IAIN McGOWAN FRPS.
Iain's abilities and achievements are legion. The author of numerous books that are portraits of local areas he has also encouraged, guided and mentored numerous photographers, both at photographic clubs and at his hugely successful and popular workshops all over the UK. His knowledge of these localities and the most successful conditions of light and weather is unsurpassed. Recently he has begun to produce intriguing environmental images and multi-image presentations.
JANEY DEVINE FRPS.
Janey rediscovered her love of photography when the first digital cameras were developed around 1998. Working in IT she undertook the photography for Client's web sites, as well as developing post production skills using Photoshop. Following the sale of her business in 2001, she became involved in photographing yacht racing and corporate sailing events around the south coast of England and Europe. In 2005 she decided to retire "full time" and bought a 31' yacht and now spends her summer cruising - currently in the north of Scotland - and her winters enjoying photography mostly in the UK, usually with an annual trip to warmer climes.
Visit Janey's new website at: www.janeydevine.com
PETER BAMFORTH ARPS.
Peter comes to modern photography with a distinct advantage, that of having worked in computing all his life. While this does provide him with exceptional knowledge and expertise, he does share this most generously amongst other photographers. But it would be wrong to consider this the most important of his talents. He is a prodigious landscape photographer and his enthusiasm for Scottish locations is second to none. As with all of the photographers showing work here, his work is instantly recognisable and bears his own distinctive stamp. At first sight his images may seem quite simple, but this simplicity is an intrinsic part of their beauty and in reality, they are anything but simple. He chooses his moment carefully and always manages to construct a truth and a reality which few of us can approach. His printing too is in the great tradition of Fine Art photographic printing,... it is invariably flawless and acts as a benchmark for those of us who aspire to achieving that level of quality. His most recent work includes remarkable monochrome images.
LEIGH PRESTON FRPS
Leigh’s photography is mainly thematic, often using dramatic lighting in wilderness situations, or monochrome in the urban landscape. The vast majority of his output has concentrated on the Northern Mill Towns, trying to depict a changing industrial landscape. Over the past 20 years he has travelled widely, with an emphasis on the USA to make images on the empty Prairies, also to Cuba, India and Georgia, adding a more reportage style of portraiture to his portfolio. Lately he has been working on the street, looking for characters and humour or aspects of absurdity. He prefers to work alone, influenced by the environment he grew up with, and the photography of Bill Brandt, John Gray, and Michael Kenna and the artists L.S.Lowry and Atkinson Grimshaw. Lyricism and narrative have become increasingly important in the documentary work he is now producing, linking influences such as J.B. Priestly, Beryl Bainbridge alongside Bob Dylan and Roger Waters.
Leigh Preston has produced two books – ‘Shadows of Change’ and more recently ‘Five Essays’ both of which depict the various aspects of his photography as outlined above.
Visit Leigh's website for more images and other information: www.leighpreston.co.uk
Robert was invited to join the Focus Group in Spring 2017 but for a number of years has been fortunate enough to be able to join members when they travel to their favourite locations. In their company he has developed his interest in black and white landscape photography, and learnt from their expertise and encouragement. There is a very strong 'personal' feel to Robert’s work clearly seen in his choice of subject. His landscapes in particular are lyrical and full of rhythm whilst there is a real feel for light, tone and awareness in his work, which is enhanced by the deliberate use of monochrome. The portrayed mood is reflective, and his work invites the viewer to look beyond the image to the story behind it.
Bill was in the Medical imaging profession for many years. He began his serious photography in 2001 and gained the ARPS in 2003. The main thrust of his work has been Landscape both in colour and monochrome. Some of these images have been acquired in Scotland and other parts of the UK while organising much of the legendary catering on Iain’s workshops. He has done extensive infra-red imaging with many outstanding results. More recently he has produced some exciting abstracts from landscape sources and is now experimenting with Long Exposure and Intentional Camera Movement techniques. Bill has been inspired by Andre’s Kertesz’s statement about landscape “...it is not enough to photograph the landscape, you have to feel it”. When we look at Bill’s images we realise that is exactly what he does. There are some who denigrate traditional landscape as being outmoded. But we know that fashions come and go, and that top quality landscape work is extremely difficult to achieve and has just as much emotional response as any other branch of contemporary photography.
Born in 1946. Nigel has been a keen landscape photographer for many years, but has recently concentrated on natural history and botanical subjects particularly macro images and the intimate landscape, He was the Royal Horticultural Society Photographer of the Year in 2005 and was awarded gold medals at the RHS Autumn Exhibitions in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012. He particularly enjoys making books of his images which he has done for a number of years using both traditional methods and also online publishing which is now becoming very popular.
Visit his website www.nigelchapmanphotography.com and link to www.flickr.com
JOHN BRADSHAW FRPS.
John joined the Focus Group in 2012. He has been interested in photography all his life and having finally started serious darkroom work in 1992, he switched to digital-based work in 2007. His main interests lay in Monochrome Landscape, but since 1997 he has concentrated on Photo Projects. Reflecting his interest in images that tell a story, these projects have studied major issues using sequences of images closely related to a narrative. The projects included The Grand Tour, Irish History, the Atlantic Slave Trade and the Greenwich Meridian. The first three projects have already been exhibited at several locations across the British Isles.
His most recent work is a new exploration of Monochrome Imaging