Peter Upton FRPS EFIAP MPAGB FIPF APAGB BPE5* 1934-2010
After leaving school Peter was a keen road cylist and had the same commitment, dedication and successes that he was going on to get in the photographic world.
Peter started his camera club life at the Bicester Camera Club, but over the years he also belonged to the Buckingham CC, Central Milton Keynes CC, Solihul PS (Birmingham) and of course the Oxford PS. As external competition secretary he ensured that the Oxford PS became one of the most successful camera clubs in the area.
Peter travelled with his wife Jeanette 1000s of miles around the United Kingdom lecturing and judging. During this time he many a story to tell, especially on one his trips to Ireland, where his talk did not start until the pubs had called closing time.
He would explain to clubs how he would go out looking for pictures, producing images with good composition and making the best use of the lighting conditions
In photographic terms Peter had what is called a creative style, from creating very soft images, to pictures with very saturated colours to vertically stretched pictures. He was a great exponent of producing a slide sandwich (pre-computer) by combining two images together eg. a silhouette of a person sandwiched with a condensation covered window. Jeanette assisted Peter by dressing up in period costumes as such exotic places as the disused quarry at Camarthen in North wales. Peter was always trend setting, so similarly he would use Jeanette to hold a multicoloured umbrella whether it was in a wood or in the middle of a city. Many of these locations producing award winning images. He also liked using a fish eye lens to gain unusual images.
A couple of his favourite haunts were at speakers corners in London – much to the annoyance of some of the speakers, and the modern glass structures of Milton Keynes. Peter did not fear anyone, not even a group of marching clowns at the Bognor Clown Festival as they were just about to trample over him.
Unofficially they even named a windmill after him so Brill mill became Upton Mill as he had taken so many photographs there.
The success a photographer rests with the images that you remember, Phantom of the opera, girl in a red hat, moody blue, Brill Mill and Jean Brookes to mention a few, all winning many awards around the country.
He was a very professional organiser whether it was producing club programmes, looking after club competitions or organising National print exhibitions for the Royal Photographic Society’s creative group.
Peter achieved many photographic awards at national and international exhibitions at home and abroad. He also received many photographic distinctions, but the probably the two most important to him was having his style recognised by the Royal Photographic Society with a Fellowship in slides using a specially designed filter that he attached to the front of his lens and in 1998 he received the Award from the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain recognising his outstanding services to photography.
In memory of Peter Jeanette has kindly donated a trophy which will be awarded to a club image that has shown to make the best use of light.
The club has had many emails from people around the country saying how Peter had inspired and gave a direction to their photography. He will be sadly missed.
Colin Harrison FRPS FBPE FIPF MPAGB EFIAP
Peter Jackman Peters passing is indeed a sad loss to photography. I cant remember how long ago it was when I first met peter but his early work on Silbury Boulevard and central Milton Keynes was, and still is one of my inspirations. Never got to be as good as him but i suppose the ultimate legacy is that I will never stop trying.
John Cartlidge Sad to know that Peter is no longer with us in the greater photographic family. His creative style will remain forever.
Clive Jones I had known Peter since I was about 17 almost 55 years. I soon realised that as far he was concerned 2nd place was not good enough
Pete Warrington Although I didn`t know Peter very well, I admired his enthusiasm and talent.He allways seemed to come up with fresh and excitlng images, To me, he just `lived` photography. A very sad loss.
Steve Field The club has lost a talented and inspirational photographer. I'm sad that I wasn't around during Peter's heyday.
Gordon Roberts I first met Pete way back when I first started judging around 1983. He always impressed me with his work and more so as we came into Digital times. He was always first with his comments and pleased to help newcomers to the circuit but I can remember vividly one evening when he rounded on me as judge for, in his view, I would not be able to see creativity if it hit me in the eye. Perhaps, at that time, he might have been right, but I didn't think so, and needless to say, and much to his surprise, I retaliated and it shut him up! Not easy to do.
Afterwards we always treated each other with much respect and in later years when I was with Oxford PS we enjoyed some good conversations. I will miss Pete as a person who knew what he wanted and saw that he got it but also as a brilliant photographer.
Mike Olver Would like to add my condolences to Peter's family and all at OPS.
Remember Peter from my days at Central Milton Keynes CC first as a lecturer and judge from when I invited him as Programme Secretary and later as fellow member at CMKCC.
