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DPChallenge Forums >> Challenge Results >> Art of 2011 - The Jury's Picks
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03/23/2012 07:41:30 AM · #1
And now... the moment an unknown subset of you have been waiting for... the jury's selected winners from the Art 2011 challenge!

It was a great pleasure to serve with such thoughtful people. Hopefully the snippets of our conversations below will give you some notion of that pleasure, including a very important aspect of judging art: the very notion of art itself gets debated in such judging. You might find some of the comments surprising on award-winners, but I wanted you to get the full flavor of how these decisions and rankings were made.

Enjoy, and congratulations to our choices, as well as to other excellent photos that individual judges loved but did not make the final cut.

the jury: 21.gif Bear_Music 21_N.gif bspurgeon 21.gif Cuttooth 21_F.gif Jutilda 21.gif LevT 21_F.gif mariuca 21_F.gif Neat 21.gif posthumous 21_F.gif Retroesque 21.gif ubique 21_F.gif vawendy 21.gif yanko

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FIRST PLACE
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Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859848.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004490.jpg Christmas Day

This is more than art. It's life. The figures are separate but connected. The girl is the very cosmos beginning and ending. And yet it's just a boring day in the backyard. I find it profoundly moving.

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yes, profoundly moving. Family life is represented very well. Busy, almost chaotic, but all connected. Tightly composed within the frame makes it warm and fuzzy. As a father, I love how this image evokes this concept of family. And the running girl. The life blood of this family, I imagine she is the one that brings laughter and smiles during the rough times. I found the processing supportive of the scene as a whole.

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Very 70's Bechtle in feel and composition. The photographer captured the mundane of everyday life perfectly here.

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There is a lot going for this photograph. The composition is extremely strong. So many little gems: the girl's dress echoed by the tree, the playing boys perfectly framed by the girl's legs, the planks on the house wall connecting the girl and the mother, the stripes on father's shirt echoing the planks, the wires behind the flying girl feel like her wake, etc etc. All of that, and not carefully constructed but seen in a split moment, which is fantastic. Everybody moves! The colors are a great complement to the overall retro feel. The only thing (but it's a big thing) that was missing for me was the emotional connection with the viewer. I didn't feel much looking at this photo.

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It's not merely a photograph of a thing; the photograph is a thing. This is what thrills me about this level of photography. The artist is reflecting on the very nature of a photograph and photography. Turning art/photography as it is popularly perceived on its head and the immensely clever thing is that he/she is doing it by simulating the most democratic yet most despised form of photography; the family snapshot. It's a photograph that would have delighted an artist/philosopher such as Susan Sontag.

The photograph depicts with deceptive precision the glorious and chaotic theatre of our lives, but it's not our lives that's the point of it: it's the fact that we can and do picture our lives. The picture itself is the thing being depicted.

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I love the girl in the front - no damn it I love them all - it's a brilliant image that I wish I'd taken.

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It's spectacularly done, truly beautiful, but it didn't make an emotional connection with me. I looked at it a number of times, but I was able to move on.

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Has amazing appeal to it, grabbed my attention on first view, one of those images that make you stop and stare for a LONG time.
But why ? I loved the POV, amazing. The PP, very appealing very vintage feel to it. The energy the girls has, her dress, her stride, and all the other things happening,in an ordinary scene made to look astonishing!

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It is that perfect moment. The title really works for me too. The girl in suspended animation is sublime. A diorama of this family. I like it very much. You could study it long and hard, and keep finding treasures.

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lacks something. Perhaps it's the low angle which makes it feel so staged? I don't know, but the vibe I get is artificiality. Is this even Christmas Day?

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Oh see, I like the low angle. It doesn't feel staged at all. It is a split second in time forever frozen. Christmas Day? Why not? I love that there was no tree, no Santa, no Jesus, no red or green. The more I talk about it, the more I like it.

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I wish I can find "le mot juste" for this picture. I got immersed in it. I am spellbound by the connection and disconnection between all elements in this shot, the spectacular perspective and the flatness of the image in the same time. This quality is especially artistic (see Balthus for instance - without imitating it; it's not even in the manner of ...). We focus on the girl but perceive every other element, the little boys busy with their game in the background, the fence, the cloudy sky, the sandals of the father who appears as tall as his daughter - such a wonderful trick of perspective. It's Christmas Day perhaps because it was shot on that day or maybe because it has an air of normality and harmony that comes when things are just right.

I am extremely impressed by the frozen feel of this shot. It's cinematic but interestingly enough I don't want to see the next clip. I do not want to weave a story because what I perceive now is what I want to remain. The mark of true art.

===================
SECOND PLACE
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the red blob has been
taken away from
21.gif hesitant to bring
shame to those who do
not follow rules. We
must set an example. Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004546.jpg One Man's Freedom (this image was DQ'd from the challenge for adding and removing features)

The handicapped man, rolling through a deserted neighborhood really made me realize how I'm such a small part of a world full of struggles. All of the elements in this shot, the man, the old buildings, the deserted streets, and the old chevy, give this picture a timeless quality.

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I adored 'One Man's Freedom' too but I struggled with it as art.

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It is sentimental and artificially processed, but he does it so damn well, and that car is so damn beautiful, which really drives the point home in a magnificent fashion. It's also really powerfully composed. Everything is just the right size, and the way the street blends into fog... WOW!

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This image is SO wonderful - but for me I don't know if it's 'art'. I love the story and the colour - but in some ways for me 'art' is something timeless and I'm not sure this image is for me. Somehow I keep wondering if it's been staged - and for me, if it was I would like it less.

