Caroline Preece provided a useful introduction, explaining how the RPS system works at the first, Licentiate level. Ten images have to be arranged so that they become the ‘eleventh’ image, hanging together coherently, although at the L stage, there does not have to be a linking theme. Rather, the images need to demonstrate a range of camera skills and photographic techniques, whilst looking good together. Caroline displayed her final, well-mounted panel, which has been approved at an RPS Advisory Day and we wish her luck when she goes to the assessment day in mid-July.
Susi Luard is also working towards her LRPS and described the journey so far, with a table full of small prints which she is rearranging into various panels, until she is satisfied that she has the required symmetry, tonal coherence, range of camera techniques and ‘bookends’ images to help keep the viewer within the panel. When she is happy with that, she will have her images professionally printed and will mount them in a way that her presentation adds to the overall effect. She wants to move on quickly to the next level - Associateship, using her recent images taken on a trip to China.
John Murray agreed to take part, then realised he didn’t actually have a set of images he could readily arrange together in the way he envisaged, so set out with his camera with that brief in mind. What dedication - and what a useful presentation resulted from it! He started by showing us a contact sheet of all his shots during a walk along from Waterloo to Liverpool Street. He concentrated on how London is reflected in the buildings he passed and his final panel was a choice of ten images - using the framework of windows to unify the panel into an abstract and graphic approach to a picture of London.
Natalie Robinson, chair of CoL&CPS, ably completed the quartet of presentations with another different approach: she talked us through how she wanted to have a series of images based on numbers - solo, duo, trio etc and she showed us the thought process she went through in first choosing the images, then trying black and white to unify the whole, but preferring some images in colour, experimenting with mixing colour and black and white, substituting an image for another and so on, until she was happy with an arrangement which fitted her vision.
Whether we want to attempt the RPS distinction levels or produce an image composed of several individual images on a tonal, conceptual or subject theme, we had plenty of material to encourage and inspire us in these four presentations. Perhaps next, we need to look at story-telling through a sequence of images? Any volunteers?