21st July 2009

From the July email newsletter:


Hi all,


Just a quick one this month, mainly to relay some important info to keep in mind for the next meeting. The club meetings will no longer be held at the Annandale community centre. As a temporary measure for the next month or two we’ll be gathering at the Rising Sun Hungry Jacks. There is another venue in the works though, so watch this space.


There will be a club outing to Pallarenda on Sunday 2nd August. The meeting place is the car park right at the end of Pallarenda, past the “ring road” and through the gate that leads to the quarantine station. This is one for the early birds with the meeting time being 7:00am, but the light should be great.


See you at the Pallarenda outing on 2nd August, and at the August meeting – 7pm at Rising Sun Hungry Jacks on Tuesday 11th August.





16th June 2009

From the June email newsletter:

Paul popped in briefly to let everyone know about a 30% OFF all canvas prints at Big W until 24 June.


Kevin brought in his movie projector and treated us to a ‘way we were’ moment with a Keystone Cops Silent Film. The energetic acting left us in no doubt as to the ‘goodies and baddy’’. Although no one could lip read, we are confident there was no coarse language, and no adult themes! – the worst that happened to our innocent heroine was to be chained to the rail tracks. The violence at the end was swift.


Andy and Christine discussed their respective recent travels regarding what to take – or perhaps what NOT to take. Christine abandoned her new camera bag in favour of a large handbag to carry /disguise her dslr with medium zoom attached. This allowed her to ‘push a few pixels’ in venues she shouldn’t have. Fortunately this was in Melbourne and she was allowed to return home with herself and camera gear intact!

Andy travelled further afield to Europe and chose a combination knapsack/camera bag which did not cry out ‘tourist with lots of camera stuff’. The monopod stayed mainly in the hotel room and the short telephoto lens seemed to cater for most of Andy’s architectural pursuits. Storage of images is another headache and Andy chose to take along his laptop  and so edit his images while the moment of capture was fresh. We all enjoyed a very interesting and informative discussion on traveling with camera equipment.


As yours truly hasn’t been anywhere recently, all I could input was my fairly recent experience of attending an auction of pre-loved (by the Police Dept.) Nikon film slrs and lenses. These (F4 - FM3 –F100)  were presented in sealed bags containing 2 bodies and 1 lens, so impossible to test. I was given the impression that they were expected to sell for around $50. WRONG!! A couple of eBay sellers kept the prices up around $300 and more. Lesson to be learnt….don’t bother thinking of getting a bargain anymore…. one particular eBay seller turns up everywhere!


For this months outing…the steam train should be in Townsville again on June 13 for more photo opportunities – possibly interiors – Kevin is our man to ‘get us in’ as Volunteer Steward – just watch out for the lady taking photos with her handbag!


Happy Snaps…



15th May 2009

From the May email newsletter:

Hi all,


Just a short note this month to keep everyone updated. Our latest meeting was held on Tuesday 12th May and due to a smaller turnout of members this month the general business was completed more quickly than usual …


Next meeting:  Tuesday 9th June 2009


Next month’s theme for presentation at the June meeting:  “Street scene”


Next outing:  No group outing was planned for this month, however as a substitute Christine and Howard raised the suggestion of club members individually taking some shots of the upcoming steam train rides between Townsville and Stuart, which are to be held on 29th May and 13th June. For example, one idea was to find a vantage point somewhere along the train’s route and take some shots (with a long lens!!) as it goes by. Here’s a link to some info showing the departure times…


We had some photos presented by Christine, Ross M and Margaret relating to tonight’s theme “Music” and the recent sunset/night club outing to Castle Hill, and as usual we were treated to some imaginative and different interpretations of those subjects. To round out the evening prior to the social coffee-biscuits-and-conversation time Garry gave a short Photoshop tutorial on converting a digital photo to appear as a “sketch”, with great results.


