Beach Huts
CREDIT: Leigh Preston FRPS

Is this it? Beyond Street Photography with Leigh Preston

Event info

Tickets are scheduled to be available from 28th May.

Leigh Preston FRPS’s latest street photography is about observation, a series of moments and photographic observations witnessed and 'stolen' in many locations featuring the random, the absurd, the bizarre and the serious. In this light-hearted talk he covers mainly people pictures from all walks of life and a general look at the absurd with aspects of performance - people perform just going about their everyday life, so there's a bit of that, accompanied by some images from The Edinburgh Fringe and some stage performances from rock concerts. Street photography is part of it, but there are elements of behaviour and silliness as well as visits to places as diverse as Stoke-on-Trent and Havana, a kind of photographic scrutiny and comment about what he comes across in towns and cities as he wanders through them. This type of work is two-fold, instant serendipity and spontaneous reaction, or a patient wait for the right moment.

Young man swinging from door lintel

All images © Leigh Preston FRPS

This latest work deviates from Leigh’s earlier photography, which is mainly thematic, often using dramatic lighting in wilderness situations, or monochrome in the urban landscape. The vast majority of his output has concentrated on the Northern mill towns, depicting a changing industrial landscape. Over the past 30 years he has travelled widely, with an emphasis on the USA to make images in the National Parks out of season and more particularly Yellowstone in winter, alongside a larger portfolio about the empty Prairies inspired by the book 'Badlands' by Jonathan Raban and also by Steinbeck. Trips to Cuba, India, Greenland, Norway and Georgia have added a more reportage style of portraiture to his portfolio. Lately he has been working on the street, looking for characters and humour or aspects of absurdity. He prefers to work alone, influenced by the environment he grew up with and the photography of Bill Brandt, John Gray and Michael Kenna and the artists L.S.Lowry and Atkinson Grimshaw. Lyricism and narrative have become increasingly important in the documentary work he is now producing, linking influences such as J.B. Priestly and Beryl Bainbridge alongside Bob Dylan and Roger Waters. More recently he has been working on projects for publications and writing the narratives to balance the pictures, these include an essay on Power and Power Stations, Rock Musicians and an ongoing portrait of Liverpool.

Leigh Preston FRPS has produced three books – Shadows of Change, Five Essays and Santorini - all of which depict the various aspects of his photography as outlined above.

Leigh has lectured widely for over 40 years and still has a darkroom, although most of his work is now digital. He sat on RPS distinction panels for best part of 25 years and now runs location workshops and printing courses for Permajet. Prior to that he worked as a tutor for Jessops school of photography in Leicester and has continued to teach college courses, although these are now far fewer and on-line due to the impact of COVID. His working life was as a cartographer and land surveyor for the Ordnance Survey and other Government departments. Photography is not his only interest - hill walking, long-distance running and industrial archaeology are other ways he spends his time.

Zoom video-conferencing

This event will take place via video-conference using Zoom Webinar. You will be emailed a link in advance so you can join the event. Watch for a PDF document attached to your RPS Event Booking Confirmation email for more information about Zoom.

During the event you will be able to see Leigh Preston and his images. You will be able to ask questions after his session.

Booking a place

You will need to book online in order to be able to access this event. Booking closes at 07.00 BST on Friday 16 July. This event is free for Digital Imaging members, but these members still have to ‘purchase’ a (free) ticket to receive a link for joining the event. If you are not an RPS member you will need to register (for free) with the RPS website in order to book.

Please check whether your membership in Digital Imaging is still active before booking your place. This will be checked when ticketing closes, and any mistake could invalidate your ticket. Check your status by logging into the RPS website.

If you are outside the UK this service will help you to calculate the timing of the online workshop.

After booking you will receive an RPS Event Booking Confirmation email. If you do not receive this, you have not succeeded in booking a ticket.

Your data

Your personal data (name, email address and telephone number) that you supply when booking the online event will be passed to the Digital Imaging Group organiser in order to enable them to:

1. Contact you in advance of the event to remind you or notify you of joining instructions (or changes thereto) etc.

2. Contact you at short notice before or during an event in case of any emergency or last-minute changes

3. Contact you at the end of the event for your feedback.

By booking this event you are deemed to consent to this transfer of your data.The event may be recorded and published.

By joining the event you are deemed to consent to our making a recording of the event available online afterwards.

Event Organiser

Rex Waygood


Cancellation policy

If circumstances beyond our control cause cancellation of the online event you will be reimbursed. It is for each attendee to ensure they are able to view this presentation online. It may not be possible for the host/organiser to rectify any problems attendees may have. For that reason, it is in your best interest to satisfy yourself that you can communicate via Zoom before the event. No refund will be available if you are unable to attend the meeting for any reason.



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