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Cuba. Flawlessly done. From a craftsmanship point of view it's unimpeachable. The tones in particular are beautifully judged. It relentlessly ticks all the boxes and can hardly fail to appeal to both neophytes and seasoned photographers alike, and unusually for much the same reasons. For me it ultimately has, as a photograph, as art, slightly less than meets the eye.

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I was of that opinion at first. Is this really as wonderful as it seems or is there "less than meets the eye"? But ultimately I think it truly is what it seems. An incredible image that hits on all fronts. I think my hesitation is because of too many setup shots on DPC. It feels like something setup in order to tug at our heart and our conscience. But I believe this is truly a moment in time. This is what all of the setup people are trying to achieve. A truly spectacular piece of art.

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This screams Cuba. I have come back to it so many times, my eyes are tired. It certainly speaks to me. The depth of tone and the composition, not to mention the story are spot on.

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This is definitely the type of rendering that I like and the composition is very good but ultimately it didn't really meet my definition of art.

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As much as I normally dislike any border, here the slickness of the letterbox adds a wonderful exclamation point. This is as sentimental as Hemingway's Cuba. Or Grahamm Greene's. The image is raw and decadent and in the end it's all smoke.

I start to understand the effort that was mentioned: "I adored 'One Man's Freedom' too but I struggled with it as art." Do we not call a high level of development a state of the art?

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As a BW image, I am definitely drawn to the beautiful tones and atmosphere. It's almost too pretty, and I can look past the border. What I do like is the presence of a human being striding beyond his <presumed> past, with just a hint of longing given the body language. I do hope that it is a candid, but I doubt it.

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It never crossed my mind that it is staged, but I guess anything can be. My intuitive side says it is not. I have no way to corroborate with the photographer, but it's just my gut.

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I was definitely wowed by this photo. But interestingly, just because it is so perfect (the composition, the street, the tones, the fog, the car) it feels staged, even if it is most likely not... feels like a still from a movie... a great movie, but still only a movie :).

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THIRD PLACE (shared by three entries, listed alphabetically by title)
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Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859851.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1002524.jpg fillory

I love the composition and unexpected head in the lower right. I think it has a thoughtful approach and I like that I can look at it for more than a quick glance and still be intrigued. To me, it's art.

I looked it up and it refers to a book and it deals with a sad dream of what it means to want something badly and never fully reach it.

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I really like the dreamy quality of the shot. It gave me the feeling of reminiscing about childhood memories all but forgotten.

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I love the dreamy feel and the palette of this one. I also like the surprise of the head in the corner. The surprising thing is that the head in the corner made me more interested in the photographer than the picture.

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I enjoyed this image. It evoked the intended dream like state. The unbalanced, and far from perfect, composition adds to the unpredictable and unique nature of dreams. Thus, the composition is perfect. I did not put it forward, in part, because I'm certain I know the creator, but also because the dream ended. The story telling in my head shut down. I found this to be a surprise, and is likely my own failing.

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It's beautiful, but I keep seeing this photographer use the same lighting over and over again. It's *fantastic* lighting, but the repetition gets to me. The composition is daring, but it almost seems calculatedly daring. Still, it is very well executed.

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I find it a little cloying. If it was a painting it would have been sent for cleaning of the yellowish hue. But it's clearly a photo (and I commend the photographer for this) treated as if it's becoming prematurely old - yes, I got it - but I saw the effect used one too many times.

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The only one (for me) with pretty clearly apparent authorship. And one of the most audacious photographers in our community too, even if the motif is getting a bit relentless by now. But how can it not be celebrated? Put aside your knowledge of the person's earlier work and view it in isolation. To quote a wise man from New Jersey, 'first empty your mind': then it's quite beautiful. And I'm in the camp of embracing titles, so the titular reference to Christopher Plover's world doesn't impose on me at all; it orients me.

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Too safe.

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Yes- Well we all know who this is, one of my fave photographers. Wonderful PP as usual, has that ethereal feel to it. Graceful and delicately composed, a real contender.

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I have NO idea who took this image and I'm glad I don't. I haven't seen any like it to compare and therefore can judge it as a stand alone. Whilst not one of my top choices, I did score it high and think it has artistic merit.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859851.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1002269.jpg memoirs of an ice fisherman

A definite feeling of isolation for me when I look at this. A very Christopher Brown feel to the shot. The dark tones and the refections on the wet ground give me a feeling of loneliness. Even with the huge black borders that I think are distracting, the image is more than powerful enough.

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Beautiful. It really does look like ice. This fits the "requirement" of suggesting stories and leaving open questions. Yes, I like this one a lot.

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An obvious choice, and a stand out among the other blurry street images that didn't make the list. This fact alone shows that blurry black and white street images are just blurry black and white street images unless there is an opportunity to explore the image through implied story telling.

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It's nearly superb, but my immediate reaction was that one of the two foreground figures was superfluous. Either one; it wouldn't matter. It's beautifully done: light and tones and time all orchestrated seamlessly. Border intrudes, especially the fragment of sharp horizontal at the bottom. It mainly misses my top rank because it's not really fresh enough in concept or perspective to seize me. And I want to be seized.

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I am seized by this one. I find myself returning to this one frequently. Every time I kicked it off my list, it kept coming back on. There are things that bother me about it, yet I can't seem to shake it. At first it seems to shout loneliness, isolation, mystery, yet the more I looked at it, there was a definite warmth to it. The main character isn't lonely, he's actually on his way home to a warm house, cozy fire and a loving family. It's the blurred person who is lost and lonely. Look closely, you'll see it. That's why I love this one. It changes as you go along. A fine wine with a lovely finish.

