February 2, 2015 at 4:15 pm #8863
We are approaching the time when we can review our competitions. We made changes this year; the main one being the number of entries you can make in the PDI comps. It resulted in a 100+ entry in the first comp but by the second it had declined considerably.
I always feel we have too many competitions but perhaps that is because I have to prepare them all and 21 is rather a lot! Members may only be entering one or two, at the most 10 competitions.
“Too many competitions”; yet attendance is always good on competition nights!February 2, 2015 at 7:36 pm #8864
I hear what you say John. I know there is a few of us who do enter the full quota to both competitions. I may moan about the judging but I feel its one way of gauging how well you’ve improved as a photographer. The cost can be prohibitive especially in the print competition printing and reprinting and then cost of mount board. Yet as you say we still take part.
It seems we may moan but we still like attending competitions, but are you suggesting we replace them and if so what form would they take? How would we continue to pick for interclub or external battles? We may not like competitions, but it is one fair unbiased way of guiding us in choosing those winners or nearlies for our battles or externals.February 2, 2015 at 10:25 pm #8867
I do agree with you John that we do have a lot of competitions over a season that makes a lot of work for you and members in preparing fro them. I think our internal competitions form an important part of the season and the development of our photography as they challenge us to produce good work. I think we have too many competitions but don’t know which we should ditch. There’s always going to be someone who wants to keep a particular one. If we were to stop entering a local external competition we wold be letting down our neighbours. Personally, the one I think we could loose would be the PDI knock out as we don’t get any constructive criticism from it.February 3, 2015 at 5:34 pm #8869
I think thats a good start Pete, ditching the PDI knockout, though some do use it as a tester to see what works or not. But I’d be for dropping that one as a starter. What do the other clubs have in amounts of competitions in their year, do they have the same as us or are their programmes less competition based? Be interested to find out.February 3, 2015 at 7:58 pm #8870
<b>Unfair workload -21 comps. for the Chairman with all the other aspects of running the Society.Then -there”s me!! All those supporting a competition reduction -say AYE———All those against——-take on some of the workload and number crunching. ——–Two rounds PDI—Two rounds Prints————-Scrap the pdi knockout——One serious round PDI – No advance work-just project and vote 1-2-3- by members everyone else get 15 points—Then same for Prints–just bring in on the night.Sorted–</b>February 4, 2015 at 10:21 pm #8874
I phoned Ron Smith last night and mentioned to him that the club’s membership had dropped a bit this season. He said that was because we have too many competitions. He thinks we should have more speakers and tutorial evenings. I’m not sure if that is the reason as I think we have the same number of competitions as we did last year. However, I do agree with that that members would appreciate having more specialist photographer giving us tips of the trade. On the other hand, like John said competition nights are well attended and give the club much needed revenue. So I think we’ve got to work out a good balance that we can afford to accommodate the program.
I plan to visit Ron soon. Does anyone want to join me?February 4, 2015 at 11:01 pm #8875
Thats nice Peter going to see Ron. A bit of research is useful. Like I said a while back–Chichester have 55 members and 35 on a waiting list—worth picking their brains.Valid point Ron makes–but there is always people leave who need replacing. Seems to me somehow the need to jolly up the old publicity. There would seem no better place than the library a good catchment centre. Superb print on easle CPS MEETS HERE seen as they walk in. Simple leaflets on the check in. I would have a massive pvc sign the full length on the railings on the side of the library -two feet drop—CPS MEETS HERE–JOIN US.and in Polish–they have some georgous girls.February 5, 2015 at 9:21 am #8876
Thanks for those thoughtful remarks.
We did have a vote on the KO and the keepers had the bigger vote. We could try again on the basis that they can keep voting until they get it right! The job of competition secretary really needs dividing up, or at least simplifying. On the externals the greatest stress and time consumption is selection; in the past only work from the previous year was used and the same 12 or 15 prints. We had to drop the “use last year’s” principle because the quality of printing was progressing so fast. Now, the quality and volume of work is such that the choice is several times as big.
But do people care that much? I find I have to look up whether or not we won last time -even though we tend to win most of the competitions! Is anyone even keeping a record?February 5, 2015 at 9:38 am #8878
Interesting comment from Ron. Of course, I guess he didn’t mean the absolute number of competitions was too great; rather the proportion of competitions to “learning activites” was too unbalanced in favour of competitions. (As they say, you don’t make a pig fatter by weighing it!)
This is why I’ve been so strongly in favour of various forms of “critique” sessions, in which we discuss photographs – both our own, and other people’s – and why they work. Discussions between members of our own work is probably one of the most potent but under-used learning activities available to us.February 13, 2015 at 11:09 am #8970
You can, of course, talk to the pig about eating whilst you are weighing it! Competitions are not completely devoid of learning opportunities. In fact they are the same lessons endlessly repeated – and that is the real problem, there is no opportunity to review or personalise what we learn from the competition. You see people making the same mistakes and we don’t get a proper chance to help them. I had hopes that the Forum would provide one way in which we could do this.February 13, 2015 at 8:09 pm #8976
I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there John. It sums it up nicely, as you often do.
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