Category Archives: Reflex Photographic Club

2 March 2017 – Medway Cup (Digital Competition)

This week was a digital print competition, the Medway Cup (Digital).  The third of three digital competitions this season, which means final results should be available soon.

There were 80 images entered in total.
There was no theme, it was an open competition.
The judge for the evening was Robin Harmsworth
Scores were out of 20.

The same rules applied, as per my previous posts on digital competitions, one of which can be found here.

So here are my 4 entries, with their scores and judges feedback:

anyone-for-tea-by-elisabeth-smith-1

 

Anyone for Tea Scored 14

The towels included within the image were confusing, what is the story?  The title is good and the tea-cup is sharp.  Need to watch the reflective highlights.  Thought the cropping on the chair was deliberate.

 

 

 

follow-the-shadow-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Follow the Shadow scored 17

This works well in monochrome and the cropping elongates the leading lines.  Good patterning.  Liked the inclusion of the bolts at the bottom of the metal fence to the left had side.

 

 

 

in-the-spotlight-by-elisabeth-smith-3

 

In the Spotlight scored 17

Like the light, egg and the egg reflection in a line works well.  The line running horizontally in the background is there but not distracting.  It was right not to crop closed to the light/egg.

 

 

 

look-into-my-eyes-by-elisabeth-smith-2

Look Into my Eyes scored 20

The eyes follow you wherever you go.  The hat holds the image in from the top.  The side lighting is good as provides shadow and some contrast.  Care needs to be taken on whites with detail, need to ensure the details are not lost.

 

 

 

Once I know my final position I will post the results.

28 February 2017 – Battle of the Prints 2017

This was an inter-club print competition hosted by Malling Photographic Society.

The judge for the evening was Clive Tanner APAGB, FRPS, MPAGB
All scores were out of 20.
All the prints I submitted were A4, printed by DS Colour Labs
All were mounted on 40cm by 50cm boards supplied by Cotswold Mounts

There were 11 clubs entered into this ‘battle’:

Bexleyheath Photographic Society
Dartford & District Photographic Society
Gravesend Camera Club
Faversham & District Camera Club
Invicta Camera Club
Malling Photographic Society
Parkwood Camera Club
Reflex Photographic Club (*)
Sevenoaks Camera Club
Sittingbourne Photographic Society
Staplehurst Photographic Society

Each club could enter a maximum of 6 images each.  There were 66 printed images entered.  Once scored the points for each club’s entries were totaled up and then each club was ranked (see below).

I had two of my prints entered, see below with their scores:

elevated-egg-by-elisabeth-smith-1

 

Elevated Egg scored  17
(This image came first place in a club print competition HERE)

 

 

 

station-shadows-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Station Shadows scored 16
(This image scored 19 Highly Commended in a club print competition HERE)

 

 

 

There were some really clever image composites entered and overall these seemed to do better than the straightforward photography.

The finals scores were as follows:

1st Parkwood Camera Club (108 points)
2nd Staplehurst Photographic Society (106 points)
3rd Sittingbourne Photographic Society (106 points)
4th Invicta Camera Club (105 points)
5th Faversham & District Camera Club (105 points)
6th Bexleyheath Photographic Society (103 points)
7th Gravesend Camera Club (103 points)
8th Reflex Photographic Club (101 points) (*)
9th Sevenoaks Camera Club (100 points)
10th Dartford & District Photographic Society (98 points)
11th Malling Photographic Society (98 points)

Well done to Parkwood Camera Club for winning this competition.

Malling Photographic Society were very welcoming hosts and everything on the night ran smoothly to time and plan and they should be proud of how the event was ran.

8th is an improved position for my club but we were consistent with our marks at 17, 17, 17, 17, 17 and 16. But also is was confirmation that we need to try harder if we want to compete at the higher end.

16 February 2017 – Digital Manipulation Competition

This was a new style of competition for the Club one which it had not run before.

