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LeAnneSchmidt
03-08-2012, 03:04 AM
I'd love some feedback on this. I have dipped my toe into competition and scored high 70's, so I am looking to get feedback about images that might be merit worthy. I feel like many images that merit are more edgy, so if you feel like this closeup of "sisters" doesn't cut it, feel free to be honest. Too much background? Too neutral? Thank you!

Rick_Massarini
03-08-2012, 03:16 AM
As presented I believe that this image will fall in the upper part of the Average category (74-75). The dead space on the sides of the image does not help the presentation. The pattern in the background is distracting and made more distracting by another pattern in the mat. The color in the mat keyline was picked up from the background color, and since the keyline tends to direct your eye to a specific color, the keyline is doing the exact opposite of what it is supposed to do - it is directing attention to the background instead of directing attention to the faces.

LeAnneSchmidt
03-08-2012, 03:24 AM
Thank you so much for your feedback! I typically do a black mat and thought this whole presentation might be a bit much. Thoughts on this one? It's called Focus.

Rick_Massarini
03-08-2012, 03:45 AM
I understand that this is probably a gymnastics, dance, or cheer outfit, so you have no control over the outfit, but the outfit makes this a mixed key image right off the bat. Mixed key images have difficulty doing well in competitions. The outfit is black and white, so if you use a dark background, your eye is directed towards the white areas of her dress. If you use a dark background, your eye is directed towards the brightest area which is the white of her dress. As presented, my eye goes toward the white of her dress and the two very bright spots on her forearms. The brown color of the background tends to coordinate with with her skin tones and her hair color and further directs my eye towards the white of the dress. The wide white keyline also directs my eye towards that white dress. In addition, the black border around a brown background doesn't blend together well and tends to accentuate the wide white keyline which pulls my eye back towards the white of her dress again.
Try this trick. Take the image and flip it upside down - that makes the actual image less obvious and allows your eye to wander to where it is being directed by the colors, tones, and accents. Look at the image and see where your eye goes - that is where it will go when it is right side up. You want your eye to be directed to the subject's face.

LeAnneSchmidt
03-08-2012, 11:53 AM
Great advice on the flipping of the image! It's so helpful to get your perspective...I knew the bright spot on her arm was an issue, but hadn't thought about the stark contrasts in terms of her own outfit having the mixed key issue. Thank you so much! Here are two more I am considering. Again, I am grateful for your feedback.