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Portrait Of Girl With Raven Wins POTW Accolade

An atmospheric portrait of a girl and a raven has been awarded Photo of the Week this week.

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Raven

An atmospheric portrait of a girl with a raven perched on her hand has been awarded ePHOTOzine's Photo of the Week accolade this week. 

The image 'r a v e n' by ePz member Uher was chosen by the staff here at ePHOTOzine and here's why we thought it deserved to win the accolade:

This image is reminiscent of something from a mystical TV series. It's intriguing and holds the viewer's attention. The depth of field used creates a nice bokeh effect in the tree canopy, and the path that runs from back to front draws the eye through the image. 

The slightly off centre position of the girl leads the eye across her arm and to the bird perching on her hand. She seems completely at ease with the bird on her hand, leading the viewer to wonder who she is and to create a back story for her. This image has a sense of vintage style about it that is very appealing. 

POTW winners currently receive a 64GB Pro memory card from Samsung. Take a look at the Photo of the Week Gallery where all shots that have received the award are displayed.

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Comments


Rev2 11 302 2 England
26 May 2015 10:31AM
Except that the bird isn't perched on her hand - or if it is, it's the smallest Raven I've ever seen. There's nothing in the description to indicate that it's digitally enhanced which, perhaps, there should be. Yes, I know I'm being pedantic.
mikehit 12 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
26 May 2015 12:00PM
To me this image is about story-telling, which it does extremely well so no such comment is needed. That would be like reading a novel and the author having to state at the end of it which parts are true and which are not. Let it ride, I say, and enjoy it for what it is.
tomcat 16 6.4k 15 United Kingdom
26 May 2015 8:28PM
That pose is not natural at all
Imagine a bag of sugar and how long you would want to hold it in that position - that is how much a Raven weighs (at least)

Sorry Mike, but you say that the image is about story telling - it is - but not in the context that you refer to
bricurtis Plus
16 2.5k 51 England
26 May 2015 9:17PM
A good attempt from the ' team ' to try to justify their selection.
But the so called Raven as has been pointed out above is out of proportion to the girl who looks rigid and lifeless. Not seeing the meandering through the image bit either.
A pigeon on the hand of a statue would probably worked as well as this.
I do like the processed look though.Smile
mikehit 12 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
27 May 2015 10:45AM

Quote:

Sorry Mike, but you say that the image is about story telling - it is - but not in the context that you refer to



Hi Tomcat - can you clarify what you mean by 'not in the context you refer to'?


Quote:That pose is not natural at all
Imagine a bag of sugar and how long you would want to hold it in that position - that is how much a Raven weighs


That sounds l like a person who sits in the cinema muttering into their popcorn 'of course a gun never sounds like that in real life...' Wink
teocali 13 442 18 England
27 May 2015 1:34PM

Quote:To me this image is about story-telling, which it does extremely well so no such comment is needed. That would be like reading a novel and the author having to state at the end of it which parts are true and which are not. Let it ride, I say, and enjoy it for what it is.


Most images tell a story, but on a photographic website it is also important and correct to indicate the processing procedures.
Rev2 11 302 2 England
27 May 2015 3:35PM

Quote:
Quote:To me this image is about story-telling, which it does extremely well so no such comment is needed. That would be like reading a novel and the author having to state at the end of it which parts are true and which are not. Let it ride, I say, and enjoy it for what it is.


Most images tell a story, but on a photographic website it is also important and correct to indicate the processing procedures.



And if a story is told it has to be convincing. This shot, to me, simply isn't. I have absolutely no issues with digital manipulation, I've given user awards to the likes of Scaramanga who's images are incredible works of art.

This to me is like a fake Lowry, a nice attempt but the proportions are all wrong and that's why I can't enjoy it for what it is. This is nothing against the photographer by the way, my comments were about the description by the team and why it won POTW.
tomcat 16 6.4k 15 United Kingdom
27 May 2015 8:43PM
Mike

I believe the previous posts have answered your question directed to me?

