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David Rudge  LRPS

Little did I know that at the time I went into that chilly school hall for my first club meeting that Graham and Lynn were lurking over the hill! But I found in them and the school an environment that led you along the path of discovering the potential of your camera and your “eye” which to me is the most important aspect of my learning i.e., the encouragement to see what lies hidden around you – the people, the buildings, the landscape and the light and what art there is to find.

Then came that phrase “that could be a panel image” which was the beginning of another challenging journey that initially sounded straightforward – 10 images to meet the RPS standards. And so to a Bovey Tracey RPS Advisory Day in autumn 2017 and that salutary lesson when only two images were to standard. Two! How dare they!!

OK, so I calmed down and immediately booked a LRPS assessment date in April 2018. Perhaps I hadn’t calmed down. The morning was full of very nervous photographers, myself included. I saw some exceptional panels and I knew that there was work to do if I was to meet their standards. Not surprising, I was not recommended but the feedback was that 8 images were to standard and I was allowed to resubmit a panel. It is important to note that of the two images that were not to standard one lacked a obvious point of interest and the other had blown out highlights (not bokeh). The first needed replacing and the second needed redoing. I immediately booked a December 2018assessment date.

Thus followed the most difficult months ever in my photographic journey. Redoing the one image was achieved early but finding a replacement image took months of searching, processing, rejecting, searching. In the end an image was chosen.

On the day the assessment panel (not needing to look at the 8 standard images) all massed around the two images and this was an unnerving experience with no hiding place. There were differing opinions about aspects of the two images which is never unusual at these days but finally the chair of the panel read out my name which is the signal that you have achieved the LRPS standard.

I left the RPS’s HQ in Bath knowing that I would never go there again because they are moving to Bristol in 2019.”

David Rudge LRPS

© All images copyrignt David Rudge

David writes;

“It was raining heavily on the 5th December 2018 when I left the Royal Photographic Society’s HQ in Bath knowing that I would never go there again…..

Sometime ago I bought a little instamatic camera with the wages from a student summer job – the last year of my sixth form if I remember correctly. They had film in them!

And so began a long journey from taking holiday memories to a wet day in Bath. As with many my first challenging camera was a retirement present in 2011 a Canon DSLR and my right index finger spent more time scratching my head that opening the shutter. I then noticed that the Bodmin Camera Club held its meeting in Lanivet where I lived at the time. So I joined. I slowly began to understand the potential on the camera and, more importantly, heard for the first time that I may have “an eye”.

Thus, I explored how to take images that were technically better but that saw something extra. Peer support and criticism helped in this even if the club judging system (we all did a bit of this at that time) was occasionally confusing (“don’t like that shade of blue”). It was friendly, encouraging and produced lots of cat images!

However, the club possessed a couple of really interesting and expert photographers whose images I envied. I had reached a stage where I needed a more structured approach to my learning.

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