Going For the LRPS by Joanne Coates

The story of Joanne’s experience of a recent RPS Distinctions Workshop/Advisory Day in York

“Well, yesterday was one of the longest days of my life!

After picking up the final pieces of my submission on Saturday afternoon I got them home to find issues with printing and mount sizes (my fault not theirs) so I had a last minute panic and spent Saturday evening desperately trying to re-shuffle things to make some sort of coherent panel.

In the end I decided to take both panels, the police dogs and the studio portraits, and went with the dogs as my first choice.

The advisory started on time at 10.30, there was 18 panels to get through and guess what number I was, yeah……….number 18 !!!!

I had to wait all day!! It was very interesting listening to the critique and I learned a lot about what was required for a distinction. The more I learned the more nervous I became, there was some lovely work displayed throughout the day and I began to wonder what the hell I was doing there. By the time my 1st panel was put up at 3.30 I was a gibbering wreck and had one eye on the nearest plant pot in case my nerves got the better of my churning stomach.

The advisor stood for what seemed like an age just staring at my photos but not saying anything. At this point I started to wish that plant pot was big enough for me to climb into. He then turned, looked me straight in the eye and said “This work does not meet the requirements of a Licentiate”. I didn’t know whether I was going to throw up or burst into tears (or maybe both at the same time!), he must’ve realised I was on the brink as he quickly followed it up with “It is much more suited to Associate level, I advise you to bypass the L and go straight for an A distinction”. At which point I must’ve looked very confused as I wasn’t sure if I’d heard correctly so he repeated himself but this time spoke a little slower and it began to sink in. Well BLOODY HELL I didn’t expect that!!!!!

As they began to display my second panel I was feeling a little hopeful that they may make the L standard, once again he stood staring and this time also shaking his head as he said “These are not L standard either, this is also an ‘A’ panel”. I almost started to hyperventilate and my grin was as wide as the theatre screen.

Secretly I feel a little disappointed that I didn’t make the L grade but what the heck – it looks like I’m on my way to a BIG FAT ‘A’. Happy days !!!”

Joanne Coates March 2015

The story continues: Joanne intends to assemble an ‘A’ panel of 15 prints and present to the RPS Northern Region Distinctions Workshop/Advisory Day at Backworth Hall 26th April 2015 and enter the final ARPS panel for assessment at RPS HQ in Bath this Autumn

More about the Backworth Hall event, with links to everything you need to know about RPS Distinctions, is here

The Register of DPS Members Distinctions (soon to be joined by Joanne Coates ARPS?!) is on this website here

Pictured: Joanne’s two panels – Police Dogs and Studio Portraits

   LRPS Layout 1

   LRPS Layout 2

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