** Stephen Bassett Awarded Novice POTY 2015 **
01st April 2015
Stephen Bassett LIPF was awarded Novice Photographer of the Year 2015 at Catchlight Camera Club this evening, in the POTY Competition. Stephen obtained his LIPF during the season, but was still entitled to see the season out as a Novice.

A selection of the Novice entries in the Square Portrait Competition:

First Place Colour - Stephen Bassett

First Place Mono - Joe Vize

** Advanced POTY 2015 - Colin Ross AIPF **
01st April 2015
The Final Round of the POTY Competition took place this evening at Catchlight Camera Club, with the subject being "Square Portraits." Each member was entitled to submit one colour and one mono image to be judged by the guest judge Eileen McCausland AIPF LRPS from Dungannon Cooktown CC.

The standard of work was tremendous - what we lacked in quantity, we made up for in quality. At the conclusion, Colin Ross and Ross McKelvey were equal first, but on the count back system Colin Ross AIPF was awarded the Advanced Photographer of the Year 2015! Congratulations to Colin!

In the Novice Section, second place was awarded to Hugh McGuckian, with the Novice Photographer of the Year title going to Stephen Bassett.

This is a selection of the images entered:

1st Place Ian Humes -

2nd Place - Steve Wilson

3rd Place - Anne Given

Some of the others:

Colour Section:

1st Place - Colin Ross

2nd Place - Bob Given

3rd place - Hugh Wilkinson

** Catchlight wins GB Cup for Small Clubs 2015 **
09th February 2015
Catchlight CC has managed another "1st" in National Competition, and another "1st" for NIPA by winning the GB Cup for Small Clubs in the Annual Competition run by the PAGB. Entry to the 'small clubs' competition is not determined by the number of members, but by the number/ability of the club members to produce an entry.
Although Catchlight CC has a membership of 40+, only 4 or 5 members actually enter the BPE National Exhibitions and/or FIAP International Salons. Needless to say, our entry was comprised of images from those members.

A slideshow of the winning entry:

The winning entry was as follows:

'Alien' by Bob Given: (13 points)

'Alone' by Ross McKelvey: (12 points)

Blue Eyes by Keith Elgin: (12 points)

Chainmail Beauty by Ross McKelvey: (14 points)

Hard Times by Hugh Wilkinson: (14 points)

Crunch Tackle by Hugh Wilkinson: (13 points)

High Atlas Children by Bob Given: (14 points)

Little Red Riding Hood by Bob Given: (13 points)

Lulu on the Rocks by Hugh Wilkinson: (13 points)

Storm Warning by Anne Given: (12 points)

Total Winning Score - 130 points
** Catchlight Member wins NIPA Novice Competition **
22nd January 2015
Catchlight Member Stephen Bassett has won the NIPA Novice Competition in Colour prints! His winning image was "Ella's eyes" and he also managed 2nd place with "Naked Pose." Congratulations Stephen! The competition was held at Bangor CC and the 3 judges were Stephen McWilliams ARPS, Trevor Craig and Anne Given CPAGB LRPS. This is a great start to the Year for Stephen, who recently achieved the LIPF and as a consequence would have been in the Advanced Section next Season regardless.
Brian McClure got 2nd place in mono prints with "waiting."
Joe Vize was Highly Commended in PDI.
Well done all, and thank you to our Novice members who submitted a large entry to the competition.

** Stephen Bassett LIPF Success **
23rd November 2014
Stephen Bassett joined Catchlight Camera Club only this season, having been a member of Carrickfergus CC beforehand. He has already made a valuable contribution to Catchlight by getting a Starred Print in Round One of the NIPA inter-Club Competition, and yesterday in Thurles, County Tipperary, Stephen was successful in achieving the coveted LIPF Distinction! This will mean Stephen can no longer participate as a 'beginner' in NIPA for next Season.

Stephen's panel of 10 'people' prints satisfied the judges that he had the requisite skills and demonstrated sufficient variety of approach to gain the award. Gabriel O'Shaughnessy FIPF FRPS MFIAP was tasked with 'critiquing' the successful panel, and remarked on the great layout of the panel, the fact that Stephen had opted for large prints (50x40cm mounted prints), and the high quality individual images that made up the panel.