That’s all for this month. Now it’s time for us all to hit the “streets” and grab some great shots to impress each other with at the June meeting.





16th April 2009

From the April email newsletter:

Hi all,


Out latest meeting was held on Tuesday 14th April, and here’s a rundown of the topics that were discussed…


The issue of the number of photo submissions that people bring along to the meetings was raised, as sometimes the number of photos that we have to get through is very large and a time consuming process (which, when you think about it, is actually a pretty good problem to have and find a solution for). It became apparent that back in the club’s history there was an almost-forgotten rule of a limit of three photos per monthly theme plus three photos from the latest outing per club member. Everyone in attendance agreed that it would be a good idea to return to that limit of bringing along a maximum of only your three best shots for each activity, as it would make the meetings run much more smoothly and prevent the meeting’s regular general business from dragging on for too long. It was also decided that if anyone has any extra photographs over and above that limit, whether it be extra images from the latest theme/outing or even images totally unrelated to the club’s theme/outing, club members are more than welcome to bring them along and present them during our “social time” after the regular monthly club business has been concluded, on the understanding that no offense should be taken if other club members use that time for other purposes aside from checking out additional photos.


Our next meeting will be held on Tuesday 12th May 2009, and the theme for presentation on that night is “Music”.


Our next outing will be an evening/night shoot at the top of Castle Hill. The meeting time/date is 5:30pm on Sunday 26th April 2009.


After an introduction by one of our newer members Ross M (he got away with it last month, but not two months in a row!) it was time to see the latest masterpieces on show from our current theme and outing. The theme tonight was “People In Action”, and there were some excellent shots from Andy (outrigger canoes), Paul (a swimmer, with a very well-done grainy black and white effect, all traditionally done in the darkroom of course), Christine (runners with lots of motion blur on a sharp background), Sean (some great sports shots), and Ross M (his brother’s band in action). Photos from the Alligator Creek outing last month were just as impressive, with contributions from Sean, Ross M, Garry, Margaret, Andy, Paul, Christine and Ross A. Apologies if I left anyone out here.


After all the general business was wrapped up it was time for Kevin to play Santa, with a box full of goodies to go to a good home. Kevin was recently given this box containing many old 35mm cameras dating roughly from the 1960s to the 1980s, plus many lenses, and Kevin chose to bring them along to the meeting and let them go to anyone who would get some use and enjoyment out of them. The old cameras sparked lots of interesting conversations, and there were a few quirky ones that had us puzzled for quite a while about how they operate or even just how to open them to load the film! I’m sure I speak for us all who were present at the meeting when I give Kevin a HUGE thankyou for his generosity. From my own perspective, I left with an old M42 mount 135mm lens that I’m really keen to try out on my early ‘70s Pentax Spotmatic in the near future.


That’s it for this month. See you on Castle Hill.





13th March 2009

From the March email newsletter:

Hi all,


Just a quick update regarding topics that were discussed at the latest monthly meeting on Tuesday 10th March…


Upcoming dates to mark off on your calendar are:


Sunday 22nd March – Club outing to the national park at Alligator Creek. The plan is to meet up in the car park at the Caltex servo on the Bruce Highway heading south, and then proceed up to Alligator Creek together in convoy. For anyone unsure where the Caltex service station is, I have attached two maps to this email – a wide view and a zoomed in view – showing the location. The Caltex is marked with the purple “1” on the maps. Note: Click here for the "wide angle" mapClick here for the "telephoto" map. Our intentions are to meet up BEFORE 7am at the service station and then at 7am we’ll be hitting the road and heading up to our final destination. Of course anyone who wants to go earlier to catch the early morning light, or anyone who needs more beauty sleep and can’t make it to the servo before 7am is welcome to make their own way to Alligator Creek and meet us there.


Tuesday 14th April 2009 – Next monthly meeting.


