New Season starts on Tuesday 23th September

The new season will start again on 23rd September 2014.  Come along and see for yourself.

Details of our Programme and how to find us on our website.

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Hyper Focal Distance Tutorial by Tony Steppings


A question was raised at the recent discussion group held at the rugby club as to the calculation of depth of field when taking photos.

In the days of pre digital, and when cameras seemed easier to use, most lenses had a depth of field scale engraved round the edge. These featured various ‘f’ numbers – with the smaller stops being set widest apart. Having determined the aperture to be used to take the shot one would estimate the furthest distance required to be in focus. Then, by rotating the focussing ring , one could bring that distance to line up with the aperture being used. By checking the corresponding matching aperture value one could read off the nearest point of sharp focus. If there appeared to be an adequate depth of field one could take the shot -but without touching the focussing ring.  If not, then one had to select a smaller aperture and repeat the above.

It all sounds complicated but it was very simple in practice. By manipulating the aperture and focussing ring the lens was actually being set on what was known as the hyperfocal distance(HFD)  Note From now on you can ignore the HFD as it can get very complicated.

The HFD is dependent on the following:-
Effective focal length of lens (Can be variable with a zoom lens)
The furthest and nearest points of sharp focus required.
The image resolution needed ( ignore unless very big images are required.

Reference to the classic books on the technical aspects of photography will give pages of formulae and detailed charts but, unless you’re doing very serious or technical work, IGNORE IT ALL.

While most modern digital ‘cameras’ such a compacts, I-Phone or Pads, Bridge, and even the simpler DSLRs, are OK for the ‘point and shoot’ brigade by having auto focus, few if any have aperture control or selective focussing. They are also missing flash and cable release sockets, but that’s a different issue.

However all is NOT lost as, from a practical point of view, depth of field is only generally relevant for landscapes or street scenes, and here one has usually selected a ‘wide angle’ setting  i.e. about 30 – 35mm. and, unless the light is particularly poor, the aperture will be automatically set to about f11. With this combination of focal length/aperture everything will be sharp from infinity back to 6’0” (infinity to 8’0” if using f8) BUT the focus must be set to the HFD of 10’0” or (15’0”).  To do this, guess something that distance away, aim the camera at it, depress the shutter button slightly to lock the focus, and then take the shot required. You might need to up the film speed to fool the camera into selecting a smaller aperture

Basically the smaller the aperture, and the shorter the focal length of lens being used, the greater the depth of field. Also, as a rough guide, the depth of field achieved will extend out twice the distance from the point of focus (HFD) as that back towards the camera.

For those few members who wish to take object d’art, depth of field is all important. I used to put a card of fine print at the nearest point of focus required, then focus on that point, and note the distance shown on the lens(a) ( Don’t use a tape measure). Do the same for the furthest point of focus(b). Take 1/3rd of (b – a), add to (a), and focus on this distance.

Tony Seppings

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KCPA Annual Print & PDI Exhibition


Please be aware that there are changes this year.

Please tell your membership to check out the KCPA website where they can download their own entry forms and labels.

Zipped folder is within website that contains everything needed including:

The Exhibition Entry Conditions

The Individual Entry Forms. These need to be completed by each Club member who is submitting entries. These MUST be returned with the entries. There is one sheet for PRINTS and a separate sheet for PDI’s.

Avery labels for Prints (Doc format & PDF format)

A Club Entry Form. Which summarise the entries being entered by the Club. These are to be completed by the Club co-ordinator and MUST be returned with the entries, one sheet for PRINTS and one for PDI’s.

There is also a checklist to be completed by the co-ordinator (Barrie Duffield)

Please ensure that mounts conform to size – that is 400 mm x 500mm x and a maximum of 4mm thick. This is to ensure they fit the KCPA and PAGB frames.

The correct size for PDI is 1050px high X 1400px wide.

A poster, will be issued later, and posted on the Website, with further information about the actual Exhibition.

The Terms and Conditions are as below


The Entrance Fee for each submission will be announced at the next society meeting.

