About the EPG

The Electronic Portfolio Group (known as the EPG)  gives members the opportunity and encouragement to submit digital images, and comment on each others’ images for enjoyment and for improving our photos in a safe and supportive environment. Hopefully this will help develop our skills and confidence to submit images to more challenging and advanced activities.

The EPG is currently coordinated by SandyR and PaulG:  epg@the-dps.co.uk. They are reputed to be friendly and do not bite.

The idea of the EPG is to allow our photos to be circulated amongst the group who will comment on them so that we get some feedback about what others feel about our images and sometimes tips for improving. We, as a group, are very aware that we all have challenges which may make some types of photography more difficult for individuals.  We have tried to organise things so that people have the best opportunity to give comments and receive comments.

We have members at all stages of their photographic journeys from beginners who use basic compact cameras to Fellows of the Society. All are welcome, provided they are happy to be kind, constructive, supportive and enjoy learning. There are a couple of things that you need to be able to do, other than take to photos. The first is to be able to use email to send and receive images as attachments. The second is to be able write comments either into an email or on a word processor.

Given people’s different circumstances, we are conscious that not everyone will be able to comment on every image every time, nor will everybody be able to submit an image each time, but we hope that everybody will be able to comment and receive comments at least some of the time.  Even if you do not have an image for a particular month, your comments on other submissions are very welcome and likewise if you do not have any comments your image for the current month will still be welcome.  A topic or theme for each month is provided and your image should reflect that topic.

We do have a deadline for submissions. The deadline for both the photos and comments is the 7th of the month. This means that  the December/January submissions do not clash with Christmas or new year holidays. This allows more time for people to do comments and so be less rushed. For example in the month of March, the March pictures should be submitted by the 7 March and the comments on the February images  should also be submitted also by the 7 March.

The way it works is that members send in their images and comments to the coordinators by the deadline. The coordinators then gather the pictures together and circulate them. The comments are edited together  and circulated  in a separate e-mail. The circulations will usually be by around the 10th of the month but might be a bit earlier or later depending on health and commitments. Small versions of the pictures will be then posted to the EPG gallery on the DPS website .

We always try to acknowledge receipt of your e-mails within 3 days. If you do not get a response, then we have not got your e-mail. 

Documentation for Download

EPG Contacts

EPG organisers SandyR & PaulG:  epg@the-dps.co.uk.

If you email us and you have not had a response within 3 days it means that we have probably not received your email.

Portfolio Group Galleries

Small versions of the EPG images can be found in the EPG gallery. Last updated – 10/05/2017

Portfolio Group Galleries
This note gives guidance on the topics for the DPS Electronic Portfolio Group. The topics alternate between a themed topic and an open topic.

Images should be submitted by the close of play (mid evening) on the 7th of the month for that topic, so images for ‘wheels’ should be submitted by the 7th August. There is no set time for images to be taken.

Note that there are references to a number of websites in this document. These websites are examples and may not be the best ones on the web but should give you a start. I have not tried all the techniques in web links so cannot vouch for their effectiveness. Use your common sense and your usual security precautions when looking at any web sites.

Open Subjects:
When it comes to open subjects you can treat the way you take them as the same as a set subject, the main thing to remember is to get your exposure correct as you do not want burned out highlights or blocked in shadows, to overcome the burned out highlights I tend to shoot at .03 underexposed as my Nikon D300 tends to shoot overexposed at the zero setting, also I shoot in RAW format and I can adjust the exposure in Adobe RAW, for those of you who are not using RAW I find that you can make so many alterations in this part of Photoshop, a good book is ‘Understanding RAW by Andy Rouse’ (this may be available at your local library) of course you can always adjust your exposure settings after looking at you histogram on the Led screen.

One of the golden rules is to place your subject matter on one of the thirds intersection, (this rule can be broken as I like to bait the judge at my photography club) also it’s good to have a lead in line from the left bottom corner, bearing in mind you can flip your image horizontally, but be aware if you have any writing or numbers in the image as these will be mirrored.

Your image needs to be sharp and have a good depth of field, when taking natural history images make sure your camera is perpendicular to the subject matter also make sure the background is thrown out of focus, this can be obtained by using a good depth of field i.e. F stop, another point is to do some gardening before you hit the shutter button, I usually have several clothes pegs and small canes in my camera bag just to hold back unwanted branches, grasses etc.

If you are photographing architecture it’s good to have some people in the shot as this gives the image a sense of scale. I am sure there are things I have missed but you will find by looking at good photographic website such as ephotozine http://www.ephotozine.com you will learn more or even consider joining a photographic club, if you do this do not worry if the judge is not complementary to some of your work as personal preferences do creep in which is not the correct way to judge a image/photograph.

If you are interested in monochrome, there is a good book on how to produce Monochrome images ‘Digital Black & White Photography’ by John Beardsworth http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Advanced-Digital- Black-White-Photography-John-Beardsworth/9781908150295

In conclusion:

I hope these notes have given you some ideas how to go about the set subjects and some possible interpretations. Hopefully all subjects will be able to be done by everyone and I have tried to indicate how a broad interpretation of the topic will make the topics inclusive.

The guide gives a few ideas, but ultimately your inspiration will come from yourself and the images you choose to share will reflect that. I hope that you will find the topics enjoyable, thought provoking and will encourage you to try new things. The EPG is not a competition; it is about learning, understanding, and sharing our thoughts and experiences so that we all improve our photos and get more enjoyment out of taking them.

If you have any suggestions for topics for 2017, do let the organisers know so that we can put them into the pot. We plan to post the next set of topics/themes in early to mid 2016 so that you all have plenty of time to think about, capture and process your images before they are due,

At the end of the day remember all we are doing is getting out and enjoying ourselves by partaking in a wonderful and enjoyable interest that allows us to express ourselves and provide beauty for others to enjoy, not to mention provoking thought from images that are outside their comfort zones. Photos can convey very powerful messages as well as being things of beauty.

Sandy Robertson LDPS

Download the Intro Guide for Commenting.

If you have any questions do please email the organisers SandyR & PaulG: epg@the-dps.co.uk.

Month Theme Submit Images By Submit Comments By
June Architecture Mono 7th June 7th July
July Opon 7th July 7th August
August People 7th August 7th September
September Open 7th September 7th October
October Natural History 7th October 7th November
November Open 7th November 7th December
December Kitchen Appliances 7th December 7th January
Jpeg – Max 1400px wide or 1050px high for the longest side.

Please name the files with a title and your name e.g. “a pretty picture by SandyR.jpg”.

If you have trouble resizing or have other technical concerns about your images do please ask the organisers. We will always try to help.

Send your images to: epg@the-dps.co.uk Please send the images as attachments to your e-mail.

Deadline for images: 7th of the month.

New to commenting on images? – Read our Intro Guide (download) to Commenting on Images.

Please e-mail your comments either in the body of the e-mail or in a text attachment. Please use .TXT, .DOC format. Please do not use .DOCX as that format is not fully compatible with some systems. We do reserve the right to moderate comments.

Deadline for comments: 7th of the month following circulation of the images.