Chairman's monthly blog...
I don’t think anyone will disagree that Norwich & District Photographic Society has made some huge steps forward over the last couple of years. I am only too pleased to remind everyone of these developments and the achievements that have taken place and to reflect upon what these changes mean and will mean for the Society going forward
We have pushed forward on all fronts but at the very heart of all these developments has been the updating of the Society’s Constitution (formally known as the rules). This is both the framework and the foundations of the Society and the basis for all future progress over the coming years.
At our Annual General meeting, which took place in June this year, a number of members (Neil Hall, Paul Cowcher, Paul Oliver and David Lloyd) came forward and were elected to the committee. This has strengthened the committee considerably and will allow the Society to function more effectively and give us the ability to develop more effectively new initiatives in the future.
Currently our only source of income is subscriptions from our members, and these have not been increased for a number of years. We would like to keep subscriptions as low as possible and therefore we are in the process of looking at alternative methods of securing additional income for the Society and the committee has appointed David Lloyd with responsibility for establishing how this might be achieved.
We have installed DiCentra competition software on our laptop and are in the process of training a number of members to use it which will make our competition evenings run more smoothly and efficiently. In addition, Paul Oliver has taken responsibility for ensuring that our projector is regularly colour calibrated and the software that we use is regularly updated.
An introduction to post processing in Photoshop is being arranged by our Vice Chairman Neil Hall using the superb facilities at the University of East Anglia (UEA) An absolute must for all new members who want to up their game in regard to post processing their images. Neil has also taken over the responsibility for our Social Media platforms.
Our Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are flourishing and apart from those that are already established we are prepared to set up others if there is sufficient demand. In particular a Wildlife SIG has been discussed so if anyone is interested in helping to get this off the ground please let us know and we shall get started.
Phenomenal Annual exhibition this year including the successful Public Competition which according to Norwich Cathedral had in excess of 20,000 people passing through the exhibition area in the 18 days it was open to the public. We continue to be grateful to the Dean, Chapter Office and Vergers at Norwich Cathedral for their continued support of the Society both today and over so many years.
Apart from the many superb Special Presentations that were arranged last season this season looks like being even better. David Noton’s ‘Chasing the Light Road Show’ already stands out as a real highlight and was the most ambitious presentation we have ever attempted. It was a huge success – not only in terms of new members who having been attendees chose to join us but also in raising the profile of the Society well beyond the Norwich area and importantly we made a profit.
We are grateful to the UEA for allowing us to host the Road Show on the University Campus in the modern Thomas Paine lecture theatre. Next September we are already planning another standout event and our successful Public Competition including the Junior category we introduced this year is here to stay.
We now have a fantastic new website which was launched at the beginning of the season and is a vast improvement on the old website. There is still some work in progress and further developments and initiatives in the pipeline will be available shortly. One major change is the Members’ Area which is password protected so only members of the Society can access this part of the website and maintain their own data profile. Here members will also find all the information they need to be an active member of the Society.
Finally, our membership grew significantly last season and continues to increase at pace. We consider our members to be our most valued assets and we need to consider carefully how we integrate every new members quickly into the Society – Paul Cowcher has taken on the new role of Membership Secretary and is already working hard to make sure this objective is achieved and that all our new members are made to feel at home as quickly as possible.