The basis for the competition was that every member was issued with 6 base images, kindly supplied by members of the club; 2 portrait, 2 landscape and 2 patterned, and each member could enter up to 6 images but had to abide by the following rules:

·         You will be required to use AT LEAST 1 of the base images, or portion of that image.
·         You may use as many of the “base images” as you wish and as many times as you wish.
·         You MUST, in addition to the above, use 1 of your own images as part of the composition.
·         You may not use more than 1 of your own images for each individual entry.
·         You may use any photo manipulation software, technique, filter, plug-in or action to create your image. “Paid for” filters and plugins are allowed.
·         You may not use any images other than the 6 provided and 1 image of your own for each entry.
·         You may enter up to 6 images in this competition.
·         This is a digital projection competition; images must be submitted using the usual digital format.

There were 27 images entered in total.
There was no theme – it was an open competition using the images provided.
The judges for the evening were the Club members
Scorecards were provided and members were asked to place the 3 images they felt were the best; 1st, 2nd and 3rd.

It was a really fun and enjoyable evening seeing the different things members had done with their images and there were some really creative and well executed manipulated images.

Due to the nature of the images they cannot be used/shown without the express consent of the photographers involved and the images could not be used for any other competition purposes as they contained the work of more than one photographer.

That said I was lucky enough to win the competition so I asked my fellow photographer Martin Mitchell who supplied the background image whether he was happy for me to share the winning image on my blog, he consented so that is what I am doing and I will explain a bit about its construction.

its-magic-by-elisabeth-smith-1

I took Martin’s landscape background image, which was of a concrete area that looked like it may have been under a bridge but which had graffiti on the walls.  I applied the filter Fractalius and then chose a photo of Lois Loren I had taken a while back in top hat and tails and added her into the frame.

To makes things a bit more interesting I duplicated this same image and repeated is in different heights down the right hand side to mirror the perspective of the background image.  I then added a large head and shoulder version of the Lois image to the left hand side.  I reduced the opacity of these images so the background Fractalius effect would show through.  And voila!

Hopefully the Club will continue to try new and exciting alternatives to get members together and thinking of different photographic approaches, techniques and composition.

2 February 2017 -Ken Hayward Cup (Digital Competition)

This week was a stand alone digital print competition, the Ken Hayward Cup (Digital).

There were 64 images entered in total.
The theme was Flora and Fauna.
The judge for the evening was Tony Bentley ARPS
Scores were out of 20.

bottoms-up-by-elisabeth-smith-1

Bottoms Up scored 16

Nicely set up. Contrasts with background. Lots of detail. Look at cropping the image closer as would make a stronger image.

 

 

peekaboo-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Peekaboo scored 17

Cute image.  The eye is a bit soft, the rest is ok.  It’s the eye that lets this image down.

 

 

 

 

 

pooch-portrait-by-elisabeth-smith-3

 

Pooch Portrait scored 18

Acceptably sharp.  Nice eye contact.

 

 

 

 

winter-leaves-logs-elisabeth-smith-2

 

Winter Leaves scored 14

Nice shapes.  Different but lacks punch.  Too dark, needs lifting.

 

 

Although comments were good, scores were low so I think I need to re-evaluate my selections for digital competitions going forwards as I seem to be weaker on projected images than printed images.  All comments above understood and noted.

5 January 2017 – Vic Cassar Cup (Print Competition)

This week was a print competition, the Vic Cassar Cup (Print).  This was the second round of a three round print league this season.

There were 36 images entered in total.
There was no theme, it was an open competition.
The judge for the evening was Glyn Bareham
Scores were out of 20.
All the prints submitted were A4, printed by DS Colour Labs
All were mounted on 40cm by 50cm boards supplied by Cotswold Mounts

So here are my 4 print entries, with their scores and judges feedback:

elevated-egg-by-elisabeth-smith-1

 

Elevated Egg scored 20 and won 1st Place

Good positioning, nice gradation of colour towards the background and framed well.

This was mounted with a white frame

 

number-5-by-elisabeth-smith-3

 

Number 5 scored 19 Highly Commended

Good panning.  Seems top-heavy, could have been harsher on the crop to remove some of the top.

This was mounted with a white frame.

station-shadows-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Station Shadows scored 19 Highly Commended

Strong geometrics.  Could have darkened the lighter areas.

This was mounted with a black frame.

 

hanging-around-by-elisabeth-smith-2

 

Hanging Around scored 18

Nicely positioned on the thirds.

