Cheltenham Camera Club
Welcome to Cheltenham Camera Club!
The Club meets on Thursday evenings from September to May for a varied programme of high quality presentations and competitions.

The Club welcomes photographers of all ages, interests and abilities.

We are friendly and supportive and, as one of the oldest photographic clubs in the country, continue to encourage our many members to develop and improve their photography.

If you are interested in finding out what we are about, simply turn up at one of our meetings – there is just a £2 visitor’s fee – you will be made most welcome. For more information click on 'About us' above.

CAPTURING THE MOMENT - 150 Years of Photography in Cheltenham
Published by Cheltenham Camera Club
Capturing the Moment Cheltenham was one of the first towns in the country to establish a professional photographic studio and has one of the oldest camera clubs. The book, marking the 150th anniversary of Cheltenham Camera Club, looks at how the nature of Cheltenham society influenced this development. We look at the history of photography in the town and its leading figures. The book outlines technological developments in photography and sets the photographic scene in Cheltenham into the wider social context, ending with a summary of photography in Cheltenham today.

Illustrated, 76 pages. 210 x 148 mm
ISBN: 978-0-9931482-0-0

£10 (to include postage and packing in UK)      Buy Now Using PayPal

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Selection of our award winning images

<b>Wild Yellow Bellied Marmot, British Columbia</b> by David Adamson<br>Commended at Great Barr and acceptances at Glasgow, Solihull and Port Talbot. by David Adamson <b>Snakeshead Fritillaries</b> by Michael Krier<br>RPS Gold Smethwick International 2014<br>CCC Natural History Medal Cheltenham International 2014. by Michael Krier <b>First Light</b> by Michael Krier<br>Smethwick accepted by Michael Krier <b>Estuary</b> by David Adamson<br>International acceptance in Serbia by David Adamson <b>Thrilling the Crowds at Cheltenham Racecourse</b> by David Adamson<br>Acceptance at Great Barr, Bebington Salon and International acceptances at Sydney and Raiganj. by David Adamson <b>Finn Dome, California</b> by David Adamson<br>Acceptance at Great Barr by David Adamson <b>Tetbury Woolsack Race</b> by David Adamson<br>Acceptances at Basingstoke, Great Barr and International acceptance in Serbia. by David Adamson <b>Approaching Warm Front, Back O' Skiddaw</b> by David Adamson<br>International acceptance at Sydney Harbour by David Adamson <b>The Last Rose</b> by Barry Roberts<br>Acceptance at Beyond Group. by Barry Roberts
Lightbox of recently uploaded images

The Starter by David Adamson. Accepted at the Clay Cross Exhibition. by David Adamson Sukara By Andy Roberts by bmw540 West Indian Whistling Duck (Dendrocygna arborea) in Reed-bed by colintrim In for the Kill – <b>Graham Wakefield CPAGB</b> by David Adamson Eat Your Greens – <b>Paul Claridge</b> by David Adamson Fine Feathers........(whooper Swan) – <b>John Weston</b> by David Adamson Commended - Barn Owl – <b>Graham Wakefield CPAGB</b> by David Adamson Commended - Yellow Billed Kite – <b>Andrew Ham</b> by David Adamson Highly commended - Feathers – <b>Janice Clark</b> by David Adamson
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Aggregate Prints 'Feathers' by Len Shood

In comparison with last week’s meeting which at times was profound, this week’s was lightweight. You could have knocked me over with a feather. Sorry, what I am trying to say is that feathers were the subject of the evening’s competition. Light the feathers might be, but thankfully the judge, Ralph Snook produced a substantial appraisal of the entries and was clearly ever aware of both the scope and limits of the brief.


The obvious choice for most entrants was a bird or birds and it was good to have a judge who knew something about birds rather than one who calls every specimen a duck! But this was not a natural history competition and some excellent bird photographs were eliminated, but only after Ralph had explained why.


We started with the Monochrome sections and I had forgotten how ineffective black and white photography is for nature. The first bird book I saw as a child, The Observers Book of British Birds, had black and white photographs and was useless as a field guide, and it is no surprise that the majority of bird recognition guides produced before and since used artist drawn bird portraits to depict the fine detail in plumage. The problems with black and white photographs are one, there is very little differentiation in the shade of some colours, and two, since birds are naturally coloured to blend with their environment, they become lost within it unless the background is very out of focus.


While there were some excellent natural bird portraits in the colour sections, including in flight, the rendition of their feathers was not as good as several well lit close views where the texture of individual feathers could be seen. Ralph used the word texture a lot, rightly so in the context of the competition, and also sharpness was often mentioned, as generally being crucial to the representation of feathers with their fine detail; alternatively a mass of feathers can convey the softness we associate with luxury. Lighting is critical in all these cases. There was a first class print of a Merlin, displaying its  blue back to the camera, but with its head turned so looking directly the camera, an exotic secretary bird and our own chaffich which all did well. A cormorant with damaged feathers in its beak after preening filled the brief superbly.  


Even hens were involved, the most amusing print of the evening being of five hens on a stillage, two up, three down. The centre one at the bottom, a brown one had its back to the camera, the other four, all white, faced the camera. Had the photographer arranged them or just found them like that? 


