2017 Landscape results

March 22, 2017 RPS Competition Results
The Results for the landscape competition and be seen here




Challenge Results - Get Down Low

March 11, 2017 Challenge Results

What a fantastic array of images for the first Challenge this year, Get Down Low.



We are certainly off to a good start!

And the winners are

Lees Valley Field Trip

February 13, 2017 Field Trips

Lees Valley Field Trip

Date: Sunday 26th February 2017

Trip Leader: Dominic Stove phone 027 2811882.


Lees Valley is a high country valley located about 30km from Rangiora. The trip offers good photo opportunities, however parking places are limited above the Ashley George section of the road in. We will probably stop near the high point to view the plains and at middle bridge to take a short walk up a hill above the stockyards.


Final Night Results 2016

December 4, 2016 RPS Competition Results
Final Night Results 2016




2016 Second Open results

October 5, 2016 RPS Competition Results


The results for the second Open can be found here

Don't Be Afraid to be P A M

Don’t be afraid to be (P)rofessional,  (A+)wesome or (M)arvellous


Up until three years ago I used my camera in P for Professional mode, that’s the P on the dial which lets the camera do everything for you to get a shot with the ‘correct’ exposure. I put the word correct in quotes because I have come to realise that exposure is simply a creative tool and there really isn’t a ‘correct’ one. 

Anyway, back to being (P)rofessional :-). My process for taking an image went like this:-

I had no idea about ISO, shutter speed or aperture and believe it or not I got lots of great images, in fact most of my images taken to get me from C to B grade were taken with this approach. 

It was during an RPS dawn shoot at Pegasus Bay that I learnt about Manual mode…..eek! At that point the intricacies of ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed and White Balance became a bewildering new set of tools and possibilities to get my head around. For the techie geek in me this was a whole new box full of goodies and opportunities to explore…wahoo :-). 


Club Chatter Edition # 134

May 30, 2016 Club Chatter
Greetings and Salutations
Richard’s Reflections
Finding inspiring and motivating guest speakers can sometimes be a bit like looking for a needle in a haystack.
In the past many really inspiring speakers have made the trek to Rangiora and injected their thoughts about a huge range of photographic subjects from weddings, landscape, long exposures, photojournalism, fashion and black and white to name but a few. They do it willingly and generously, typically rewarded by a bottle of wine, a few petrol vouches and RPS’s infectious energy, friendship and engagement.
They have all left their mark in one way or another and some of them have had the effect of compelling us to go forth from the room and pick up the camera and start making images straight away.
I am sure that our photography has developed and blossomed certainly in part due to the exposure we have had to some amazing luminaries.
One of the challenges is to find new and different speakers who can maintain that inspiration and motivation so that the experience for all is new and fresh and our demands on the same speakers s not onerous.
Perhaps in the future the Canterbury Clubs will look to bring in guest speakers from outside of their home areas and to host more ‘regional’ presentations rather than club presentations. Of course a down side of that is that individual clubs lose that intimate relationship that they currently enjoy with the people who visit as judges and guest speakers.
Rangiora has developed such wonderful friendships with so many highly thought of photographic specialists and I think that needs to be protected at all costs. The relationship that we enjoy with these people is absolutely invaluable in so many ways and we must not lose that.
There may however still be the opportunity to balance that by regions hosting speakers that individual clubs would not otherwise be exposed to and I also think that there is real value in that.
We constantly need to be reviewing what we do and how we do it to maintain vitality, relevance and freshness that is sustainable.
I would add that while finding needles in a haystack can be tricky, actually finding one is incredibly rewarding. One such person was Peter Latham who is based in the Coromandel and who will be speaking to us on the 7th of June.
Club Meeting – Tuesday the 7th of June 2016 – Guest Speaker Peter Latham
It really has been incredibly exciting talking to Peter over the last couple of months to get to the point where his visit to Rangiora is almost upon us. 
In addition to showing a collection of his beautiful landscape images captured throughout New Zealand, Peter will talk to us a bit about his journey in photography which started off from a 5 month bicycle/photography expedition, then a stint on cruise ships before returning to New Zealand and focusing on fine art landscape photography.
He will also talk to us about the gallery market and fine art photography in terms of what sells and what he looks for when capturing an image.
Peter is also known for his large projects and composite imagery and he will outline these to us.
I posted Peter’s bio on the Rangiora Photographic Society’s facebook page and so you can check there for more information about Peter.
I am incredibly appreciative and humbled by Peter travelling to North Canterbury to talk to us. While his visit will form part of a Southern photographic trip, he has planned that around RPS.
Having seen the images that he will be presenting and spoken to him on a number of occasions now I just know that you will thoroughly enjoy it.
Please book it in your diaries as this will be an evening not to be missed.

