Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Photography Practical

So how was it for you? Does Proper Prior Planning Prevent Poor Photography? Serendipity aside, and it does play a part it just limits what you will be able to take for the reasons discussed last week around the whole incidence and coincidence that is wrapped up in what we call “luck”.  You make your own. A well attended evening, including some prospective members  –  hello I hope you enjoyed the evening and if you have any suggestions for the blog please either contact one of the committee, leave a comment, or use the suggestion box at the door of the club. A little prior research doesn’t  do any harm and Hanneke had us do a little pre- event thinking. This discipline doesn’t just apply to the studio. I am sure that there was a deal of head scratching as well as prior-reconnaissance and some “Oooh I’ll go that way” as well as those more cautious souls who stayed closer to the hall (and of course the tea and biscuits) and Gerry’s still life flowers. The brief was five (or more) different approaches to a subject.

Myself, Dan E. Megg G. and prospective member Jackie headed upstream by Brislington Brook to the pack horse bridge (Nightingale Valley to those who know it), which is less than ten minutes from the School (runs from Maes Knoll to the Avon). Some went to St Anne’s Park, some to St Anne’s Wood, others got more adventurous and took to the roads.  The results were interesting, even people in the same group can take the same subject but the angles, light, height, camera settings, detail selection are all personal and all make for a subtly different image. There were some fine images on display after the break and thanks everyone for sharing, though I am not sure my electricity pylon lived up to it and Jackie did it better. It’s a start. It’s not yet a habit for most, I would hazard a guess and even then it will depend on what sort of habit it becomes.

Let me elaborate. I have taken to portaging a Nikon Coolpix I got for a knockdown price from e-Bay around with me every time I leave the house over the last week or so. Just in case. 20MP for about £45. Bargain. That means, with the phone, I have two cameras I take pretty much everywhere with me.  The just in case bit is telling though. I got it because I missed a street photo that formed in black and white in my mind the second I saw it (OK I had been thinking about getting it for a while, this was the final push-against-an-open-door). I don’t very often do street. Even if I had my DSLR with me I am not sure that it would have got taken because it would have been too intrusive, especially in the available space there was to take it in. The battery on the phone was flat. Either, Serendipity, yes, but Planned Serendipity because I was looking for photo ops at least subconsciously, OR, Planned serendipity, no, because I hadn’t taken the preparation seriously enough – that is taken more care to keep the phone charged. I err towards the latter. That photograph is lost because it was never taken and will never be taken.

The habit is one of preparation. Deliberate preparation with the added stimulus of making more than one representation. Hanneke was not saying don’t pick up the camera bag and go for a wander, she was saying pick up the camera bag (making sure there is a camera in it, of course)  go for a wander because you have created the expectation which sharpens your focus with the intent of making one aspect stand out. A sort of Bokeh for the mind.



Busy week for announcements.

* If you are reading this then you most likely have seen the letter from Maurice reference the move of school to just up the road. It’s the post before this one. Sounds promising.


** Please remember the Flikr competition, this month it’s on the subject of reflections. Voting open for May’s competition too.


*** 19th July, the chance to photograph back stage at the Bristol Hippodrome, a outlined by Maurice at the at meeting. The show is the Rat Pack, details from Julie as follows:

If you read the information attached we have the chance to send 6 photographers along for a paparazzi style experience including behind the scenes photos which sounds great. You just have to agree to send a copy of your photos to them afterwards and they retain the copyright – but you can still use them in club competitions which seems very fair.


If you are interested in going into the draw for one of the 6 places please send a reply to this reflex e-mail letting me know and I will put your name into the hat. The 6 people will be chosen at random next week at the club prize giving event, which is being held in the skittle alley of the Langton Court pub (our old venue just round the corner).


**** Which brings us to next week (12th June) which is the social evening to be held at the Langton Court Pub, Langton Court Road, St Annes, just around the corner from the school.


***** The Western Counties Photographic federation, of which the club is a member, latest news letter is now available from here.


****** And the last two PAGB news Letters can be accessed via the following links:


******* If you fancy having a go at writing for the blog (it doesn’t have to be limited to one person) then have a chat with Mark Stone.


All the best


Ian G.