Newsletter #120 – CRITIQUE NIGHT

We started the evening by thanking the Fire Service for offering to show us around the previous week, and confirmed that we are going to see if we can rearrange the event. As we all know, Critique nights are an essential part of any creative development and so members have the chance for other photographers to give feedback on ways that they feel might improve images before finalisation. We all have slightly different views on what makes a good image, so you might not agree with the comments and sometimes the comments might seem harsh, but they are intended to be constructive, and said in a way to help you make your photos even better.

Some newer members have asked about the requirements and procedures for our Critique sessions and the can be found on our website or by clicking HERE. We also have a section on image resizing which is again on our website and you can link to this by clicking HERE. If you need any additional help with resizing then please ask.

My tip with Critique Night comments, is to try out out a couple of the suggested changes or edits, picking those that you are most at ease with, and see if it improves your image. We would love for you to re-enter those edited images in a subsequent Critique so we can see what you did.


Someone mentioned that when critiquing the prints we didn’t comment on the paper textures and the mount quality and colour. We did struggle a bit on time but we do intend to reintroduce that back in to the print side of our critique and understand why the author chose to do a print instead of just a digital image.


It was good to see and hear the possible options and the overall comments from the panel, with lively interest and comments from the audience and I must say the quality and quantity of the images has improved, highlighting the value we all put on these nights. Similar to members wanting tips on how to improve their images, we would like tips and suggestions on how we could improve these critique evenings, so be sure to make suggestions.


My comments on mount cutting might have seemed harsh, but I know from experience that it takes time and skill to cut a good photo mount. I would say for every mount I used, three went in the bin. The annoying thing is there is no set rule about whether the mount should be judged as part of the overall image. On this point, we can make the views of any judge we use clear before submission dates.

I would like to thank the other panellists; Peter and Lawrence, who devoted a lot of time to make very constructive comments on a range of very good quality images. We should also acknowledge Tom who put it all together. Also, thanks to Thomas MacRae who stepped in to run Mo’s Table, and he gave us more challenges with both the choice and placement of lighting. Looks like you had fun working with the challenges set.


Brian Batman provided a spotlight session on technique rather than equipment. He demonstrated the importance of checking your camera settings, and showed some images of a Tractor Rally taken using very slow shutter speeds. Thanks to Brian for sharing that with us.


During the evening, I asked more of you to send in images for the newsletter. I should point out that anyone can send images in, and the more the better. Lastly, I will be drafting up a list of small jobs that need doing on club nights, or behind the scenes tasks, and will request helping hands to cover them. So, until then, think of ways you could help the Club to improve and spread the work load. Thanks.