Congratulations Stephen Bassett LIPF!

NB -(Ross McKelvey FIPF MPAGB EFIAP BPE5* was on the assessment panel, but did not participate in the judging process for the panel, as he had personal input, and knowledge of, the applicant)
Tips for newcomers to Club Photography
13th September 2014
The Path to Progress as a Club Photographer

Do not try to run before you can walk!!

Initially the world of competitive photography can be quite daunting. Resist the temptation to compare your own work against people who have been doing it for years – instead, you should aim to learn new skills and techniques, and compare your work in 6 months or a year’s time against what you did previously.

Take an active part in Club Competitions – particularly the internal Club ‘Photographer of the Year’ Competition which compels you to take photographs to suit a certain theme. Although your images may struggle to get selected for the Club’s entry to the NIPA Top Club Competition, it is important that you participate in the process. This teaches you the art of taking, composing, processing, printing and mounting an image for display, and you should hopefully receive feedback from Judges and fellow members as to how to improve. Submitting a digital image into the PDI Round is an easy way to start - and it will also teach you how to name, resize an image and get it in the correct colour space.

Think of entering any online or magazine competitions? Many magazines run a Photographer of the Year Competition, and these can be a good introduction to competitive photography. Remember to disregard much if not all the 'feedback' you get from friends and family on photo-sharing websites such as Flickr and Facebook etc - qualified and experienced photographic Judges really do know better (most, but not all of the time!)

Concentrate on a subject matter that you enjoy most - be it landscapes, portraiture, sport, street, natural history.......whatever! Read magazines, learn or improve your photoshop skills as well as your camera technique. Do not be afraid to seek help or guidance from those more experienced than you!

After a couple of seasons of actively taking part in the club competitions, you should hopefully build up a selection of images that could be used towards a Distinctions Panel such as the LRPS or LIPF or CPAGB? (Details elsewhere). These require 10 images (preferably prints!) and there are lots of Catchlight Camera Club members available to provide you with guidance and assistance towards such a Distinction.

If after a while you feel that your work has reached a certain standard, you might want to explore the World of Photographic Exhibitions (or ‘Salons’).

Overall, do not try to run before you can walk. Do not expect to compete against the top guns immediately – it takes time to progress! Photography is a skill as well as an art, and no matter who you are or what level you are at, you always have new things to learn.

September 2014
** Wed 10th September - Special Guest Speaker - Inaki Hernandez FIPF **
31st August 2014
On Wednesday 10th September we have a special guest speaker at Catchlight Camera Club - Inaki Hernandez FIPF - who specialises in architectural photography and gained his Fellowship with a panel of 20 remarkable colour architectural photographs.

Admission is free, and all guests are welcome as always on our guest speaker nights. Finaghy Community Centre, Benmore Drive, Finaghy Rd South, Belfast.
** Medals Galore for Bob Given in International Circuits **
20th June 2014
Bob Given DPAGB BPE3* LBIPP has had fantastic results in 2 International Circuit Salons - the first was the JCM Circuit in India, consisting of 3 Salons. In The New Delhi Salon he was awarded a FIAP Silver Medal for "Crunch" in the Photojournalism Section; In the Itarsi Salon he was awarded a JCM Gold Medal for "Black Widow" and a JCM Medal for "Claire Reclining" in the Figure Study Section. In the Pilakhuwa Salon he was awarded an Honourable Mention for "Black Widow."

In the Digital Photo World 3 Country Circuit, he won 3 Gold Medals and a couple of Honourable mentions, narrowly missing out on the Blue Badge for Best Individual Author in the Montenegro Salon -

Serbia Salon - DPW Gold Medal for "Crash Ball"; HM for "Paddy"

Bosnia Herzegovina Salon - HM for "Wet Jumper"

Montenegro Salon - FIAP Gold Medal for "Splash" and FIAP Gold Medal for "Wet Jumper."

So all in all a total of 6 Medals and several other Awards - well done Bob!

