Eclipse 2015

It is probably a little known fact to KCC members but our John Pugh, among his many other interests, is a bit of an expert on heavenly bodies of the extra terrestrial kind.  Realizing that this year’s eclipse was not going to be witnessed again until 2026 he couldn’t wait to photograph the event.  Most of us would stay clear of attempting this amid dire warnings of instant blindness should one look directly at the sun.

John, not wishing to be known as ” Blind Pugh” selected the densest filter in his collection which was one normally intended for infra red images and therefore almost opaque to the naked eye.  This was too small to attach to the Fuji 200mm lens he wished to use but he just held it in front and shot away with 1/4000 sec at f22 and -3 stops exposure compensation dialed into the Fuji XE-2 camera.  You must agree that the result is excellent and a superb record of a once in a lifetime event.

If you have taken great eclipse images that you would like featured on this page please send them by email to Len.

 

Eclipse start

Eclipse max

 


Greenwich Time

Thursday 12th March had twenty of us winging our way down to London again, this time mainly to visit Greenwich.  The trip was organised by our Amazing Andrea and was a great success even down to the weather (how does she do that ?!)

Andrea must have been relieved to see that the coach was all we expected and was driven very professionally by “Bill” of Harris Coaches.

Greenwich has so much going for it that we all came to the conclusion that it would take more than a day’s visit to fully appreciate what there is on offer and, best of all, so much of it free.

Having whizzed round the Maritime Museum, The Cutty Sark, The Queens House, The Painted Hall, The Observatory etc, etc. We were picked up by Bill and taken to the spectacular Canary Wharf for the evening before setting off home at about 7.30.  There were aching legs and sore feet but these were compensated by cards full of interesting images some of which can be seen below.

Coach Interior

Greenwich panorama

Old Naval College2

 

Canary wharf 1

Relaxation

Old and new

The Chapel

Painted Hall

Sitting down on the job

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J&M for Web

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Balcony Queen's House 2

 

 

Looking Up

Restoration

Window

 

Ship in a bottle

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Tyring day

Fountain

KCC website

Top Hat. Ann

CUTTY SARK CARGO

Old Brewery Still,Old Naval College

Bottles1

Ray and friend
Ray’s Chinese Takeaway

 

Meridian on Phone Derek

This is Derek’s phone showing his GPS status as zero longitude. Strange things have been known to happen at this point such as blurry photos…

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Maureen on zero

Meridian Maureen

 

M and L

Canary Wharf Station

YOU ARE HERE

You are here

 

WHAT ARE THEY PHOTOGRAPHING

The watchers. Ann

The gathering pack. Ann

Canary Wharf reflection

 

BRIGHT LIGHTS OF CANARY WHARF

Bend it like Beckham. Bob

CONCREATE AND GLASS

Mr Morris

Canary Wharf night

Canary Wharf

City Lights

Jill and Len

EXIT


Exhibition 2015

Every year for the whole of February Kidderminster Library  allow us the use of their splendid gallery to mount our annual exhibition.  The exhibition consists of seventy four framed images from our membership of fifty two members.  This year forty four of the members contributed allowing the club to show a real cross section of work from all skill levels.

The opening night is always a highlight in the club’s calendar and very well attended by members and their partners.  It has become tradition that a trophy is awarded to the authors of the best images in the General and Advanced classes.  We always try to obtain the services of a well known local person to act as judge for the evening and this year Loz Samuels the Arts and Play Development Officer for Wyre Forest Council kindly stepped into the role and seemed to relish the challenge of choosing two out of a diverse selection of images.

This year’s winners were Martin Rowe (General) and Steve Ficken (Advanced)

Of course, the exhibition requires much preparation and planning beforehand and a special mention must go to Maureen Mundon who, for the last two years has made “hanging day” so much easier thanks to her meticulous planning.  Without all the heroes who give their time on preparation days the installation would be far from the pleasurable task that it  always turns out to be.

A special mention also to for Duncan and Elsie who, once again, kept the wine and nibbles going on opening night

It is hoped that the images below give a taste of the occasion.  Here’s to Exhibition 2016 !

 


 

Choosing the prints…

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Framing Session…

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Hanging Day…

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Job well done – now it’s off to Nero’s



 

Opening Night

Poster

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Time to go home …?

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Relief At Last !

Ever since we moved to our present quarters in Saint Barnabas Hall we have waited for the promised improvement to the toilet situation.  Up until now the only one available has been via a long trek through to the rear of the building and up a steep staircase.  As, like so many clubs, our membership is formed largely by retired folk, this walk together with a possible queue at the end has been a major downside to our much loved home.

The building work required to alleviate the situation has been beset by not only financial problems but unforeseen snags with the old building revealing obstacles that have stretched the estimated time and costs.

Over the last year however, the prospect brightened considerably when money became available via a grant from the local council due to the efforts of Councillor Ann Hingley and work was started in earnest.

