Welcome to the Pennant Hills Photographic Club

We welcome all photographers to join and participate in its events and by sharing knowledge to improve and enhance photographic skills. Our club aims to mentor, support, and educate its members, and to foster skills and passion for photography in a collegiate and enjoyable atmosphere.

Meeting Address only: Uniting Church Hall – Corner of Boundary Road and Bellamy Street. Parking is on a grassed block of land opposite the church in Bellamy St., and the entrance we use is facing Bellamy St.

For information on the club please view this link.

To join please download and complete the Membership Form (PDF fillable): Download Membership form

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About Us

PHPC is a medium-sized club of around 40-50 members. Our members range in skill from enthusiastic novices to experienced photographers. The club has a few members who are judges.

We have a number of members who run the mentoring program for our newer members to learn the capabilities of their camera(s). We are large enough to support the growth of members but small enough to be a community, where all members can know each other. The club is here to challenge us to get the best from ourselves and our cameras

Join our Club Upcoming Events - mouse over for details
Aug
5
Mon
7:30 pm Presentation: by Chris Kenyon @ Uniting Church Hall
Presentation: by Chris Kenyon @ Uniting Church Hall
Aug 5 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
Presentation by Chris Kenyon on Mounting Photographs.
7:30 pm Presentation: Chris Kenyon – Mou... @ Uniting Church Hall
Presentation: Chris Kenyon – Mou... @ Uniting Church Hall
Aug 5 @ 7:30 pm – 9:45 pm
Presentation by Chris Kenyon on Mounting Photographs
Aug
19
Mon
7:30 pm Comp 07: Open and Set – Machinery @ Uniting Church Hall
Comp 07: Open and Set – Machinery @ Uniting Church Hall
Aug 19 @ 7:30 pm – 9:45 pm
Comp 08: Open and Set – Machinery. An image of the whole or part of a machine that shows the beauty, functionality, history or value of the machine.
Recent Posts Archives

Sutherland International

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by Chris Kenyon, 22 June 2024

Gestalt Theory – Picturecorrect

Understanding Gestalt Theory in Photography

Posted: 06/14/2024

Gestalt theory, originating from early 20th-century psychology, emphasizes the human ability to perceive patterns and wholes in chaotic environments. This theory, which asserts that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts,” has profound implications for various disciplines, including photography. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the principles of Gestalt theory and explore how photographers can harness these concepts to create more compelling and visually engaging images.

Also remember that a Spring Sale for the Cheat Sheets on all the Compositional Elements is ending soon!

gestalt theory

What is Gestalt Theory?

Gestalt theory was developed by German psychologists Max Wertheimer, Wolfgang Köhler, and Kurt Koffka. The theory focuses on how people naturally organize visual elements into groups or unified wholes when certain principles are applied. The main principles of Gestalt theory are:

  1. Similarity
  2. Proximity
  3. Closure
  4. Continuity
  5. Figure-Ground
  6. Symmetry and Order

These principles explain how our brains interpret complex scenes, enabling us to recognize patterns and make sense of visual stimuli. In photography, understanding and applying these principles can lead to more impactful and aesthetically pleasing images.

Principle 1: Similarity

Similarity refers to our tendency to group similar elements together. In photography, this principle can be used to create harmony and cohesion within an image.

Application in Photography:

  • Color Coordination: Photographers often use color to create a sense of unity. For example, a photograph of a flower field with red and yellow tulips grouped together leverages the principle of similarity in color to create a striking visual effect.
  • Shape and Form: Similar shapes and forms within a composition can guide the viewer’s eye and create a sense of order. A series of arches in an architectural photograph can exemplify this principle, leading the viewer’s gaze through the image.

Principle 2: Proximity

Proximity involves grouping elements that are close to each other. This principle helps in establishing relationships between different parts of an image.

Application in Photography:

  • Groupings: Positioning subjects close to one another can create a connection or narrative. A photograph of a group of friends standing closely together conveys a sense of unity and togetherness.
  • Foreground and Background Interaction: Placing elements at varying distances within the frame can add depth and perspective, helping the viewer understand the spatial relationship between objects.

Principle 3: Closure

Closure is the concept that our minds tend to fill in the missing parts of an incomplete shape or object to perceive a complete form.

Application in Photography:

  • Implied Lines: Using elements within the frame to suggest a shape or form can lead the viewer to “complete” the image mentally. A photograph of a broken fence might suggest a continuous line, even if parts of the fence are missing.
  • Silhouettes and Shadows: Silhouettes can create powerful images where the mind completes the shape of the subject, enhancing the viewer’s engagement with the photograph.