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What struck me in this shot was the imminent feeling of danger. It's an allegory of life. The horizon obscured by the men of the apocalypse, the "mediator" crossing diagonally the trajectory of the main figure going straight to her fate with open eyes, a few unsuspecting witnesses oblivious to the drama. Very powerful image.

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It does evoke a sense of danger, the figures up ahead spell something menacing is about to happen. There's a lot to look at, that's the main thing I love about it, plus all the different shadows just make this visually appealing to me.

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it had a certain mystery created by the slightly soft/out of focus approach. I loved the rich dark and midrange tones. It sucked me in.

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There's no getting around the fact that it's a complete photograph for all of the reasons already stated, but for me it's a bit weak on the art side of things. It's just too common. The mystery found here can be applied to all of the others that look just like this one. Now perhaps if it was part of a collection I would enjoy this one more but as a standalone it doesn't do enough to separate from the field.

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I know what you mean. The title really does help it, though.

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I think this image is wonderful - but it does seem like I've seen it before, in many other forms here. I agree it would be a standout in a series from the same artist.

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This was my top pick as well. Still love it, would love to see it honored. Just a beautiful piece, moody, evocative, allegorical, with distinct apocalyptic feeling. Well done.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859851.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1001961.jpg tisk tisk

Maybe expected, but the fact that it's a photograph really made me appreciate the person who created it.

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a stunning achievement, or bit of luck, in photography. The exact best most interesting details are maintained, everything else is obliterated.

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Sculpturally gorgeous. Like those apparently unfinished sculptures that actually redefine how to see a thing. We approach mystified, but leave (and only reluctantly) deeply edified. I'm always thrilled to find someone stretching what can be done with a camera (and I believe this was done primarily using a camera rather than a computer). It's loose, and yet taut. An artist's distillation.

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I find it fascinating technically, intriguing emotionally, yet I find myself wondering more about the technicals and how it was done more than the photo itself. Perhaps because it's so incredibly well done and I believe that it's more done in camera, which is even more fascinating. I found the technique more fascinating than the photo itself.

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Great work. Bold, economical in the means of expression, and highly emotive. Bravo. Would love to know how it was done, but I doubt I will.

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I liked this one. It's one of the few that pushes a boundary and art needs to do that.

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For me it's an unhappy dream of a Giacometti, if we have to think of it in sculptural terms. And if it were Giacometti's work I suspect that he would have been unhappy with the picture (and the work). With the risk of sounding obnoxious I have to admit that I am not even that interested in finding how this picture was taken. If it is a distillation, I didn't get there yet.

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This is a top pick for me, in part due to technique, but also the sense of time. I like the conflict of movement within the enveloping bright whites. The wisp of white blur across his lips, albeit serendipitous, is my favorite nuance of the image. Silence.

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For me it's intriguing. It has an Alberto Giacometti crashes into Francis Bacon feel to it. The blown out quality of it does have quite an impact visually. However, I couldn't go beyond the shot being just interesting.

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HONORABLE MENTIONS (listed alphabetically by title)
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Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004656.jpg 3 : 1 5 a m

Graphically I loved it. It made me curious about why the windows would be overlapping. That didn't last long. It felt like I was window peeping for awhile, which was rather interesting. But the interest didn't last long.

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graphically appealing

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I like the composition, natural but energetic. It just didn't keep my attention.

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It's interesting. The little white overlap and the small intrusion into just one of the 12 rectangles make it into something interesting. And the differing intensity and perspective of the right-hand window versus the others adds another layer: a multi-dimensional effect. That's about it though.

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This would have made my top 3 had the artist included some context. I love the starting point.

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Would I like to look at it again? The answer is no. I would have taken this shot also - who wouldn't - on the spur of the moment. Might even remember some distant melody and feel the balmy air. But the magic of the moment is gone and so it's the picture.

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Now this I really loved, I wondered why ! Grabbed my attention for sure. Has a certain equivocal feel to it. Why do the windows overlap, who lives behind there, fascinating.

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I'm in the "interesting but doesn't keep my attention" camp. Graphically it has some interesting aspects but overall, it's unengaging.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004244.jpg Arabian

It reminded me of a drawing I have by DaVinci. I loved the deep rich tones. The eyes had an out of this world look to them. I tried not to be swayed because of my love for animals, but to me, it was art indeed.

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A beautiful rendering to black and white, gorgeous fade from darkness to bright highlights, but the pose and composition are unimaginative.

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It's a horse. A lot better and more lovely than the average picture of a horse, but it still doesn't reach anything beyond being a really nice horse picture.

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it's definitely art and beautifully done. This is another one that's just sheer joy to look at, and I don't need more from it. Sometimes joy is enough.

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This heavy stillness is superb but the chiaroscuro here is not that effective, too contrasty, and creates a lot of clumsiness of shapes.

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The processing is lovely. I like the how an animal so beautiful could have such an ominous feel to it. The shot constantly reminds of the movie "The Ring" which probably why it has that dark feeling for me. It's just a bit too safe for me, though.

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I'd call it "a study", something an artist does to perfect his technique and/or prepare for a real piece. Not much substance here for me, either

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I can see how a horse lover would enjoy this photo, but it's more of a study than anything else. As for the technique, it needs refinement. I'm also puzzled as to why the artist decided to make the bridge of the nose so prominent at the expense of all the other details. It begs the question as to why this area was deemed so important.

