Bee on lavender


“Bee on Lavender”.

Click for “Botanic Light” evening information

If you want your own gallery of images on the website, send them to with your name and membership number . Use approx. 1600x 1200 pixels so they can be scaled down if necessary, Anything much under 500×500 looks very small onscreen. Note- we can’t stop anyone copying and saving any image online.

For information about upcoming club and inter-club competitions, click below.

Upcoming competitions information.

On October 11th, Sandy Cleland gave us a  show of masterly wildlife images, mostly from Scotland and the wider UK, with some from abroad. Sandy makes it sound so easy. He just happens to be wandering along a road and a beast of some sort just stops what it was doing and poses alongside him.

Aye, right.

The clear, but modestly unspoken message of proper natural history photographers like Sandy Cleland or Laurie Campbell, is  that you actually need to know a great deal about the creatures you are observing, their habitat and ethology – and you have to wander along a great many roads, for many years, with infinite patience, respect for nature and a very precise vision of what you hope to find there – to capture images like these – not just of a bird on a twig  in the distance, but of an animal actively doing what it does best in its own environment.

The only problem with a demonstration of mastery  like this is that I don’t know whether to be inspired, or to sell the camera in despair. Lovely stuff.


So – 4th October was our first try at a problems and answers night. More problems than answers, maybe, but part of the idea was to find out what basic knowledge levels are like and to get folk talking to each other.  To judge by the noise levels, we managed that at least.

Next time we do this,  we want to be able to focus on what folk want to do, want to know. To that end, please give us feedback. What was right, what wrong, helpful, confusing etc. – what would you do if you organised it, what do you want to find out about? Let us know. Don’t be shy. It’s YOUR club. Send comments to . The more the better. We can sort them and look for common factors to use  as a preparation for next time.


Last Tuesday we had our first encounter with Malkit Benning, (He’ll be back!), who gave us tips and practical experience of studio portrait photography. No White Rhinos or racehorses, but thanks to Louise for her patience as model.

A page of Malkit’s notes is available below as a 1997 DOC file or as plain text.

Downloadable Doc 97 file
Text file


A reminder that the competition with North Berwick Photographic Society will be on November 10th.  That’s a THURSDAY, as NB are hosts this year.  This will feature 20 digital projected images from each club, maximum size 1600 x 1200 pixels. Anyone may submit any number of images for consideration, so long as they postdate 10th November 2014- ie no more than two years old. Twenty images will be selected. Images  to be considered for North Berwick should be sent  by Saturday October 22nd at the very latest, to


On Tuesday 20th September,  we had a talk from Lindsay Robertson, which illustrated how uniquely personal photography can be, both as a recording medium and as an art form. Lindsay is an advocate of film over digital, quality over quantity,  and of doing things the way your heart tells you is right for you. Not many speakers show up with a van load of  large , framed prints which sell (when they sell!)  for four figures – or with such illustrative invisible slides. The fact he forgot the digital part of his presentation may be more than chance. The prints are unforgettable.

His point about a life in photography was that while it sometimes pays, it’s always worth doing, if you do the best you can.

His challenge to us as photographers- to take one, single image and get it right, is very much at odds with current notions of taking 10 frames per second and hoping one comes out right- to say nothing of shooting 4k video and extracting still frames, a technology eagerly anticipated by many.

Not everyone can maintain this sort of personal discipline, nor should they. Photography  is a hobby, too. There are many facets to photography and Lindsay’s way is personal and distinctive to himself- a timely reminder at the start of the season that camera club competition photography is far from the only game in town and doing what you choose to do is rather the point.


We kicked off  the 16_17 season on Tuesday 13th September with a talk from new president Susan Kempson outlining her plan for the Autumn and Winter syllabus. It was good to see a number of new faces  and we hope to see you all back next week.

For those who joined tonight- if you were not told the password for the members’ page of this site, please ask next week. There’s nothing on there just now anyway, except last year’s competition scores and committee members’ contact details, so you’re not missing much.  Also next week we will pass out  a printed syllabus sheet, but you can print it off from here if you prefer.  If you need to get in touch this week, use the contact form.



Do you save photos to Onedrive? Use Microsoft online tools at all?  You may want to read their user agreement.

“To the extent necessary to provide the Services to you and others, to protect you and the Services, and to improve Microsoft products and services, you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content, for example, to make copies of, retain, transmit, reformat, display, and distribute via communication tools Your Content on the Services. If you publish Your Content in areas of the Service where it is available broadly online without restrictions, Your Content may appear in demonstrations or materials that promote the Service. Some of the Services are supported by advertising. “

If you have no commercial interest in your photographs, fine. If you have, you might want to think about where you store or edit them.


 The president’s Summer newsletter is here:- Summer Newsletter 2016


Website:- Can we have some feedback please? How often do you look at it? How much have you read? Is it easy / hard / impossible to navigate or understand? What needs doing to it?

Any pertinent comment welcomed. Keep it clean.    Email to


The proposed syllabus for 2016_2017 can be seen here:-

It is also accessible from the “Calendar ” menu at the top of the page.

