View Full Version : Brand New Here: Print Comp Critique, please?

01-15-2008, 01:20 AM
HI Everyone. I'm am new to this board, but have been a PPA member for about a year. I am learning a lot by reading the threads here and have challenged myself to enter some local competitions here in my home state.

Some good, forthright CC please? Are these worthy? What about entering them in regional level? On #5 I am lost as to how to present it. The gray just seems so boring to me. Any suggestions?

#1: "Facing A New Life"
#2. "A Child's World"
#3. "Shh...Keep The Secret"
#4. "Young Love's Uncertainty"
#5. "But Why...?"

01-15-2008, 01:21 AM
The next two....

01-15-2008, 01:22 AM
And finally the last one...number 5. I have to narrow this down to four.

01-15-2008, 01:53 AM
Few questions first. Are #2 & #3 the same child? Can you post #2 larger so we can see the eyes, which look like black pockets on this small file.

01-15-2008, 02:37 AM
Keith thanks. No they are not the same child.

Yes, her eyes are dark. I'm not loving that about this image. I will try to post it bigger.
ETA: Darn it, it keeps telling me my file size is too large. Would someone tell me how to embed the info, please?

01-15-2008, 02:54 AM

Did that work? Hope so! LOL

01-15-2008, 02:54 AM
Not! LOL
I attempted to host the image on my site, and then use the IMG tags, but that didn't work. Is there a recommended file size for this?

Help? :o)

01-15-2008, 02:59 AM
What is the url for the image?

01-15-2008, 03:35 AM
Duh...blond moment. :D

Here it is...nice and big: http://www.jewel-images.com/achildsworld.jpg

Thanks for you time everyone.

01-15-2008, 04:28 AM

#1 - a slightly different angle on a pregnant Mom, that's good. The challenges with the image will be broad light on her face and the wide border in presentation.

#2 - like the image, the dark pocketed eyes will dramatically effect the score. Try to improve them by dodging. Again the presentation is overdone - lose the scrollies.

#3 -Right now the dress color is overpowering. It's much better in B&W and bring down her skin tone. It is cropped to tight. Needs more room above her head and a little space below her hands. Right now that bottom hand just pops up outta nowhere with no connection to her arm or body. Again - simplify the presentation. Unless a wide border helps the print - it actually hurts the print. This wide border doesn't add.

#4 I would leave this out. Her expression does not match the thoughtful down tipped head position. She looks very slump shouldered. There are small issues with messy hair and clothing. Plus it is not a impactful subject or treatment. All these little issues will combine to hold this print back.

#5 Like in several other prints, you are cropped way too tight on the heads. A general rule of thumb is if a child is seated there should be room for them to stand and not run out of the image. I would prefer to see this as a vertical image (on a horizontal board) with quite a bit more space above the boys heads. you need to work on the eyes to bring them out. This a good example of a better stroke/border choice - simple and small. Experiment with placing this on a black background. It will balance the black pants used in a highkey image.

Not sure on the titles, I think you could find something more unique that would help the prints more. These are a little cliche. I think you have some good choices for entering your first competition. Good Luck


01-15-2008, 02:30 PM
Keith, thanks for the great CC. So much appreciated.
So, if I play with these and fix the big borders...do I have a shot at least of scoring decently? Just don't want to enter and make a fool of myself.

I''m considering the smart thing to do may be just volunteering at the local comp this year to get a feel for what happens and then enter next year. Is that the smart way to do it, or are these competition worthy at all?

01-15-2008, 02:41 PM
Hi Julia;

I say you should definitely enter AND get on the print committee. Of the five, I'd elimiminate either the expectant Mom or the boys. One factor would be how much more room was on the Raw files. If no more room on the young lady with long hair I'd take that out. I'd love to see all 5 raw files low-res in at least a 8 X 6.4.

01-15-2008, 02:44 PM
Julia -
I grew up in Oregon, and worked on the print committee for PPofO for a few years before moving out to Georgia. The PPofO organization is AWESOME. You will learn so much about competition by working on the print committee. The group there is so supportive and encouraging. It sounds like you might already be a member of PPofO, and if you are, perfect! If you're not, I would recommend joining and going to as many events as you can. There are actually two times you can enter print comp in Oregon - the big convention at the beginning of the year and another during summer seminar. The summer seminar is not judged by affiliated judges, so the scores won't count toward anything, BUT it's a perfect way to float images by a panel and see how they score, then they can be re-entered for the "official" judging during the annual convention.

01-15-2008, 03:02 PM
So, if I play with these and fix the big borders...do I have a shot at least of scoring decently? Just don't want to enter and make a fool of myself.

Julia By All Means ENTER! it is how you learn and You will definately NOT make a fool of yourself. Volenteer to work if you can, they may be full of workers already. BUT definately ENTER! The only fools are those that don't try for what they want.
JMO Keith

01-15-2008, 04:54 PM
Thanks for the encouragement, everyone. Still not sure at this point, but definitely and objectively considering it. I am for sure going to ask to be on the Print Committee. Thanks for recommending it! The feedback here is amazing and I'm so glad I have found this resource!

Here are two of the files. These were the RAW files. Nothing done to them. SOOC. I think I slid the vibrance slider on the girl with the red dress a tad, but that's it. That image, unfortunately, does not have any cropping wiggle room. The other one does though. What could i do with it?

Red Dress (http://www.jewel-images.com/DSC_0221.jpg)
Long Hair (http://www.jewel-images.com/DSC_0148.jpg)

I have to dig up the other files. There is not enough room on the little boys to crop vertical, unless it's close in and tight. It was shot horizontal. Lesson learned!

01-15-2008, 04:57 PM
The only fools are those that don't try for what they want.

I absolutely LOVE this.

Thanks. It means a lot to me today...

01-15-2008, 05:09 PM
Hi Julia;

It makes a big difference having that bit of extra room on the long haired young lady.

The red dress image looks like a step-mount could work well making the subject layer a good bit smaller.

01-15-2008, 06:49 PM
The red dress image looks like a step-mount could work well making the subject layer a good bit smaller.


Except... LOL...(I feel ignorant) Would you please tell me what a "step mount" means?

01-15-2008, 10:53 PM
Step mount is the image on a layer with . . . a stroke . . . or something framing it, then placed on a larger background layer.

01-16-2008, 12:22 AM
Cool. Thanks. I suspected that, but wasn't sure. I'll play around with it.
Thanks so much guys! You rock.