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Thread: Buying into a system
04-30-2009, 03:52 PM #1
Buying into a system
For some time my efforts had been spent striving to achieve a merit, believing all along that I could get my degree with client work.
(A noble thought one would think...)
I did fair enough, scoring in and around the deserving of a merit category.
Even up till 2 years ago and having gone 4 for 4 at nationals, I felt I still was struggling to make the mark.
Until a few or so trade shows back, my friend Michael and I were walking around and we stopped and talked with Jim Chagares.
He questioned us concerning our intentions for our prints in competition.
(I'll ask you the same.)
What do you get when you attempt to score an 80 and fail?
Answer: You’re sent packing that's what.
Now... what do we get if we try to score a 100 and fail?
Answer: A merit.
He said to us,
"Have higher aspirations for your work."
Have higher aspirations for your work?
Those words rang in our ears and changed everything, especially the way we approach competition. (Every aspect)
Combined with a few others, we have bought into that system and devised a formula.
There is hardly a day that goes by that we are not talking about it.
Having said that, over the past 2 years a dramatic change have taken place, the most obvious coming last year.
My highest score ever was lower than 3 of the 4 scores from last year’s MARC competition. This year same thing. All four were well at the high end of scoring making my highest scoring print case to date.
This is not attempt to get everyone to see my scores or a way to get my name out. To think such would leave you much mistaken.
No, this is an attempt to let others know it can be done and it is possible to do consistently.
If this is received well (sometimes I have the feelings of being a thread killer here) I would be happy to share.
Have higher aspirations for your work.
Last edited by John_Metcalfe; 04-30-2009 at 03:56 PM.john
04-30-2009, 07:26 PM #2
Ah, John, you've piqued my interest again... I noticed your SEPPA scores, and would love to see the prints.
04-30-2009, 07:38 PM #3
Okay - I'm interested. How do I have higher aspirations for my work? Currently I would like to see my client work improve as I watch for those competition prints, which always seem to allude me, for one reason or another. I sent a case for the first time ever to Mideast Regionals, and was okay with the most of the results, but in all honesty, I was hoping for better. Now I really don't have anything to send to Internationals. That said, while my main goal is to please my customers (all were very happy with the images I used in print comp.) I would really like to aspire to that of Master some day - from client images. So, to take you back to the question you posed, "how do I have higher aspirations for my work"? Please share.
And thanks for always being honest in your input. I appreciate it.
AngelaAngela Lawson CPP
Michigan CPP Liason
Where Life + Art = Memories Forever
04-30-2009, 08:40 PM #4
04-30-2009, 09:31 PM #5
Yeah um... after I posted that I realized I had you and that guy you're friends with (Michael?) confused...
04-30-2009, 09:53 PM #6Senior Member
- Join Date
- Oct 2008
Me at SEPPA. John at home. No worries! Ha. The duck is in Jacksonville, Illinois. A bit confusing. As long as the camera is in Batavia I'm happy.
04-30-2009, 09:57 PM #7
04-30-2009, 11:30 PM #8What do you get when you attempt to score an 80 and fail?
Answer: You’re sent packing that's what.
Now... what do we get if we try to score a 100 and fail?--Elephants can swim...
...and very gracefully.
I do believe
Anything is possible for me.
Kirk Darling, CPP
05-01-2009, 01:58 AM #9
Although I totally agree with the philosophy, I still think it is difficult if you don't know *how* or *why* you are not scoring higher.
I still think there is a missing element to your formula ... which is feedback. Or coaching ... or mentoring. I mean even the best athletes in the word have coaches, trainers, mentors, etc. Why? To give them feedback.
So, the formula is more like an algorithm to me:
Step 1: Attempt to take a 100 image
Step 2: If 100 then congrats! Goto Step 5
else, goto Step 3
Step 3: Get feedback as to why the image didn't score higher
Step 4: Gain insight on how to create stronger images and apply it to your photography
Step 5: Repeat
At least that seems to be the formula I am on :-)John Heckler, M.Photog, CPP
Avatar compliments of Laura Laine Photography
05-01-2009, 02:40 AM #10
Angela, the single most important factor in my competition success/improvement has been asking others for input. I don't just ask "if this would merit" -- but I would ask what was keeping it from scoring higher. What imperfections there are... how I could improve the print.
I would do this with every image. Seeing the score alone won't help you grow. It's examining the image with a mentor and learning to see the flaws (and more importantly, learn how to fix them or prevent them in the future).