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DPChallenge Forums >> Challenge Results >> Bokeh Placement - Please tell me if underrated?
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06/28/2006 08:08:21 AM · #1
I feel this image was under-rated...undeserving of the 1's, 2's, forty-three 4's, and sixty-six 5's... Not to mention that this shot was not setup like a lot of them...it was taken during a live performance - no posing, no communication, no nothing. 201st place?

I feel lost, someone help.

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/512/thumb/349191.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/512/thumb/349191.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

Message edited by author 2006-06-28 08:12:31.
06/28/2006 08:17:32 AM · #2
To be brutally honest, I would say it placed pretty much where I think it should have placed. There is pretty much nothing really wrong with the shot, just all not that interesting.

The fact that it was not set up doesn´t matter one bit to me and frankly, wether it was or not is irrelevant, all that matters is if it "appears" to be setup and I kindof think that is the case here. The lighting is not bad but hardly good either. The composition is good however and I like the choice of DOF and I personally think it met the challenge, I do suspect though that there were a lot of voters that didn´t think so since it didn´t have any circular highlights in it, there was a huge discussion over this in the forums.

To improve this photo, both as a photo and your score here, you would have needed better stage lighting, probably a black bacround behind the drummer, I would have used a longer lens or a bigger aperture to cast him even more out of focus and perhaps finding a slightly better viewpoint on this, maybe composing it with a tilt to it, having the guitar players hands up in the right corner and the drummer in the lower left corner.

All in all I must say I would have given this a 5 and not commented, opting to go straight to the next photo. I know I am being a bit brutal here and I am sorry if I am hurting your feelings but I hope you value an honest opinion over a brown nosing one.

I do like your thinking process behind this photo and I really encourage you to stay here and keep entering challenges, most people (including me) take about 10-20 challenges to figure out what does well here so please, keep at it.
06/28/2006 08:22:08 AM · #3
It's a good shot and you may have a point. I think I probably gave it a five because yes, it has 'bokeh', but it doesn't leap out and grab me as a picture that is enhanced by its background. I can think of reasons to give a hiigher mark, but with four hundred pictures...

I know this is going to sound pernickety, which probably means that it is, but I'd say that a) the background very definitely makes an important contribution to the whole and b) there is bokeh in the background. What I can't say is that the bokeh itself is enhancing the mood or contributing to the image as a whole.

Those are not so much reasons for marking it down - more like me thinking out loud at you.

As a photo it's underrated at 5.3. As a bokeh challenge entry it's probably about right.
06/28/2006 08:29:07 AM · #4
I expect bokeh to add a certain sparkle to the background from reflections of light. This shot, like many in this challenge, has just a shallow depth of field.

I decided not to vote in this challenge because I would have to give a large number of DNMC scores when my view of good bokeh is obviously much narrower than many entrants.
06/28/2006 08:42:14 AM · #5
Just a couple of thoughts. Not being set up does not mean a shot will/should automatically score higher, in fact set-up shots usually score better because more thought has been put into composition and content. Also, I don't think "underrated" is possible at DPC. You ask for it to be 'rated' by submitting to a challenge, it got rated - it is what it is.
06/28/2006 08:50:58 AM · #6
I don't want to turn this into another bokeh discussion...but bokeh is not japanense for "sparkly highlights"

There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image?

And I value your opinions, but I can't see how my image is not enhanced by the bg? the bg is the guitar player of the band, it puts the two biggest members in the same frame, but keeps the focus on the lead. I don't understand.

I am truly upset with how this challenge was perceived by voters and how the meaning of bokeh is completely out of whack in most peoples perception of it. When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.
06/28/2006 08:52:01 AM · #7
Originally posted by Larus:

To be brutally honest, I would say it placed pretty much where I think it should have placed. There is pretty much nothing really wrong with the shot, just all not that interesting.


I concur.
06/28/2006 08:56:19 AM · #8
Originally posted by specialk0783:

... There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image? ...

... When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.

It appears that some people prefer a deer as the subject to 1 1/2 hands? ;^)
06/28/2006 08:58:52 AM · #9
I was told long ago "do not blame the audience if you do not get the applause you expect or think that you deserve"
06/28/2006 09:00:09 AM · #10
Originally posted by glad2badad:

Originally posted by specialk0783:

... There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image? ...

... When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.

It appears that some people prefer a deer as the subject to 1 1/2 hands? ;^)


I'll just blow this off since it adds no level of intelligence to the conversation.

Actually...no...i can't resist.

Since the feet in your bored photo are cut off do you feel you didn't deserve the blue ribbon you got?

Message edited by author 2006-06-28 09:01:36.
06/28/2006 09:00:22 AM · #11
It was 201st in a challenge with over 400 entries. It scored well over 5, and was in the top half. It did not do badly.
06/28/2006 09:00:30 AM · #12
Originally posted by specialk0783:

I don't want to turn this into another bokeh discussion...but bokeh is not japanense for "sparkly highlights"

There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image?