Principle 4: Continuity

Continuity describes our tendency to follow lines and curves, making it easier to navigate and understand an image.

Application in Photography:

  • Leading Lines: Photographers use leading lines to guide the viewer’s eye through the photograph. A road stretching into the horizon or a river winding through a landscape can create a natural path for the viewer’s gaze.
  • Flow and Movement: Capturing elements that suggest movement, like flowing water or a winding staircase, helps create a dynamic and engaging image that leads the eye naturally.

Principle 5: Figure-Ground

Figure-Ground is the ability to distinguish an object (the figure) from its background (the ground).

Application in Photography:

  • Contrast: Using high contrast between the subject and the background helps the subject stand out. This technique is particularly effective in portrait photography where the subject’s face needs to be the focal point.
  • Depth of Field: Blurring the background (bokeh effect) while keeping the subject in focus can help isolate the subject and make it the clear point of interest.

Principle 6: Symmetry and Order

Symmetry and Order refer to our preference for balanced and orderly compositions. Symmetrical compositions are often perceived as harmonious and aesthetically pleasing.

Application in Photography:

  • Balanced Composition: Placing elements symmetrically can create a sense of stability and calmness. Architectural photography often employs symmetry to emphasize the precision and order of structures.
  • Patterns and Repetition: Repeating elements can create a rhythm in the photograph, leading to a cohesive and pleasing visual experience.

Integrating Gestalt Principles in Your Photography

To effectively integrate Gestalt principles into your photography, consider the following tips:

  1. Plan Your Composition: Think about how you can arrange elements in the frame to utilize principles like proximity and similarity to enhance your composition.
  2. Experiment with Different Perspectives: Changing your viewpoint can help you find natural lines and shapes that utilize principles like continuity and figure-ground.
  3. Focus on Details: Pay attention to small elements that can collectively create a stronger impact, embodying the principle of closure.
  4. Use Contrast and Light: Play with light and shadows to create depth and highlight the figure-ground relationship in your photos.
  5. Practice and Analyze: Regularly review your work to see how well you are applying these principles. Experiment and learn from each shot to continually improve your ability to create compelling compositions.

Summary:

Understanding and applying Gestalt principles can significantly enhance your photographic compositions by making them more visually engaging and harmonious. By recognizing how our minds naturally perceive and organize visual information, photographers can create images that resonate more deeply with viewers. So, next time you pick up your camera, consider how you can use these timeless principles to elevate your photography and see the whole picture.

by Chris Kenyon, 22 June 2024

Leading lines from Picturecorrect

Types of Leading Lines in Photography Composition

Posted: 06/16/2024

When it comes to photography composition, one of the most powerful tools at your disposal is leading lines. Like the invisible hand that guides a viewer’s eye through an image, leading lines are a subtle, yet highly effective, compositional element that can dramatically improve the visual impact of your photos.

Also remember that a spring sale for the Cheat Sheets on all the Compositional Elements ends soon!

What Are Leading Lines?

Leading lines are, in essence, visual paths drawn in an image that lead the viewer’s eye towards a particular point, often to the main subject of the photograph. They serve to guide the viewer’s attention, create depth, and add a dynamic element to a composition. Leading lines are everywhere, from the natural lines created by rivers or coastlines, to architectural lines in cityscapes, to implied lines in portraits.

Understanding and leveraging leading lines in photography can significantly enhance your images, and here are some types of leading lines you should know.

1. Straight Lines

Straight lines are probably the most common leading lines that photographers utilize. They are powerful and direct. Whether vertical, horizontal, or diagonal, they create a sense of order and stability.

  • Vertical Lines: These lines can imply strength and grandeur. Think of towering skyscrapers or a towering tree in a forest.
  • Horizontal Lines: These suggest tranquility and breadth. The horizon line in a landscape photo is a classic example.
  • Diagonal Lines: Diagonal lines add a sense of dynamism and movement to a composition. They are often used to lead the viewer’s eye from one corner of the image to another or directly to the subject.

leading lines straight

Photo captured by Susn Matthiessen

2. Curved Lines

Curved lines, such as those found in winding roads, rivers, or architectural arches, create a sense of fluidity and grace in a composition. They can add a rhythmic, harmonious feel to your photographs and guide the viewer’s eye more subtly than straight lines. An “S” curve is a particularly pleasing type of curved line, often used in landscape and nature photography.