Club Chatter Edition # 133

May 2, 2016 Club Chatter
Greetings and Salutations
Richard’s Reflections
A few years ago I visited Athens for 4 or 5 days and made a daily pilgrimage to Plaka, which sits just beneath the Acropolis and is a labyrinth of ancient streets and alley ways that are now the home to marketers and peddlers of anything touristy. 
There is an addictive vibrancy in the air and I used to love meandering around the many twists and turns and getting lost—which for one that is directionally dyslexic was not difficult in the least. 
Near Plaka there is an area that is absolutely dedicated to outdoor eateries and restaurants—a little like the restaurant mecca of Lygon Street in Melbourne – but ever so much more rustic. As is often the way in highly competitive fooderies in Europe the waiters stand outside the restaurant area and try to entice the throngs of passers by in—often offering free this or that and certainly theirs is the very best restaurant in all of Plaka and you will not find anywhere more price competitive. No such thing as the Fair Trading Act or Consumer Guarantees Act in Plaka.
On my first sojourn to Plaka I walked around all the restaurants looking at the menus posted on bulletin boards at the entrance ways and generally trying to avoid the eye and attention of the eager waiters who would pounce at the drop of a hat. 
I first met Giorgos on my second circle of the restaurants as he stood elegantly at the gate of a restaurant. Only his quiet nod and acknowledgment to the multitudes that passed gave it away that he was associated with the restaurant. 
He was a man in his mid forties, tall and impeccably dressed, slightly thinning salt and pepper hair brushed back, gold metal framed spectacles on his tanned face and with a smile that charmed and would no doubt capture the heart of any lady tourist – or a gay one for that matter.
He was the waiter in the restaurant but you would think that he was the owner he was so passionate about it and the food that would be created and served within.
I said to him that I was a very selective eater – and those of you who know about my ‘red food phobia’ will understand the dilemma that this causes—particularly when a tourist in a country known for its tomato dishes. 
Giorgos asked my name and I told him it was Richard. With meaning and focus he said; ‘Reeshard…..I will make a deesh a just for yuuu’. 
Well, how can you resist that and so it was that I dined in Giorgos’ restaurant and indeed dined there every night that I was in Athens.
Every time I walked up to the Restaurant Giorgos was there to meet me and would welcome me to the restaurant – ‘Ahhhhh Reeeshard….have yuuu come to dine here again my friend?’, and it was always Giorgos that waited upon me and certainly every meal was as though it was a ‘deesh a just for mee’. 
One evening I asked him about his background. Giorgos looked at me with that ‘it is what it is look’ and said, ‘Reeeshard I am a broken man. I trained as a chef in the famous keechens of Rhodes Island and once had my own restaurant….but you know the Greek condition eees nota good and so I lost every thing. Everything..you know. I lost a my restaurant, my wife and my famileee….and now I wait on tables….your table. I am a waiter.’
Giorgos wore his heart on his sleeve and regardless of what had happened to him he knew that it was more about what he did about it that really mattered the most. He also understood the value of people and relationships. This ‘beautiful man’ had carefully and genuinely built a relationship that ensured I would always go back and seek him out – to dine at his restaurant amongst the many at the foot of Plaka—the ‘neighborhood of the Gods.’ And I bet that he did that with every passing tourist. It was his way…the way of a broken man that refuses to be consumed by woe and sorrow.
The only free gift that Giorgos offered to me when I first met him was his endearing smile – no free litres of wine nor starters or breads – just a smile from man who said he was broken but would make a dish just for me.
It is always about the people and how people treat people and, you know, that is something that Rangiora Photographic Society also does extremely well.
But on with the blog…..

Club Chatter Edition # 132

April 5, 2016 Club Chatter
Greetings and Salutations
Richard’s Reflections
I’ve been reading a book called ‘The Old Wives Tale’ by an author long since dead by the name of Arnold Bennett. The book was in fact written in 1908 and from all accounts is one of those famous English classics. 
The story covers the lives of two sisters from 1840 through to 1904 and one of the points that is made is that it matters not how we end up for we all end up the same. What is very important is what happens in the intervening years—the quality, goodness, the depth and breadth and very texture of our lives.
To be fair, I had never heard of the book or the author until I was reading another aged book by the name of ‘Testament of Youth’ that referenced the Bennett book and so I made a point to download it onto my kindle and read it.
One of the things that I absolutely love about this book is the fact that it was written over 100 years ago and captures the very essence of life as it was in the years from mid 19th century through to very early turn of the 20th.
The language and the way people expressed themselves, their dress, fashions, ideas about death, respectability, prejudices, the class structure and attitudes to different cultures, the food and the way they ate; all beautifully captured in the pages between two covers.
And why is that important? Fair question! 
Well Karl Marx said that knowing the past is key to knowing the future. But perhaps it’s more complex than that. Reflecting upon the oddities and peculiarities of life as it was is helpful to us to reflect upon the oddities and peculiarities of life as it currently is and to know that nothing stays the same.
So much of what we do as photographers is in fact documenting the life and times of our current world around us—creating a snapshot of the current state that future generations can look back on just as we look back at images taken 100 years ago and consider what life was like back in ‘the day’.
Doc Ross describes this as ‘capturing the essence of the human environment’, and we, as photographers, have an important role to play in doing just that. Check out http://www.gallery464.co.nz

