The Impala trophy is an award system developed by the Photographic Society of South Africa to acknowledge the achievement of its members (all members throughout South Africa) in mainly national photography salons as there are very limited number of international salons organised by South Africa clubs. I started entering photography salons in 2011 and at the end of 2012 I ended up in 62th place with 77 points on the rankings. In 2013 I improved my position and was placed in 5th place overall. Currently (up until November 2013) I am once again in 5ht place. See the images of the results below. As you will see from the results, there are two categories: Nature and Open. A member can only accumulate points from photo acceptances in Nature divisions of salons in this category. All other acceptances are calculated in the Open category except monochrome which has its own trophy.
Interesting to note – in 2013 we (Bloemfontein Camera Club) had 3 members under the top 10. Currently we do have yet another 3 members under the top 10 and 6 members under the top 20 (Bessie Vermeulen is also a member of the Bloemfontein Camera Club). We are members of an active club with very “strong” members and we do encourage our fellow members to start entering salons at a very “young” age/early stage of their photography career.
Here is an explanation from the PSSA website as to the functioning of the Impala trophy http://www.pssa.co.za/salons-mainmenu-81/regalia-mainmenu-94/impala-trophy:
Awarded annually to the person gaining the greatest number of points in a medium (digital or prints), to fully paid-up members of PSSA (no affiliate members). These points will be gained on National and International salons recognised by PSSA and which is held within the borders of South Africa only. The year will run from July 1st through to June 30th of each year and the award will be made at the annual PSSA congress. You may enter a piece of work on as many salons as you wish, and there is no restriction on the number of points gained by an image, towards the Impala Trophy. Please note that the same (substantially the same) or similar scene should be regarded as the same picture. (i.e. the next frame)
The point system will be:
|Award||National Salon||International Salon|
|C. O. M. & other medals||2||3|
|Winner in the Category||3||4|
There will be one trophy for each medium. In the event of a tie for the total number of points gained during the competition year, the number of certificates and/or the number of medals awarded will decide the eventual winner. It will be the task of the PSSA executive committee to make the final decision.
Judges will be credited with the following points: – National and International salon judging of Digital and Prints: the same number of points as the number of entries by an entrant, per the category judged.
No person is eligible to win the Impala Trophy on judging points alone and no judge may claim more than his/her total points in this respect.
Final results for June 2012 – June 2013:
Current standings – November 2013 (for period June 2013 – June 2014)
Just a summary of the countries I’ve entered up to November 2013 successfully (at least 1 acceptance in a salon):
Message to take home:
Lately I did not have a “good run” with my salon entries. So I was re-thinking about photography and salon entry, what I am doing wrong. Then I realised – I am doing nothing wrong. Or maybe I am just a bit emotional about my photos at this stage and I tend to ignore the fundamental technical aspects of photography. For example – I was proud of myself with the my images of the Oystercatcher (bird) captured in the Klein Brak River area that I tend to ignore two of the basic principles in photography – (1) good light & (2) correct exposure (to see the detail in the images). Here is an example of one of the mentioned images taken during my Klein Bark River trip:
Just a reminder – do not let your emotions decides which photos to submit to a competition/salon. Also look for how you’ve used and applied all the basic photographic principles in your photos and only then make a decision. Even though the rules for the Nature category of photography salon read: “The story telling value must be weighed more than the pictorial quality. ” Do not be fooled – judges do not adhere to this rule all the times. Rather be prepared than sorry and upset by only submitted technical correct images in the Nature category of photography salons. Also just remember that entering photography salons is just a by-product of photography – the aim objective of photography is to enjoy the entire exercise.
Until next time – keep on shooting!!!