**Article on Composition **
19th June 2014
The handout for the 2nd Beginners Class on Photographic Composition can be downloaded from the following link:
** National Success for 4 Catchlight Members **
18th June 2014
The PAGB is the parent body for UK based Camera Clubs, and every Year it holds the PAGB National Exhibition, that is exhibited in various venues throughout the UK. The Exhibition Images are selected from each Federation's entries to the PAGB Inter-Federation Competition. Our local Federation is NIPA, and of the 40 images entered by NIPA, 8 were selected for the National Exhibition - and all 8 were from Catchlight Members!

Congratulations to Hugh Wilkinson CPAGB LIPF LRPS BPE2* who was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for the PDI entry "Hard Times." Hugh also had "Crunch Tackle" selected as a PDI.

Ross McKelvey MPAGB FIPF EFIAP BPE4* had a total of 4 images selected - 2 Mono prints, 1 Colour Print, and 1 PDI. "Underground Glamour" scored the maximum 15 points.

Anne Given LIPF CPAGB LRPS BPE2* had 1 PDI selected - "Raphaella" that was recently awarded Top Mono print in the NIPA Exhibition at the Waterfront Hall.

Bob Given DPAGB BPE3* LBIPP had 1 Nature PDI selected - "Yellowstone Fox."

Congratulations to all 4 Catchlight Camera Club Members - who will receive a Neill Marshall Medal from NIPA in recognition of the achievement.
*** Beginners Guide to Camera Settings ***
10th June 2014
On Wednesday 11 June, Catchlight Camera Club will be holding the first of 3 Beginners Classes. These are aimed primarily at new members of the Club, but non-members and friends can attend.
As this is being run outside of the Club Calendar, there is a small charge of £5 to attend each evening.

Wed 11th
Basic camera settings - advice on using P mode, AV, TV and manual mode.
The triangle of ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed.
Basic studio set up using Speedlites

Wed 18th
Basic photoshop (auto levels; curves; sharpening; cropping) - using images taken on Wed 11th
Composition - Rule of Thirds; Diagonals; S Curves; Simplicity; Leading lines etc

Wed 25th
Introduction to Club Photography (an explanation of what is involved in being a member of a camera club)
Demonstration of mounting and presentation of prints
Explanations of competitions, pdi sizes, NIPA/PAGB, etc.

Ross McKelvey has prepared a document on Basic Camera Settings that can be downloaded from the following link:
** Catchlight 1, 2, 3 in NIPA Annual Exhibition **
04th June 2014
Catchlight members have taken Bronze, Silver and Gold in the Colour print Section of the NIPA Annual Print Exhibition at Waterfront Hall, and Gold in the Mono prints Section, as well as numerous PAGB Ribbons! The Exhibition was judged by Michael O'Sullivan FIPF FRPS from Cork Camera Club.
From the 100 Prints that were selected for the Exhibition, 40 were from Catchlight Camera Club Members - meaning the Club accounted for 40% of the entire exhibition! Of particular note was the fact that both Bob Given and Ross mcKelvey had all 8 of their prints accepted into the Exhibition 4 colour and 4 mono! Well done all!

Anne Given CPAGB LRPS LIPF BPE2* capped a very successful first season in Catchlight by winning her first Gold PAGB Medal for 'Storm Warning- Raphaella' :

Hugh Wilkinson CPAGB LRPS LIPF BPE2* was awarded the Gold Medal for Top Colour print with "Land of Giants" (an image that was recently awarded Top Colour print of the NIPA inter-club Season) :

Ross McKelvey MPAGB FIPF EFIAP BPE4* was awarded the Silver Medal for "Lady in Waiting"

Gerald Gribbon was awarded a Bronze Medal for "The Stare"

In addition to the Medals, Bob Given DPAGB BPE3* LBIPP was awarded 2 PAGB Ribbons for "Wet Jumper" and "Lone Bison Yellowstone" :

Ross McKelvey MPAGB FIPF EFIAP BPE4* was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for "Moody Hoody"

In Colour prints, Martin Courtney AIPF was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for "Honesty"