At the end of 2014 the committee received an invitation from the trustees for the 10th January to attend a grand opening of the splendid new toilets equipped with all mod cons and situated on the ground floor.

Naturally, we were delighted to accept.  Duncan said he would attend at his convenience, Terry wanted to know if it was to be a sit down affair, Andrea said she would pee there and couldn’t wait and lots more loo related comments were made in true KCC style.

It was a very pleasant morning.  We were serenaded by a charming flutist playing Handel’s Water Music.  Coffee was served, raffle tickets sold and there was many an item to spend ones pennies on.  Anne Hingley gave a little speech in the crowded corridor, cut the ribbon and ceremoniously gave one of the toilets an inaugural flush.  All in the best possible taste!

Afterwards all the usual suspects retired to The Three Crowns and Sugar Loaf for lunch.

Flutist

 

Hall overview

 

Ribbon CuttingGents

Flushing

Group


KCC Goes to Brum

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The crisp morning of Saturday 20th December saw a small but happy band of five stamina-filled enthusiasts assemble at Kidderminster Railway station for a pleasant ride into Birmingham. Our task to find the Café Nero was interrupted by a visit to Drucker’s, the Viennese patisserie, where we all enjoyed the sumptuous cakes (and of course coffee)!

Our walk around Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas Market and Craft Market was most interesting, and most of us refrained from purchasing items, enjoying the sights and aromas associated with all types of food, drink and craft. Of course, we could not resist a trip into Jessops! At this moment, the sun came out!

After a leisurely morning, we assembled at The Dragon Inn for lunch (having lost our two Londoner friends en-route – not to worry, John’s map came in useful!) Full of festive food and drink, we assembled at the Olde-fashioned-sweet shop (Andrea made some purchases – were they really stocking-fillers?) to be met by our National Trust Guide and visit the carefully-restored, atmospheric 19th century courtyard of working people’s houses, Birmingham Back-to-Backs, where we had a glimpse into the lives of the ordinary people who helped make Birmingham an extraordinary city. The last surviving court of back to backs – houses that were built literally back-to–back around a communal courtyard. (We were reminded that no flashers were allowed inside the house, as this would affect the wallpaper! – so John Jeff and Bob stayed outside – LOL)

The tour covered three houses, complete with authentic coal fires, lit candles, Christmas trees decorated with oranges, etc, from the 1840s through to the 1970s – visiting Mr Mitchell’s downstairs rooms, with a collection of “glass eyes”, a typical Victorian family home, and lastly the home of George Saunders – who turned his house into a tailor’s shop, full of suits, patterns, buttons and memorabilia. The wooden staircases were most treacherous – they must have been very little people, of very slim stature in those days!

When we left the Chinese Quarter, it was approaching dusk, and we walked via the Mail Box, into Gas Street and onto Brindley Place, where we saw the spectacular three “sky needles”, which have been added to the roof of the NIA as part of its redevelopment. Of course, we could not resist a visit to Café Rouge for social intercourse, followed by tea and cakes. We meandered round to Centenary Square, which was lit by the wheel and evening skating. What an atmosphere! Even the exterior of Birmingham Library looked interesting. By this time, the town was heaving, passengers alighting from New Street were being directed in a one way system round the German Market, but it really was a wonderful opportunity for photography. We were all tired, but happy, as we departed Birmingham at 7.00 pm for a jam-packed train back to Kidderminster.

Thank you all for your company – Andrea

 

Vic Square [2]

Vic Square

 

Andrea Dreaming

Stall. Ann

Reflections. Bob

Ballons. Bob

Bull. Ann

Back to Back courtyard

Front parlour

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The Three Needles

The Photographers

Reflections. Ann

Wheel & Library

Christmas tree. Ann

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by John Pugh

 

 

 


December 15th 2014

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The last meeting of the year for the last few years has become our “Fun Night”.  No lecturers, no tutorials but, of course there has to be competitions!  The skittle alley was once again imported and Stephen exercised our brains with not one but two festive quizzes.  Duncan and Elsie put on the usual Bacchanalian supply of drinks, there were the obligatory mince pies and Andrea brought along some of her wonderful Bread Pudding.  At nine o’clock Merchants of Bewdley delivered their prize winning fish and chip suppers.  Luckily KCC members, it seems, have hearty appetites!

Duncan & Elsie

Duncan & Elsie’s Bar

Skittle Management

Skittle Management

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Skittle Instruction

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Brian Scoring


Steve Larking

Winning Team

Winning Team

Top Scorer

Top Scorer (Skittles, that is!)

Weny & Jill

Terry's Shoes

Terry’s special skittles shoes

 

Tony & Geoff

JP

A Camera at a Camera Club – what a surprise !!