I have to reiterate David's sentiments that I have no quibble with the photographer, but with the "team" who decided that this is something that it is definitely not

I appreciate that wildlife is not everyone's cup of tea, but there was a butterfly image uploaded in the week, that in my and a lot of other peoples opinions (and I am talking about serious toggers who know their business) was/is the best butterfly image ever uploaded on here. To be honest I do not think it will be surpassed by anyone this year. It idd not get a mention from the "team"
Why? Because the thumbnail was probably never even opened, but just skipped by, like a lot of other images seem to be

It is time the site employed (can they afford it) an editor who actually knows his/her photographic stuff

If the "team" is who I think it is, then one is an astute business woman and one is an IT guru
The others are made up of who?

Just the view of myself and a lot of other members on here who prefer to keep their thoughts to themselves, or at least not to go public

Regards

Adrian
mikehit 12 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
27 May 2015 10:30PM
Hi Tomcat - you have missed the point of my question


Quote:Sorry Mike, but you say that the image is about story telling - it is - but not in the context that you refer to

You agree it is storytelling but not 'in the way' I refer to - I am just puzzled as to what you mean by 'not in the way I refer to'. How it telling a story in a different way?


The rest of your post is really about personal preference and is as justified as mine. For me, the image as a whole allowed me to suspend disbelief but I accept not everyone will feel the same way.
davidburleson 14 3.0k 3 United Kingdom
28 May 2015 9:24AM
As we are all giving our opinions here, I'll give mine:

My Personal Opinion

I can only describe some user's comments regarding this photo and a few other awarded photos in the gallery as pedantic. It's almost as if they have forgotten the real reason people take photos, to capture and share a moment with others which might hit some sort of emotional point with the viewer.

Whether or not a photo has been manipulated should have nothing to do with determining if it's a good quality image. All that should matter is the end result in my opinion.

I understand that we all have our opinions on what makes a good image. It might be realism, a story, a text-book style representation of a subject or something else (or all of the above). I for one really like to see things that I haven't seen before or to see an old subject taken in a new and different way. I like to see images that push the envelope of their genre. I'm not saying that is the only thing I look for though. I also look for images which are exquisite examples of subjects that have possibly been done similarly before. That may sound slightly contradictory, but I think when judging an entire gallery of photos you have to consider a number of views.

But hey, that's just my opinion...


Who is "The Team" who awards photos?

As for who "the team" is that judges these photos, we've never made it a mystery. It consist of everyone apart from Tracey on this page:

https://www.ephotozine.com/team

We all have our own tastes in photos and different backgrounds. We all look for different things when viewing photos too. This is what makes our selection process very special compared to one individual editor. Instead, we have 5 editors. This avoids potentially genre and user bias. But, must we all have to have an extensive photographic background to know a good photo? In my opinion, no. You don't even have to be able to take a good photo to know a good photo when you see one. Look at Simon Cowell. I bet he doesn't know a single thing about producing a pop track, yet he knows when someone is going to sell millions of records. However, we have seen hundreds of thousands of photos uploaded to the gallery. We have judged every single one of them and this has helped broaden our understanding of what makes a good photo and sets it apart from other photos.

Everyday we go through photos that have been uploaded that day. We often discuss the photos we have found, debating the different aspects of the photos which eventually leads us to making a decision on the award it should receive. Come Monday morning, we review the photos that have received Editors' Choice awards and decide which we feel is worth Photo of The Week. It's not just something we take lightly nor a last minute thought.



Put your money where your mouth is

Those of you who feel you can do a better job, we have always offered the opportunity to become a Guest Editor. Why not try doing it for 1 week (That shouldn't be to difficult, only a few hundred photos you have to look through) and judge each photo's merit for the Guest Editor Award which is also featured on our homepage along side Editor's Choice and Highly Commended photos.

https://www.ephotozine.com/forums/topic/guest-editor-volunteers-106871/

28 May 2015 9:49AM
I tend to agree with Adrian, namely that it's about time that a new Editor was appointed, an experienced respected photographer or photojournalist, to do what Pete used to do. Committees don't work, or at least, they should be restricted to a short-listing role.
teocali 13 442 18 England
28 May 2015 12:12PM

Quote:I tend to agree with Adrian, namely that it's about time that a new Editor was appointed, an experienced respected photographer or photojournalist, to do what Pete used to do. Committees don't work, or at least, they should be restricted to a short-listing role.