A 1-page Competition Calendar can be found on the “Competitions” menu at the top of this page. More events may be added and dates may move slightly, but it gives everyone warning of when images must be handed in for each competition.

This year’s “away” competition with North Berwick, on November 10th,  will have a theme of “Movement”, so get your thinking caps on and lens caps off.


Final scores in the “When I’m 64” competition.  (We came second.)

 Complete When I’m 64 MASTER Score Sheet

Gosport 500.0  Haddington 494.0  Bridgenorth 492.5  Carshalton 475.5  York 473.5

Not a lot in it. Congratulations to all the entrants.


05 April 2016. The club’s AGM and last meeting of the winter season.Various pieces of (probably) silverware were handed out to the deserving winners  and immediately taken back to be repawned. Retiring treasurer and president Mike Shakespeare (whose herculean labours over the last three years are truly appreciated) stated that the club is in solid  shape both in members and moneys. Requests to buy a club drone were , nonetheless,  again rejected – even one without missile carrying capability- so it’s feet back on the ground this summer and get photographing for next season, when Sue Kempson and Bob King will be cracking the new whip.

15 March 2016. This week we had the “When I’m 64” competition, judged by Ian Fullerton. Haddington entries scored well on the night . In the Tully Jackson AV competition, also judged by Ian Fullerton, , the winner was Colin Legg, with his impressions of a coastal walk from Brora to Golspie.


6 March 2016.   The inaugural evening of the Fiona Govan Memorial competition for nature photography confirmed that there is strong interest in that area of photography among  many club members- which should be no surprise, living in an area as scenic and rural as East Lothian. As this was the first time for this event, the rules about number and type of images were deliberately slackened, which revealed that the standard of nature photography in the club is pretty high. The winner was Alison Cameron’s owl and  other  (short eared) owls featured prominently- a taste of things to come in local competitions this year very likely. No cuckoos.



The very best lectures are funny, informative and thought provoking at the same time. It’s a hard act to manage. We had a masterclass in how to do it  from Colin Legg on 1st March, comparing and contrasting the techniques of painting and photography and giving us all some great ideas on how to improve the way we “make” pictures by drawing inspiration from great art. Links to some of Colin’s source material can be found on the “Photo Tips” tab at the top of the page.

Some of Colin’s pictures can be seen in his gallery. (WARNING! Creepy-crawlies!)

Given the increasing cost of external guest speakers, it would be great if more members could give talks sharing their thoughts and experiences in photography. Our new president elect has a large and empty syllabus to fill in for 2016-17. Do you have something to tell us? Give it some thought. We are not all experienced lecturers, but that’s not a problem among friends. If presentation technique is a problem, others can assist with that. It’s fine to do short talks too- we could have two  or more speakers on the same night. There’s a huge amount of experience in the club- in both digital and pre-digital photography. Let’s share it.


March 8th will be the first Fiona Govan Nature Photography competition. (See events calendar). It is also hand in night for the annual club competition. There is potential here for images to end up in the wrong place.

It’s possible you may enter the same images for both competitions- if so, make sure the competition secretaries, or anyone who looks vaguely competent, knows what’s going where.

As this is our first go at the Nature competition, here’s a quick summary of the rules and procedures:- Any image, DPI or print, with a nature theme is acceptable: Wildlife of course, but also landscape, seascapes, storms, plants, fungi, spiders  etc. Any number of images (within reason) and of any date. Next year we will probably restrict entries to images from 2016-17. Please send DPI to the competition secretary, whose email address is in the “Members only” page, or bring them on a USB or SD card on the night. Judging will be by popular vote. There will be no judge except the club members. Some minor chaos may be expected, but we’ll work it out on the night.

If you have entries for both competitions, please personally ensure they are placed accordingly- ie don’t just give someone a memory stick and expect them to sort it out, especially me.


Haddington Camera Club in East Lothian aims to provide a friendly and supportive forum for everybody interested in photography, whether they are beginners, experienced photographers, or somewhere in between.  By joining the club, you have access to a wide-ranging programme of events between September and April every year with summer outings after the season finishes.

Advice is readily available on most aspects of photography, including camera handling, composition and digital photography.  For those interested in film our darkroom has enlargers and associated equipment.  We also have printers and computers for producing digital images.

Among our weekly programme you will find practical activities, talks, visits, and opportunities to view the best work from photographers throughout the UK.  If you are competitive by nature, you can enter not only our regular club competitions, but also inter-club, regional, national and international competitions.  The club also holds several exhibitions, the main one being in May, as part of the Haddington Festival.  See this year’s Calendar on the right for details and the latest information.

We meet on Tuesday evenings at 7:30 pm, on the top floor of the Poldrate Arts and Craft Centre, Haddington, EH41 4DA.

The annual subscriptions are –  Adult : £30, Junior and concession (over 60): £20

If you are thinking of joining or simply want to find out more just come along to one of our meetings or get in touch using the “Contact Us” link.