Still walking and chatting in the countryside despite the weather!
The walks continue and we had a good ramble through Velvet Bottom last Wednesday when the rain held off long enough for us to complete the circuit and have a good chat. Some even took photos!!! We are hoping to explore the Stanton Drew/Pensford area next week.
The Plan is to meet in the lane near the stone circle at a slightly later time of 2.30pm and take it from there. Anyone coming let me know by Monday 6pm. We have also decided to take September arrangements and adapt to a Virtual Plan as long as we can upgrade Zoom to give us longer meet time.
We need to determine what the Social Club arrangements for opening are currently and the Committee will meet either last week of July or first week in August by Zoom to make a few arrangements between when we finish in July and begin again after August.

So…. Feedback on the LONE TREE CHALLENGE

Jenny says:
Jane R: 3 in 1 is a nice black and white and good clouds-is it cropped a bit tight? The bench and tree has a nice lead in line and I like the textures in the wood and the composition. Perhaps up the contrast to get true black? Past its best is super I like the angle and the lead in line against the beach and the sky I think I would not have included the people but just personal preference.
Jill: I must go and find this wonderful witch I think the treatments work well especially the really spooky one.
Bill: tree 1 has nice white snow in foreground and I like the composition 2 is really minimalist with lead in lines Its almost an abstract. The B and W 3 is my favourite with the moody sky and the slope I also think a square crop would work.
Graham I do like the Bewitched treatment with the texture you described it suits the title and I like it a lot. The trusty 2 header at Farmborough is back I see-nice comp and I like the low horizon and the clouds. I wonder if the frosted tree needs a thin border around it?
Pamela: All three dead trees! I like the light you managed to take the pics in especially the Au revoir but I wonder if the tree needs always to be in the middle of the shot – just a thought .
Jane L I always want to photograph hares and never have the camera to hand when I see them which isn’t often. Is that On the Way home really Black and white? You??? I actually like it but my favourite is the Stoke Camp for composition, colour and the sky.
Geoff: these three images are really quite iconic and the colours in the Namibian ones are stunning and the shapes amazing. Is the 3rd one in England or also Namibia? Also the sky suggests quite a long exposure-was it?
Tony#1 I found the shadow coming in from the right a distraction. I do like bandw as you know and the light looks great although a bit burned out I might have blocked it a bit moe or toned it down post processing if I knew how !!! The tree in barley is great I do like the movement you are getting in your shots.
Suzanne: harvest Tree is beautiful with the wide wide angle low viewpoint and the movement in the crop Both pictures of the Lonesome Pine are really well composed and I like the attention to detail in the colour one of the thin black border- really sets it off well the square crop really suits both.

Jill says :

Au revoir – Nicely silhouetted and the lovely sky really sets if off. Perhaps you could crop some of the sky at the top?
Lockdown Tree – I wonder of this might be best in portrait format so cutting out some of the other trees to make it more “alone”. Also reduce the saturation a little
Past life – Again would have made this portrait and cut out the other trees.
It wasn’t dawn – As the subject was “Lone Tree”, I just wonder if just the reflection would make it a better image as the tree blends into the background hedge behind.
Treeline B&W – Like the lead in lines and think it would have more impact if it was in portrait format without the trees to the left, nice as they are.
Treeline – Same comments but it is a lovely landscape image.
Bewitched is great but don’t like the picture frame. A simple keyline would be better and not so distracting.
Farmborough Common – Too much Topaz for me!
Love the 2 Namibian ones. The lighting on the branches is beautiful.
Lone tree 3 – Image is made by the dramatic sky giving it real impact.
Like your atmospheric B&W one the best.
Harvest tree is great (and clever!)
The 2 Trail of the Lonesome Pine – prefer the B&W one as it has more detail in the sky
Jane L
Well done for spotting and capturing the hares! It is a lovely tree and a shame you couldn’t isolate it in the sky. Perhaps if you got down low but then you would lose the hares!
On the way home B&W Love this one as it has real atmosphere.
Stoke Camp – Interesting colour – sun but a storm brewing? Good position of the tree on the third