And I value your opinions, but I can't see how my image is not enhanced by the bg? the bg is the guitar player of the band, it puts the two biggest members in the same frame, but keeps the focus on the lead. I don't understand.

I am truly upset with how this challenge was perceived by voters and how the meaning of bokeh is completely out of whack in most peoples perception of it. When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.


Ah, but you forget one thing. Voters rate images higher that elicit in them a stronger positive response. The fact that other images rated higher than yours means that these images spoke to more voters in a clear and stimulating manner than yours, irrespective of their strict adherence or lack thereof to the bokeh principle.

Respecting technique to the letter isn't what scores images higher on this site. There is a definite formula to doing well on DPChallenge. It`s up to you if you want to modify your own creative output to try to meet higher-scoring image criteria.
06/28/2006 09:03:59 AM · #13
So, after you claim that ANY flower shot is deserving of a 3 (my flower did much better than this shot, thank you) you expect this shot to get better than a 5.3? This shot is pretty weak technically - the lighting is too harsh for me, making the colors washed out and there is absolutely NO mood set. Aren't rock bands supposed to play in dark venues?
The guitarist's hand is dead in the middle of the frame, which is where my eye ends up after scanning this picture. Ending up in the middle makes my eye stop, not really scanning the picture for more. Also, the little bit of gut protruding isn't attractive at all, perhaps from the clothing mark still visible.
I think the underrated example of a similar shot is this one:
//www.dpchallenge.com/image.php?IMAGE_ID=349415

Oh, and thanks for the 3.
06/28/2006 09:07:33 AM · #14
Originally posted by specialk0783:

Originally posted by glad2badad:

Originally posted by specialk0783:

... There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image? ...

... When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.

It appears that some people prefer a deer as the subject to 1 1/2 hands? ;^)


I'll just blow this off since it adds no level of intelligence to the conversation. ...

??? Hmmm. Last time I checked, subject matter was relevant to the impact of an image. It was evident by the voting that the deer image you've pointed out was more popular with the voters than the subject you selected. What's the big deal?

p.s. - Glad you enjoyed my image 'Dirt Doodling'. Thanks for looking. ;^)
06/28/2006 09:11:54 AM · #15
If I had a 3.333 voting average I wouldn't be complaining about a 5.315.
06/28/2006 09:16:11 AM · #16
Lashing out at people who are trying to answer your question will get you nowhere fast.

It has some bokeh, but nothing that enhances the scene. The background is too integral a part of the scene, in fact, more subject than enhancement - and the enhancement bit that we're harping on is they key. 5.3 is not a bad score, especially for a fairly new participant, especially for a very large challenge. You finished in the top half. Good for you! Other photos simply conveyed bokeh much much better than this one.

Bokeh is tricky. I say shrug your shoulders and move on to the next one.
06/28/2006 09:17:18 AM · #17
If you are not going to listen when people tell you why one shot scored better than another, you are not going to learn how to win a ribbon. And that is the ultimate goal of the conversation. Isn't it?
The deer shot was more pleasing to more voters. It got a better score. Your shot didn't please the eye and therefore people didn't vote it higher. A pleasing shot will allow people to gently over look a few flaws and yes, even partially ignor the challenge discription, but one that doesn't have a pleasing quality, well, people will find the flaws and it will not get a good score.
As for your shot, I really do not like the cut off hand on the top. It is, to me, a glaring flaw and I would have voted it as a four or five.
Now, mind your manners and don't attack people that are trying to help.
06/28/2006 09:18:15 AM · #18
Also, you should go back and read the rules again. You should not be voting someone down if you think they broke the rules. Vote as if what you see is legal, if you suspect it isn't report it!

Comment:
This would have been great had the rules been followed.

Comment:
The bokeh in this photo looks photoshopped...if im wrong im wrong and I apologize...but it looks fake so I have to vote that way.

Comment:
Selective Desat...is this against the rules? Looks like some other filters have been applied here.

Comment:
I would like this...but I think you broke the rules?
06/28/2006 09:26:59 AM · #19
Originally posted by jrtodd:

If I had a 3.333 voting average I wouldn't be complaining about a 5.315.


Good point. Thanks for noticing this.
06/28/2006 10:42:14 AM · #20
I recall you saying:

"BOKEH AND DEPTH OF FIELD ARE THE SAME THING!!!

Geez...there is no difference between Bokeh and a blurry background known as "depth of field" - Bokeh is just a Japanese word that describes the blurry background we Americans call "DOF"

Now get off it already...Bokeh is Bokeh, Depth of Field is Bokeh, Bokeh is Depth of Field, DOF is DOF, DOF is Bokeh, Bokeh is DOF...NOW STOP ARGUING!"

in the Doesn't look like a lot of people know the meaning forum.

Clearly you "know" what bokeh is? Or...maybe you should read what people are saying/typing and then research it on the web more in depth before you tell the DPC photography community they don't know what they're talking about.

