On Wednesday 16 March, we temporarily escaped from the virtual world of Zoom and commenced a gradual return to face-to-face meetings back at Greenleas School. The plan is to start using the school again – with suitable Covid precautions – for practical evenings, internal activities, and print evenings. (For the time being, we will continue with Zoom conferencing for speakers and competitions.)

The meeting was also recorded for those members who were unable to attend in person.

We began our return with a print evening as our very own David Manning ARPS entertained and educated us by showing us a selection of his prints.

For the first half of the evening, under the title “In No Particular Order”, David showed us some of the many prints he has created over nearly 50 years of printing.  He began with his very first print, “Class of ‘72” (taken in 1974), and then guided us onwards, through a variety of different subjects and treatments, right up to the present day.  Indeed, some images had been seen recently in PDI competitions.

There were portraits, landscapes, seascapes, composites, and more.  And there was even some natural history – “I don’t really do natural history”!  The prints were mostly colour, but there were also some black & white ones and an infrared image.

In the second part of the evening, David set up first the panel of ten images he used to achieve his LRPS in 2015 and shared his thoughts on putting the panel together.  They were a very mixed collection.  But they had all scored 20 in competitions.  David did not find the LRPS criteria particularly fulfilling.  (Broadly, having to show variety in approach and techniques – assessed by reference to camera work and technical quality, visual awareness, communication, and overall impression.)

David then set up the panel of fifteen images he used to achieve his ARPS.  He found the different criteria for this distinction much more fulfilling.  (ARPS requires a cohesive body of work that depicts and communicates some aims and objectives set out in a Statement of Intent.)  David’s images were all street portraiture.  And they were all taken during a two-day stopover in Hong Kong.  He had them more or less sorted out before he had gained his LRPS!

Finally, David showed us his “most successful print in competitions”.  It was a composite street photography image called “The Lady and the Tramp”.  He had previously tried separate images of the lady and the tramp.  But they had not scored well like that.  So he had put the two characters into a single image (he explained how he had gone about this) and it had done really well for him.

David also shared his “tips for street photography”, including his preferred camera settings.

It was good to be back in the hall at Greenleas School again looking at prints.  And they were of course such good prints.  This was a very interesting and entertaining evening surveying David’s superb images and enjoying his helpful commentary.  For many people, “prints is what photography is all about” and David’s images showed why they feel like that.