Many thanks
Barrie Duffield

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PDI Scoresheet and Ross Cup results

First the good news, OPS has managed to be represented in two Plate Competitions for the SLF during January 2014.

1/. Colour prints
2/. DPI

Unfortunately we were just pipped for the mono by West Wickham

The most recent result came from the PDI competition at Old Coulsdon last week where Orpington Photo Society were placed fourth with only half mark between third place, the marks were 67 for OPS and 67.5 for Selsdon.

Certificate was awarded to Peter Humphrey for his PDI – The Wasp

The score sheet has been attached for your information
PDI Scoresheet.pdf
The second larger competition was the Ross Cup, held at Faversham this year on the 23rd November.

Entrants to this regional competition included the highest marked prints from 39 Photo Clubs during 2013.

OPS managed 28th place (121 points) with Eastbourne coming 1st with 148 points and closely followed by Tonbridge with 146 points, both clubs have been alternating top places for several years now.

To view further details of this and other competitions in your area please go to the federation websites for KCPA and FSLPS

Finally I remind you that the plate rounds will be on 20 Jan with Andy Smith as judge for colour prints at South London club venue and DPI plate 3 will be at Selsdon on 31st January judged by Monica Weller – the Plate final will be on 25th February at Old Coulsdon and judged by Paul Adams


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SLF results for Colour Group 2 SLF


SLF Colour print group 2 – 6th Nov.

Last evening I attended the above competition at Cheam on behalf of OPS with 8 selected colour prints plus one tie break

The five additional clubs competing were from the hosts Cheam plus Selsdon, South London, Bromley and Greenwood.

The results were very close with winning team Cheam achieving 71.5 points and closely followed by Selsdon with 71 points, Orpington obtained a respectable 69 points in third place ahead of Bromley 68.5, South London 66.5 and Greenwood 61.

The judge was Marcus Scott-Taggart who put aside one of the largest number of Hold Prints
(those to be reviewed twice for receiving top marks) I have seen for awhile with eight prints finally obtaining 10 points which were all certified.

Orpington received 10 points which are displayed below from Tracey Elvidge and Peter Humphrey, being only one of the two clubs receiving 2 x certified prints.

This was our most successful colour print first round since being responsible for External Competitions and now means we move onto the 2nd Plate 2 event in January.

If anyone wishes to join me on this evening once dates are known then please advise so we can organise travel arrangements.

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TV and Film Theme Quiz Night

Instead of standing outside in the cold watching fireworks, members gathered together on the 5th November 2013 to compete in a TV/Film quiz night. 30 images were supplied and members were challenged to guess the titles of the TV show or film loosely depicted by the images.

There was a high standard of Photoshop manipulation together with an even higher standard of obscure criptic clues to the answers. In the end only one person gained a pass mark of over 50%.

The top 3 couch-potatoes were:

1st – Paul McElroy

2nd equal – Mike Dancer and Donald Bisset

4th equal – David Barnes, Neville Secular and John Alleeson

Special mention must be made for the following entries:

– Malcolm Ming for his ‘Superman’ in his back garden.
– David Barnes with his ‘Tinker, Taylor, Soldier, Spy’ panel of 4 images stitched together.
– Tony Seppings and his ‘Moonraker’ involving 15 layers in Photoshop.
– Mike Dancer for ‘The spy that came in from the cold’ that nobody guessed.
– David Grimwade for ‘The 39 steps’ which started as 10 steps, then just grew ever upwards.

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Internal Competition on “HAIR”

Tuesday 8th October 2013 saw the members meet for a friendly competition featuring images of hair. Chris Sawyer hosted the evening in a purple wig which started off with the song ‘Hair’ from the musical ‘Hair’ – just in case anyone was unaware of the topic!

Following much discussion of the 39 projected digital images in the competition there was a round of voting which resulted in a tie of 4 images with three votes each. Round two of the voting was a show of hands for the 4 images with the following result:

1st – Tony Seppings with ‘Alternative Hair Style’

2nd – Peter Humphrey with ‘Windswept’

3rd – Rod Tietjen with ‘Static Hair’

All that was left to do was present the prizes and the three successful photographers went off with their chocolates and comedy wigs into the night.

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