – except the competitions for the Set Subject and Human Portrait.

Prints

Prints may be commercially or home printed. Prints must be mounted on mounting board. To avoid damaging other members’ work, neither masking tape nor Sellotape is allowed. Minimum size of the mount 16 x 12 ins (40 x 30 cm). Maximum size 20 x 16 ins (50 x 40 cm). The title and member’s number ONLY should appear on the back.

Each print should also be accompanied by a digital version see below.

Projected images

Projected images must be submitted with titles and in a folder with the member’s name and number. Images can be either on a disc/flash drive or sent to George Todd by email georgetodd1957@me.com The images must have the longest side being 1400 pixels

Closing dates for entries in Competitions 2015 – 16

3rd September   Opening night

17 September     Digital Projected images

8th October         Colour Prints

5th November     Human Portrait Prints

10th December   Set subject – Coast

14th January       Black and White Prints

4th February   Set subject – Dereliction

3rd March          Set subject – Abstract


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