Club Chatter Edition # 131

March 10, 2016 Club Chatter
Greetings and Salutations
Richard’s Reflections
Yes, it has been a while since I last put finger to key and tapped out an RPS Blog. Did you know that ‘Blog’ is a fusion of two words—Web and Log?
Since taking a sojourn from the daily habit of paid corporate employment I have found myself in the rather peculiar position of being even busier than I was previously but apparently that is to be expected. When suddenly confronted with a voluminous amount of time we go into a panic and proceed to fill every conceivable minute/hour with something that we perceive to be worthwhile thus justifying sitting behind a computer with a cup of coffee at the ready.
In my case, the ‘busyness’ has been doing a lot of writing and a fair amount of photography and on occasion both at the same time. All very exciting—particularly when material gets published.
Ahh yes, it is the life of the freelance writer and photographer for me—actually ‘free’ is the most appropriate part of that title; though there are two aspects to that as well. In the one sense the words that I tap out and the images I produce are apparently for free. In the other sense….I am at least free from the corporate drudgery and I have to say that is – to use an oft used term of mine – ‘wunderbar’.
But in any event, while all this excitement has been going on I have been quite neglectful in the RPS Blog front to the point where it now features prominently in my diary to get one done before the next club meeting. So the time is nigh.
Just as a matter of conversation I was trolling through shoeboxes of old film photographs the other day. (I’m not really sure what ‘the other’ day really means. Do you? I suppose it means any day other than today.) There were literally packets of these things and going through them was an interesting experience in embarrassment. What was I thinking when I carefully photographed that pinecone? What did I see in that bland piece of landscape, which had its horizon tilting to one side and was in any event badly over exposed? Why did I shoot that sky when there was nothing but…well sky with a tiny bird flying overhead and even the tiny dot of a bird appeared out of focus.
Needless to say those once coveted images so lovingly framed in the viewfinder that cost a dollar a pop were all dispatched to the recycling bin and I feel all the better for the experience of brutality.
But it did tell me a couple of things:
1.Thank goodness for digital and the digital trash can; and
2.My photography has improved over the last 20 years. Well thank goodness for that.
It is good to reflect upon where we started from and appreciate where we are now in terms of our development and remember also that the only person that you are really competing with is the person that you were 5 minutes ago.
But let’s gets this show on the road and complete the rest of the blog—if you are still with me.

Club Chatter Edition # 130

January 18, 2016 Club Chatter
Greetings and Salutations
Richard’s Reflections
We ended the 2015 RPS year on a high note with our ‘new look’ Final Night and I had meant to come back to you with one final ‘blog’ for the year to thank you for making Final Night so successful and wish you safe travels and a ‘Happy New Year’. As things are apt to happen, time just ran way with me but the thought was there nonetheless.
In terms of Final Night, I thought the format worked very well and it was fabulous to see you all looking so resplendent. You had all gone to so much trouble, which was reflected in the spirit and energy of the evening. Thank you.
It was also great that PSNZ President Murry Cave made the effort to attend our Final Night, an effort that was very much appreciated.
It is good to look at different ways that our Final Night can be presented and next year we may do something similar and perhaps the year after that we may look at something different. The key with these things is to always maintain freshness and vibrancy. I would be really interested in getting any further feedback from you about last years Final Night and hearing ideas that you may have for future Final Nights and how you think that it could be delivered.
For me, the year has started in a rather interesting way. After 35 years working for the same organization, albeit in different corporate structures, a restructure has meant that I am now officially looking for new opportunities. 
It feels kind of scary and kind of exciting all at the same time. Most days it feels like the restrictions of a birdcage have been removed but on some days it is like I am adrift in a large ocean with only a flutter board for security.
But to have the freedom to really explore what it is that you want to do when you ‘grow up’ is pretty amazing and it’s interesting to really understand what it is that I like doing most of all.
We spend so much of our time doing things because of perceived commitments; because it is expected of us; because we have always done it; because that is what I did yesterday and the day before; because it is easy and safe to stay doing the same thing….but what is it that you would really like to do? 
That is the question and for many of us in our heart of hearts we actually know….but never get to do or never have the courage to do.
For me, well I like relating to people, talking, telling stories, travelling and taking a photo or two.
So I think that I might become a travelling photographer and storyteller! What I do know is that it is going to be an exciting year, perhaps not without its little humps and bumps, but being part of RPS is really exciting because it does allow me to fulfill all the things that I love doing now. Very cool!
As I re-read and proof this blog before posting it, it occurs to me that there is another question to ask and that is, if you were released of all limitations or restrictions, what would you really like to do as a photographer and what sort of photography would you really like to do?
Perhaps that is something that we can all ponder over the course of the year as it unfolds.
It’s going to be a great year and I look forward to sharing it with you.

Website Links & Online Learning

April 25, 2014 Tutorials & Useful Stuff

This page is for links to photographic websites and online learning that may be of interest. If you know of any sites that should be shared, email the link to the President for consideration.

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Scott Kelby - every photographer's home should have at least one of Scott's books, as well as the knowledge from this website.

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