3. Implied Lines

These are lines that don’t physically exist but are suggested by elements within an image. They can be formed by the direction a person is looking, the path of a dancer’s leap, or even the sequential positioning of objects in a scene. Although they’re less obvious, they can be incredibly effective in guiding a viewer’s gaze towards the subject.implied leading lines

Photo captured by Jonny Clow

4. Interrupted Lines

An interrupted line is a leading line broken by another element or object in the frame. For example, a fence line may be interrupted by a gate or a tree. This type of line can create tension in an image and adds interest to the composition by breaking up the monotony of a continuous line.

5. Converging Lines

Also known as perspective lines, converging lines are common in architectural and street photography. They occur when two or more lines start from different points but meet at a single point in the image, often on the horizon. Converging lines create depth and perspective, giving a three-dimensional feel to a two-dimensional image.converging lines

Photo captured by Amariei Mihai

Conclusion

Mastering the use of leading lines can elevate your photography to new heights. They serve not only to draw attention to your main subject but also to instill a sense of order, add depth, and enhance the overall aesthetic of your images. As you become more familiar with these various types of leading lines, you’ll begin to see them everywhere and instinctively incorporate them into your compositions.

Remember, while these guidelines can be incredibly helpful, they’re not hard and fast rules. Experiment, be creative, and don’t be afraid to break the rules once you’ve learned them. After all, photography is an art form, and you are the artist. Harness the power of leading lines and let your unique vision shine through your work.

by Chris Kenyon, 22 June 2024

APS Comp

Graham Burstow Monochrome Prize

GBMP 2024

APS APPROVAL NO. 2024/09

GRAHAM BURSTOW MONOCHROME PRIZE – SOCIAL DOCUMENTARY | STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

The Graham Burstow Monochrome Prize was established in 2023 in honour of Graham Burstow OAM SAPS PSQA FFRPS FAPS EFIAP who was one of the founding members of the Australian Photographic Society and since that time, he contributed enormously to the Society and its members. He was involved in the establishment of APS national and international exhibitions. Graham was the APS President from 1982 to 1984 and was the APS Print Division chairman for ten years.

Graham passed away at the age of 96 years in 2022, and was legendary in the photography world, having been recognised by an Order of Australia medal in 2004 for his services to Photography. The first Queenslander to do so, he achieved a Fellowship in each of the Australian, British, and American Photographic Societies.

Grahams’ captivating photographs are held in many institutions around Australia, including the National Library in Canberra and HOTA on the Gold Coast, and show his great passion for social documentary especially in monochrome.

Calendar

 Entries Open 15 June 2024
 Entries Close 30 July 2024
 Judging Commences 31 July 2024
 Results Emailed 30 August 2024
 Catalogue & Awards Sent30 August 2024


Awards

• Prize Money First – $500, Second – $250, Third – $100.
• Presented to the Honourable Mention placings (ribbon).
• At the discretion of the judges acceptances in each section that have not received a placing, may be awarded a Merit.
• VIRTUAL JUDGING will be used with judges in different locations within Australia.
• Acceptances gained in this exhibition may be applied towards APS honours.


Judges

Adrian Whear APSEM/b
Andrew Swinfield EFIAP APSEM
Anne Smallegange EFIAP/g GMAPS EPSA

by Chris Kenyon, 22 June 2024

Results for competitions in Comp 5 Open and Set – Backlighting

There were 20 entries that were rated the highest by our judge(s).

Members can view all images and comment on them by following this link
View / Comment entries in Comp 5 Open and Set – Backlighting

click here to see a pdf catalog of all competition results

Sunset silhouettes
Elaine Holliday – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Cleansing
Elaine Holliday – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Maasai at Home
Larry Armstrong – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Small Print

Fisherman at sunrise
Chris Barlow – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Digital

Through the glass wall
Reena Cheng – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Sand Storm
Robin Levin – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Parasol Hues 1
Chris Kenyon – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

All alone
Elaine Holliday – Set – Merit
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Framed in the ruins
Chris Barlow – Set – Merit
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Industrial
David Mellefont – Set – Merit
Set Subject Small Print

Pyrmont Wharves
Michael Frost – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Gundagai Station and Surrounds
Michael Frost – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Riding The Wave
Nancy Morley – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Billboard Figures
Don Dickins – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Figures and Triangles
Don Dickins – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Daisy_BW
DENNIS BARKER – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Brown Booby
David Mellefont – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Elephant at sunset
Chris Barlow – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Bush fire sunset
Richard McMullen – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Busy bee
Richard McMullen – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

by Don Dickins, 18 June 2024

Results for competitions in Comp 5 Open and Set – Backlighting

There were 20 entries that were rated the highest by our judge(s).

