View Full Version : To enter, or not to enter....

04-21-2010, 12:21 AM
that is my question, lol!

So I figured I would ask the experts for some help. I have one image I am pretty sure I am going to enter. My first competition ever was in November, it was for our local affiliate and I entered this image. Keith had helped me prepare before comp & he also gave me some more pointers on the image during our mentoring session @ Imaging. I've made those corrections and am much happier with the changes. Is there anything further I can do to improve this image?

Dog Tired

The next image is from a recent session. I haven't done any cleanup b/c I wanted to get opinions on it first. I have a few other images that are full length (which include the hat and boots) but I like the expressions in this one best. I also have the full color version of this image. I'm not great at looking at things objectively, so I know I'm letting my emotions sway my opinion on it. I need to know whether the issues I see will hold it back.
Is this image worth it, or not?

Beyond that, I have a few others I've been tossing back and forth in my mind, but I figured I'd start with these. I would really like to start entering print comp, but just cannot wrap my head around it and I am obviously running out of time :) I suffer from the "I'm not worthy" syndrome and cannot find images I feel confident about. I just want to throw my hands up and say forget it. But I question whether that is more my fear talking, or whether I'm really not ready. *sigh* enough rambling for now.....

05-01-2010, 06:39 AM
First, sorry to take so long to respond. I didn't notice that these posts had not been answered to date.
The image with the dog has great color balance/harmony, as well as an obvious subject. It has a lot of potential. The image of the two youngsters in fire fighter outfits is somewhat eye-catching as well.
I don't see anything to change about the dog image.
The lighting on the girls seems directional enough to create a highlight and shadow side without causing any problem shadows... Although I would like to see a bit more direction on them. Might be cropped a bit too tightly...
As far as your "I'm not worthy" syndrome... Wow, print comp is not designed to make a person "feel good". It is designed as a way to get critical annual feedback on a professional set of skills. Think of it as an annual review by a panel of peers, who will review your best images from the previous year and point out strengths and weakness's. In our business, we get this kind of feedback for relatively low cost.
It is the fear of not "doing well" and a lack of experience that keeps most folks from entering in the first place.
I urge you to consider attending some local, state, and certainly regional judging events in your area this next year. I think you will find them to be a very valuable resource to improve your day to day work as well as your special projects.
Sam Gardner, M.Photog.Cr. CPP Int. Juror

05-01-2010, 05:16 PM
thanks Sam. Let me clarify what I mean by the "I'm not worthy" feeling. In all honesty, its probably a good feeling b/c I am never satisfied w/my work ;) I guess that is what keeps me improving.

My rambles were more the self doubt of whether I should bother entering this late in the game. Ya know, is there enough time to clean up and fix anything w/these images to make them better. I have the hardest time choosing images, and that is where the "is this image worthy" comes in. I hope that makes sense. I very much view things emotionally, and don't always trust my gut instinct on my work. So I'm always wondering if I'm making a selection based on my emotions or based on if it is the right kind of image for comp.

Anyway, I decided to go for it as I really have nothing to lose except money, since I'll be sending it in late ;) I have two other images I'm sending in as well, just because.

here is pretty much the final edit of the girls. After reading this, I'll probably see if I can give a little more room on each side.

Still struggling w/a good title but we are thinking "A Hero's weakness"

05-01-2010, 08:45 PM
Amy, thanks for clarifying your thoughts about "worth entering" and self doubt. Here are some interesting quotes along that line...

“Masters are very faulty; they haven’t learned everything and they know it.” -Robert Henri

“One must learn by doing the thing; for though you think you know it, you have no certainty, until you try”

Cezanne wrote to Emile Bernard,
“Time and reflection modify little by little our vision. And at last comprehension comes to us.”

“I don't think there's any artist of any value who doesn't doubt what they're doing.”
Francis Ford Coppola

Thanks again for sharing your thoughts, perhaps these dialogues will encourage others also.

Sam Gardner M.Photog.Cr.CPP, Int. Juror