This was mounted with a white frame.

 

 

After this round I am currently 3rd in the print league with one more round to go….

8 December 2016 – Victory Cup (Digital Competition)

This week was a digital print competition, the Victory Cup (Digital).  The second of three digital competitions this season.

There were 76 images entered in total.
There was no theme, it was an open competition.
The judge for the evening was Raymond Bridges
Scores were out of 20.

The same rules applied, as per my previous posts on digital competitions, one of which can be found here.

So here are my 4 entries, with their scores and judges feedback:

1-2-3-segway-by-elisabeth-smith-3

 

1, 2, 3 Segway scored 16

Good sense of movement.  The panning could be sharper. The red of the other persons jacket pulls your eye away from the subject.

 

 

 

lois-by-elisabeth-smith-2

 

Lois Scored 14

The light needs to be cut down a bit.  The image looks flat, it needs more contrast.  The eyes are sharp which is good.

 

 

 

 

number-19-by-elisabeth-smith-1

 

Number 19 scored 20 2nd place 

Good panning.  No background issues.  An enjoyable image.  Well done!

 

 

subtropical-paradise-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Subtropical Paradise scored 14

The surrounding sky is very dark and there are no details in it.  The image needs to be lighter.

 

 

After the second round of the digital league I am joint 8th, lets hope the last round gets me up the rankings a bit.

Ray Bridges mentioned a photographer whilst giving critique to another image, Brian Beaney, so I checked his website out and his images have a graphics feeling to them.  One thing his images had was a consistent look and feel.

 

24 November 2016 – Discovery Day Challenge (Digital)

For this competition, the challenge was that photos had to be taken on the clubs day out in Whitstable.  They had to be from a specified area within Whitstable and all taken on the same ‘Challenge’ day (25 September 2016).  For this competition a maximum of 6 entries were permitted.  There were 50 entries in total.

The judge for the evening was Stephen Carroll ARPS.
All scores are out of 20.
1st, 2nd, 3rd and two Highly Commended places given.

coast-life-by-elisabeth-smith-5

Coast Life scored 17

The elements; the dog in the bottom left, the man in the red middle right and the boat top left, worked well in a triangular formation.

The square frame was the right choice for this composition.  It all hangs together.

 

 

 

old-guys-rule-by-elisabeth-smith-2

Old Guys Rule scored 17

The desaturation works well with no obvious bright areas to draw the eye away from the subject.  The light area to the right of the subject work well in contrast and defines the subject more.

 

 

 

old-neptune-by-elisabeth-smith-6
Old Neptune scored 16

Lots of light tones which work well together.  The right amount of detail.  Would look to darken the shingle at the bottom edge as this would make the image stronger.  A bit of fringing around one of the chimneys.

 

reflextions-by-elisabeth-smith-1

 

Reflextions scored 16

An intriguing image.  Would have expected to see the photographer in the reflection also.  Technically well done.

 

 

 

 

surf-the-moment-by-elisabeth-smith-4

 

Surf the Moment scored 20 and won 1st Place

Desaturation works well, lots of blue tones. The vignette works to ensure there are no light patches at the edges or in the corners, so your eye is drawn to the main focus.

 

 

 

tyred-of-whitstable-by-elisabeth-smith-3

 

Tyred of Whitstable scored 17

No bright areas.  Good shallow depth of field, brings the eye back to the main focus of the image and the other periphery items are just scene setting.

 

My personal favourite was the photo that came in 2nd Place.  I was convinced it would take the crown!!

The other comments on the other images which I learn from were:
– if you are taking a ‘details’ shot, one that want the viewer to wander their eye around it needs to be sharp, have a good depth of field so make sure the right areas are in focus and the contrast needs to be balanced.
– Watch out for bright patches within the frame especially at the corners.
– Look for good textures and complimentary tones.
– Having a colour running throughout helps hold an image together.
– when using monochrome take care on the contrast, which is key.
– When focussing a deep shot try to get the foreground in focus if nothing else, it adds strength to an image.
– depending on the image, square and letterbox formats can work well.
– Take care when positioning subjects in front of things that they don’t merge into the background.
– Not every image works in monochrome.

And that concludes my update on this week’s digital competition judging.