Members can view all images and comment on them by following this link
View / Comment entries in Comp 5 Open and Set – Backlighting

click here to see a pdf catalog of all competition results

Sunset silhouettes
Elaine Holliday – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Cleansing
Elaine Holliday – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Maasai at Home
Larry Armstrong – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Small Print

Fisherman at sunrise
Chris Barlow – Set – Top Shot
Set Subject Digital

Through the glass wall
Reena Cheng – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Sand Storm
Robin Levin – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

Parasol Hues 1
Chris Kenyon – Set – Merit
Set Subject Colour Large Print

All alone
Elaine Holliday – Set – Merit
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Framed in the ruins
Chris Barlow – Set – Merit
Set Subject Mono Large Print

Industrial
David Mellefont – Set – Merit
Set Subject Small Print

Pyrmont Wharves
Michael Frost – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Gundagai Station and Surrounds
Michael Frost – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Riding The Wave
Nancy Morley – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Billboard Figures
Don Dickins – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Figures and Triangles
Don Dickins – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Daisy_BW
DENNIS BARKER – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Brown Booby
David Mellefont – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Elephant at sunset
Chris Barlow – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Bush fire sunset
Richard McMullen – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

Busy bee
Richard McMullen – Set – Merit
Set Subject Digital

by Don Dickins, 18 June 2024

Presentations uploaded

At our meeting on the 3rd June we had three presentations:

  • Backlighting Presentation
  • Commenting on club members photography entries
  • 50th Anniversary Photobook

These presentations are now ready for you to look at on our website.

To access the presentations, first log in and then click on the Members Resources tab (4th from the top on the right hand side menu). You will see the presentations listed at the top of the page. Click on the presentation to open it up.
Regards

Janne

by Janne Ramsay, 13 June 2024

Epson presentation at Hawkesbury Camera Club tomorrow night.

Dear Fellow Photography Clubs

Hawkesbury Camera Club would like to invite you and your members to a presentation by Luke McCormac from Kayell Australia re: Epson products on Wednesday, 12 June.

Am sure we will educate ourselves in relation to current printing products, ink etc as these things has changed.

Could you please pass this on to your members and let me know if any members are interested in attending?

We start at 7.30pm

Location:  Richmond Club. 6 East Market Street, Richmond.

Regards

Marian Paap | Secretary | Competition Manager | HCC

M        0402 116670

W        https://hawkesbury.myphotoclub.com.au

by Chris Kenyon, 11 June 2024

2023 APS Australia Cup

A very big thank you to everyone in the club for your amazing submissions for entry into the 2023 APS Australia Cup. The standard of the images was very high and the decision on the photographs chosen by our selection panel was very difficult. In the end the selection incorporated life in Australia from wildlife, scenes (some iconic), lifestyle and architecture.

Congratulations to the members of our club whose images were chosen.

The standard of the images and the number submitted for the APS Australia Cup has provided us with most of the images we will need for the FCC Interclub competition which opens in August. There are nine categories in that competition and many of the photographs submitted for the Australia Cup apply perfectly to the different categories. We will talk about this more and let you know closer to the date.

For now, here is our entry for the 2023 APS Australia Cup.

2023 APS Australian Cup
Balmain Waterfront / Robin Levin
Chatting in the Rain / Nancy Morley
Farm House / Don Dickins
Gecko Shadows / Ruth Penman
Grabbing Food from Mum’s Throat / Prasad de Silva
Juvenile Superb Fairy Wrens / Ruth Penman
Lamington Views / Sue Crowe
Lamp Post / Don Dickins
Mona Museum / Julie Royle
Propeller / Omid Mazloomi
Shearer / Ruth Penman
Show Ride / Don Dickins
South Bungle Bungles / Menno Kipper
Summer Buster / Robin Levin
Sunrise Through the Mist / Chris Kenyon
The Breakaways / David Mellefont
The Flow / Nancy Morley
Uni Spiral / Chris Kenyon
Waterfall / Norm Wilkinson
Foggy Morning / Kate Fuji

Regards

Janne

by Janne Ramsay, 8 June 2024

Photography Competitions

How to Win Photography Competitions: Tips from a Pro

Posted: 06/01/2024

After a few minor photo competition successes, I entered the Focus Awards absolutely full of confidence, my ego had taken hold and all I could think about was all the recognition and prizes I was going to win.

