Long-time member and ardent club supporter, Suzanne Ladd, has a reputation as a “thinking photographer”; one who plans ahead, considers the options, takes the shot and makes the most she can of it in post-processing. Her evening this year deliberately set out to consider the shots she has taken in the past that didn’t make the cut, or were kept well away from any judge’s eye, but that in light of her increasing understanding and expertise warrant a second look.

The evening’s presentation must have taken a great deal of time to prepare. Suzanne drew on a wide range of images that she has faithfully recorded (and kept, we can only guess where) over the years. Not only did we see her recent attempts at Intentional Camera Movement techniques, inspired by Rose Atkinson, but she also presented her own takes on Namibian desert landscapes, her cycling trips to the Outer Hebrides and Robin Hood’s Bay with Jill Toman, and, closer to home, those of Salisbury Cathedral, Tintagel, the Tor and the homemade rafts on the annual Wells Moat race.

Suzanne’s narrative took us through the before and the after shots as well as treating us to hikes through hills and moorlands as well as the tribulations of handling boats and broken bikes when investigating tales of James Cook’s residency in far-away villages. Always a fan of capturing details that many of us miss, Suzanne looks for beauty in the spring leaves and ageing seed heads she finds in the landscapes she explores. She looks for themes and projects to tackle anew, and this year her love of the wider vista is leading her to seek and record what she calls “people in the landscape”. So far she has taken shots that range from reclining sun worshippers on the top of the Tor to the street corner characters so often engrossed in their mobile phones.

It was an interesting evening that gave us lots to think and talk about, not least to admire. Next week we welcome back Duncan and Deborah Armour via Zoom when they will present the Rainforest talk that we had to postpone back in September. Jill Toman has been working hard on the programme for 2024/5 and this is now on our website. Members are reminded that fees are now due and we look forward to welcoming new members through the summer months.

Jenny Short