Not everyone portrayed birds however, and although a minority of the images entered came into this category they obtained a high proportion of the awards because of the thought, imagination and detailed execution involved. They are examples of photographs that have been made, not just taken. Peacock feathers, or at least the tips of them featured in one or two. For one simple picture of five small feathers, they had been dyed an eclectic set of colours, magenta, rust, green, blue and black which looked good together. Another, a high key picture used three feathers arranged on a white plate as if it was a nouvelle cuisine dish. Feather headdresses were used effectively and we also saw feathers used as for flyfishing and for indoor sport with an ‘action‘ print of a dart flying towards a dart board, its tail feathers resembling the union flag. 


There was a stirring of the audience when a striking image I can best describe as ‘a feather boa and no knickers’  came on the screen. Ralph, having a double take, eventually saw that the boa met the brief — (sorry!)  and subsequently awarded it a Commended; not to award it at all would have been to deny a fine photographic image due recognition, but to award it higher, he probably feared for his good reputation. And as a competition judge it is a good one.


There is now an archive of all Len Shood articles on the home page immediately above the 'In Focus' archive.

CCC 150th Captures the Moment

There is an article and video on the first event of our 150th celebrations 'Capturing the Moment' on the BBC Gloucestershire website, please follow the link: BBC Gloucestershire

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Len Shood Archive

26th February 2015 Print Appreciation Evening
19th February 2015 Aggregate Round 3 Print 'Feathers' - Judged by Ralph Snook
12th February 2015 Bryn Griffiths, Hasselblad Master Photographer
5th February 2015 Aggregate Round 3 PDI 'Reflections' - Judged by Pete McCloskey
29th January 2015 Harry Sedgwick Memorial Competition 'Architecture' - Judged by Dave Johnston
22nd January 2015 Showing of CISP 2014 images
15th January 2015 Travel Photography by Michael Freeman
8th January 2015 'Capturing the Moment' at the Parabola Arts Centre

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InFocus Newsletter Archive

Issue 137: 1865 January The Photographic Society; Making a Photograph; Purchasing a Camera; A Method for Photomicrographs by Dr E. T. Wilson; Letters
Issue 136: 2014 October Godfrey Outram, 1934-2014; External Competitions; Update on Plug-Ins; Are you a Constable or a Turner?; Rule Changes
Issue 135: 2014 April OnOne & Adobe Creative Suite, Histograms and RAW files, What makes Colin Harrison Click, Breaking the Rule - thoughts on Composition
Issue 134: 2014 January Honorary Life Membership - Martin Fry, Olympus day with Gifford's Circus, Sandy Fothergill, John Cook, Corrupted memory card?, Focus stacking with a tablet
Issue 133: 2013 September 1st CISP, Competition Software, Ewa & Peter Makas and Richard Cherry, Honorary Life Membership - Martin Fry, Life in a Competitive World by Ian Gee
Issue 132: 2013 April Adding a Keyline, Soft Proofing, Jane Borland and Graham Hodgkiss, Private Lives, Ghosts and Shadows, Morgan Outing
Issue 131: 2012 December Tewkesbury School, Janice Clark, Archie Douglas, Creative Course, Topaz & Nik, Photoshop in the 1850's?
Issue 130: 2012 September Cheltenham International Salon, Chairman's Medal, Liverpool Cathedral, Making Cards, New Logo, Lightroom
Issue 129: 2012 April Founder E.T. Wilson; My Journey; Making 'The Mystic'; Nature Photography; Depth of Field; CCC at the Mayor's Parlour
Issue 128: 2012 January Brain Swinyard Award; Layers; Adding Text; Guy Edwardes Review
Issue 127: 2011 September Lundy Trip; Digital Dabblings - HDR; Micro Adjustment; The wider world
Issue 126: 2011 April Street Photography; Royal Visit; Showing Off; Copyright
Issue 125: 2011 January 150th Anniversary plans; Photography and the law; Keywords; David Christie tribute
Issue 124: September 2010 Preserving the past; Our Archivist; Using the Web Galleries; Clogged Nozzles
Issue 123: 2010 April Converting to Infra Red; Fred Wall tribute; Colour Management; Fibonacci deconstructed; The way we were.
Issue 122: 2009 December Cyril Bint tribute; Calibration and colour management; iPhone apps; Club competitions precis
Issue 121: 2009 September Lightroom 2, CS4 and Elements 7; Back Button Focusing, New FIAP rules
Issue 120: 2009 April Memory test; Jack Stephens tribute; Competition changes; Raw files
Issue 119: 2008 December Image Stabilisation; Public photography and the police; Updating your camera?; Black and White Printing
Issue 118: 2008 September Profile converting; Digital projection; Making the print; Dynamic range explained
Issue 117: 2008 April Annual Exhibition report; Scanning; Letters and distinctions explained; Canon 40D - worth it?
Issue 116: 2007 December The lighthouse of Cordouan; Wendy and Godfrey Outram Arts Council Award; CS3
Issue 115: 2007 August Backups; Exhibition move; Sikkim & Bhutan; DIG info
Issue 114: 2007 April Judges; Selective focus; Photomatix;
Issue 113: 2006 December Woodchester Mansion; Looking towards 2015;

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