January 2018 Monthly Meeting Report

Monday January 8th, 2018

 Paul Colley, Chairman of the British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP) and winner of many photography awards as well as writer of the book Winning Images with Any Underwater Camera judged our competition Best of 2017.

A good turn out of people this evening listened to Paul Colley and his appraisal of the photos entered into our monthly competition “The Best of 2017”. Thank you to everyone who entered, as Paul said it was very difficult to choose from many excellent photographs.

For this competition all photos had to be taken in 2017 and there were 4 categories. Paul had been asked to pick a winner for each category and then the overall winner was chosen by vote by those present at the meeting. Congratulations to Elaine White for her beautiful photo of a Common Underwater Prawn found at Trefor Pier, Wales.

Paul Colley gave a very interesting and thorough explanation of his reasoning behind why he chose each shot and also talked about many of the photos that didn’t quite make his selection and why. He showed thumbnails of all the images and then his first and second set of selections, giving further reasoning behind his final overall choice of winner for each category.

The importance of composition was discussed and also how difficult it was to judge between the final few, some showing good behaviour whilst others were technically brilliant and others nicely lit. He had taken some of the shots and done further adjustments himself in Lightroom to show how he believed some of the photos could have been improved. Paul explained ways to remove or minimise chromatic aberration, when to sharpen or just adjust clarity in a shot, the use of vignetting, cropping, and when to centre or offset an image and many other hints and tips. Lots of good information 🙂

He also brought along his book Winning Images with ANY Underwater Camera which discusses many of these and other points in detail.

The winners of each category were:

Open UK Macro and Overall Winner – Elaine White – A Far from Common Prawn Trefor Pier Wales

Open Overseas Wide Angle – Elaine White – Lilies underwater growing up to the surface, Car Wash Cenote, Mexico

Open Overseas Macro – Maggie Russell Anenome Fish in Bubble Coral, Komodo, Indonesia

Open UK Wide Angle – Yo-Han Cha – Diver on Wreck

Compact – Maggie Russell, Leaf fish House Reef Alami Alor House Reef, Indonesia

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