And Bob Given was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for "Yellowstone Fox"

In the PDI Section, Valerine McKee LIPF was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for "Common Blue Butterfly"

And Hugh Wilkinson CPAGB LRPS LIPF BPE2* was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for "Heavy Tackle"

Congratulations to all our members who had success in having images selected for the Exhibition!
** Excellence FIAP Award **
21st May 2014
In the same week as achieving the Fellowship of the Irish Photographic Federation (FIPF) Ross McKelvey has been awarded the Excellence FIAP Award (EFIAP)- which makes him the only photographer in N.Ireland to hold that Distinction.
The EFIAP requires 250 acceptances into International Photographic Exhibitions in at least 20 different Countries, with at least 50 different pictures. Ross has had work exhibited in Countries right across the World, from Argentina to USA, Serbia, Holland, Italy, Germany, France, Czech Republic as well as Ireland and UK. Many medals and awards were achieved along the way, the most notable being:

'Stephen' - this image was the Grand Prix Winner in Serbia, coming 1st from a total of 11,201 photographs from 692 photographers from 59 different Countries! The image was on the front cover of the Exhibition Catalogue that was sent out to those 692 photographers throughout the World.
It was also awarded Top Mono print in the Celtic Challenge in Wales 2012 and a Royal Photographic Society Gold Medal in the Edinburgh International 2012.

Subway Muscle - the only image to be awarded 2 individual FIAP Gold Medals, and also winning FIAP Silver, PAGB Gold, and PAGB Silver. It was also the Top Mono Print of the entire UK at the PAGB Print Championships at Connahs Quay 2012.

FIAP stands for FEDERATION INTERNATIONALE DE L'ART PHOTOGRAPHIQUE - the body that awards patronage to the various International Photographic Salons, and oversees the FIAP Distinctions Awards.
** Ross McKelvey Awarded Fellowship of IPF **
18th May 2014
Catchlight Camera Club is proud to say that Immediate Past Chairman Ross McKelvey was awarded the Fellowship of the Irish Photographic Federation at Mullingar on Saturday 17th May 2014.
The panel of 20 "Timeless and Memorable Portraits" was awarded the Fellowship by a panel of highly qualified Judges including Anne Cassidy FRPS FIPF, Gabriel O'Shaughnessy FIPF FRPS MFIAP, Seamus Costello FIPF, Judy Boyle FIPF FRPS, Des Clinton FIPF FRPS, Michael O'Sullivan FIPF FRPS, and Paul Stanley FIPF.
There were 5 Fellowship applications on Saturday, and this was the only successful panel on the day! If at first you don't succeed, try and try again.....this was a completely different panel to his first attempt 2 years ago, which consisted of 20 digital composites. Ross felt that the original panel was not worth spending any more time on, and instead went back to the drawing board - before coming up with this panel of 20 mono portraits and making a fresh submission.

Statement of Intent:

Monochrome photography is undoubtedly an art form. By deliberately discarding the distraction of colour, attention is focused onto the visual building blocks of texture, tonal contrast, shape, form and lighting. My intention has been to use all of these elements to create a panel of 20 memorable and timeless portraits. The challenge was to do so in such a way that the grittiness of the male portrait would sit comfortably with the beauty of the female face, and the female form.
In the absence of colour, the viewer’s attention is drawn to the eyes and the faces, the texture of clothing, the lines of the body, the light and the shadows.
I present 20 memorable and timeless portraits - each with a story to tell, a character or a beauty to portray. Monochrome photography will surely be enjoyed forever!

Ross McKelvey
May 2014

Large download of panel layout:

** All Change after AGM **
16th May 2014
At the Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 14th May, a new set of Club Officers was appointed for next Season:

Chairman : Terry McCreesh
Vice Chairman : Bob Given
Treasurer : Liam O'Reilly
Programme Secretary : Anne Given
NIPA Rep : Ross McKelvey

Other Committee Members:
Paul Jepps; Gerald Gribbon; Dean Irvine


The current season has been nothing short of remarkable for Catchlight Camera Club. In 2 short Years the Club has established a solid membership base, that has excelled not only on the local stage, but Nationally and Internationally as well. I have been extremely proud and fortunate to be Chairman during these 2 formative and successful years.
In terms of competition, Catchlight Camera Club did unbelievably well :-
1. We won the NIPA Top Club Competition, including both the main and the Novice Sections.
2. We became the first NI Camera Club ever to win the Plate Competition at the PAGB Print Championships at Connahs Quay.
3. We came 13th in the FIAP Clubs’ World Cup – a particularly remarkable achievement!