Perhaps you should read Frisca's post....I think it fits for forums as well...just my opinion of course.

Message edited by author 2006-06-28 10:53:51.
06/28/2006 11:51:54 AM · #21
I recall a comment I got on my DPC Cinema shot which I think is entirely appropriate for this shot.

"needs less crotch"
06/28/2006 11:54:52 AM · #22
Originally posted by DrAchoo:

I recall a comment I got on my DPC Cinema shot which I think is entirely appropriate for this shot.

"needs less crotch"


ROFL Sounds like a bad date! :P
06/28/2006 12:56:59 PM · #23
Originally posted by specialk0783:

<snip> I feel this image was under-rated...undeserving of the 1's, 2's, forty-three 4's, and sixty-six 5's...

So you think the 3s are OK? :-)

Lots of shots submitted for challenges here are undeserving of 1s, 2s, and 3s. Lots are also undeserving of 8s, 9s and 10s. Some voters will see a shot and give it a low score because it might threaten their shot's chances at getting a good placement, or because they're offended, or they don't like the subject matter, no matter how good it is technically and aesthetically. Likewise, some voters will think a shot is cute, or reminds them of a favorite memory, and they vote a 10 even if the shot is technically poor.

Check out a few ribbon-winners in any challenge and see how many of those get votes of 3 or less. And notice the lack of threads like these from those folks, because they've come to understand that everyone is allowed to vote whatever they like (and sure, they're happy to have won a ribbon).

It also seems you knew about the controversy of the meaning of bokeh--I would think if you really wanted a better score, you would have shot something that would more readily fall into most DPCers' understanding of bokeh. You were brave enough to submit your shot, believing what you do about what bokeh is. And then the voters voted, with each with his or her own idea of bokeh. I'm sorry the result was lower than you expected.

BTW, if you think your shot is undeserving of the "low" scores it received (all the way up to the 5s!), is it also undeserving of the 8s, 9s and 10s? (If I seen this shot during voting, I would have given it a 5.)

Message edited by author 2006-06-28 14:05:04.
06/28/2006 01:13:15 PM · #24
Originally posted by Beagleboy:

Originally posted by specialk0783:

I don't want to turn this into another bokeh discussion...but bokeh is not japanense for "sparkly highlights"

There is a picture of a deer that came in (71st I think?) - that the bg is almost completely blurred a solid color...no nothing...71st? Over my image?

And I value your opinions, but I can't see how my image is not enhanced by the bg? the bg is the guitar player of the band, it puts the two biggest members in the same frame, but keeps the focus on the lead. I don't understand.

I am truly upset with how this challenge was perceived by voters and how the meaning of bokeh is completely out of whack in most peoples perception of it. When a completely blurred, nearly solid color bg gets 71st in a bokeh challenge and my entry gets 201st....I just can't possibly be happy with the voters.


Ah, but you forget one thing. Voters rate images higher that elicit in them a stronger positive response. The fact that other images rated higher than yours means that these images spoke to more voters in a clear and stimulating manner than yours, irrespective of their strict adherence or lack thereof to the bokeh principle.

Respecting technique to the letter isn't what scores images higher on this site. There is a definite formula to doing well on DPChallenge. It`s up to you if you want to modify your own creative output to try to meet higher-scoring image criteria.


good point.
06/28/2006 01:22:33 PM · #25
Originally posted by carpents:

So, after you claim that ANY flower shot is deserving of a 3 (my flower did much better than this shot, thank you) you expect this shot to get better than a 5.3? This shot is pretty weak technically - the lighting is too harsh for me, making the colors washed out and there is absolutely NO mood set. Aren't rock bands supposed to play in dark venues?
The guitarist's hand is dead in the middle of the frame, which is where my eye ends up after scanning this picture. Ending up in the middle makes my eye stop, not really scanning the picture for more. Also, the little bit of gut protruding isn't attractive at all, perhaps from the clothing mark still visible.
I think the underrated example of a similar shot is this one:
//www.dpchallenge.com/image.php?IMAGE_ID=349415

Oh, and thanks for the 3.


If you are going to spew your hatred and make comments strictly grounded in emotion rather than logic, please go elsewhere.

You are obviously irritated that I gave your flower a 3 (maybe I didn't), so you are trying to get back at me...

"little bit of gut protruding isn't attractive at all" - hatred - this has nothing to do with anything...and can you please point out a gut in that picture?

and the hand may be in the middle of the picture...so what...the subject is perfectly in one half of the frame, and the other bokeh'd subject is in the other half. I think you need to work on your image evaluation skills before you make comments that direclty go against basic rules of photography. The center of the main subject is directly on the right "thirds" line and the center of the second subject is directly on the left thirds line. The guitar is split perfectly down the center...my eye flows through the image wonderfully.

Please stop using emotion to make your judgements...start using logic.
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