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

Over the weekend I’ve received the last result of the salon for the month of June 2015. June 2015 is also the end of yet another cycle of national salons in South Africa and this year’s cycle is quiet significant. In the past few years clubs were allowed to use a Remote judging system meaning the three judges asked to judge a specific section of a salon were from all over South Africa. All they had to do were to sit in front of their computers at home and judge the images they received from the salon administrator at their own pace. As from July 2015, this type of judging will no longer be allowed. Live judging is now the new required system meaning all three judges must sit together in a room and judge the images simultaneously. The new live judging system has it pros and cons but I think it is a good system as long as they do make use of experienced judges. I just hope the smaller camera clubs in the country will be able to host salons using this Live judging system. Only time will tell. Now, lets get back to the month of June and the salon results.

 

 

The details of the salons are as follows:

 

Total number of salons entered:

9 (6 international salons & 3 national salons).

Overall outcome:

International: 47 acceptances from 92 photos entered = respectable 59% acceptance rate (increased from 38% last month)

National: 47 acceptances from 76 photos entered = 62% acceptance rate (increased from 46% last month)

Medals: 9 (one of my best months since I’ve started entering salons with 4 medals won in international salons)

COMs: 13

 

Now for the individual salons:

 

  1. International salons

 

  1. 1st Vibgyor Circuit 2015 (India)

 

This was a 3-salon circuit.

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in the Nature and Open sections = 24 entries

Acceptance: 1 COM & 14 acceptances (63% acceptance rate)

 

Comments: Standing hug was the image that received a COM in one of the salons and the image was also accepted in the other two salons. Seems like the judges are enjoying my meerkat images

Standing hug 1024 300k 72d sRGB W

Standing hug

Tswalu nature reserve, Northern Cape, South Africa

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  1. 2nd Queensland Circuit 2015 (Australia)

 

This was a 4-salon circuit.

 

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in Nature and Water section = 32 entries

Acceptance: 2 medals, 2 COMs and 18 acceptance (69% acceptance rate)

Comments: Lucky for me, I won two of my four international medals this month in this circuit. Lioness and cubs 4 has won one of the medals in one of the salons and received three acceptances with this image in the other three salons. It is an “old” image I’ve captured way back in 2013 in the Kgalagadi. I’ve decided to revisit the image with my newly adapted workflow (processing the image in Photoshop) and it seems to work.

Lioness and cups 4 W

Lioness and cubs 4

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa

_________________________________

 

  1. Raptors at risk salon 2015 (USA)

 

Photos entered: 4 photos entered in Nature section

Acceptance: 2 acceptances (50%)

 

A very unusual salon with the focus on raptors. Some very interesting images in the final results of this salon. At last I received my third salon acceptance for Pygmy falcon with kill 2. I’ve struggled to get salon acceptances with this image. Maybe because this is not really salon material but rather showing the readers what Mother Nature is all about. This Pygmy falcon has just raided the nest of a flock of sociable weavers and came out with a chick from the family nest for breakfast. I had to sit and wait for about 1 hour at the nest for the falcon to come and collect its breakfast. This is what patience in wildlife photography is all about. I am not sure many photographers do have images like this in their archives but I may be wrong.

Pygmy falcon with kill 2 

Pygmy falcon with kill 2

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa

_________________________________

 

  1. 4th Danube Salon 2015 (Serbia)

 

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

Acceptance: 3 acceptances (38% acceptance rate)

 

Comments: Very interesting history for me regarding this salon. Each year since 2012 (1st Danube salon) I’ve entered this salon and every year I’ve received a low acceptance rate except for the first year. So, this is really a challenging salon and acceptances do not come easy. That is why I would like to post an image that was not accepted in this salon and you’ll be the judge. The image is Vulture dust and the image has already received two other acceptances.

Vulture dust 1080 300k 72d sRGB W

Vulture dust

Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa

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  1. Corsica salon 2015 (USA)

 

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in Open colour, Open monochrome, Nature & Photo Travel sections = 20 entries

Acceptance: 1 medal & 7 acceptances (40% acceptance rate)

 

Comments: My third international medal for the month with yet another meerkat image namely Family of three. I think these type of images tell a great story and that is what wildlife photography is all about. I did not do well in the other sections of the salon – just to show you how difficult it is do get acceptances and do well in international salons.

Family of three 1080b 300k 72d sRGB copy W

Family of three

Tswalu nature reserve, Northern Cape, South Africa

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6 .     43rd PSNY salon 2015 (USA)

 

Photos entered: 4 photos entered in Nature = 20 entries

Acceptance: 1 medal & 3 acceptances (100% acceptance rate)

 

Comments: My fourth international medal for the month – this time around with a hippo image on the Chobe River namely Aggression 1. Not very often that I do achieve a 100% acceptance rate in an international salon – so I am very satisfied with the outcome of this salon.