Pamela says:
: Jenny. Wasn’t dawn. I think this is very striking. The
reflection is strong. I might have cropped a bit of sky. Treeline. B&W.
Lovely lone tree but my eye goes to the row of trees on the right.
Interestingly, in the colour version I don’t find my eye wanders and I
really like this photo. The bit of dark in the foreground adds to the
Graham. Frosted. We don’t live far from each other but your
weather is so different. It’s a lovely tree! I think Bewitched is
hauntingly eerie and I am expecting all sorts of strange images to
emerge. I think a dark frame would look better than the brown.
Farmborough. A good picture and very sharp but my favourite is still
Jill. The Witch. Three dramatic photos and so sharp. I
thought I would prefer the B&W, especially as it is a ‘witch’ but my
favourite is the colour version. The colours are so right; I love
Jane R. 3 in 1 is cleverly taken, perhaps a bit tight at the sides.
I think Past its Best tells a poignant story. I love the isolation it
suggests and that’s why I would prefer it without the people, although
arguably it suggests life and death so another way of looking at it.
Bench and Tree. I find the bench is taking my eye out of the picture so
I would prefer it from a different angle or without the bench.
I looked for my weekly chuckle but then remembered you had been away
but at least you have submitted one photo, and it’s really good one.
The light is wonderful and I think the composition works so well, even
without a chuckle.
Geoff. Like you, I love the trees in Namibia and
eothese two are a bit different from the ones usually shown. I love the
background, the trees are so sharp - all in all, excellent (and I’m
envious). No 3. The wonderful sky adds so much drama.
Jane L. Evening
hares. It’s a privilege to see hares; lovely animals. On way home is
drastic and you have caught the tree in an ominous mood! Stoke Camp.
Well caught in the sunlight. The lone tree really is a lone tree; I
like it, it’s a very good composition.
Tony. Lone tree 1. I love the
tree but find the dark shadow distracting. No 2. is dramatic but my
favourite is Tree/barley. I love the wavy grass in the foreground. I
would like to see a second version, this time with less on the right
for comparison. But it’s a great photo.
Bill. Tree 1. For me, there is
a bit too much snow in the foreground, but it’s all so sharp and
well-exposed. Tree 2. I really like the simplicity of this photo. It’s
intriguing and I find I am imagining all sorts of scenarios. Tree 3 is
another great photo. I love the drama and isolation.
Suzanne. Harvest
tree 1. I love this; it’s a different take from the usual. The lines
work well, the sky is extraordinary. Lonesome 1 and 2 are both good
compositions, sharp and really good but Harvest tree gets my vote.

Suzanne says:
This week, I have noticed there are 13 - out of a total of 31 images, which are black and white. Interesting!
GRAHAM: BEWITCHED – is my favourite of yours. The whole shape of the tree evokes a spooky feeling. It’s well placed and the bushes around it plus those shadows in the foreground all add to it. Sharp, crisp, eye catching and B/W suits it but check what appear to be brown/blue colour patches beside l/h side of your bold frame choice. FARMBOROUGH COMMON – I must go there with my camera. A lone tree you can spot from a few miles away- very colourful, sharp image and composition good. Is it HDR? FROSTED TREE – A very graceful tree with ... has it hoar frost on it?
TONY: LONE TREE BW- which I like best because the tree position is great with just the right amount of base. The house in the background, roughly on a third and the position of the sun and its rays leads your eye in and around this gentle b/w image. Great composition. LONE TREE COLOUR 1- What beautiful t light and colour on that tree and in the sky creating a strong shadow in the foreground. A nice picture, but not as strong a composition as the b/w image for me. TREE IN THE BARLEY – Great light again, love the colourful crop with its lead in lines but a shame your tree is not isolated a little from the hedge; so for me, so it’s as above for the composition.
BILL: TREE 3- A famous and well photographed tree on Mendip which is my favourite of yours Bill. You took it from the pool side, I, from behind it! B/w suits the subject well, tree placement good and is highlighted with the dramatic dark sky behind - a classic example of - one/two thirds composition. TREE 2 – Is it growing or dying? Well done for the low angle needed to raise it above the grass line and highlight it against the water. A different slant on Lone Tree which fits the brief. TREE 1-A nice bright print, good whites and your lone tree does stand out but how about cropping some of bottom off. Does it need the snowball?
PAMELA: AU REVOIR- Is the one I like best of your images. The light plus the shadow of the trunk add a lot to this picture. It is a lone tree in that it’s different from those around it but if it was mine I might have a go at pulling the picture out evenly to lose as much as I could of the right hand tree (then clone out the odd branches that were left.) This would make the dead tree higher up in the frame and the shadow would almost be in the left hand corner. Your picture is good as it is, but it’s a great subject so perhaps retake it through the seasons- maybe a little differently each time. Please show me if you do. LOCKDOWN/PAST LIFE- How clever and well seen because I’ve just realised that Past the tree hiding behind Lockdown giving it its humorous hair do. I don’t mind the tree where it is in Lockdown as it kind of balances out the trees on both sides but maybe crop off some of those r/h trees and make L stand out even more in the centre. Three, great, sharp, colourful images.
JENNY: IT WASN’T DAWN- I have quite a few picture of this tree and still haven’t got it right! As a lone tree maybe you could think about your Wells cathedral picture technique and crop the reflection up to the bottom of the three clumps of vegetation in the water, flip the canvas vertically and hey ho, a perfect lone tree, reflection - upright. No need for that main tree! But, that’s only in my opinion. Even so, I do like that tree. TREELINE B/W and COLOUR- Both good landscapes. Again, I prefer the b/w image but in both pictures there are strong lines in your composition and your main tree is positioned well. You could try cropping one of these images up to bottom of the two darker green tracks on the r. As the right hand side one is slightly curved, together they make good lead in/out lines and the crop might make the tree stand out even more- just a thought.
JILL: THE WITCH OF WOOKEY 3 – A sharp, bold and dramatic image which is my favourite. The tree on the r/h side tree doesn’t detract from The Witch and the strong contrasts of b/w suits it. I liked picture 1 - (colour version) minus the smaller tree on the r/h side also. Great colour rendition, it looks right, but for me, perhaps b/w suits the image best. Three well composed images and all in all, a truly great tree to photograph.
JANICE: AT STOURHEAD- Beautiful light in this image, warm colours not over saturated and I love your choice of not having the whole tree in your picture. A great composition. The angle at the base is good because the viewer uses it as a lead in and out line. Detail in the trunk and the patch of pale blue water compliments the image.
JANE R: PAST ITS BEST – That tree trunk on the beach certainly catches your eye. It’s my favourite of your images. It has a good lead in line from the right; fills a lot of the frame and is sharp. Its textures and shapes are well captured as is the detail in the sand. The two people in the background give this image some sense of scale but, do they take my eye away from the trunk. No, I think I like them there. A soothing seaside scene well spotted! BENCH AND TREE/THREE IN ONE – Maybe it is a tad close to the frame but it’s nice to have a picture/title to chuckle at. Viewpoint is good and you have separation between the three trunks. BENCH ... I can see why you placed the bench as a lead in line in this b/w image which has nice light/shadows, good contrast and movement in the sky.
JANE L: ON THE WAY HOME- A great moody image. Is it mist or fog? Whatever the weather, this bare tree, which is sharp seems to stand out. The hedge line is a good base for it as your eye is directed to the trunk and up into the filigree of twisting branches. My favourite. They seem to be pointing you to ....what I wonder! STOKE CAMP- Interesting light, well captured in this image with its lone, blossom tree. I think it might be even more dramatic if it was letterboxed. HARES – Nice light on this image also. What a good spot to sit and watch the hares come out to play. I would like to sit in that field with my camera too.