Tuesday 14th July 2009 – New Scavenger Hunt due at the July monthly meeting. The one that just closed was a success and at the meeting there was plenty of interest shown starting another one straight away. Again we just chose letters of the alphabet to base our photos on, and here they are… R Q V T H F O D B W


At this month’s meeting there were plenty of photos on show for our enjoyment relating to the current theme, the last outing (despite the rain) and the last Scavenger Hunt. The submissions for this month’s “Open” theme came from Sean (a portrait); Christine (backyard wildlife); Carl (France/Wales city scenes); Ross (landscapes); Andy (various experiments with his new camera); and Paul (macro/close-up). So the “Open” theme was a success with no two people choosing a similar genre.


Andy, Leala, Paul and Christine added to the submissions we had already seen at previous meetings with their own Scavenger Hunt photos, and Leala and Garry brought along shots from February’s all-but aborted monthly outing to the Ross River dam. Their shots were mainly taken on days other than the planned outing day though, due to yet more rain on the day we planned to be there.


Ross rounded out the evening by demonstrating a DIY flash diffuser for close-up/macro photography. After seeing similar items selling for silly prices online he used some ingenuity and made some himself from frosted-effect plastic ringbinder divider sheets from Officeworks for next to nothing. Ross even handed out his leftover sheets to the rest of us so we could follow his “design” and have a go ourselves. Thanks Ross!


That’s all for now. See you at the outing on Sunday 22nd March.





15th February 2009

From the February email newsletter:


Hi all,


Just a quick monthly update on what was discussed at the club’s monthly meeting held on Tuesday 10th February.


We started with the general business: 


The next monthly theme for presentation at the March meeting is “Open”. So anything goes! Mainly for the benefit of our newest member Andy, Garry spoke about the general rules for the monthly themes, and since it has been a while since these things were mentioned in general I thought it would be worth repeating here. The photos can be presented in any format, so a cost effective and time saving alternative to bringing along prints/enlargements is to bring along your photo/s on a flash drive as Garry always brings his laptop to display them. The other main rule is that the photos have to be taken within the previous twelve months prior to the meeting. If the theme inspires you to go out and shoot solely to come up with a theme photo to present then that of course would be the best outcome because that is really what the objective of having the themes is all about, but if you have an older photo taken within the last year that fits the theme then that is perfectly okay too.


After a couple of months without outings due to the Christmas / New Year period and all the bad weather we’ve been having we now have an outing to look forward to. The outing is to Ross Dam next Sunday 22nd February. The meeting time and place is 8am in the main car park. Depending on how much rain we have between now and then it might be wise to bring along some insect repellent.


We had a scavenger hunt running late last year for presentation at the January meeting, but since the January meeting was almost a total washout very few people had the opportunity to display their hard work. So anyone who has anything to show relating to the scavenger hunt is more than welcome to bring it along to the March meeting, which also gives us another few weeks to get out there and shoot for it. As a reminder, the ten photos have to relate in some way to the following letters of the alphabet… G, M, L, E, J, Y, N, U, P, X.


A suggestion was made to show the entire year’s meeting dates on the front page of the club’s website, so I have done this. An important thing to note is that for November only we have had to shift the meeting date to the first Tuesday of the month (2nd November) because the community centre had already been pre-booked by someone else on the 2nd Tuesday prior to us confirming our reservation for the year’s meetings.


As usual there were some great submissions relating to January’s “Macro” theme for our viewing pleasure, although there weren’t as many as usual, no doubt due to the weeks of non-stop rain. Christine brought along some great shots of ants and plants, and Garry brought some shots taken in the rain at the Palmetum. The effectiveness of the raindrops on the close-ups of the plants proved that with some thought the problem of the rainy weather could be turned around to actually be an advantage.


You may recall an email sent out from Sean requesting help with borrowing/hiring a lens for shooting a wedding on Magnetic Island. Sean brought along some enlargements from his work on that day, and I was especially impressed with one or two of the candid shots which showed that he has a lot of natural talent for capturing the moment. One thing he definitely has on his side is youth(!!), so his enthusiasm combined with all the experience he gains in the future will no doubt improve his technique to match his big talent.