Aggression 1

Aggression 1

Chobe nature reserve near Kasane, Botswana

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  1. National Salons

 

  1. Tafelberg fotografie klub salon 2015 (South Africa)

 

 

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in the Wildlife, Birds, Portrait Scapes, Open colour & Open monochrome section s= 24 entries

 

Acceptance: 1 medal, 5 COMs & 9 acceptances (63%)

 

Comments: I’ve achieved a 100% acceptance rate in both the Wildlife and Birds sections but I’ve struggle to get acceptances in the other sections. Something for me to work on! Sea eagle lunch received the medal for the winning image in the Birds section. Yet another “emotional” image for me – just because of the degree of difficulty of capture an image like this. But the judges will not know it and you as a photographer must take note of it.

Sea eagle lunch 1024 300k 72d sRGB W

Sea eagle lunch

Flatanger, Norway

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  1. 1st Camera Club of Johannesburg salon 2015 (South Africa)

 

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in the Nature landscape, Architecture, Macro, Visual Art, Open colour and Nature Print sections = 28 entries

 

Acceptance: 2 medal, 2 COM & 11 acceptances (53%)

 

Comments: Another first for me – entering a print salon in South Africa. I’ve entered international salons with prints previous with great success. Print salons are much more time consuming and troublesome than digital salons. But it paid off as Sea eagle lunch (image posted above) received another medal as the winning image in the Nature print salon. The other medal I’ve received was in the Landscapes section with an image from Namibia (Grass on dune 1) travelling with Hougaard Malan in 2012.

Grass on dune

Grass on dune 1

Excelsior farm, NamibRand nature reserve, Nambia

_________________________

 

 

  1. 4th Magalies Foto Fun Club salon 2015 (South Africa)

 

Photos entered: 4 photos each entered in the Nature, Open colour, Scapes, Pets monochrome and Open monochrome and Human monochrome sections = 24 entries

 

Acceptance: 2 medals, 3 COMs & 7 acceptances (50%)

 

Yet another salon in which I’ve achieved a 100% acceptance rate in the Nature division with Lioness and cubs 4 (image posted above) receiving 2 medals. And what a surprise as I’ve mentioned last month in my post: Sunburst in room. The image received a COM in the Open colour section and last month it was rejected in another salon. Just to show you – never give up on an image if you like it and if you think there are no serious technical problems with the image. Here is the image again – judge for yourself!

Sunburst in room 1024 300k 72d sRGB W

Sunburst in room

Kolmanskop, Namibia

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Message to take home:

 

I started ding the thing called photography in 2011 and my biggest fear was dealing with the very complicated computer programme called “Photoshop”. I was amazed with what can be achieved with the programme. But do it yourself – boy-o-boy, it is not as easy as everybody is telling you. Yes, I do agree with the statement: “ It’s already easy as pie for anyone to capture a photo. Whether it’s a point-and-shoot, their iPhone, a DSLR, or an old Hasselblad, where the image originates isn’t the issue so much.” It is fact that nowadays almost everybody owns a cellphone or entry-level camera to capture the moment. However, as technology advances, the quality of photos will continue to improve. So, in order to progress as a photographer, you need to understand the principles that go into that so called “WOW” image. Not only that but also you need to understand that a photo’s best end result is via the optimal utilisation of developing/processing software. That is why is vital important for everybody to try and improve your photo developing skills (learn to use computer software effectively).

 

Until next month, keep on shooting

 

  1. #1 by michaelsingletonhaworth on July 21, 2015 - 4:10 am

    Willem this is a belated congratulations on your awards in the Nature’s Best Photography Africa competition. Wonderful images and thoroughly deserved!!

    • #2 by whk139 on July 21, 2015 - 5:36 am

      Thanks Mike, do appreciate your kind words.

  2. #3 by photographytricksandtips on July 23, 2015 - 7:33 am

    Jy kan voorwaar baie trots wees op jou prestasies Willem. Terwyl ek vir jou skryf wil ek jou ook vra om, wanneer jy ‘n geskikte kandidaat raakloop, hom/haar tog te vertel van die e-boek oor digitale fotografie wat ek en Hennie onlangs die lig laat sien het. Dit is pas deur Kwarts Uitgewers as ‘n e-boek gepubliseer. Vir meer inligting, skryf vir my by superfoto7@gmail.com of gaan na: http://bitly.com/17ecITw

    • #4 by whk139 on July 23, 2015 - 10:02 am

      Hi Josef, geen probleem – sal so maak.

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