Friday 20th April 2018
We never know what to expect on a meeting night even though the topic is set down on the syllabus.
It’s becoming a bit of a cliché, but the ‘shortcuts’ give a great start to the evening. However, I’m ahead of myself.
We started with a Special General meeting. Although my memory is only slightly worse than that of my computer, I’m sure this was a first for me. There were two motions to consider. 1. Conditions regarding a ‘Remote’ membership category, and 2. The offer of a ‘Joint’ membership which would allow a spouse of a full member to vote at meetings without having to pay a full membership.
Both were agreed to so now Ron has the pleasure of including amendments to the Club Rules.
Modest changes to definitions, to improve clarity, were discussed and accepted as was the proposal to accept the offer of the Victorian Amateur Photographic Society to include our club within their Public Liability Insurance scheme. This was necessitated by the demise of FAMM. A couple of concerns regarding the conditions of cover with respect to location are being addressed by Ron.
At this point I must say that you will find Ron mentioned (if not in despatches) quite often. That’s not just because I like the name, but he does an awful lot of behind the scenes work. The fact that the club runs well is due in large part to these activities, so, when he asks for help don’t turn off the hearing aids!
Back on to stable ground.
The topic for the ‘shortcuts’ was GREEN.
The first movie seemed to be obvious at the start, taking us around a garden, viewing different shades of green. However, a subtle change showed us what some people with colour disabilities might see which demonstrated how lucky most of us are. Another shift demonstrated how a green screen can be used.
Next up was an Alfa Romeo. I wasn’t aware that they were anything other than red!! However, a one off special had been produced with many differences, not just the colour. Apparently the concept was based upon a beetle shape and colours.
We were next shown a dancing bear. Not only dancing, but twisting to that- was it Chuck Berry song ‘twistin’. Some of the higher level programs use ‘pins’ at the joints to facilitate movement, but this one had something extra by timing the movement to the beat of the music.
Superman move over. One member demonstrated how to remove clothing using a computer. Of course he using animated figures but if you see you know who, lurking with a camera, be aware. Life is never easy.
Another member with an eye for attractive people (just women so he’s all right), showed a few photos in a gallery and questioned what it had to do with green. Subtle or what?
The same chap did the ‘Life of a tree hugger”, but did it end when the tree died?
Reginald Fleetsnot (or is that ‘shot’) showed what a green photographer will produce. As a still photographer even I could do better, but the worry came when he joined a video club. Arrrrrgh!
A time lapse, using a GoPro, of our green screen workshop showed that even though we have a few years on us, we can still move quickly.
Wow, what a lot to get through. I think I’ll have a cup of coffee.
After animated offerings from the audience, the topic for the next shortcut is COWS. Without the ‘e’.
Show and Tell came next with Gary H demonstrating his newest ‘toy’. With a feature enabling the use of hand gestures, a new drone will do your bidding. Quite remarkable, and what is more, Gary said he had more confidence flying this one indoors. It is a small package with a powerful specification. Some compared it with a puppy as it followed Gary’ gestures. I thought more of a malevolent insect as it stared at him waiting for a command.
It is awfully difficult to get groups to flourish although a couple seem to be moving. I’ll send out the groups list gain to remind you who is where. John Millard tried to get discussion going, but many looked bemused, so we went on to the presentation of past group movies as selected by our members.
I think the equipment had a brain fade when I came on the screen and refused to progress after about two minutes of me. The next couple of oldies from the 1990’s were well received with some surprise at the clarity of sound.
That rounded out a busy evening. Supper was arranged by Joe and Fred.
Just one more thing before I go into sleep mode.
Ron (that name again) asked that each night, a member sit with him and Richard, at the controls to ‘observe’. So, if you are ‘volunteered’ for that ‘promotion, please don’t be bashful. I know we are male dominated at the moment, but, ladies show your mettle, stand up and be counted. You are at least as knowledgeable as most of us. We have had two lady Presidents in past years. Watchathink?
Friday 6th April
After my usual, (but slightly shorter), introduction Gary Hegedus got the evening underway with ‘shortcuts’. The title for this evening was ‘watch out’ and there were quite a few interpretations.