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Really gorgeous indeed, a little contrasty I feel but haven't we seen this a dozen times before.

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A horse is a horse of course, of course ... it IS a beautiful image of this horse. Perhaps a bit too yellow for me. Not a stand out by any means.

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Beautiful creature. The deep, black, orbits give the image a rather creepy feel. It left my confused as to the intent. A soft portrait of a horse, or something more dark and sinister?

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004532.jpg Black & White

I don't even know myself why this hit me. It just made a statement. I don't know that it had anything to do with race, but it seemed like a white door holding him back. And yet, at times the door was open. Even if you take race out of the issue, there seemed to be a conflict there. Is the door really blocking the way? Is he hiding in the shadows behind the door, just looking out to see if he's going on, or completely comfortable staying in the safety of the shadows. The look seems determined, yet I'm not sure what he's so determined about.

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My first reaction was to the contrast between white and black; very eye catching negative and positive space. Initially I thought the hinges should be cropped out, then I realized the significance of the man being "held back" by the door was pure genius.

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I also liked the hinges, and especially what appeared to be a rusty old lock. (Is it a lock?)

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Yep, looks like a latch. It really puts forth the message of him being held back.

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I thought he was being held back, at first. But then he looked like he was almost hiding back there. There's determination, but not motion nor seeming intent to move.

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I can't react that positively to this one. It seems pretty banal to me, honestly. And on top of that, I don't think the craft of it is especially good. I feel like the the tones are blocking me out, getting between me and the image. I don't like the way the light cuts his head on the diagonal. I don't like having the "concept" force-fed to me in the title. I want to yell at the shooter "Yeah, I GOT it! Don't hammer on it! Gimme some credit here!" A title like "Pretoria", say, just to pick an arbitrary example, would have let me get to the race issue at my own speed.

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graphically appealing but ultimately felt contrived and forced.

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Is the concept being force fed to us? Or is the title simply referring to the graphics?

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Well the man in the photo isn't really selling the concept, IMO. He kinda looks like he's smiling a little. If the concept is racial, or oppression in general, it's hard to get worked up over it with this rendering.

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I think there needs to be some meaning, otherwise what was the point in creating it in the first place?

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And the meaning should not be spoon fed. It's clearly about race, oppression, etc., but it falls flat in the delivery.

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The meaning is beside the point to me, and the title can be purely visual and not necessarily political. It's visually interesting to have this big field of white (anchored nicely by a hinge) next to a field of black with a figure appearing gracefully from the darkness.

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I was unmoved, and remain unmoved.

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I don't care about the issues. I don't care about whether he's trapped, hiding, coming out. It was fun to explore it, but it's not what made me like the photo. This was simply a case of a photo hitting me over the head visually. I don't know why. And it doesn't matter. I find myself wanting to look at it again and again.

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It's an interesting discovery. Art doesn't always need to make you feel something. It's wonderful when it does -- it lasts much longer. But sometimes there is just a piece that gives you incredible pleasure just to look, and it doesn't need anything more.

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I still love the photo. Don't like the title though, for obvious reasons stated above. It's banal and makes us think about race, but in fact it is not about race, at least not only about it. I don't want the title to besmirch the photo, the photo itself is strong. It is also about having to live in our ever more-contrasty world, and instinctive desire to stay back, to hide, and inability to do that... Love the huge white panel taking up more than a half of the image. It makes it uncomfortable, almost painful to look, you have to squint to see the man's face. We sympathize with the man who is trying to find shelter in the darkness. The high contrast is very appropriate. Composition is simple, but effective. And at the same time it is a great, highly psychological "environmental" portrait of the man, very interesting, ambiguous facial expression. Well done, in my opinion ...I wish the title was different or absent though.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004214.jpg de rever

I liked it visually. It intrigued me a bit, but then it started to seem a little ordinary.

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This has a few subtle things going for it, and it's subtleties that make one "reflection shot" stand out more than another. I feel a real dreamlike quality to this. The mannequin facing away seems more real than the one in the wedding dress who so brazenly reveals her headlessness. But at the same time, the one facing away has this rather frightening axe-like thing hanging from her back. And I just love that we can't see their room at all. We only see the nostalgic looking buildings across the street.

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The composition is purposefully uncomfortable, I like that in an image. It draws me in, often the first sign of a fascinating image with room to explore. Fear and uncertainty were my initial responses. Choices to be made. Like a great novel, I'm drawn to the next page. I want to know what's beyond the windows. Why such uncertainty? Anybody else fall in love with imagery that sucks you in, teases you with stories, and then leaves you with just enough to keep your imagination running wild? I know it's good when I'm still enthralled days after I first saw the image.

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I want to see the figure on the right as a real person. Actually, I do. So many ways into this picture. It's a fabulously restless thing. Curiosity, and defiance of the abandonment of curiosity, ought to be rewarded. Worthy.

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I really didn't connect to this shot on a deeper level. I do think it has nice tones and a somewhat dreamy feel to it but that was about it.

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I like it. It peaks my interest, but after a short while there's not enough going on here to sustain it. However, I do agree that there are enough subtleties here to elevate it above the common reflection shots but it doesn't do much more than that. Perhaps if the building reflection held more significance and not merely be the result of the photographer's own limitations this would carry more weight with me.

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I loved it at first, but the more I examined it the more I struggled to find what I loved about it, very ambiguous - true!

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It's a nice image, but not a story for me.

