Rollright VAG Blog by David Townshend ARPS

23 February 2019

SIG: Visual Art

Reeds by Mike Parmee ARPS

Variety and creative stimulation, that’s what you are assured of at Rollright Visual Art Group events, and February’s meeting was no exception. 

Mike Parmee showed the panel he is currently developing based on intriguing minimalist images of reeds emerging from water. The shape of the reeds with their reflections has prompted Mike to explore a link to Haiku poetry. Mike particularly welcomed responses from the audience to his ongoing work.

Barry Barker took the link between poetry and images far into the world of Surrealist art and literature. After gaining access to a shop crammed with a bizarre collection of objects, Barry let his imagination off the leash to create a series of surreal images of apparently unrelated objects. He then linked these with his own Surrealist doggerel verse. Barry told us that the Arena photographic group had described this as the weirdest presentation they had experienced. The audience had to agree with that assessment, and definitely needed a lunch break to ponder on what they had seen and heard! 

Railway lines can also be a stimulus for creative photography as Robert Herringshaw showed. Robert explained how he used the Pecha Kucha technique for an audio visual submission to the Saltaire Festival of Art. Pecha Kucha is a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds; the images advance automatically and you talk along to the images. Robert’s presentation was of a trip along the length of the Airedale railway line, taking images through a single carriage window at precise times during the journey. Unfortunately Robert had to display his work to the Festival not as a Pecha Kucha but as five prints mounted as if a double-glazed carriage window; but fortunately we were able to view the Pecha Kucha.

Bob Brasher made the most of his family holiday images of the Italian Riviera by combining the ARPS panel format with a transforming filter to produce his ‘Postcard from Italy’. The fascinating swirling distortions became evident when the audience took a closer look at the ‘postcard’ prints.


Orange Boat 4 by David Townshend

David Townshend demonstrated how multiple exposure and intentional camera movement techniques can also transform subjects. His abstracts ranged from ephemeral coastal landscapes to the interiors of Cambridge college chapels, and striking, colourful interpretations based on a small orange boat.

Who needs modern lenses and auto-focusing? John Credland showed how he has been taking a Don McCullin approach to his street photography using old, preferably obscure, lenses, focusing by moving the camera and relying on focus-peaking information, and holding the camera this way and that.

Kay Reeve promoted the RPS Analogue Group through her presentation of mostly darkroom prints demonstrating a variety of printing techniques including producing a final negative print. 

Members welcomed each opportunity through the day to view the presented images more closely and were more than happy to offer their opinions, with compliments where deserved! As ever, the audience was extremely grateful to Andreas and Sue Klatt for organising, chairing and feeding the group.