Presentations by members have become a regular feature of Alnwick and District Camera Club’s programme and the latest one by Dru Dodd more than lived up to expectations.
Dru is renowned for his fine landscapes and night time skyscapes, many of which he showed during the evening, but his presentation revolved around the technical aspects of photography.
As a trained scientist, he relishes the challenges that difficult conditions present and, to a great extent, this drives his whole approach to taking pictures.
It is unusual for a photographer of his calibre to be willing to reveal the secrets of his success but Dru was generous with his advice about the wide range of techniques that he uses.
He emphasized the importance of balancing the light in his pictures, which he achieves mainly by the use of graduated filters.
For most of his work he uses a tripod, essential for the many images he takes using long exposures.
Most of Dru’s photographic work takes place in camera, with relatively little left for digital manipulation on the computer.
One exception is the blending of multiple exposures for pictures of subjects such as city lights and star trails.
Panoramic pictures are another of Dru’s specialities and he showed a number of spectacular examples.
To achieve these he uses a specialist tripod bracket that allows a series of pictures to be taken that can be stitched together digitally without any distortion.
Dru covered many other topics including depth of focus, use of flash and use of polarising and neutral density filters.
Finally he even gave advice on what clothing to wear, an important issue for dedicated photographers like Dru who work at all times of day and night, often in freezing temperatures.
This was a most inspiring and informative presentation, illustrated by a series of superb pictures.
To complete the evening, Ian Atkinson and Doug Ross jointly presented a fine gallery of prints.
Ian’s pictures, all taken in Turkey, featured colour and monochrome images of Hagia Sophia, Roman ruins and the spectacular landscape of Cappadocia, while Doug’s striking monochrome prints, using a wide range of approaches from high key to high contrast, were mostly taken in Northumberland.