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The little balconies and the title suggest a French connection. Shouldn't it be either "a rever" or de reve (as in une image de reve). Details. I do like the vertical split and always stop for overlapping images and reflections but in this case my heart did not skip a beat.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004578.jpg La Defence

I cannot resist what I call an "allegorical" image. At first glance it seems like a rather random, semi-posed street shot. But the diagonal composition follows her eyes, and you realize that everything going up the stairs is proceeding from her head. She is dreaming this world. Her little brother skates toward her as if he's trying to warn her. Dreaming is dangerous! Once you think of the photo this way, you have to admit that it's perfectly composed for it, right down to the shapes of the steps and the shapes on the wall behind her.

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I agree that it's beautifully orchestrated. Her winsome expression and her too-pretty face seem to impose themselves slightly more than I'd have preferred. Rather like a fashion shot where an improbably attractive model tries to look like she belongs in an otherwise real-life scene. But the composition and the moment are extraordinarily worthy.

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I wanted to love this one. I did love this one. Maybe because of the birds. :) The composition is truly excellent. The processing is gorgeous. Yet it seemed to miss on an emotional level. It seemed a little cold and distant. I wanted to feel more on this one, yet each time I looked, I didn't really feel anything. While it is truly worthy composition-wise and beautiful to look at, it's not enough for me on this one.

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This image does not interest me at any level. It has the qualities of a good snapshot.

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Yes wonderful shot, reminds me of "Inception" definitely has dream like qualities to it, the men climbing the stairs has spiritual connotations to it, the pigeons as well, a sign of freedom, has she missed the boat, whilst the others have made it, who knows what the boy is trying to tell her, maybe a warning, amazing!

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My first thought was the diagonal line of it. I liked it but didn't love it. The birds were a nice addition but my first thought was "street photography" although I'm trying not to put anything into a box. She's lovely, but wonder if she isn't some how posing, trying to look like she's not.

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I liked the leading lines of the stairs carrying the eye effortlessly to the girl. The strong diagonal cutting across also gave my eye the permission to move around the shot. For me the girl didn't really convince me of anything beyond a pose trying not to be a pose, though.

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Yes, everything else but the main figure is great and works very well. But the girl appears posed even though she tries no to. Maybe if she sat farther away and was not so "big", it would work better as a street shot. Right now it is right on the border between a model shot and a street shot, and it is not a very comfortable place to be.

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This is definitely a photographer's photo. It's what you hang up to impress people. That said, I still like it so what does that say?

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1001904.jpg Fisherman's Son

I didn't know what to do with this one, because I loved it, yet I wanted to fix some of the technicals, but I loved it, but I really wanted to change the crop, but I loved it. I ended up loving it. It's all in the boy. Is he scaring away the bird? Is it joy? Is he falling? How old is he? Are they doing it for a living or for pleasure? I'm also in my high contrast phase, so I love the blown highlights. Technically I want the darks fixed more to my liking, but I'm loving the story. Plus -- I'm jaded because the little boy looks like Ernest Shepard's drawings of Roo.

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What I like about this is the crazy silhouette of the boy and how he bridges the two boats, running from one with a father figure to an empty one. The overall composition is not that interesting.

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That's the problem that I had. I loved the boy, the composition was ok if it was cropped better and the technicals needed work. But yet it still called to me each time I saw it. Can art be flawed? Or does it not succeed if parts bother you. (parts bother you emotionally would be good, technically, bleh. )

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I like this one because unlike most photos, I saw the subject's world first and the photo second.

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Like others have said, the technicals in this shot could be better. But what I do like is there's a certain energy in the shot that makes me feel like I'm there.

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I think the 'technicals' in this picture are perfectly negligent. That is, materially immaterial. Many photographs are the better for what's neglected, and this is one of those. It stands almost entirely on the small sphere of enchantment enclosing the boy and the bird. And yet, without the context of the prosaic world surrounding that enchanted sphere, the bubble would be pricked. Worthy.

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A very interesting photo. The contrast between mundane and unappealing surroundings and the outworldly beautiful boy's silhouette could not be stronger. The scene is almost biblical, evoking Christ walking on water (and if you've seen the Sea of Galilee, you know that in reality it is a rather mundane-looking lake).

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An extremely endearing image. Goes beyond technical analysis. It is what it is. It exists because of the stillness of the father and the energy of the young son. We imagine a cloudless sky, the ocean is slightly agitated and the humans go about their lives in murky waters. If you squint you get the movement also. The image remains a beauty. After I posted I saw the image again in a thumb format: little drops from the fountain pen of a writer.

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I too wanted to love this but something was lacking. The boy resembles a kokopelli figure softly placed there. For me, I was craving that his silhouette be crisper, less soft, which opposes what I usually like. I do like the contrasts and use of mostly shadow and highlight tones.

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Not really liking this much as well, over exposed yes. I don't really find it at all that interesting, I tried I really did.



Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1002281.jpg The Empty Universe

I would give it the grand prix except I don't trust that the photographer made this. Isn't he just snapping the work of a tape-art genius? I'm not sure. I can be convinced otherwise.

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I don't know who created what, but this spoke to me. What? I'm not sure.

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I enjoyed it, somewhat humorous and mocking, reminding me of The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy. "The babel fish is small, yellow and leech-like, and probably the oddest thing in the Universe."

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This was initially on my short list, but I cut it for the same reservation expressed above. It's a terrific piece, but it's a picture of the piece. I'm not prepared to give the photographer the benefit of that doubt. Which is not fair, of course, but in the limited context of this competition I want to be sure that I'm rewarding what the artist can do with a camera, and not with electrical tape (even if it's the same artist).

