35th Smethwick International Exhibition of Photography, 2009

The 35th Smethwick International is organised by Smethwick Photographic Society with patronage from FIAP, PSA and the RPS.

For many years Smethwick Photographic Society has been staging possible the best International exhibition in the UK. They operate an open door policy when it comes to judging and for the second year running I’ve been privileged to witness the judging of the colour prints. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see the monochrome prints being judged due to a prior engagement.


Kingfisher with Catch (FIAP Ribbon) © Paul Ashton

The whole judging process for this exhibition takes three days, Projected Travel & Nature on day one, General Digital on day two, with Mono and Colour prints on day three. Entries are invited from around the world, the quality of which is second to none. In all, a total of 95 awards are made, which includes 53 Gold, Silver & Bronze medals, plus an additional 12 FIAP, 18 PSA and 12 RPS Ribbons. Gaining anyone of these awards is something to be proud of.

In fact, the judges had three DAPA Group members jumping for joy when they received their report cards just one day after the judging had taken place (how quick was that?).


Aaarrgh! (HM) © Belinda Buxton

Belinda Buxton and Paul Ashton, both International virgins, gained awards. Belinda in the Open Digital section with her image entitled, Aaaghh!! And Paul, in the Nature Print section with, Kingfisher with Catch, both image shown here. DAPA Groups third award winner was John Powell, John was awarded a Royal Photographic Society (RPS) Gold Medal for his monochrome tough guy image, “We Can Make It”. This takes John’s International awards total for 2009 to nine.

We Can Make It

We Can Make It (PSA Gold) © John Powell BPE3*

DAPA Group members gaining acceptances were:

Angela Adams BPE1* (8), Belinda Buxton (1 HC), Cherry Larcombe BPE2* (5), Joe Brennan LRPS BPE1* (1), John Powell BPE3* (9, including RPS Gold), Keith Naylor DPAGB BPE3* (5) Paul Ashton (1 HC) and Robert Powell BPE2* (4).  All in all another great set of results.



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