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Keith_A_Howe
09-20-2010, 03:44 AM
I am on my way home from judging SWPPA the first ever district competition and the first district level digital submissions. Here is my take on it. As a judge I really liked judging images on the moniter. It was interesting especially since I had just judged in LA last month where everything was print. Several makers from LA entered the same images as files at SWPPA. So I had the unique experience of seeing them once as prints and this time around as files. Based on that experience I will be sending in my own entries (and recommending to everyone else) as actual prints. If time or cost is the major consideration then enter files rather then not enter at all. But if you have the option to enter real prints . . . well that's what I am gonna do. By the way we had a first at SWPPA One maker had a perfect case score of 400. That's right! All four entries scored 100! His name is Richard Sturdevant. I was awed by his work!

Keith

GregYager
09-20-2010, 04:19 AM
I've been waiting to hear what your take was on digital entries. I knew print was the way I really wanted to go but this sealed the deal for me. I've obviously never entered a print comp of any kind so I've got some learning to do both in how to prepare my prints and how to shoot images that are competition worthy. Thanks for keeping us posted on this and for your input in other threads to help people better prepare their work for judging.

Marc_Benjamin
09-20-2010, 04:34 AM
4 100's at a regional/district comp. That is truly amazing. Hope the case gets 4L/4L at nationals.

Betsy_Finn
09-20-2010, 04:56 AM
cool about the 4 100's. Just curious, were they prints or digital? :)

Keith_A_Howe
09-20-2010, 01:56 PM
4 100's at a regional/district comp. That is truly amazing. Hope the case gets 4L/4L at nationals.


cool about the 4 100's. Just curious, were they prints or digital? :)

I would be shocked if they didn't all go loan. First time I have ever punched a 100 right outta the box. It was that amazing. Of course as judges we didn't know they were all the same maker until after the judging was done. There were 5 total 100's given at SWPPA that I know of. All of them were print entries. Not saying a digital file submission can't go 100 but that didn't happen this time.

Keith

Suzy_Roberts
09-20-2010, 02:26 PM
I'll pipe up...Keith, it was great seeing you and Holly again! This was my first time to enter print comp and I have mixed feelings about the digital judging. I went 4 for 4 and I think being digital helped 2 of the entries and hurt 2 of the entries. There was a LOT of zooming and knocking off of points due to the zooming of the digital images.
I will say tho that it was a really interesting learning experience. It was SUPER EASY to enter and I think that had a lot to do with a lot of subpar images in the digital category.

Mark_Katz
09-20-2010, 03:36 PM
Richard was a guest speaker a few months back at the local guild meeting. Beautiful work indeed. Was one of the images a composite of a cowboy?

Keith_A_Howe
09-20-2010, 03:48 PM
Suzy, Holly said that sitting next to you and watching your excitement as your entries came up was the highlight of the trip.

SW was up over 40 cases from last year, so anything that gets more people involved is a good thing. I just want to be sure I was clear the reason I will stick to prints is because I actually got to see the difference between the same images submitted as prints and as files. There were several prints that looked just as good in the file as they did in the print but more often the print looked better and I didn't see anything that the file looked better then the print. Not saying that in some circumstances the file wouldn't be better but this time around I didn't personally see that.


I'll pipe up...Keith, it was great seeing you and Holly again! This was my first time to enter print comp and I have mixed feelings about the digital judging. I went 4 for 4 and I think being digital helped 2 of the entries and hurt 2 of the entries. There was a LOT of zooming and knocking off of points due to the zooming of the digital images.
I will say tho that it was a really interesting learning experience. It was SUPER EASY to enter and I think that had a lot to do with a lot of subpar images in the digital category.

Just to clarify, we don't take off points, that's not how it works exactly. We place images in the catergory and then either high in that catergory or low in the catergory. In the print room, the sign listing the catergories is posted on the turntable wall so the audience can also see it. In the digital judging room that sign was laying on the table in front of the judges so the audience could not see it. I think maybe because the sign wasn't up for all to see, it might not have been as obvious that the judges were assigning a catergory and not totaling up a numeric score. I also think that maybe we judges as a group need to find a better way to express that we are placing it in a different a catergory not lowering a numeric score. The points don't really make any difference to the judges. It's the catergories we care about The points are there for the awards. Different associations have different awards that are based on scores and thats when the actual number matters.