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This one really didn't catch my attention at all.

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Totally 'eh' from me. Just looked like a photo of something already there.

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interesting concept, but I agree with other commenters, seems like a bad snapshot made in a contemporary art gallery

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For me what was being shown is all that mattered. The art either lives or dies with that alone. All of these rules you're placing on photography as art seem contrived to me.

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I disagree. If it was true, why not just open up a book of your favorite artist and take a snap of one of the plates? no need to even leave home :)

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What separates this from Readymades? Do we even know the original purpose of the the tape artwork? Assuming of course it was created by someone else, which seems to be the charge here.

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Nothing separates this from Readymades. I want to be swayed to this picture. After all, we're not sure of scale or scope of the "original" artwork. And this blurring of photograph with original is interesting (and confrontational and subversive) in itself. The more I think about it, the more I wonder if I would really be that wowed by the original in whatever context it is. The photographer is elevating the piece by forcing us to look at it with the emphasis he decides. And I find it primitive and profound in the best sense.

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Readymades had their time and their place. If every artists will start putting random junk in the galleries expecting the same response as Duchamp (granted, many do :)), it would be rather pathetic.

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If it happens to be the photographer's work, I'd like to see it photographed properly. And titled accordingly. Considering that this challenge was advanced editing, a little work would have made this picture more interesting.

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I wasn't aware there are 'tape-art geniuses' and I never stopped to think whether the author made the scenario or not. Either way I don't think it 'shines' as a stand alone image.




Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004577.jpg The Kiss

The image is just highly emotional and compelling to me. The "kiss" is quickly leaving the frame and already out of focus. This is just what happens when someone kisses you! I'm just utterly charmed by it now.

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Do you get kissed in the eye often?

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Only by photographs.

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touché!

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It is unexpected. It rebels against convention, though admittedly only modestly: it's not storming the Bastille, but it is knocking a policeman's helmet off. And any rebellion, no matter how limited its aims, usually does everyone some good. The depth-of-field choice carries it forward even further by making an irrelevancy become relevant. The implied yin-yang of the darkside & lightside takes yet another step. It's a mild insurrection but I'm happy to march with it a ways.

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A fleeting kiss. It may linger on your lips and mind yet that memory of a couple of seconds can stay with you for a lifetime. I liked it immediately, yet did not put it in my top group. I can't explain why. Something about the way it is not focused. Our eye immediately goes to her hair, which could very well be what we should see, but I somehow missed an element that I can't quite put my finger on.

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Focusing on the lock is a stroke of genius. Just a perfect moment re-created when you already don't really see her approaching face but your eyes are still open :). One thing that bothered me a little is the sharp line of her shoulder, I would prefer it blurred or darkened

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The kisser was a bit too posey. Had she been more convincing, authentic, this would have been an absolute fave.

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I might like that, too, but in losing the "convincing" we gain a 1940's Andrews' Sisters feel that I find irresistible. I know we are now in the realm of personal and subjective taste (where we always are).

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A little bit obtrusive to me, I can see why the men would love it, though!

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I wish I did not see the title. This is a photograph about silence, vulnerability, heartache, longing and a faint promise of happiness. Beautifully done. The elegance of times past.

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My deep enjoyment of this image is reflected in the comments above. Charmed. Mild insurrection. Perfect moment. Convincing. Obtrusive. Faint Promise.

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I agree that I can see how the men would love it. I see how it's a passing moment caught in an interesting way, but actually this one really doesn't interest me.

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I think it's an interesting shot. I like the rich tones and composition. The thing that I don't like is where the photographer chose to place the focus point. My eye immediately goes to her hair and for me it should be on the lips, especially since the title is "The Kiss". That's where my eyes would be focused if I was embraced in a kiss. This one didn't make my short list.

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The out of focus lips is what's good about the photo -- it gives the feeling of moving in for the kiss, this missed focus because of the movement. I issue is the same issue, though, I don't like the final resting place. Maybe it would have turned it cliche to have an interesting earring, but it would have given my eye a place to rest more comfortably and keep the interest of the soft focus. Right now, the idea is interesting, but the picture isn't.

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I love hair. (as long as it's not in my soup)

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004019.jpg Onslaught

Controlled chaos is what I see in this image. I presume it is a found scene, but there was a clear decision in arranging the composition. Evidence of dozens of old ads, lost and found posts, free couches, guitar lessons, and those gone missing. All on one pole, one neighborhood. That's a lot of life represented in one frame.

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Visually appealing and conceptually exciting. It reminds me of Surrealist art objects (or anti-art objects). It is aggressively empty of meaning. Meaning has been ripped away from it.

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Which makes it meaningful.

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There's definitely a lot of life ripped away, but all of life is gone. I suppose it would have been cliche to leave one piece, but it doesn't surprise me or make me in the slightest bit curious. Perhaps I've seen it too often on every corner, even though I must admit I haven't seen it in a photograph. But why go back to it when you can see it everywhere?

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like a squirrel or gull? Ha! Kidding aside, the mundane has been delivered to you.

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A clarion example of found art that surpasses the expected reach of that genre. It's an electron microscope image of ubiquity. An archaeological exhibit in a museum with no doors.

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This didn't have enough substance for me. I don't care for it at all.

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I'm just not that deeply connected to this in any way, I don't thrive on confusion just the opposite, so I can't connect to it.