You guessed it, it was an absolute fail!

However, failure is one of my key inspirations and every time it happens (fairly often) the cogs in my mind start spinning as I try to figure out how to never let it happen again.

photo competition winner

At the time, I was still a carpenter/builder and as I went about the rest of the day my mind was elsewhere contemplating how I could improve my chances of photo competition success in the future.

Then an idea struck me, a lightbulb moment, what if the winning photo competition galleries, the top 20/50/100 scoring photos that are always published on the relevant competition websites contained a pattern as to which photos might be more likely to be successful in a photo competition.

I couldn’t stop thinking about it, I raced home, turned on the computer, opened an Excel spreadsheet and created a series of columns based on photographic criteria.

Great Light, Black and White, High Saturation, etc, etc

I then scoured the galleries of my favorite photo competitions, one by one I viewed each image and ticked the various boxes on my excel spreadsheet.

I was hoping to see patterns of specific photographic criteria common to the top-scoring photos.

Not only did I find a series of patterns, their significance blew my mind.

There were three very important photographic elements found within almost all of the winning photos, so much so, if your photos didn’t contain at least two of these three elements it was almost impossible to win photo competitions.

3 Important Photographic Elements:

  1. Strong Subject
  2. Simplicity
  3. Great Light

Enter Photo Competitions with the unfair advantage!

Have you ever noticed that the same handful of photographers seem to win all the high profile photo competitions?

It’s true, the same names tend to end up on the winner’s list time and time again.

Photo competitions are no different from any other competition in the fact that if it is your first time entering you are probably not going to be all that great. To be great in any competition generally requires figuring out the subtleties of success.

So what can we do to give ourselves the best chance of winning?

photo from competition

The reason the same photographers tend to always win is that after several years of entering they have figured out what works and what doesn’t.

Keep in mind, like me, those winners once were lousy at photo competitions too.

But, that kind of experience comes at a cost. They have probably, entered their best 4 or more photos into at least 5 photo competitions per year, over a period of 2-3 years. If we do the math at an average of $25usd per photo that kind of experience is likely to cost well over $1000.

What if I told you that you already have GOLD-winning photos in your collection?

Yes 100%, you already have photos in your collection that have the potential to achieve awards at the highest levels and win the biggest international photo competitions!

How do I know this?

Over the years, I have taught Photoshop to thousands of passionate photographers of all levels, from absolute beginners to experienced professionals.

And the one thing they all have in common is GOLD-worthy photos in their collections.

I bet your wondering, how can absolute beginners and experienced professionals both be at the same level?

You are right; they are not. However, without fail, no matter the skill level I could always find photos with GOLD level potential on the hard drives of every single photographer that I have taught.

Granted, the beginners generally had fewer gold-potential photos than the more experienced photographers; however, regardless of skill or experience, I could always find the diamonds among the rough.

Therefore, I am 100% sure that you too have photos of the highest level in your collection; but, which ones are they?

If you are like me, you probably have 20,000 – 200,000 photos on your hard drives.

And if you have entered a competition before you might know that your favorite photo is often the one the scores the lowest. Just because we like it doesn’t mean it will do well in a photo competition.

photo contest image

We should absolutely take photos to please ourselves, however, to be successful in photo competitions we need to put our emotions aside and choose photos that will please the judges.

Image selection is the most important skill in building your reputation as an exceptional photographer.

Not only is selecting the right photos critical to doing well in photo competitions, but it is also the single most important skill in building your reputation as an exceptional photographer.

All photographers of all skill levels have both brilliant and bad photos in their collections. Yes, the more skill and experience the photographer has will generally result in a higher ratio of brilliant over bad images.

That being said, if both the beginners and the best photographers have both brilliant and bad photos to choose from, then there can be no doubt that one of the most important skills in becoming an exceptional photographer is image selection.

In other words, your reputation as a photographer is directly related to the quality of the photos you choose to share.

Having a better understanding of what makes a great photo, along with being more critical and more selective about which photos you share, is likely to elevate your standing as a photographer more than any other skill.

Exceptional photographers only share exceptional photos! (When was the last time your favorite photographer shared a bad photo?)

by Chris Kenyon, 8 June 2024