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21st October 2015 -It's not the title that counts

The most recent photographic competition in the club provided the judge Mac Bouchere from Teignmouth with quite a challenge. On the one hand there was the themed print competition for images of Cold Harbour Mill – the club is currently working towards an exhibition of the mill’s restoration – and then there was the Open print competition. So it was a case of one very clear and precise subject on the one hand and a wide-ranging, anything goes on the other.
Mac was quite clear about what made a winning or good photograph. The picture had to convey something without having to read the title. It had to show some feeling or mood or sense of what the photographer felt when the picture was taken. In the pictures of the mill – a difficult subject with often poor lighting and many distractions that made composition difficult – Mac felt that the best images were ones that showed exactly what the mill was about and stood on their own as more than pure record shots. The results for this class were 1st and 2nd to Diane Rowe for ‘Cold Harbour Start Up’ and ‘The Mill in spring’; 3rd went to Polly Knowles for ‘Gareth the Volunteer. Highly commended went to Frank Colebrooke, Peter Tickner and Diane Rowe.
The Open class of 36 prints brought out the expected wide range of subjects. Portraits, landscapes, architecture and natural history as well as bizarre images such as what looked like a knitted bicycle or a sheep Grand National. Mac provided useful commentary of how some pictures needed extra punch and colour quality control to lift their subjects but also found many excellent images which stood out from the others. The results were 1st Frank Colebrooke for ‘Pain’ – a great shot of endurance at a Rock Solid challenge event;2nd to Polly Knowles for a tear-jerking ‘Can we go home now’ image of a tied up dog waiting for its master; 3rd went to Ted Strawson for ‘Contemplation’ .
Highly commended went to Rachel Carter and Ted Strawson.