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I did stop at this image. I hope that the elements were made and not found. Be it as it may, something essential is lacking here, and I am afraid that it's in the lighting. Or the tonality. or contrast. It's an "artistic" subject but not an artistic shot.

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The feeling of things in every day life gradually being taken away, (be it friends, events, memories) did cross my mind. But ultimately, the execution of the shot is what made me pass on it. While an interesting image with a strong message, it wasn't as appealing viscerally as the others that made my list.







Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1002676.jpg Progression

It's really stunning. It's simultaneously Da Vinci and back-alley. The subject is simultaneously a machine and desperately human. There's something about the red tones where too many exposures overlap... that adds blood to what might otherwise be mere engineering.

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It had more than just a quick moment going on. I liked that the face was almost hidden and I had to study it to make sense of it. I like the movement of the arms. It almost reminded me of a bird flapping its wings.

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This one kept me coming back and still does. There's a strange balance of tension and fluidity in this shot. Depending on how I'm feeling when I look at this, his expression could be either unsure or self confident. A very interesting image.

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Works extremely well both on visual and emotional levels. I love visual "double entendres", it is an image of a movement, and a beautifully framed portrait, and a symbolic flower, or a vase, what have you...

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For me this image is really dated. (It's like noticing sometimes in some people's home that all the books date from the same time, around leaving college. As if the reading has stopped then. And that's not talking about the absence of contemporary books but by the choices made that one can date fairly well.) Dated might not be the right word; it's not really outmoded but belonging to a time and taste that is not universal. Personally I am not interested in this image.

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You solidified the relevance of this image. ". . . belonging to a time and taste that is not universal." Perfect. What I find fascinating is the subject's head and expression. He is still in his thoughts. At peace, or peacefully struggling, with the turmoil that surrounds him. What is this turmoil? Obviously we don't know the exact answer, the artist provides some visual cues with the moving arm, as well as, with the title. One interpretation: He is a bit beyond middle age, and still alone despite successfully moving through life; the arms represent the shallow relationships of friends and family who have come and gone through out his life. The above summation rings true: simultaneously machine and desperately human, the modern adult. My other favored interpretation, is that it may simply, and elegantly, demonstrate the battle for life; the eroding body with the preservation of a youthful self identity, whether it be a natural aging process or illness. These battles are universal, but uniquely experienced. Like a not-so perfect piece of art. No matter what the intent, the image is evocative.

Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_859850.png Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_1004061.jpg Till The Colors Run

This is a test of the emergency broadcast system.

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This is only a test. Had this been actual art, you would have been alerted. (Beautiful flow and composition. It just didn't move me beyond that.)

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Yes and the emergency is bad composition. It's much better when you flip it. However, I can't give any awards for that oversight.

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Not usually my cup of tea, but found myself repeatedly opening up the image and looking at it further. It IS very beautiful, clever and interesting. I do think of this as art.

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Colors and movement are pretty, but that's it for me.

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I agree, a very pretty shot but without any substance.

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What I appreciate is that it's an abstraction with a purpose, rather than random marks. It's a landscape. A beautifully abstracted rivage. There's an untamed ocean screaming up from the deep cold south, rearing cliffs, and a lush sylvan interior. If James Cook was roaring drunk this is what his chart of New Zealand's South Island might have looked like.

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I liked the colors but other than that, it didn't scream art. It somehow looked off kilter - like it needed to be turned around.

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I thought it was lovely. Liquid and flowing (literally) landscape. Gorgeous colors and textures. Composition works very well. What's not to love?

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What's not to love? The lack of context, the randomness. Yes, it does have some artistic qualities, precisely the ones that I don't appreciate in a photograph. Some Odilon Redon overtones. But it's all flat and save for the bottom left part this image is a hybrid.

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not my style at all. Nice colours though.

Message edited by author 2012-03-27 21:22:01.
03/23/2012 08:46:25 AM · #2
I guess no one's been waiting for it. :P
03/23/2012 08:48:12 AM · #3
Congrats to the winners! These were some great photos... and, there were many more great ones that were not mentioned.
I think all of them were art, but with this being a "challenge" there has to be a select few "winners" so to speak.
So congrats to those that won.
03/23/2012 08:54:38 AM · #4
Congrats to the winners and the HM's. I found the banter between the jury on some of the selections to be most interesting, especially when not everyone was in agreement. Some of the critiques were most interesting read as well for it showed me a different way of looking at the piece that I did not think of. In particular, the Black & White entry; the meaning/symbolism I saw was quite different from what some of the judges saw.

Edited to add - Along with the congrats to the winners, the Jury Panel gets a big thank you for taking the time for this side contest. As I mentioned above, the discussions and critiques were most interesting for they sometimes showed me a new perspective to look at the mentioned compositions.

Message edited by author 2012-03-23 09:10:16.
03/23/2012 09:02:47 AM · #5
A big congrats to the winners and a big thanks to the jury, I think they did a marvelous job, must have been a difficult task choosing between all the wonderful images in this challenge. I totally enjoyed voting on this one, if only more of the challenges would be a bit more art orientated this place would rock like no other.
03/23/2012 09:16:39 AM · #6
Congratulations to all the winners and a big thank you to the jury. It is obvious that the members have devoted a lot of time to this task and taken it quite seriously (never doubted that they would) and what a treat to get a look at their working thoughts. Good stuff - art and critiques.
03/23/2012 09:19:24 AM · #7
Congrats to the winners. Big thank you to the jury for taking on such a daunting task.
03/23/2012 09:31:08 AM · #8
Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! Congrats to 21.gif vlado, 21.gif nixter and 21.gif daisydavid !!
PS Melbourne, Perth and Sydney - Australia well covered

