NUPG 12th November Meeting Report

This month saw Nick More returning, this time to talk to us about ‘Fish Portraiture: Techniques and tips for creating characterful pictures’.

An interactive session with questions being posed throughout, Nick started by getting us to think about the definition of a portrait and what factors can give an image that special something that encourages people to engage with it enough to comment on it.

Nick spoke about his philosophy for choosing images and how he breaks the choices into simple categories to focus in on the best images. We were then treated to a number of Nick’s own fantastic shots to demonstrate the various techniques he uses in different situations.

He invited us to look at how different backgrounds can be achieved, not just aiming for black backgrounds but also looking at how to create backgrounds that are colourful or give a hint of the animal’s environment (without distracting from the subject) and the range of options that can be achieved using strobe positions, snoots, slates, filters, experimenting with exposure and blur techniques. This all gave us some real food for thought (and future experiments). There was also the reminder though, that sometimes you don’t need to rely on fancy techniques to get ‘that shot’, you just need the patience to wait until that fish swims towards you, looks at you (or yawns!), and look out for those behaviour shots. Don’t be afraid to choose the shot you want to take on a dive and just focus on trying to get what you want.

The competition theme this month was ‘Rust’, once again we had a hard time choosing the winners.

Overall winner was Nick Robertson-Brown with a lovely shot taken in Barbados.

Justin Beevor claimed 2nd place with his image of the Giannis D

In 3rd place was Caroline Robertson-Brown with her picture of a tom-pot blennie taken under Swanage pier.

The compact category was won by Rob Williams with his shot taken recently in Capernwray.

Next month will be a purely social occasion as we get together at the Gurkha Grill for a Christmas Curry, giving us the chance to swap diving and camera-related stories and start plotting our dives for next year.

Keep your eyes on the website for further details of January’s competition categories and closing date details. We’ll be having our ‘Best of 2018’ competition which will be judged by Kirsty Andrews who will be with us at the meeting.

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