View Full Version : How to Get to the Next Level...

08-13-2007, 05:03 AM
Hello to everyone!

New to posting, but 3rd year in getting a PPA Merited General collection print to hang. What could I have done differently to make this into the GB or Loan?

I have been watching the forum for several years but a bit shy to post and have learned so much from so many wonderful artists.

Thank you so much for your insight.

Sherry Piche

08-13-2007, 05:05 AM
Opps, forgot to send image...

08-13-2007, 05:11 AM
Sorry... newby error... here it is..


08-13-2007, 06:02 AM
"How do I get to the next level?" This is my question too!

This is a very nice image and I can see how it merited. Did you get a critique? If so were there any hints on the critique for improvement?

I have had one single portrait merit so I'm no expert but I wonder if the title could have been something with more impact? I don't know if this would have taken it up even to the GB but it might have helped.

Thanks for sharing. Don't be "shy" about posting.

08-13-2007, 10:30 AM
Hi Sherry,

I think the key to Loan is uniqueness. An image that is well executed in accordance to the 12 elements will get you the merit and a real unique one will push it.

08-13-2007, 04:52 PM
Marc is correct it is uniqueness is key second is IMPACT!!!!!!!!
The best thing is to buy the GB and loan books and study them and just keep streching your photography.

08-13-2007, 08:34 PM
To get into the showcase book you had to have a judge desire your image to go "loan" but not have enough members of the panel in agreement for the image to actually make it to "loan". Once the image didn't make "loan" the juror could use one of their tokens to have the image placed in the showcase book. I hope that made sense.

To me the image you've posted is very nice. It shows a nice lighting pattern and light ratio. One issue I have, (and this is looking at a 3 inch print vs the 16x20) is that the dress competes with her face for my eye's attention. I keep looking down at the dress. Maybe a vignette would have helped a bit and maybe on the original you've done just that. I would also have liked to see her eyes. But again I am looking at a 3 inch print....

How do you get to the next level? Keep passionately pursuing your art and craft. For images to make it to the loan collection they have to have impact. I personally don't believe impact can stand alone, you have to have a supporting "something". That something could be lighting, composition, color harmony, etc. Impact in lighting, impact through emotion, etc... You don't have to have uniqueness entirely, but it helps. If you are going to do a subject that's been done a 1000 times before you have to do it in such a way that it just grabs the jurors attention. Makes them stand up and say "wow". It can be done, but it is more difficult. A lot of merits are given out now-a-days with bugs and flowers. For some it's easier to create an image of that subject matter with impact and the judges are rewarding them. But if your passion is portraiture the pursue that passionately and you'll get there! :)

08-14-2007, 02:00 AM
Don is right when he says impact. I make the choice to vote yes for loan when it's an image that compells me to keep looking at it. If I find myself not wanting the turntable to spin so the print goes away, that's probably a good indication I should put my thumb up. You just feel it in your gut.

So if that sounds like a copout you all should know that in order to get to be an affliate juror and be in on the decscion for loan or not loan is a long drawn out process.First you have to be a Master. Then you must attend the course- Making of a Merit Print - that is held during international judging every year. Then you have to apply and judge at a certain # of non-affliate competitions where there are affliate jurors on the panel. Those jurors have to witness you actually judging and then fill out an evaluation of your abilities. One of the important qualities they look for is open mindedness. You must have a minimum of 5 evaluations submitted to PEC. They review those and look at who is reccomending you. Your scores in different areas are looked at and they may come back and require that you submit additional evaluations. Even if everything is wonderful, you still may not be accepted because they may already have too many judges on the list in your area ( portrait open etc - not geographic)

Then after you finally are accepted - you are continually evaluated every time you judge at an affilate competition. The jury foreman submits a review of every judge there. Also if you are lucky enough to judge at national, you are evaluated closely there.jury Chairmen are also scored. PEC does everything possible to m,ake sure that affliate juror status stands for integrity, ability and fairness. Once you get affliate status it's not yours forever, you have to continually earn it and show that you deserve to still have it.

I know this wasn't the actual question here, but I thought it might be helpful for people to have some insight as to how the judges scoring their work, earn the right to do so.


08-15-2007, 01:48 AM
Thank you everyone for your comments. Many wonderful explainations. I appreciate your time and advice.