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What makes an award winning photo?


Steve_S e2
9 176 3 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2012 10:07PM

Quote:Now I also like a nice landscape or seascape but I just don't have the eye for it myself. But I know the formula.....foreground interest (mmm maybe a rock), a good lead in (path, stream,ripples in the sand etc), perhaps a strong focal point and a nice sky.


Or perhaps you don't….? Smile Smile

(I know, I know. Shameless self-promotion…. yadda, yadda. Tongue Wink )


Or the odd long exposure with or without a 10 stopper Tongue

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Steve_S e2
9 176 3 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2012 10:34PM

Quote:With macro and close-up, there are no conventions to get in the way.

I agree Mike. Many wildlife images are the same. You don't need FG interest or lead ins. The whole point is to make the bird, insect, fox etc the ONLY point of interest and to not have distractions in the image that can lead the eye to anything else. But it has to be technically very well done i.e. composition, sharp and well exposed. Having said that, you can come up with different wildlife images that include environment or atmosphere or are of a more arty nature but the basic rules still apply.
Pete e2
13 18.5k 96 England
8 Oct 2012 10:41PM

Quote:The whole point is to make the bird, insect, fox etc the ONLY point of interest

Most of the wildlife I give ECs to has very shallow depth of field to isolate the subject from the background resulting in a clean featureless background. And that's because we have many members who can do this extremely well...but occasionally we get a cracker through like this Curlew or this deer that includes more depth to give a strong image of the subject in its environment.
arhb e2
7 2.4k 68 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2012 10:44PM
I felt exactly the same as you Steve, when I first joined.
It was the wildlife images on epz that I liked the most - portraits/beauty/fashion just passed me by back then.

With regard to what makes a winning photo,
something I like about the Vs mode, is that very occasionally, 2 good, similarly matched images are displayed, but on closer inspection, one seems to stand out.

Also, when viewing in normal gallery mode, and again occasionally, an image stands out from the rest at thumbnail size, regardless of genre,
which always makes it worth a look at for closer inspection.
StrayCat e2
10 15.0k 2 Canada
8 Oct 2012 10:53PM

Quote:It really does sadden me when I hear this sort of thing...jealous and egotistical people have caused so many problems over the years for what should be a very simple and none political feature.

For once we agree.
Steve_S e2
9 176 3 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2012 11:24PM

Quote:The whole point is to make the bird, insect, fox etc the ONLY point of interest
Most of the wildlife I give ECs to has very shallow depth of field to isolate the subject from the background resulting in a clean featureless background. And that's because we have many members who can do this extremely well...but occasionally we get a cracker through like this Curlew or this deer that includes more depth to give a strong image of the subject in its environment.


Exactly my point Pete. There IS a formula for every genre but you can break the formula and still get an award. It doesn't mean that an out of focus, poorly exposed shot will get one though! By the way (if anyone thinks otherwise), I don't take my photos with the sole intention of getting an award from EPZ. I do what I do because I like it and like the finished product (because those sort of images inspired me at the beginning) and post it here. The fact that it meets Pete's criteria or that other people like it is purely coincidental. Sadly, many of those photographers who inspired me aren't here anymore Sad I wonder why? I'm certain that photographers of other genres do exactly the same thing. They have seen images they aspire to, have learned how to take them and manipulate them and go out and do it. Surely that is what the site is about.
scottishphototours 10 2.5k 2 Scotland
8 Oct 2012 11:26PM
The ones that win EC's have the X factor. Simples. Wink
Pete e2
13 18.5k 96 England
8 Oct 2012 11:28PM

Quote:The ones that win EC's have the X factor.

If you are comparing me with Louis Walsh I'm hitting the ban button Wink
Steve_S e2
9 176 3 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2012 11:34PM

Quote:The ones that win EC's have the X factor.
If you are comparing me with Louis Walsh I'm hitting the ban button Wink


With all these brown parcels floating around, the only thing you have in common with Louis is wealth Wink
cdm36 10 391 7 England
9 Oct 2012 9:34AM

Quote:The ones that win EC's have the X factor.
If you are comparing me with Louis Walsh I'm hitting the ban button Wink
With all these brown parcels floating around, the only thing you have in common with Louis is wealth Wink




Well apparently he put in another thread theres not enough in the envelopes, so he's getting greedy as well Wink...


As for a specific formula, best not to worry about it, take them for yourself, anyone else likes it or think its worthy of an award, it's a bonus, Smile
Pete e2
13 18.5k 96 England
9 Oct 2012 9:52AM

Quote:As for a specific formula, best not to worry about it, take them for yourself, anyone else likes it or think its worthy of an award, it's a bonus,

Sound advice
javam e2
10 1.1k 19 United Kingdom
9 Oct 2012 10:49AM

Quote:As for a specific formula, best not to worry about it, take them for yourself, anyone else likes it or think its worthy of an award, it's a bonus, Smile


Well my latest HC fits that bill precisely.

It was nothing more than a family snapshot of my son when we were out for a walk/scoot in town. I was pleased with it, thought it would look good in mono and decided to upload it. I had no great hopes for it attracting loads of attention (same is true for any of the family shots I upload), but this remains the first place I tend to post any shot I am pleased with.

The award was both unexpected and much appreciated, but when I look at the picture the warm glow I feel is not because it has an award, but because it is a picture of my son that I will treasure for many years to come.

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