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MargaretR
24th May 2018, 03:13 PM
Not usually given to blowing my own trumpet, but going to make an exception just this once, since I'm sufficiently chuffed to do so ..

I just gained my FRPS! :D

I'm sure this audience will all know that's a Fellowship of the Royal Photographic Society. I've had a somewhat ambivalent relationship with the RPS over many years, thinking much of the stuff that gains an "F" to be not worthy of the paper it's printed on, but some of it is truly outstanding work.

What prompted me to have a go, was seeing panels published in the Journal getting an F, and - for some of them - swearing to myself "You got an F for *that*?! *I* could flaming well do better than *that*!"

So I decided to put my money where my mouth was. And it worked!!*laugh

My panel is not stuff I'd put on my own walls in a million years, but when you play in the RPS sandpit, you play to *their* rules, so I went high-concept, abstract and monochrome. Not to mention high-tech post-processing in both photoshop and iPad. I was kind of surprised that it all went through with no referrals, and got the official rubber stamp of approval today.

If you want a look, the panel may be seen on the link below. It may not be your taste - not even sure it's *my* taste, to be honest! - but, hey, they gave me an F :eek: and I'm not arguing with them! :D

https://www.mmrainey.com/Photography/FRPS-Panel-2018/

And of course, all originally shot on Olympus!

Graham_of_Rainham
24th May 2018, 03:15 PM
Well done! I like the panel too.

*chr

wornish
24th May 2018, 03:26 PM
Congratulations. I also like the panel.
I see what you mean by significant post processing a lot of work went in to achieve the results you displayed.

MJ224
24th May 2018, 04:26 PM
Congratulations Margaret.............

Well done...*chr

Walti
24th May 2018, 05:16 PM
Many congratulations!

The work you’ve done there deserves the plaudits!

Crazy Dave
24th May 2018, 05:22 PM
Fantastic - well done. If I remember correctly, there is only a one in ten acceptance rate.


David

Zuiko
24th May 2018, 05:24 PM
Margaret, you can blow every instrument in the brass section of the orchestra! Whatever our views on what it takes to be awarded an 'F' they do not give this distinction lightly and this is a terrific achievement. It is all the more praiseworthy that you departed from your usual style to concentrate upon the type of subject matter and treatment that would be likely to appeal to the distinctions panel at the RPS.

Well done and congratulations, you deserve to feel proud. *chr

MargaretR
24th May 2018, 06:31 PM
Thank you, all. Normal service will be resumed with a few more infrared shots tomorrow .. tonight, the wine glasses are out! *chr

Zuiko
24th May 2018, 09:27 PM
.. tonight, the wine glasses are out!

That's not an easy subject to photograph, you have to watch the reflections. :D

DerekW
24th May 2018, 09:28 PM
Congratulations - please will you show us some of the images you used to start with to create these shots

raichea
24th May 2018, 10:19 PM
Congratulations.

I'm curious... did you achieve both LRPS and ARPS beforehand or skip one or other (or both!)?

Wee man
25th May 2018, 06:32 AM
Great to see you got this result in an area you do usually dabble in.
This shows your talent as a photographer/ image maker shining through.
Very well done.

Sent from my SM-G930F using Tapatalk

Phill D
25th May 2018, 08:24 AM
Very well done and well deserved, they are great images in my view. Personally I prefer the ones where the actual subject is more recognisable and less abstract. Can I ask what made you chose that style and subject for your submission? The reason I ask is because to improve my photography I had wondered about having a go myself one day but looking at your images just don't think I have the imagination or skill to come up with anything like that.

MargaretR
25th May 2018, 01:11 PM
Congratulations - please will you show us some of the images you used to start with to create these shots

Certainly. I'll put something together over the weekend.

MargaretR
25th May 2018, 01:16 PM
Congratulations.

I'm curious... did you achieve both LRPS and ARPS beforehand or skip one or other (or both!)?

I got the 'L' by exemption by having done a City & Guilds Photography certificate in the mid 90's, and the 'A' in the late 90's. Always say I got the 'A' by accident, as it hadn't crossed my mind to do it, but I was at a printing course and the tutor was Something Big at the RPS; he suggested I submit a panel from the images I'd taken along to print (plus others from the same trip), so I did for the hell of it, and was very surprised to sail through. So I never actually 'worked' for the ARPS, it just kind of happened. :) Then it took about 20 years, and Retirement, before I had the time and energy to think about the FRPS. But now that one's checked off the Bucket List! :D

MargaretR
25th May 2018, 01:34 PM
Very well done and well deserved, they are great images in my view. Personally I prefer the ones where the actual subject is more recognisable and less abstract. Can I ask what made you chose that style and subject for your submission? The reason I ask is because to improve my photography I had wondered about having a go myself one day but looking at your images just don't think I have the imagination or skill to come up with anything like that.

