Alnwick, Camera Club

Alnwick Market Place
Alnwick Market Place

Chairman’s tips

The first meeting of the season at Alnwick and District Camera Club is traditionally chairman’s evening, and accordingly chairman Dave Dixon provided an instructive and entertaining presentation entitled Life Without Photoshop.

As the great majority of club members use Photoshop software to manipulate their digital images, they were intrigued to discover how Dave manages to produce such excellent pictures that are frequently very successful in club competitions.

The answer is that he uses Canon software supplied with his camera, alongside Corels’ Paintshop Pro photo editor. Even though he uses an old version of this programme, he still employs an impressive range of manipulation techniques, including lighting and contrast control, conversion to monochrome and specialist effects, such as producing ‘antique’ images from modern photographs.

Dave demonstrated how quickly and simply he could achieve many of these effects.

Dave is also a keen proponent of high dynamic range pictures, for which he uses Photomatix software.

He demonstrated how such pictures could be produced from single and multiple images, and also showed how a more natural final result could be achieved by subtly blending the manipulated image with the original unprocessed image.

To complete the evening, Dave gave an impressive audio visual presentation featuring superb images of derelict machinery at the gravel works at Low Hedgeley.

This machinery has now been demolished and removed so his pictures, taken over a number of years, now form an important historical record.This was a most unusual and instructive evening that will provide members with plenty of ideas and inspiration when working on their own digital images, whatever software they use.