I suppose that beginners were more likely to submit files then prints, so it would stand to reason that maybe the overall level of files was effected by that. But there were great images ( some of them Suzy's!) and lesser images in both prints and in files. It's just too early to really tell any true trends.

I have nothing to back this up but this is what I think is going to evolve. Up to now we had a choice of what statement we wanted to make and how we would accomplish that. One of the options we had to make that statement was the choice of paper we presented the image on. I think as time goes on and we all learn what kind of statments are best portrayed on a moniter and what is best conveyed on a piece of paper, then that will be the deciding factor of how to submit the image and not cost or convienence.

Keith

Keith_A_Howe
09-20-2010, 03:49 PM
Richard was a guest speaker a few months back at the local guild meeting. Beautiful work indeed. Was one of the images a composite of a cowboy?

The cowboy composite was an entry from last year I believe and was the front cover of the convention book this year.

Keith

Joe_Galioto
09-20-2010, 03:50 PM
i just judged at the delaware valley guild on thursday, a talented & friendly group for sure.
it was all digital. this was the first time i judged digital entries.
the system worked out ok, but i think some of the entries would have shown better as prints. i think there is some lost is details especially in the dark/black areas. the panel took that into consideration a gave the maker the benefit in most cases.
it certainly is much easier for those who entered and the print committee.
joe

Keith_A_Howe
09-20-2010, 03:56 PM
i just judged at the delaware valley guild on thursday, a talented & friendly group for sure.
it was all digital. this was the first time i judged digital entries.
the system worked out ok, but i think some of the entries would have shown better as prints. i think there is some lost is details especially in the dark/black areas. the panel took that into consideration a gave the maker the benefit in most cases.
it certainly is much easier for those who entered and the print committee.
joe

Joe, at an affilaite competition we do not take that kind of thing into consideration. If the maker chooses to enter it as a file then it has to be good as a file. We will not make assumptions that there is detail and it's an equipment issue anymore then we will make asumptions on a print that it was a lab screw up and the photographer actually did it right. We score what is in front of us and if there is pixelation, banding, loss of detail in highlight or shadow etc, it will speak to technical excellance and effect the catergory where the image places. I am sure you know this but we have a lot of beginners who read these threads and I don't want them to think submitting a file is a way to get around technical issues in their entries.

Keith

PaulWood
09-20-2010, 08:28 PM
How long will it be before the results are published?

Joe_Galioto
09-20-2010, 09:48 PM
keith,
i understand all that, and your points are well taken.
this was not an affiliate judging.
it was also the first time this group's competition was all digital and there is a learning curve for all of us.
joe

Teri_Quance
09-21-2010, 02:04 AM
And, he deserved that 400! So bummed to have missed SWPPA this year... but, I did see Richard's prints in Kerrville... a 400 print case for sure!

Mark_McCall
10-02-2010, 06:05 PM
How long will it be before the results are published?
In the past, I've been able to post the results online immediately following the awards banquet.
This year, however, PEC wanted to ratify (for lack of a better word) the results before they'd let us post them, which took a couple of weeks.
Not sure what the hold up was, but I got a ton of nasty emails from photographers wanting to know their scores.

Keith,
I didn't see the digital judging personally because I had other duties to attend to at SWPPA, but I hear tell that the judges were zooming in more than 100% on the monitors.
If that's the case, I'm sure many images fell apart when inspected closer than 100%.

Do you think we'll continue to have a split competition? digital and print?

Sarah_Johnston
10-11-2010, 02:39 PM
Mark, I know I am not Keith but I can help answer your question. At this point Yes we will continue to have both print and digital as long as both mediums are entered. My hope is that prints stay around for a VERY long time. I find great value in the print exhibit as an educational tool. Images will be displayed the way they are entered, so I would hate to see the "print" display dwindle and disappear.
Ron has a post here that addresses the zoom issue. The program, I believe, does not allow more than 100%. Some of the issues were that files were not prepared according to the specs (ie-color space, etc.) which could have attributed to some of the issues we saw. I will find Rons post and post a link here for all who have questions.

Sarah_Johnston
10-11-2010, 02:49 PM
http://www.ppa.com/community/forums/showthread.php?t=20773

Here is where Ron posted about the issues at SWPPA.