I cannot believe it – already five months into 2015. And it was time for our fifth local camera club meeting for 2015. I was glad to see that our club decided to use the usual three-judge system to score and critique the submitted photos. All three judges were members of our club. Nothing personal but I would like to see some external people (not members of Bloemfontein Camera Club) from in and around Bloemfontein to be called in to assist with the judging. Surely there are photography gurus around that are not members of our club. But please – no one-judge system! How about 2 local judges and 1 external judge for each meeting? Just to bring some “alternative” perspective into the club. Just thinking out loud.
However, lets go and see what the local judges though of my images – lets look at the results of my images submitted to Bloemfontein Camera Club for the month of May 2015.
Here are the results of my images:
A. Nature category
Just remember – no manipulation using computer software is allowed in this category
Just take note that the judges are requested to give comments on images in only certain categories and not on all the images. This month the judges gave comments on the 1-3 star Nature and Pictorial categories and not for the higher star members.
Slow wave hole – scored 11/15 (Gold award)
Image taken from at Luphathana, Wild coast, South Africa
My first image for the evening and it just made it into the gold award section (gold = a score of 11-13/15). This was a slow shutter image taken of a wave pulling back to sea over the rocks. Not your usual sea scape image. Like I’ve mentioned last month in my blog – what is the Nature category all about. It is not just about wildlife – it is also about landscape and much more. Just to proof a point with this image. Now, if one looks at the score and taken that there were three judges, then a conclusion can be made that 2 judges probably liked the image with both these judges giving the image a score of 4/5 and the fifth judge did not like it giving it a score of 3/5. Giving an image a score of 3/5 means that the judge is of the opinion that this image is not really on salon acceptance standard. Well, hopefully I can proof the judge wrong (and has already done so with an acceptance in local landscape salon) in the near future. Only time will tell.
B. Pictorial category
For this month I’ve decided to enter two images in the pictorial category. One cannot just continue submitting images in only one category.
Just remember – photographers are allowed to used some computer software to manipulate images before submitted it in this category. However, I did not do any manipulation on any of the two images I’ve submitted.
Morning glory – score 12/15 (Gold award)
Image taken in Kolmanskop (ghost town), Namibia
This time around it seems like all three judges liked the score – a possible 4/5 from all three judges added up to the score of 12/15. A very well known scene and image from Kolmanskop but I am sure not many photographers had the privilege to have such an image taken in the most beautiful morning light. Hougaard Malan added his magic touch to the building just before sunrise making it possible for us to capture the scene just as the first light entered the room through the broken windows.
Hockey trap – score 11/15 (Gold award)
Image taken during the provincial women’s hockey tournament in Bloemfontein held a few weeks again – Go Free State!!!
My first ever try at hockey and I must agree with the judges: not the best hockey photo. I just wanted to see how the image projects on the screen. No the best of light – in fact, it was overcast. Luckily there was some action and a story telling element in the image pulling the image up a level. After about a 1 000 images I had about 5 greta images. Now I do realise how difficult it is to take photos at a hockey game. From now on I will definitely look at hockey photos from a different perspective.
C. Set subject – “Movie poster”
In this Movie Poster a movie must be advertised. The movie must have a Name and Subtitles . Manipulation is allowed
I’ve decided not to enter any images in the set subject category – just because I am not keen on photo manipulation.
Message to take home
Thinking about some of the comments of the judges on the images presented during this last camera club evening, I am of the opinion that photographers should not take all the comments of the judges as the alpha and omega. A photographer needs to think of what he/she wants to tell the “audience” with a certain image. Therefore, you need to learn how to constructively critique your own photography. Such constructive critique can not only help you to think before pulling the trigger and therefore be able to take better photographs each time you pick up a camera, but it will also build your confidence as a photographer. If you are positive about your images and you know exactly why and how you’ve taken the image, only then should you be prepared for the inevitable critiques from the judges, your peers and colleagues. And if you are serious about photography, you will not get away with some sort of critique. So get use to it and use it to your advantage.
Until next month camera club meeting – keep on shooting