There's a whole long saga here, Phill. The short version is that the whole thing is as much about 'figuring out the game' as it is being good at photography.

I went to a couple of Advisory Days (which I would advise anyone considering a Distinction that you NEED to do), and it became clear that the people who assess these panels have seen everything under the sun, and are bored stiff by a lot of it. One chap went along with 20 stunning images of the desolation around Chernobyl, and was basically told "we've seen about 10 similar panels in the last year, so yours won't stand much of a chance". So just being bloody good at the photography won't cut it by itself, they also want to see something 'different'.

I'd gone along with the germ of an idea ... do something with architectural abstracts, as I like shooting that sort of thing. But I went home with my tail between my legs from that first day, realising that wasn't enough. So, thinking cap on.

I've also been learning digital art techniques over the last couple of years, and finally got a grip on Photoshop, but the lightbulb moment was realising that I can also create arty stuff in various iPad apps from my images, and that *this* was potentially that 'something different' to throw into the mix. At my second advisory day, this provoked a lot of interest by the 2 assessors, and it was obvious that they hadn't seen this sort of thing before, so I was cautiously optimistic about some chance of success if I went ahead. And indeed, it worked out for me.

Maybe 2 years from now, some other poor soul will get told "we've seen 10 iPad panels in the last year, yours won't stand a chance", so there's a definite benefit to being the first! :D

So ... advice...? You *do* need to be good at the technicalities of photography and printing, and have some kind of style or vision, but it's also as much about finding that new slant that will catch the assessors' interest and give you an advantage. *How* you do that, I'm afraid, is up to the individual to figure out, and I've actually come to believe that *this* is part of the challenge too, not just the photography parts.

Phill D
25th May 2018, 02:57 PM
That's great info Margaret, I think i'm too much of a novice to really give it a proper go at any of the levels.

drmarkf
25th May 2018, 06:14 PM
That is just FANTASTIC Margaret!

Several members of the Cambridge club have got 'F's, but all of them quite a few years ago and, to a man & woman, they all say they'd never have got them today. I know a couple more with 'A's who have both failed at the 'F' hurdle a couple of times recently, and both are among the very best photographers I have the privilege to know.

The standard today is quite stunning, and I'm absolutely delighted for you.

drmarkf
26th May 2018, 09:01 AM
By the way, I love your panel.
Regardless of the way the images were created, it's an artistic tour de force.

Zuiko
26th May 2018, 09:24 AM
That's great info Margaret, I think i'm too much of a novice to really give it a proper go at any of the levels.

Phill, you should be fine for the 'L' distinction, but do take Margaret's advice to attend one of the RPS advisory days before you even think of putting together a panel of prints. The emphasis for the 'L' is very much on general competency and photographic skills but artistic interpretation and presentation are important even at this level.

For example, I was fascinated to see how much time and effort the assessors put into arranging a panel, by changing the positions of the individual prints and swapping some of them for spares to obtain harmony and balance. Something to consider is whether the prints are going to be all portrait or landscape orientation or, if mixed, what sort of pattern and symmetry are they going to form in the panel. Other factors include possibly placing prints with similar colours or tones either next to each other, or at opposite ends of a row, or in opposing corners. The same goes for pictures that are predominately light or dark and even considering the best placement for subjects looking left, right, up or down.

This may sound like arty bollocks but when you see the exercise done by someone who is experienced it is surprising what a difference it can make. Consequently, assuming all your prints are technically competent and contain interesting, well composed subjects, making your final selection should be influenced by what works with your other prints as part of a set as much as anything else. It may be necessary to exclude what you consider to be your best or favourite image if it doesn't fit well with the rest of the panel. Needless to say, you need to include a display plan when submitting you panel for assessment.

There is a big step up from 'L' to 'A' and artistic interpretation around a more solid and tightly defined theme becomes increasingly important and then, as Margaret has demonstrated, the 'F' is a whole different kettle of fish!

sapper
26th May 2018, 10:51 AM
Well done Margaret!

MargaretR
26th May 2018, 12:56 PM
That is just FANTASTIC Margaret!