On the individual front, many members achievements are worthy of mention:
Caroline Hughes won the NIPA Novice Photographer of the Year Competition. Several other novice members got Starred images in the inter-club competition which helped win the Novice Section of the inter-club competition, as well as the Top Club Title – Leo McCourt, Ian Humes and Anto Dargan.
Hugh Wilkinson had the Top Colour Print, and Bob Given had the Top Mono Print, in the NIPA inter-club competition.
John Lawell achieved the AIPF, Valerie McKee, Hugh Wilkinson, and Anne Given all achieved the LIPF; Peggy Turner, Ian Humes, Anne Given and Hugh Wilkinson achieved the LRPS.
I won the Will McCrum Cup for Portraiture, with Hugh Wilkinson the runner-up.
Those of us who enter the National and International Exhibitions had fantastic success, helping to put the name Catchlight Camera Club out onto the larger stage. Hardly a National Exhibition passed without at least a couple of awards for Bob Given, Anne Given, Hugh Wilkinson or myself. Bob Given achieved BPE3*, Hugh Wilkinson BPE2*, Anne Given BPE1* and myself BPE4*. Cups, medals and ribbons came all our ways. We hope to have more members taking part next Season.
We also held a mini exhibition at Belfast City Hospital which was very well received, and we hosted Round 4 of the inter-club competition which again, was well received.
Overall we tried to provide the members with a varied calendar of events, opportunities to learn and improve, and hopefully we will have more of the same going forward. In particular I would like to thank our many guest speakers who provided us with lots of information and inspiration.

I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to the smooth running of the Club during the season, from fellow Club Officers to committee members, and those unsung heroes who are always on hand to help set things up or put things away. You know who you are, and I thank you all. In particular I would like to thank Vice-Chairman Terry McCreesh and Treasurer Liam O’Reilly for their assistance as Club Officers.

Going forward, we hope to arrange a full and varied programme for next Season, and potentially open the doors for a number of new members. Unless the majority of members attend on a regular basis, a low turn out does not do justice to the varied programme we provide, and what we are trying to achieve. In the inter-club competition we had 21 individual members with images selected to represent the Club, and 9 individual members managed to get Starred. This augurs well for the future of the Club.
I encourage all of you to get involved in the management of the Club, and look to help those in charge to organise the weekly meetings, events and competitions.

After 5 years in a row as a camera club Chairman, I know only too well that my leadership style is Dictatorial, and may not be to everyone’s taste - but no-one can argue that I ‘get things done,’ and done to the best of my ability. Rest assured, I am looking forward to a place in the cheap seats, and I believe I have earned it!

Chairman 2014
*** Important Membership News ***
16th May 2014
Catchlight Camera Club has a current limit of 50 members but this has been increased to 65 for next Season after the AGM.
If you would like to join Catchlight, then you should let us know by sending an e-mail to or by using the CONTACT page on this website.
It is likely that any new intake of members will range from absolute beginners to intermediate and more advanced members.

In order to be considered for membership, please act quickly if you wish to join us!

*** Update 4/6/14 - we have now reached our full membership number - any applications received after this date will be added to the waiting list
POTY Round 2
06th May 2014
The theme for Photographer of the Year Round 2 was 'Window Light' and it was judged by Stephen McWilliams ARPS from CBPPU.