Peter was one of the most passionate photographers on the lecture circuit and this always came accross in his talks and photography.
His legacy will the influencs he has had on photographers up and down the country.
Damian Crawford It is so sad to learn the passin of a very talented photographer. Although I did not know him well, Peter will be sadly missed.
I hope his work will prove to be an inspiration for photography for years to come.
JOHN BOTELER Peter will be missed by me as I remember on my first visit to oxford p.p. Peter won the competition and for many years no one in the club could match his shots. Going on a shoot with Pete was an experience not to be missed. Heaven will know they have a top photographer. Condolences to Jean and family .from Velma and John.
Philip JoycePeter's relentless challenge against the mundane and predictable made his photography special and he paved a way that others followed. I am sure he could have little imagined when started out that his images would inspire so many across the whole country. I am indebted to Peter for the encouragement to be my own photographer and the inspiration his images gave. Peter will be sadly missed but not forgotten.
Dave Collier I first met Peter at Morris Photographic in 1983 when he had a 'Saturday Job' there, he was very enthusiastic and encouraged me to join OPS which I did soon afterwards.
His photographic style could be challenging to anyone who thought images had to be sharp and clear, but his abstract style won many people over to the more creative way of working.
He did travel extensivley and do recall him visiting Ipswich Photographic Society when I was working in that area, and he recognised me and said hello,even though we had not met for some time.
An inspirational photographer who gave his enthusiasm and time freely.
Colin ArmitageI first met Peter at Bicester Camera Club in the 1970's, and noticed how well he did in club competitions. His pictures showed his uncanny knack for getting a fresh and exciting perspective on almost any subject. His work inspired me to improve my photography.
It was Peter who introduced me to digital photography, which I found fascinating, and continue to enjoy. He also helped and advised me when I was making my first attempts to submit work for exhibition.
And it was Peter who, ten years ago, introduced me to Oxford Photo Society, to further develop my photography. I shall always be grateful for the help and encouragement he gave me.
Jeff ColesThe first ever camera club meeting I attended was a talk by Peter, he certainly was an inspiration to me then and later when I joined the OPS always encouraging photographers to find their own style, I thank him for that.
Jim Hartje:Sorry to hear about Peter's passing - many thanks for letting me know. In his heyday he was a very imaginative photographer and fine judge
He will be sadly missed.
Chris Palmer: I know that the last year or so had been difficult for Peter, but I recall a passionate photographer, a sound judge, and a genuine nice guy.
OPS and the world of photographer is the poorer for his passing.
Maurice Pugh: Thanks for the message about Peter.
I knew him for a number of years, mainly through the International, although he had judged in our area for the SPF and given talks for us.
He will be missed.
Peter Gennard: So sad
Ian Mellor:Thanks for letting us know Don.
We did know Peter, well, and as you say many knew him from CMK days, it is very sad to hear that he has passed on.
Steve Smith:Very sad news regarding Peter Upton please send my condolances to his family, a great photographer who I first met many years ago.
Emma-Jayne-Evans I feel as Tony does. I too didn't know him
Tony-Tarry I don't think I ever met Peter (being a relatively new member), but he obviously made a big impression on everyone who knew him.
Ian-Tunnicliffe I first met Peter around 5 or 6 years ago and he was one of the reasons I joined OPS. A true inspiration photographically and a thoroughly nice chap. He’ll be sadly missed by many.
Don-Byatt Peter was a big influence on my own photography and led me down the creative path. I first met him when he was at Buckingham camera club, must have been mid 1980s, and then for a while he was President of Central Milton Keynes. I suppose Peter was also a big influence in me eventually joining OPS.
I remember many photographic trips with Peter and his enthusiasm for getting pictures was very infectious. One particular outing was the clowns convention at Bognor .... I remember Peter stepping into the road to stop the clowns parade so he could get his pictures! He was cetainly a character and will be sorely missed.
Colin, as requested I've passed your message to New City.
Linda-Wride I didn't know Peter, but an untimely death is always heartbreaking.
Those who have lost a loved one with Alzheimers have been through that experience twice - you lose the person before the body dies.
I echo Douglas's condolences to Peter's family and his friends, including those in OPS.
Douglas Vernimmen All my condolences for Peter's family and OPS members who where very close to him.