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Tony Spooner


Born in Exeter, my interest in photography goes back to childhood, when I had a Kodak Brownie reflex and would help my Dad in the darkroom. During National Service, in the RAF in Kenya, I bought a 35mm Braun Paxette with fixed 45mm lens. Kodakchrome slide film was available, speed ASA 10. Unfortunately, wild animals ran in terror whenever we tried to get close enough for a decent image from a military helicopter, or leaning out of the open door of an aircraft. We did however get some decent images on a climb of Kilimanjaro.

I did not return to photography for many years, then joined Newbury Camera club. My work, being London based, meant that getting to meetings was difficult. I was a Chartered Insurer and Senior Risk Control Surveyor. A heavy involvement in major projects such as the Channel Tunnel provided photo opportunities but I did not return to club photography until I retired to Sidmouth.

I soon realised that there was more to photography than Family Records, important as they are. I found Sidmouth Club friendly and helpful to new members, and in time found myself helping others, especially during the change to digital. I had nothing to show that I knew what I was talking about, and decided to join the RPS with a view to gaining an LRPS. It was not easy, but I managed it in 2010, and then the Associateship in 2016. Entering images for competition can be nerve-wracking, but I found seeing other images and noting comments very useful, even if I did not always agree with them!

Having used Canon and Nikon, including full frame, I now use Fuji mirrorless, as it is smaller, lighter and performs well in comparison tests.

Tony Spooner
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