In addition to our internal competition program, the Club also competes extensively against other local and regional clubs. This gives us the chance to meet other clubs and compare some of our best images with theirs. Importantly, additional competitions provide us with a wider range of assessment comments on selected images so that we can get a sense of aspects of photography where Club photographers might usefully develop their skills.
Among the external competitions we are involved with each season are the following:
The Bracknell Nines
This is the only competition that we host ourselves. There are nine local clubs – traditionally, Bracknell, Burghfield, Farnborough, Guildford, Maidenhead, Newbury, Windlesham & Camberley, Wycombe and Yateley. Each club submits six images and judging is by an external judge marked out of 10 each.
Last season Bracknell came second in an exciting competition to Maidenhead with only half a mark separating the clubs.
These are the competitions organised by the Federation that we belong to – the Southern Counties Photographic Federation.
SCPF PDI and Print leagues – These are leagues running from November to April with leagues generally being divided into divisions of 8 clubs. Each club organizes an evening event and arranges for an SCPF judge who (should!) follow SCPF guidance on assessing and marking images. Each club in the division submits eight images at the beginning of the season leading to 64 to be judged on each night meaning that, across the season, the same set of images is judged eight times by eight judges.
The print leagues did not operate in the 20-21 season and may not run in 21-22.
However, last season the Club won the SCPF PDI division 2 by a wide margin so that this year we will be in PDI division 1 competing with traditionally very strong and sometimes larger clubs including Chichester, Basingstoke, Winchester, Farnborough, New Forest, Yateley and Steyning.
SCPF Championships – this is a federation wide competition and last year 34 clubs each submitted 15 images which makes for a marathon judging exercise. The top two clubs progress to represent SCPF at the national competition.
Last season Bracknell came third just behind Yateley and one of our images was a awarded a judges medal.
SCPF Exhibition – Again a federation wide competition (normally print and PDI) and last year 35 clubs submitted 8 PDI images which were each judged out of 10. In normal years there is a physical exhibition of prints and projected PDIs.
Last year the Club came second (to Yateley again) and one image received a silver award in the Mono category.
SCPF Finals Day – The two top-scoring images from each club in SCPF compete against one another
PAGB Cup and PAGB Nature Cup Competitions
These are national level competitions and require at least 12 images in each category. Typically, they show us how much room there is for our Club photographers to improve.
Last season we came 74th out of 120 clubs in the PAGB Cup
National level competitions open to any club within the PAGB “family”
Other Inter-Club Competitions
Farnborough PDI Challenge – 10 images each from 6 clubs
The Albany Cup – organised by Guildford CC – this is a panel competition (normally Prints) for eight clubs requiring four images by at least three authors to any theme a club cares to select. The images are marked individually and then as a panel.
Two years ago the Club won this but last season came last.
Windlesham & Camberley Non-Advanced competition – This is a competition for six local clubs that focuses on images from eight “non-advanced” photographers (i.e. those who are not in the top division of the club, do not have “letters” and have not had images used to represent their club in the last two years.
Yateley 8 by 8 by 8 competition – eight prints from eight different members from eight invited clubs.