Message edited by author 2012-03-23 09:32:49.
03/23/2012 09:35:04 AM · #9
Congratulations to the winners and the jury for making this a little more interesting. The level of work in this challenges was the highest I have seen. Maybe we should include the word artistic in all challenges? Great work by everybody involved.
03/23/2012 09:46:38 AM · #10
Thanks to the jury for their hard work on this task. It is fascinating to read through the different comments of how each image impacted each panel member. Much appreciate the insights that they have shared.
03/23/2012 10:10:58 AM · #11
Thank you, jury...I like your choices!!!
03/23/2012 10:17:19 AM · #12
Jury duty sucks; so you guys are to be especially commended for making the commitment. And thanks for the HM and thoughtful, honest comments. I guess we all owe a special vote of thanks to Don for "organizing" the responses and whatever else he did.
03/23/2012 10:29:50 AM · #13
Big congrats to all the winners! Thank you to the jury for a job well done. I learned a lot from reading the comments.
03/23/2012 10:33:08 AM · #14
I'm so glad that people are going through the tedious task of reading all of the comments. I'm glad that they learned some things, or at least started viewing the images in a different way. I certainly did. Congrats to all!(Juror number 7, who kept asking the judge to stop so she could go to the bathroom.) :)
03/23/2012 10:47:06 AM · #15
Hmmmm...I connected far more with the choice of imagery than the writing. Congrats to the winners and HM's.
03/23/2012 11:03:08 AM · #16
Great choices by the jurors and major congratulations to all the winners!
03/23/2012 12:47:27 PM · #17
Congrats to everyone, winners and jurors alike. Lots of thought and effort went into this challenge.
03/23/2012 01:04:13 PM · #18
Congrats to the award winners. Good job! Thanks to the jury for their hard work. I appreciate the effort, time commitment and the deliberation. Good results.
03/23/2012 01:05:49 PM · #19
Excellent choices! Thanks for all your hard work to the jury, and congratulations to those recognized!
03/23/2012 01:31:57 PM · #20
I will second the aforementioned sentiments.

Congrats to all, and thank you to the jurors. I too greatly enjoyed that the jury reposed their discussions for all to see.
03/23/2012 01:34:28 PM · #21
Congrats to the winners and Thanks to the Jury for their efforts!
03/23/2012 01:42:20 PM · #22
it was al nice
but lets not do it again
otherwise they might invite us to join the Olympic games\
and if so,would you shoot nike shoe`s
there is only one judge
TIME
03/23/2012 02:07:12 PM · #23
Originally posted by tvsometime:

I guess we all owe a special vote of thanks to Don for "organizing" the responses and whatever else he did.


We DO owe a hearty vote of thanks to Don (21.gif posthumous), who's handled this task for every jury we've been on, and done it uncomplainingly, with a smile on his face.

I'd be remiss, however, in my role as jury "chairperson", if I didn't mention the major contribution of 21_F.gif mariuca and 21_F.gif vawendy, who cobbled together a "reporting system" within our jury thread that allowed all of us to keep track of what was being said about every image, and that greatly facilitated Don's ultimate task of gathering and publishing the commentary.

Basically, this jury ran so smoothly I had practically nothing to do :-)

R.

Message edited by author 2012-03-23 14:17:19.
03/23/2012 02:12:27 PM · #24
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by tvsometime:

I guess we all owe a special vote of thanks to Don for "organizing" the responses and whatever else he did.


We DO owe a hearty vote of thanks to Don (21.gif posthumous, who's handled this task for every jury we've been on, and done it uncomplainingly, with a smile on his face.

I'd be remiss, however, in my role as jury "chairperson", if I didn't mention the major contribution of 21_F.gif mariuca and 21_F.gif vawendy, who cobbled together a "reporting system" within our jury thread that allowed all of us to keep track of what was being said about every image, and that greatly facilitated Don's ultimate task of gathering and publishing the commentary.

Basically, this jury ran so smoothly I had practically nothing to do :-)

R.


OK thats enough now
it sounds like a speech at the OSCAR event
03/23/2012 02:36:33 PM · #25
my crazy long day just got even better an honorable mention in an art challenge :)

so i should add some detail... the girl Danielle is one of my bestest friends, 10 years ago she was one of my other female friends best mates and i knew her but no where as close as i do now, so i lost 6.5 stone(91lbs, 41kg) in pursuit of this lady...... 9 months of hard work, getting handsome pursuing her and being nice and everything i though she wanted and i made my move asked her out and she said no hahaha lol but i gained so much from it not only health but life experience confidence funnily enough and an amazing friend that we laugh about it all the time, so i hate to disappoint the not convincing commentator but everytime i see her i get a big hug and a kiss from her, she was a rock when i split from my lads mum and was always there for me so im pleased this photo did well :)

thank you to the jury and the favourites :)

Gi x

this comment nailed it

The out of focus lips is what's good about the photo -- it gives the feeling of moving in for the kiss, this missed focus because of the movement. I issue is the same issue, though, I don't like the final resting place. Maybe it would have turned it cliche to have an interesting earring, but it would have given my eye a place to rest more comfortably and keep the interest of the soft focus. Right now, the idea is interesting, but the picture isn't.

i had my camera in my hand and she came in for a kiss as i tried to take her pic the focusing distance of the nifty 50 meant it got what was in it range which was thehair, was an instant fav of mine when i saw it in the morning :)

Message edited by author 2012-03-23 14:41:25.
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