Open Competition 1 - Oct 22

Winning PDI Image - Elena by Paul Wilcock
Nervous anticipation rippled through the hall as 20-plus members (and a handful on Zoom) awaited the start of the first competition this season. Open comp one was judged by Martin Pickles, who is a member of North Cheshire Photography Society and Macclesfield Camera Club. It was wonderful to see the much-awaited return of prints to the competition this year, after an absence of prints due to Covid safe measures. There is nothing like seeing a picture come alive in print!
Martin gave each picture its moment in the spotlight and although we overran, I personally feel it was much appreciated. Along with excellent feedback on each shot, Martin gave us lots of hints and tips to further develop our skills. Here are some of the ones I felt would be useful to share…

  • When mounting your prints choose a mount colour to enhance your main subject. White or cream will bring out the colours and highlight the warmth of a photo. Black will bring out shadows and dark areas and is good for monochrome prints.
  • When taking photos of animals, insects, birds etc always make sure the eyes can be seen and are in focus.
  • In a landscape, shot bring out the nicer areas of the photo by selecting and then the clarity slider.
  • Make sure your title relates to your subject matter and bear this in mind for you composition.
  • When taking portrait shot from a side angle, judges don’t like the subject’s nose to stick out past their cheek.
  • Get down to the same eye level as the animal so as not to make the animal look smaller. This is the same when taking pictures of cars, get down to wing mirror level.

It was great to feel that “butterfly in your stomach” feeling as your shot arrives on the screen, breath held wondering, will they like it? It was a very enjoyable evening, and the quality of the images was fantastic, a point which martin also made, making his job much harder. From the standard on view last night, it is going to be a very interesting season! Here are the top five prints and the top five PDIs

Result OrderAuthorTitleLeague Marks
1stRay Girling01_Afternoon practice20
2ndKath Hill03_Senior Barbary Macaque19.5
3rdSheila Regan01_Approaching Storm19
4thRay Hill01_Nuthatch looking for danger18.5
5thRay Hill03_Gannet Gliding on the wind18
Result OrderAuthorTitleLeague Marks
1stPaul Wilcock02_Elena20
2ndJim Cain03_Purple Pasque flower19.5
3rdColleen Ashley02_Little owl on a gate post19
4thTom Sheckleston03_Black Eagles Aerobatics team Southport18.5
5thIan Smith03_Song Thrush18

Congratulations to the winners and thank you to all the members who submitted images and to Martin for his Judging.

If you would like to join us, we are a friendly bunch and welcome new members. You can “Try before you buy!” and come for up to three sessions before you must join. A session costs £2.50 and membership is £30. For more information about the Mid-Cheshire Camera Club visit our website at or come along to a meeting on Wednesday evening at 7.45 for 8pm at St Andrews Methodist Church, Dingle Lane, Winsford.