Outcome of my photography salon (competition) entries – Month of April 2015

I had more time in the month of April 2015 to enter photography salons. However, I was still selective when it comes to entering international salons with so many available to enter. My main aim with entering international salons is to get 3 acceptances per image in order to move up through the different Galaxy rating of the Photographic Society of America (PSA). Earlier this month I’ve received the message from the PSA Nature organizer that I’ve achieved the 3 Galaxy rating (achieving a total 513 acceptances with 171 photos in the Nature division). So now my next aim is a total of 700 acceptances in order to qualify for the EPSA (recognition of photography achievement (ROPA)) award. But lets get back the salon outcomes.



The details of the salons are as follows:


Total number of salons entered:

5 (5 international salons & 1 national salons).

Overall outcome:

International: 48 acceptances from 68 photos entered = 71% acceptance rate

National: 13 acceptances from 20 photos entered = 60% acceptance rate

Medals: 2

COMs: 5


Now for the individual salons:


A. International salons


  1. Cheltenham 2015 (UK)


Photos entered: 4 photos entered in the Nature section

Acceptance: 4 acceptances (100% acceptance rate)


Comments: Just want to remind the readers what I’ve posted in an earlier post of mine – the fact that it is not that easy to get acceptances in UK based photography salons. So I am more than satisfied with the outcome of this salon. BEE EATER WITH BUTTERFLY is doing well for itself – one of the acceptances in this salon – with it second acceptance in just its second entry. I was not so sure about this photo because I had to use a high ISO to get a decent shutter speed resulting in a somewhat noisy image. I’ve tried my best to remove the noise without losing details in the bird.

Bee eater with butterfly 1400 300k 72d sRGB W


Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa



  1. Sydney Habour Salon 2015 (Austalia)


Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in Nature and Wildlife sections = 8 entries

Acceptance: 2 acceptance (25% acceptance rate)

Comments: A very low acceptance rate for this salon but one cannot win it all. So, somewhere along the line one can expect a serious dip in the acceptance rate. RED was one of the two acceptances – only its second acceptance in 5 salon entries. Seems like this photo is not a favourite with the judges. However, just one more acceptance and I can put this photo to rest.

Red 1400 300k 72d sRGB W


Bloemfontein Botanical Garden, South Africa



  1. 55th Midland Salon 2015 (UK)


Photos entered: 4 photos entered in Nature section

Acceptance: 1 COM & 3 acceptances (75%)


A very interesting COM award for DOVE TAKING OFF WATER. Image taken in Kgalagadi with lot of patience waiting for the Cape turtle doves to take off from within the water pool in the middle of the road. It is the third acceptance for this image (5 entries) – so this image is now “used up” and it is going to the shelve.

Dove take off water 1400 300k 72d sRGB W 


Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa



  1. 4th Hoylake Salon 2015 (UK)


Photos entered: 4 photos entered in the Nature section

Acceptance: 1 medal & 2 acceptances (75% acceptance rate)


Comments: Another 75% acceptance rate in a UK based salon – very satisfying. Winning a medal is even more satisfactory. LAST LIGHT won this medal for me. Once again – patience paid off, as we had to follow this clan of meerkats for more than 1 km on foot (running and not walking) carrying all our heavy photography equipment before they settled down in a specific area and started with their foraging exercises. What an experience!!!

Last light 1080 300k 72d sRGB W


Tswalu nature reserve, Northern Cape, South Africa




  1. Digitalna Foto Arhiva Circuit 2015 (Croatia)


This was a 4-salon circuit – 4 salons in 4 different countries (Croatia, Montenegro, Ireland, and Serbia)

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in Nature, Birds and Wildlife sections = 48 entries

Acceptance: 36 acceptances (75% acceptance rate)


Comments: An extraordinary high acceptance rate for an international circuit for me. I’ve entered 4 new landscape photos taken during a recent Namibia photography safari with Hougaard Malan in the Nature section. I’ve received 15 out of a possible 16 acceptances – very rewarding because I am not really a landscape photographer. GHOSTLY MILKY WAY was the only photo that received 3 acceptances – missing out on one acceptance.

Ghostly milky way


NamibRand nature reserve, Namibia


 B. National Salons


  1. 4th VPS Landscape salon 2015 (South Africa)


Photos entered: 4 photos each entered 5 of the six section – Nature landscape, Nature landscape with human elements Landscapes (separate colour and monochrome sections) = 20 entries


Acceptance: 1 medal, 4 COM & 7 acceptances (60%)


A very interesting salon with only landscape photos that can be entered – not manipulated, with human elements and manipulated photos. Once again, our recent Namibia & Wild Coast photography safari saved me because I’ve used a lot of the photos taken during these trips in this salon. However, it was a photo taken during an earlier trip in Magoebaskloof (TREE ABOVE) who won the medal for me. It is its second medal and 6 acceptances in 6 salon entries for this photo. And a 60% acceptance rate in an all landscape salon is more than enough for me.

Tree above 1024 72k 300d sRGB W


Magoebaskloof, South Africa




Message to take home:


Thinking about the VPS Landscape salon and me being a wildlife photographer using mainly long telephoto lenses – consider the following piece of advise I’ve read somewhere on the web:

“Often, when photographing a landscape, there is a particular element of the scene that has caught your eye and made you want to capture the image.  With a telephoto lens, it is possible to isolate that key element and bring it to the fore of the composition, You will find that the change of focal length may be refreshing as even local landscapes can be transformed to something unfamiliar when seen through a telephoto lens”


Until next month, keep on shooting


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