I just got back from the club print competition and done a lot better than I expected.
"Catch of the Day" (19)
The judge really liked this one and only reluctantly gave it a 19 instead of 20 due to there being several better monochrome images in the final group. Personally I thought it a little too dark and could have done with a bit more brightness, especially the small fish in the kid's hand.
I thought that the daisies being a touch overexposed would possibly be problematic. The judge did point this out as well as part of his constructive criticism but felt that it didn't matter too much when looking at the overall picture. Unlike the last judge, he liked the fact that I hadn't cropped in close to the bird but allowed it to be shown in its natural surroundings and habitat. He also said that the expression 'pin sharp' is often used when describing a pic but if anyone wanted to see an example of what "pin sharp" really means then they should just look at the feathers on this pic. High praise indeed!
"High Salvington Windmill" (17)
This one definitely scored more than it deserved. As the judge correctly pointed out, the photo is way too cluttered with peripheral stuff such as the building to the side, the person sitting in the chair, the cropped trees between the mill's blades, and the cut off tree on the right. I should have moved position slightly and maybe cloned out some of the more obvious detritus.
This judge was very good and wasn't rude about anybodies photos when offering constructive criticisms. When he did point out something negative in a shot, he would always find something else nice to say about the photo's good points (in the case of the windmill, the use of sepia toning rather than just plain b&w).
I'm a bit worried that the attitude and comments from some of the previous judges might have deterred some of our newer members as we only had five entries from the beginner's group this week.
Like I said, I was more than happy with my marks, especially since I wasn't going to use any of these in competition as I didn't think them good enough.
The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense.