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StaceyDamon
02-07-2008, 06:43 PM
C&C please!!!

The 3 Amigos
http://inlinethumb52.webshots.com/25203/2809339450017302327S600x600Q85.jpg

Trick-or-Treat
http://inlinethumb59.webshots.com/25146/2453386230017302327S600x600Q85.jpg

Sisters Forever
http://inlinethumb49.webshots.com/22960/2904620580017302327S600x600Q85.jpg

Lover's Playground
http://inlinethumb15.webshots.com/16462/2181491640017302327S600x600Q85.jpg

Joe_Galioto
02-07-2008, 09:43 PM
stacy,
i hate to be the bearer of bad news, but none of these images are likely to merit. the judges are looking to be blown away. photographs that our clients love are not enough to please them. these are all nice photographs but don't have that something special that will earn a blue ribbon. maybe someone else here can guide you better then i. my first priority is always pleasing the client & making a profit.
sorry,
joe

Dave_Cisco
02-07-2008, 09:55 PM
Self examination quiz, Stacy...How many General Collection books do you have? How many Loan Collection books? Get a couple and try to identify the common features that the judges were looking for.:)

Auralee_Dallas
02-07-2008, 10:29 PM
I think she is due some feedback.
#1-Kids dead center and mixed clothing tones. Smiling at camera. Nice client image.
#2-Sort of a snapshot before trick or treating. Arm has choke hold.
#3-Mixed clothing again and grinning at camera.
#4-Creative idea, again, more of a family snapshot--fun image, but composition is awkward, play structure in background coming out of womans head.

It took me years of watching and listening to print competition to understand how special these images need to be and how important it is to plan in advance with locations and clothing consultations. Smiling isn't really the kiss of death, but there has to be a reason to smile, not just because the photographer asked you to. Lighting is also really, really important. You need to have directional lighting and that is a challenge to find outdoors.

Definitely get a hold of some Loan and General collection books to review. They are expensive, but worth it if just not for inspiration. If you have a local guild, start competing there. Getting feedback on your images is the most useful thing to do.

I had the financially best year I've had in the 10 years I've had my business. However, this year didn't yield any portrait merit prints for me. I'm disappointed, but it just challenges me to try harder and think about it more when I'm behind the camera. I can post my losers if you want to see and folks here can rip them up.
Keep trying--it's the best way to improve.