The Winner of the Novice Colour Section was Peter Lennon :

Closely followed by Hugh McGuckian:

The Novice Mono winner was Caroline Hughes:

And in second place was Fiona Taylor :

In the Advanced Section, the Colour Section was won by Hugh Wilkinson:

In second Place was Bob Given:

In the Advanced Mono Section, the winner was Stephen Wilson:

And in 2nd place Bob Given:

Overall Standings for the Competition:

1. Bob Given 35 points
2. Ross McKelvey 33
3. Hugh Wilkinson & Stephen Wilson 27 Points

In the Novice Section:

1. Ian Humes & Peter Lennon 31 points
3. Michael Ross 30 points
** 4 Catchlight Members gain awards in National Exhibition **
01st May 2014
The Rushden & District Photographic Society recently held its 32nd Rushden Open Photographic Exhibition 2014, which is one of the many National Photographic Exhibitions held under the patronage of the British Photographic Exhibitions or 'BPE.'

Bob Given DPAGB BPE3* PSA3, Hugh Wilkinson CPAGB LRPS BPE2*, Anne Given LRPS CPAGB LIPF and Ross McKelvey MPAGB AFIAP BPE4* all gained acceptances and Awards. This is another feather in the cap for both the individuals concerned, as well as for Catchlight Camera Club and N.Ireland Camera Club Photography in general.
Congratulations also to Hugh Wilkinson for achieving the BPE2* milestone - for 50 acceptances in National Exhibitions!

If you are interested in entering National Exhibitions, please see the following link to the BPE umbrella organisation:

Bob Given received 2 Awards - a Bronze Medal as runner up in the Nature Section with 'Vulpes Vulpes.' This image was also awarded a Gold Medal in the Cheltenham International Salon 2014 recently!

Bob Given also got a Highly Commended Award for 'Ursus Martimus.'

Hugh Wilinson was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for 'Hard Times' (an image that was recently awarded Top PDI in the NIPA inter-club 'Portrait' Round) :

Ross McKelvey gained a Highly Commended Award for 'London's Calling' in the Creative Section:

Anne Given was awarded a PAGB Ribbon for 'Mature Ursus Maritimus'

Catchlight Camera Club was also honoured this week, to receive news that Ross McKelvey has been voted onto the National PAGB Judges List. Ross is one of the 3 Judges for the prestigious Edinburgh International Print Exhibition this Year, and has been a guest speaker or Judge no less than 12 times during the current season in Clubs both North & South!

Catchlight Camera Club
** RPS Day with Rikki O'Neill FRPS MPAGB
22nd April 2014
On Sunday 27th April the Royal Photographic Society NI Branch, is bringing Rikki O'Neill FRPS MPAGB to do a presentation at Newforge Country Club, 10am - 4.30pm. This is open to all.
Please confirm your attendance to Damian McDonald ARPS -

** Distinctions Evening a Success **
09th April 2014
Camera Club Members came from several Clubs to Catchlight CC on Wednesday 9th April, to view a large selection of successful LIPF, LRPS, ARPS and AIPF Panels. Catchlight CC would like to thank not only all the guests who attended on the night, but in particular those members from various Clubs who gave up their time and attended to display their panels.

Many thanks to:
Dermott Sweeney LIPF from BPIC
Gareth O'Cathain LRPS from BPIC
John Tinneny LRPS non affiliated
Pat McKeefry LRPS from CBPPU
Brendan Hinds LRPS from CBPPU
Martin Spackman ARPS from CBPPU
Paul Killeen LRPS from CBPPU
Damian McDonald ARPS from CBPPU
Hugh Wilkinson LRPS from Catchlight
Anne Given LRPS from Catchlight
Martin Courtney AIPF from Catchlight
Ian Humes from Catchlight
Valerie McKee LIPF from Catchlight
Peggy Turner LRPS from Catchlight

Damian McDonald ARPS:

Anne Given LRPS:

Brendan Hinds LRPS:

Dermott Sweeney LIPF:

Gareth O'Cathain LRPS:

Hugh Wilkinson LRPS:

Ian Humes LRPS:

John Tinneny LRPS:

Martin Courtney AIPF:

Martin Spackman ARPS:

Pat McKeefry LRPS:

Paul Killeen LRPS:

Peggy Turner LRPS:

Valerie McKee LIPF:

Ross McKelvey
Chairman, Catchlight CC