Tagged: A Well run club
September 21, 2015 at 7:57 am #10537
I’ve had my full compliment of prints ready and mounted for weeks, months in fact.
But I shall be entering very few, if any, in this first competition. The reason is that the judge has seen them. He is a follower of mine on Flickr and I feel it would be unfair to enter pictures he has commented on, or seen.
It raises the question of pictures being out there, either on the web or as acceptances in competitions. Some enter a particular picture in all 20 BPEs. If they have enjoyed some success does this affect future judgement of the same pictures?
In any event Crewe PS is just us and I don’t want to be seen as gaining any unfair advantage.
It is unlikely that I shall have the time to make any new prints before the closing date.September 21, 2015 at 8:40 am #10538
You should go with the flow John and enter them. The judges should be totally impartial.Not your fault.Mainly because of the flawed judging I decided years ago prints were a waste of effort.Again this year not prepared to have my intelligence tested so will enter nothing.Look at Ian’s appraisal of my Spiral Staircase on Flicker.Like so many was judged to be totally rubished.So entrants cannot pre judge and not for you to do so.Just enter your prints ready.September 30, 2015 at 4:49 pm #10580
Having been to Whitchurch last night, it brings home how well run our meetings and competitions are . Thanks to John for all his organizational skills and how he goes about conducting our meetings I really appreciate it.
Again thanks John for all your hard work.September 30, 2015 at 9:52 pm #10581
Here here Wallace!
Re: the prints. I think that Brian is an objective and fair judge and your prints would be judged without bias. It is impossible to compare a small online Flickr image to a fully mounted print. How it prints plays a huge part in its success and Brian hasn’t seen the prints. Also Brian has not been asked on Flickr to compare your work against any other images and I am sure that there will be many fine ones to give them a run for their money in Print 1. Personally I say enter them. If anyone objects then they can let a committee member know. I am sure that judges recognise work all the time and are more than used to remaining impartial.September 30, 2015 at 10:07 pm #10582
I do agree with you Wallace. John is a very skilled organiser but who is going to replace him next year?
So far no one has volunteered or even hinted at serving. Come on CPS members step up to the plate!
By the way, I won’t be volunteering, it’s a job for a younger person – I’ll be 80 next season!
Ken, all judges are flawed and most of them admit it. But I don’t let it bother me when they trash my work I just keep on enjoying myself making pictures!
Just keep on entering work – we’ll appreciate it even if they don’t.October 2, 2015 at 9:16 pm #10594
John, please put a full entry in for the first competition. I’m sure that everyone else looks forward to seeing your work as much as I do. It doesn’t matter if the judge has seen them before and knows they’re yours. Judges must regularly judge photographs they’ve seen before and they need to be professional enough to be impartial. When they’re judging a competition they’re evaluation of your photographs may change depending on the standard of the other work. I’m sure you’ll be interested to see how they rate against other members work.October 3, 2015 at 11:46 am #10597
TOM 80 NEXT YEAR–WHY only a chicken Tom–keep taking the pills. LOLOctober 3, 2015 at 4:40 pm #10599
Brian’s judged PDIs for us, and has seen most of my pictures before on Flickr. He’s always been scrupulously fair and objective, applying the same judgement to my photographs that he’s applied to everyone else’s. I don’t do prints, but if I did I’d have no worries about Brian’s impartiality, and nor should anyone else.
Go for it, John!October 3, 2015 at 7:31 pm #10600
DO NOT KID ONES SELF—Its how the world revolves–you scratch my back and jobs for the boys. One would have to be exempt between the ears to think otherwise. Just look at so many of the big competitions and the names are all there –regularly- and superb work by unknowns passed over. Credibility among judges???-I can well remember once all the big guns had a slagging–never asked to judge again. I have previously described “Judges” in amateur photography are like a clutch in a very expensive car. A fine engine and equally finely engineered gearbox—bought together with the crudeness of a “clutch”. Meaning- people have superb fine camera”s—go to exotic places to produce superb fine photographs—to be judged by some one who puts themselves on a pedestal and call themselves a judge. In all sports the umpire-ref- judge has to work within strict guidelines. In club photography most are not fit for purpose and the big let down for serious amateur photographers. I could post half dozen good photo”s -not only rubbished-but the facts all wrong. The A380 taking off with wheels off the ground–it a “Record”— The white cottage in the lavender fields—it has been stuck there—. I could list endless. Sorry no respect for them and a better alternative is needed. Better to let the members vote winners.October 4, 2015 at 12:56 pm #10601
Well, in view of Ken’s mistrust of the impartiality of judges, perhaps none of us who know a judge personally should enter competitions he or she is judging, simply to avoid subjecting them and us to innuendo and allegations of corrupt practice. That’s sad; but it’s clearly an issue.