First up was a movie taken on a phone mounted in a car. A wife’s favourite and obviously valuable watch (which didn’t work) was thrown out of the window. Wife was not happy - Jan. (or should that be Gary).
What goes up must come down. A footy thrown up travelled way into the atmosphere and the resultant football’s ‘eye’ view on the way up, and coming back down, was something to be seen. Of course it landed on the throwers head. Don’t ask how come it didn’t burst.
A dashcam showed the risks that some people take. One member commented that he would never get a dashcam as cars with them always had accidents!!!
A well travelled member showed us some rice harvesting and, before anyone could ask what it had to do with watch out, he switched to bras on a fence. The demonstration was to support women with a breast cancer. Shows what can be missed if you don’t ‘watch out’
A voice over told a riddle for which the answer was an egg. I haven’t figured out the connection yet. Must see that one again.
Have you ever been concerned about that ‘thing’ on the wall. Husband and wife were obviously scared of whatever it was. A bit of clever shooting with camera on its side gave us a ‘things’ eye view. If I say it wasn’t pleasant especially when it moved, I’m not getting at the stars.
Now, a Scotsman with a (not very good) French accent, is something to listen to. However, the advice on how to clean up a pooch’s poops came across.
The final movie was about tree lopping and how to use a chainsaw with one hand. Scary or stupid. Mind you, we never found out if the operator had two hands.
The second part of the evening was devoted to ‘green screen’ use. Again hosted by Gary we were shown some of the ways to shoot against a green screen, including positioning, lighting and a few clues on how to remove ‘blemishes’.
Prior warning meant some members came prepared to experiment and the results will be shown later in the year. Remember folks we have a night dedicated to shown green screen movies.
We can learn a lot by watching, but more by being involved. So it was on Friday. As ideas were tried, there was much discussion and offers of help, and that’s what we are about.
It was a good night with shortcuts showing initiative, and, importantly, an interest in the club. One member had raced down from the NSW rice fields to be there on the night.
The presentations also showed that members are prepared to help each other – if asked, so don’t be afraid to call for help.
Experimenting isn’t limited to a laboratory.
Well done all and thanks for being there.
Shortcuts appear to be gaining strength if members comments can be used as a gauge. A number have said that the club has a purpose each night and the variety of interpretations on the chosen theme is quite remarkable.
The theme for the last meeting was ‘Ancient and Modern’.
The selected theme for the next shortcut is ‘Watch Out’. Surely this is wide open to interpretation. Go to it folks.
Perhaps we should call him Alfred the Great. A lot has been attributed to him and much has been said about him.
Kevin spent a lot of time preparing his presentation and we were reminded about many of A.H’s works.
We all know that he made cameo appearances, but in some of the clips he was more obvious than others. Kevin did a great job of taking us through many of the features of Alfred’s movies. (Is that too familiar?). I found the interviews interesting. Was it tongue in cheek when he said one movie scene of 45 secs had 78 pieces of film. How the hell could it be spliced??? I think he had a very dry humour and was pulling the interviewers leg much of the time.
One demonstration showed how a facial expression can mean different things depending on the context in which the shot appears.
Many thanks for your time, Kevin. For me it was well spent.
Once again Richard’s wife Joan came along. Every visit she makes, she volunteers for supper duty. Thank you Joan and Gary H.
Our next volunteers are from (in order) Norman, Joe, John M., Elizabeth. Anyone who doesn’t turn up gets two go’s in the future.
Ron and Richard drove the bus smoothly with only one little speed hump. Who pressed the mute button. I think it might have been someone sitting behind them!!
April 6th is our green screen night with Gary H. He asks that we come prepared to shoot anything – doesn’t matter how silly you might think it is, just have a go. We’ve also been asked to do a short Documentary on the night for members who can’t be there so bring your camera and shoot. This promises to be a great practical night if we all try.
April 20th is when we discuss and plan the group movies. After that night we should get rolling. I’ll send out a reminder later about this.
Ron will soon be sending out some titles of previous group movies for you all to make a selection to show on the night.
Twenty three members turned up and I think they all got something from last Friday night. Eight shortcuts was the best so far. Kevin’s presentation was strong. Let’s keep it going
My thanks to everyone for being part of the club activities.
A variety of our members, including Jack who photo appears above provide updates for our journals to keep you up to date if you missed a meeting.