Several members of the Cambridge club have got 'F's, but all of them quite a few years ago and, to a man & woman, they all say they'd never have got them today. I know a couple more with 'A's who have both failed at the 'F' hurdle a couple of times recently, and both are among the very best photographers I have the privilege to know.

The standard today is quite stunning, and I'm absolutely delighted for you.

Thank you, Mark. I agree, the standard is daunting today ... I'm sure my 'A' (19 years ago!) would never have cut it at that level today. I was all the more surprised, therefore, to succeed at this one! I think definitely giving them something 'new' to look at helped a lot.

MargaretR
26th May 2018, 01:09 PM
For those wanting to see some of the original images, here are a few comparisons of before (out of camera) and after (LR, PS and iPad processed). The bulk of the panel shots were taken around the City of London, some around King's Cross, and I think 1 was from La Defense in Paris; pretty sure the 3 here are all in the City.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/Orig-1.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/98966)


http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/Orig-2.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/98967)


http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/Orig-3.jpg (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/98968)


As John (Zuiko) noted in another post, a panel also needs consistency, and in my case I went for that through taking everything into B&W, so that the emphasis was not on colour, but on shapes and forms; and by printing them all in square format (since I was calling it 'Abstracts Squared').

OM USer
26th May 2018, 04:40 PM
The techical artistry is fantatstic and I'm sure that helped a lot. A brilliant idea. It all seems a touch Escher to me. Can't say its my kind of thing but I can appreciate the work you put in. Congratulations.

Harold Gough
27th May 2018, 09:57 AM
Well done.

I considered the RPS many years ago but decided that what they wanted as images was not what I was interested in.

Harold

MargaretR
27th May 2018, 11:02 AM
Well done.

I considered the RPS many years ago but decided that what they wanted as images was not what I was interested in.

Harold

No, I get that. Their exhibitions leave me pretty cold, and I don't warm to the "arty bollocks" (as Zuiko rightly put it!) that surrounds most of their utterances. Certainly this kind of stuff would not be what I normally produce for my own preferences, but I just decided it was a challenge I wanted to take on.

No doubt when it appears in the RPS Journal, there will be someone, somewhere going "Flipping 'eck ... you got an F for *that* load of tosh? "*I* can do better than that.."

Which is where *I* started from, to prove a point, so I hope those folks go on and have a go themselves! :D

Phill D
27th May 2018, 01:24 PM
It's really good to see the comparisons Margaret. I think it definitely adds to the overall effect. You've certainly produced some impressive images. Inspiration indeed.

RobEW
28th May 2018, 10:04 AM
Brilliant work. I like them in a way I didn't expect to, as normally I like architecture images to be quite representational, and I'm not normally a fan of heavy post processing. (I've sometimes seen images which win accolades and thought "Why bother with a camera, and why call it photography").

It does seem a shame that in the competition world you have to play the game according to the preferences and fashions of the current batch of judges. Lots of very fine work which gets displayed in galleries would be marked very low in competitions. It's a real achievement to be able to play a game so effectively when you're not fully convinced by the ethos, rules and spirit of the game. (Though I suppose that's what many people do to some extent in their working lives ...)

Great images anyway, irrespective of other considerations.

RobEW
28th May 2018, 10:09 AM
Incidentally I took photos the other week of that second building in your "before and after" post. Somewhere near the Leadenhall building; hard to get high enough or far enough back for a good perspective. Mine were nothing like as accomplished as yours of course, but it's nice to see.

Zuiko
28th May 2018, 02:14 PM
It's a real achievement to be able to play a game so effectively when you're not fully convinced by the ethos, rules and spirit of the game. (Though I suppose that's what many people do to some extent in their working lives ...)



Sounds a lot like Banking! :D

MargaretR
28th May 2018, 02:22 PM
Incidentally I took photos the other week of that second building in your "before and after" post. Somewhere near the Leadenhall building; hard to get high enough or far enough back for a good perspective. Mine were nothing like as accomplished as yours of course, but it's nice to see.

Yeah, that's Lloyds' of London, the 'inside out' building. Great subject.

Harold Gough
28th May 2018, 02:57 PM
It's a real achievement to be able to play a game so effectively when you're not fully convinced by the ethos, rules and spirit of the game. (Though I suppose that's what many people do to some extent in their working lives ...)

How did you get hold of my CV?

Harold

Internaut
28th May 2018, 07:06 PM
That level of manipulation isn’t really my thing, but I love the panel! Congratulations.