I must say, I do disagree with judges about some of the choices they make, and with their reasons for doing so. But I don’t think I’ve ever felt a club judge was ‘cheating’ by rating people they know personally more highly. On the contrary, I’ve observed them being harder on their acquaintances, bending over backwards in an effort not to show any partiality. But I guess other members have different experiences?October 4, 2015 at 2:06 pm #10602
I agree whole heartedly, otherwise we would never go into the kitchen. While I understand Johns (worry) take on this, I think the judges are adult enough not to lean towards images he/she has already seen. It would be a sad day indeed if we stopped entering competitions for fear of being damned if you do and damned if you don’t enter. I hope John will put his images in, a great image will always stand heads above others. I for one look forward to seeing a full quota entered from members.October 4, 2015 at 8:01 pm #10604
Seriously –Club amateur photographers deserve better.One of my problems with judges is they are allowed too much freedom and clear parameters need to be defined they should work within. No doubt the problem is aggravated by far too many competitions , this in turn requires more judges than the system can provide of quality.In so many activities winners are defined clearly -goals scored-first past the post-chess-darts you can name dozens. But photography -dog shows –I cannot think of others where it hangs on the decision of a judge. Therefore all the more reason for the highest of skill and integrity. Only those that know can comment on integrity. But I can certainly comment on appalling and entirely inaccurate comments by judges leading to low marks. I will post one example from last year. Like the picture or not it was not marked down low for that reason. It was marked down for a serious technical problem-so explained the judge. Please examine and tell me the “technical problem”??This I would add was taken through a crowd on Crewe Rail platform in a very fast moving act.October 5, 2015 at 6:55 am #10609
Ken >>> The preoccupation with technical precision above all else is a serious limitation for club photography. I’ve recently posted a link to an excellent article by Francis Hodgson on standards in photography in which he happens to refer in passing to club photography a couple of times as follows:
“The camera club virtues (perfection in the craft skills of photography at the expense of any or every notion of expressiveness)…”
“…it brings to mind camera-club contests in which producing even curves in Photoshop is more important by far than having anything to say.”
There you have it in a nutshell. But that’s hardly the fault of any one judge: it’s a pervasive ‘cultural’ problem in club photography as a whole.
Interestingly, Francis Hodgson has just posted a critical appreciation on his blog of photographs by Alejandro Guijarro which are fine examples of ‘straight’ photographs that have a great deal to say, where technical perfection is irrelevant (though they are very well made).October 6, 2015 at 5:25 pm #10619
Ken’s Dog Show would be just about as objective as a competition could get; clearly defined criteria which can be judged quite accurately one dog against another. (Straighter back, curlier hair, “better” colour etc etc). The entries in photo competitions require a far broader and far more subjective view. “Eddie” Sethna, whose assessment of judging has become something of a guidebook for judges, suggests only 15% of marks, or thereabouts, be awarded for technical aspects – the only ones we could even start to try and make objective.
In the end there is some far deeper motivation in making photographs than how they will do in competitions – or there should be. I think that we should treat competitions as a chance to show some of our pictures to the other members. They always make up their own minds as to which ones interest them. Judges usually find something of interest to comment on, even if it is usually something to do with image perception.
I have had it said to me that clubs are only about competitions. If I really thought that I would have left long ago. It may be true of a club such as Wigan 10 – no disrespect, I know many of them quite well – but they would be the first to admit that they ARE about competitions. An average club will represent a mix of interests and members will know whose work is whose and just enjoy the contributions from their favourite workers – regardless of what the judge thinks.October 6, 2015 at 7:14 pm #10622
In the end there is some far deeper motivation in making photographs than how they will do in competitions – or there should be.
That is absolutely the right way to look at it. As you know, I’m fairly critical of the competition culture in club photography. But I have appreciated and enjoyed excellent work that members of CPS have done when photographing for their own enjoyment and interest, rather than putting on a performance for a competition. We’ve seen work that people have done out of genuine personal interest or a spirit of experimentation on our outings, for open-evening presentations, as contributions to the Monthly Theme activity. Like John, I am very glad we aren’t only about competitions.
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