Finally, welcome aboard to our latest member Andy. Like many of our members Andy is rekindling an old hobby from years gone by, and it was a pleasure getting to know him at the meeting.


That’s it for now. See you at the dam next Sunday.





28th January 2009

Hi all,


A few months ago the club was sent a notice from the MSN mob to let us know that they are stopping their "groups" service in February. This MSN Groups service was how we provided the members gallery. MSN gave us an option of migrating our Group (the gallery) in its entirety to another Group service called Multiply, and I have done that this afternoon.


I believe that any members who had galleries in the old MSN group should receive an automated email from Multiply advising them of the transition. Just as we had to individually register on MSN to have a gallery there, we'll now have to register on Multiply in the same way. Following the link from the automated email led me through the sign-up process, so I suspect the same will happen with you. I'm not 100% of the process there because I was going through it as a site manager rather than a member.


The galleries seem to have transferred okay, although with my own photos probably about a quarter of them lost the text descriptions that I had placed against the individual photos in the old gallery. I played around with my own personal gallery there briefly and was able to edit things on my existing photos without any dramas, but I haven't attempted to upload anything new yet.


The major improvement with the new gallery is that it loads up and accepts updates fast. For many months the old gallery has taken about five minutes to load up each page, which made it useless to both view and update. Another good improvement with the new Multiply gallery is that it now has the ability for people to make comments on other people's photos, in much the same way as Flickr, Facebook, etc.


With the old gallery there was a function where anyone who wanted to join the "Group" and create a personal gallery had to be okayed by Lindsay, Garry or myself. If the transition went well then hopefully that still applies. Whether it will apply to people who already had galleries in the old MSN site I don't know; hopefully those people will still have their previous access. If not, we'll just reapprove everyone who reapplies for access.


Anyway, here is the link to the new gallery for anyone who didn't receive an automated email from Multiply...


Give it a go and post some new pics.





15th January 2009

From the January email newsletter:


Hi all,


I won't be boring you for too long this time because with only three of us braving the wet weather on Tuesday night there isn't much to report on from this month's meeting, so for once I'll keep this very short and sweet. Garry and Christine presented their photos relating to the current monthly themes of "Bridges" and "Circles or Squares", as well as their Scavenger Hunt photos which were also due this month. The usual high standard of their presentations was met again. Also Ross, who couldn't make it for reasons other than the weather, emailed his theme submissions to Garry who displayed them on a laptop. One of Ross' photos was a 360 degree panorama of a rural setting which he had manipulated to look like a little planet, with trees, grass, etc (even a Landcruiser) poking out of the surface. It was a very interesting effect and Ross offered in his email to give a demonstration of how to do it at a future meeting. Due to the circumstances (i.e. the rain) on Tuesday night I'm sure any late submissions for the January theme and scavenger hunt will still be very welcome next time.


Next month's theme is "Anything macro". Also please remember that the entire year's themes are posted on the club's home page, which is handy to get a head start on any of the upcoming themes.


There was no outing arranged for January. After the Christmas break and the semi-aborted meeting we'll get back into full swing again next month.


Finally Garry mentioned that Dan Slattery is unwell in hospital at the moment. As all club regulars would know, Dan is a long-time club member with a mountain of photographic experience who always has time to spare to give dunces like me great advice on all facets of photography and cameras, so I'm sure I speak for everyone when I say that our thoughts are with you.


See you all at the next meeting (10th Feb),







Click thumbnail to view a larger image:



Above Photos by

Scott Radford-Chisholm

 Lotus, Ross River, 28 May 2006  by Frida

 Blencoe Mists by Lindsay



 Chillies by Mick

At Cungulla  by Carl

Watching Paint Peel

by Vanessa