Wendy's Team

Ready for Stephen’s Quiz

Sheelagh's Team

Maureen's team

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Cynthia

Cynthia working hard

Bob Cheating

Ooh! Looks like Bob’s cheating!

Hedwiga & Hubby

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Quiz Answers

And now for the quiz results…

Quiz Winners

Quiz Winners with their mega prizes !

 

 

 


Round One Projected Image League 2014/15

October 27th was the first competition night for the projected image league and our judge for the evening was Ian Thompson who took the unusual method of having the images sent to him beforehand to assist him in making his decisions.  There were forty entries in the General section and twenty four in the Advanced and we therefore, obtained good value for his fee.

We were treated to the usual variety of styles and subjects with one or two to make the judge think outside his book of rules, always worthwhile !

Sheelagh Cooke took top mark in the General League for her study of a rose entitled “Perfection”.  Both Jeff Evans and Len Harris collected twenties for their images “A Well Earned Rest” and “The Message”.

 

Full results will be shortly be published on the website and the club room notice board.

 

Perfection

“Perfection” by Sheelagh Cooke.

A well-earned rest!

“A Well Earned Rest” by Jeff Evans

The Message

“The Message” by Len Harris


The Barmouth Bonanza

October 17th saw sixteen of us including partners off to Sunny Wales for a long weekend in Barmouth.

We stayed at The Bae Abermaw Hotel in comfortable rooms mostly overlooking the sea and with it’s own private car park and found it convenient being just outside Barmouth.  We had dinner  each evening at the hotel and enjoyed relaxing in each others company.  Being rather off season we didn’t see much of any other guests and so had the very comfortable lounge to ourselves.

On Friday Brian gave a mini lecture with hints and tips towards successful landscape photography.  Did we learn anything?  We will have to wait and see!

Saturday started rather badly when Andrea fell and hurt her arm.  She unselfishly  waited until we were all off to do our various things and then phoned for an ambulance and was taken to a hospital in Bangor where she spent most of the day.  Full marks to Bob and Ann for giving up so much time in bringing her back after her treatment. Their generosity was paid back in part by the presentation at the evening meal of an anniversary cake that Andrea had arranged with the chef.  They had to depart on Sunday (poor workers!) and so took Andrea home.  What a shame that the very person responsible for arranging such a grand weekend was unable to be with us to enjoy it. Latest diagnosis – broken shoulder !

Barmouth and surrounding has much to offer for the photographer whether it be landscapes, seascapes or just mooching about and we all managed to find something to point our cameras at.  And yes, it really was sunny with the only serious rain arriving during our departure on Monday.

 

Thanks again Andrea!

Bedroom

Rooms With a View

A Good Day begins with Breakfast

A Good Day begins with Breakfast

Rosie 2

Rosie – Our lovely waitress

Fruit Juice

“Put That Camera Down and Eat Your Breakfast !” by Len Harris

Brian's Lecture

Brian’s Lecture

There Will be a Short test After...

There Will Be a Short Test Afterwards…

 

Rocks in Barmouth Estuary

by Martin Rowe

A SINKING MARTIN AT BARMOUTH SUNRISE

A Sinking Martin at Barmouth Sunrise by Andrea Holmes

Raibow on Barmouth estuary

by Martin Rowe

The dawn train on Barmouth bridge

by Martin Rowe

The end of the climb

The End of the Climb by Sue Hancox

the blue lagoon

The Blue Lagoon by Sue Hancox

Anyone for coffee

Anyone for Coffee by Sue Hancox

Coffee Shop

The Best Coffee Shop in Dolgellau and Possibly the Universe !

 

 

Beach

Barmouth Sands by Len Harris

Smile for the Phone

Smile for the Phone by Len Harris

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by Bob Dixon

Wales Ann Dixon

by Ann Dixon

Off the rails

Off the Rails by Brian Berkley-White

Patterns in the sand

Patterns in the Sand by Brian Berkley-White

 

MARK BARMOUTH

by Mark Gameson


Landscapes

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On a lovely Sunday morning we all met up in the countryside at Kinver at a fairly reasonable time for Landscape photography. After a short walk up a hill to our destination everyone began getting their camera and tripods out and started composing for what was a lovely view. After an explanation of the basics of landscape photography and the advantage of using filters, a demonstration was given to each member of how a simple filter could drastically improve their exposure and ultimately greatly enhance the image without the use of a computer. Focusing and composition tips were demonstrated while we walked around Kinver Edge looking at new landscape shots which did not encompass the traditional views and expanding everyone’s definition of landscape and encouraging them to look around them at all of their surroundings.    Terry.

 

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                                                                                                                             and here are some of the results…..

 

Kinver Edge

Kinver Edge by Marion Shephard

Back to nature by Ann Dixon

Back to Nature by Ann Dixon

Let it blow. Bob Dixon

Let it Blow by Bob Dixon

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by Jeff Evans

MARK LANDSCAPE

by Mark Gameson