Our latest camera club competition was judged last night, the topic was ‘Something Prickly’ I submitted 4 digital entries af which there were 63 in total. Only 25 prints were entered, maybe others have the same problem as I do when it comes to printing. The judge was an ‘ARPS’ member from a neighbouring camera club in Ross on Wye and his comments were really constructive and helpful for future competitions. One think I have discovered though is that judges’ opinions vary from one to another and in this case he was very definitely looking for the obvious when it came to the criteria ‘prickly’ rather than the more subtle, though at the same time I think he had seen enough cacti and holly to last him a lifetime by the time he had finished.
I was delighted to get 3 awards out of my four entries; 3 highly commended and a 3rd place.
Of one of the highly commended, a rose, he loved the whole picture, composition, exposure, depth of field, detail, but said that had it been more obviously prickly, it would have done better than highly commended.
The next highly commended was a picture of sea holly I took for unit 1 of TAOP, depicting rhythm, diagonals and pattern. His comment about this one was again very positive, although he said he felt cropping the right side of the shot would have resulted in a stronger image.
My final successful image was the back view of a sunflower, again taken for this course; this time the unit on colour. He had nothing negative to say about this at all although I feared he might have thought that the prickly link here was quite tenuous too.
Apart from the success of my entries, one thing that really reassured me that I what I am learning on this course is really sinking in, was that I could predict exactly what the judge had to say about most of the entries, whether it be about depth of field, exposure and certainly composition. Our camera club is a bit of a mixed bag in terms of talent and skill, some of the good are very, very good and some of the not so good, truly horrid! Intermediate cup next time, lets see what that brings!
Other successes in the last couple of weeks: I was asked last week to do a demonstration at camera club on using Photoshop to put together an audio visual slideshow. I used a sequence of photos from a balloon trip the the children had bought us for our 60th birthdays last year. I was really pleased with the outcome and will put the finished article here once I have tweaked it. The second thing is that I have been asked to run a photography club at the primary school where I am a governors starting after Christmas. It will be good to be able to encourage some of the youngsters to get involved in this lovely activity.