Courier Report 25th March 2022

Date Published 
Fri 25 Mar 2022
At this time of the year, photographers often have to battle against the elements in order to pursue their hobby. The Isle of Man Society, in common with many others, has faced a different challenge recently with the Covid-19 Pandemic, severely restricting its activities. The Society has been forced to cancel several meetings this Winter due to enforced ‘lockdowns’ caused by the Pandemic. Understandably, some of our older members have been nervous about venturing out and risking infection, but the Society has put in place sensible precautions at our new venue (such as hand sanitiser and the now optional wearing of face coverings) to minimise any risks. So, the bottom line is that we have every intention of completing our revised Winter and Spring programme this year and full details of this can be found on the Society’s website,

In yet another first for the Society, last Wednesday evening saw us participate in a keenly contested ‘Zoom Battle’ with the Oldham Photographic Society and the Rochdale and District Camera Club. During the lockdowns, competitions via Zoom became almost the norm, but this is probably the first time we have competed in this friendly rivalry whilst gathered together!

The judge for the evening was Marilyn Roberts DPAGB BPE4*, the current President of the Yorkshire Photographic Union. She said she was looking for certain key elements when judging, namely originality (explained as being something “that little bit different”), atmosphere, dynamism and story-telling. As a renowned PAGB judge and mentor, Marilyn was able to give all the entrants a most helpful critique of their work. She applied her knowledge and experience in looking for evidence of technical ability, awarding higher marks for any images that had impact, displayed a pleasing colour palette or was particularly easy on the eye.

It was especially gratifying that she awarded the top mark – 20 out of 20 - to two of the Society’s images but, in the end, the final scores left the Society in second place once more with 400 points, only 45 behind the winners, Rochdale but 46 ahead of third placed Oldham. The best image in the ‘battle’ was judged to be "Banded Demoiselle on Grass" by Christine Widdall, the current Oldham President and a past judge of the Society’s annual competitions at a time when she was President of the Lancashire and Cheshire Photographic Union.

The Society next meets at 7.00 pm on Wednesday 30th March at the St John Ambulance Headquarters for a competition in memory of past member of the Society, Richard Shafto, for the award of the Cup bearing his name. Potential new members and guests (for a nominal charge) will be made most welcome.

The IOMPS gratefully acknowledges the continued support of the Arts Council.

By Antony Hamilton