I agree with Adrian and Alan too.
mikehit 12 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
28 May 2015 12:25PM

Quote:it's about time that a new Editor was appointed


I'm interested as to why. Where do you feel the current system is failing? Is it that their taste no longer chimes with yours?
But is your comment related about conduct of the site in general or is it mainly about the POTW awards?
28 May 2015 2:59PM

Quote:I'm interested as to why. Where do you feel the current system is failing? Is it that their taste no longer chimes with yours?
But is your comment related about conduct of the site in general or is it mainly about the POTW awards?



Mike,
It's not a question of taste or even of "artistic merit", but with this particular image, and others, I think Dave and Adrian summed up the problems with their comments above in so much as artistically it may be fine but technically it is not outstanding. The photo of the week, or EC or HC should make the average enthusiast (which I consider myself to be) wish they'd created the image or make them want to attempt something similar or just admire it. Too many of the awarded images do not do this.
I also lost a bit of faith when the system of short-listing was changed, members being replaced, as I understand it, by a computer algorithm. Unfortunately, due to a computer crash, I've lost the e-mail explaining the change so I may not have got that bit 100% correct, but that is the impression I got.
I also think that the POW, EC and HC photos should make a casual surfer want to know more about EPZ and join. I fear that many do not do that, especially when compared with headline images on other photographic sites. Most of these other sites are, overall, not as good as EPZ.
The comments are not related to the site as a whole or to the judging of competition entries, purely to the selection of the POW, EC and HC awards.
In my opinion the choices were, generally, better when Pete was doing the job.
mikehit 12 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
28 May 2015 4:12PM

Quote:Too many of the awarded images do not do this.


add..."(for me)"
I am not being pedantic or snotty with this inspriation, like taste, is a personal thing and I don't believe you can generalise by speaking on behalf of what you perceive to be the 'the average enthusiast' - being one of them is not the same as being representative of them.

Tomcat mentioned butterfly images - I like looking at them and I like taking them (at a low level of competence) and I can recognise a high level of technical expertise when I see it. But as a concept and an execution (an artisitic execution, not a technical one for those who know how much a raven weighs) this image is one I have enjoyed looking at and may well have missed it had it not been presented as POTW.

I think what has probably changed is that Pete would have had an innate understanding of what he wanted the site to be, and subconsciously or otherwise his choices of image would have been in that same mould. Someone new coming in will have a different artistic slant just like someone taking over editorship of any newspaper or magazine.
But I guess we aren't going to agree on how significant all that is.
28 May 2015 4:35PM
Mike as you say we aren't going to agree. I did have a lot of IMOs in the original comment but as I was answering a question, addressed, I think, to me, it seemed that it was obvious that the comments were IMO and, therefore unnecessary.
With regard to the technical aspects of that POTW, IMO it looks like a "scrapbook" image we used to do pre-digital era, in so much as the girl and the person are not IMO very well blended into the bg. It looks like a cut out stuck to the bg. If that was what was intended then I apologize now.
themak 8 1.0k Scotland
28 May 2015 5:10PM
I reckon the girl would need to be 3 m. tall to be in scale with the raven. And why not?
bricurtis Plus
16 2.5k 51 England
28 May 2015 9:09PM
@ davidburleson.

Quote:Put your money where your mouth is

Don't keep throwing that old defensive chestnut back at us.
I've put my money into site membership.
This is about the POTW, the ultimate accolade a member can receive from ePz. .
Members cannot take part in that process,
A simple question, would you rather hear concerned members grievances or see them walk quietly away as many top class photographers have already done.


tomcat 16 6.4k 15 United Kingdom
28 May 2015 9:32PM

Quote:You agree it is storytelling but not 'in the way' I refer to - I am just puzzled as to what you mean by 'not in the way I refer to'


Mike

Where I come from the term "story telling" can relate to someone who is not entirely liberal with the truth
The image in question was DM'd and not very good at that, but no reference made

Regards

Adrian

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