In the Herald - The sun sets on another year of extraordinary imagery

Date Published 
Wed 22 Dec 2021

Following on from our marvellous medley of monochromatic images last week, in this issue Irvine Camera Club is brightening up your short winter days with a cracking collection of creative colour.

In the second part of his judging for us, Campbell Skinner, president of Greenock Camera Club, cast his experienced eye over the selection of colour prints chosen by our members for the competition.  With subjects ranging from glowing sunsets to handsome dogs, Campbell certainly had his work cut out choosing his favourite prints.

Several of the photographs picked out by Campbell for commendation are shown here.  “Hebden Bridge” by Alan Kempster shows a scene of the Yorkshire town in autumn, layering the iconic architecture very effectively.  Colin Houston’s stunning coastal long exposure “Sunset in Pastels” has a gorgeous tonal range giving it a very dreamy feel.  Pete Heywood exercised some of his newly acquired knowledge in compositing with his “Movement in the Glen”, one of the more creative images of the evening.  Chole Campbell is clearly following in her mother’s footsteps with the award for Best Beginner on the night for her images, including a well observed street image “Talk don’t talk” and a studio photo “Harley Quinn”.

In the end though, Campbell had to whittle down the prints to a handful of his favourites.  In joint 3rd place he chose Michele Campbell’s studio shot “Little Cherub” and Fiona Wallace’s still life “Cool imaGINings” which ties in a bottle of Inventor’s Gin with some very clever adornments in order to create the narrative.

In another very strong showing, Michele also claimed two joint second places with her well printed studio shots “Teacher’s Pet” (recently selected as a judge’s choice in the PAGB Masters of Print exhibition) together with “The Lost Children”.  I joined Michele in joint 2nd place with my nature shot of a brown hare on Islay, with Campbell commenting on the successful use of fine art textured paper to successfully present the subject.

That left Campbell to unveil our winner in the colour print section, Fiona Wallace’s “One Man and his Dug”.  Fiona’s gorgeously printed photograph of a man on a deserted beach throwing a ball for his dog is simple but yet also powerful in its ability to evoke an emotional response.  The best photography does this.  It goes beyond being a pretty picture.  Exceptional photography should encourage us to look deeper into our feelings about what we are seeing.  Fiona’s winning image does exactly that.  Looking at it, one can’t help being transported to that isolated beach, feeling the low winter sun on our faces, hearing the waves gently roll in and the patter of paws on the sand as the dog scurries after the ball.

As we wind down the club for the festive season, everyone at Irvine Camera Club would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.  Stay safe, and enjoy the light!