RPS Digital Imaging Event

I went along to the RPS Digital Imaging Event in Birmingham on Saturday – it was a bit of a last minute decision to go as I went to a party on Friday night and the idea of an early morning trip was not sitting too well, but, I figured: that’s what strong coffee is for.

Anyway I was glad I went – there were some great speakers and some awesome images as well as workshops and trade stands. Because I left it late, I couldn’t attend the workshops as they were fully booked.

I wasn’t surprised that Glyn Dewis didn’t show up since he’s cancelled on Marlow CC twice.

Paul Sanders gave a great talk on his photographic journey from early days in journalism through being picture desk editor at a national newspaper to where he is today – pursuing his personal interests. Paul’s talk had two themes which resonated with me – one was how he used ‘analog’ filters (Lee filters) like Neutral Density and Graduated grey to get his shots how he wanted them “in camera” and a comparison with how using photoshop or lightrroom to achieve the same effects loses image quality. The other thing that struck me was how he used photography as a mindfulness tool – he spoke about the “process” of taking images and taking the time to plan and get them right. Take a look at his website at http://paulsanders.biz and you can see what I mean.

Tim Flach showed some amazing animal  images from his recent works on endangered species… his approach is a little different in that although he photographs in the wild, his shots are engineered to look like they’ve been taken in a studio with dark black backgrounds. To do this he uses portable flash to create pools of light leaving the background exposed dark. Some very interesting images, especially the bald chickens! http://timflach.com

I was very interested in Nick Turpin’s talk on street photography – it is an area I would like to do more work myself. Nick became the youngest full-time photographer on a national broadsheet newspaper in the UK, spending seven years shooting news, features and portraits for The Independent. Nick is a self-proclaimed ‘Street Photography Evangelist’ and has spread his belief in the importance of Street Photography as a distinct approach through books, exhibitions, workshops, TV, radio and lecturing. http://nickturpin.com

Nick also recommended looking at a website call “In Public” which is designed to showcase Street Photography. You can see some of his work there too. http://in-public.com

Gary Evans heads up the Imaging Science group at the RPS and did the grand finale talk which was on high speed video – showing a number of chemical reactions and explosions in slow motion taken from camera capable of thousands of frames per second. Exciting stuff – but the highlight for me was the last sequence which was taken by some researchers – the fastest camera on earth – which filmed a pulse of light – and you could actually see the light beam moving – so it was capturing something moving at the speed of light! Awesome stuff.

Zoltan Balogh from Southampton CC was sat next to me in the audience and was presented with a ribbon for one of his images. I simply had to put a link to his website here as he does some really great work. http://balough.uk

A great day and well worth the trip.