[b]Jane Lewis says :
Find myself being a bit picky this week but think it’s just heightened lock down blues. I particularly liked the more local settings offering a virtual out and about in the recent less clement weather. I also enjoyed the “comparisons”, alternative versions or edits of the same or similar image to consider and learn from.
Jill’s West Witch is great. I like the colour for its detail in the bark but prefer 2 & 3 composition with its wider context. Works well in b&w for drama and sky although feel the top cloudscape is too dark and detracts a bit in No 2 and the No 3 vignetting is ott for me.
I have a similar Paulton Basin tree to Jenny’s so can’t comment for fear of bias and prefer colour when there is so much to see in the image! I like the Treeline lower edge crop (a little more maybe?) because the dark area was distracting. The b&w works for its simplicity but for me there is more to see in the hillside contours of the colour version. No surprise there.
I like the interesting light in Pamela’s Au Revoir (cut down the sky and adjust horizontal?) but prefer the clouds and framing of Past Life. Although a fun idea, Lockdown Treetop doesn’t really work for me and too straight on.
Suzanne’s Harvest Tree hits the brief for me again. Low view wide angle, interesting foreground, hedge defining horizon to tree, convenient cloud gap lead in, good use of b&w. Lonesome Pine 1 & 2 are interesting for me because I’d crop the colour to a rectangle to remove some of the foreground grass which is is quite bland and samey yet that same grass is punchier in b&w and adds interest within the square format.
Once again, I like Tony’s moving crop and light, this time in Tree in the Barley. I find the track lines leading out of the picture disconcerting. Is this an example of Jill’s left to right being preferred visually to the opposite direction as here? Lone Tree 1 disappears below the horizon so not so effective, foreground shadow aside. I like the composition and broodiness of the black and white image although find the sun a bit bright.
I think Jane R’s Bench and Tree would benefit from more sky at the top but like the concept as I do the 3 in 1. Does the latter need to have more contrast and be further away for greater effect? On the other hand, I like the viewpoint and contrast of the dead trunk on the beach, the people add perspective and a reason for the footprints perhaps.