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03/25/2004 09:49:51 AM · #1
Top 10 List
Things Iíve learned on DPChallenge

10. Never post an out of focus picture hoping itís mistaken for soft focus.

9. Use the full 150k that is allowed.

8. Compose your shot very carefully. Otherwise itís just a snapshot.

7. Donít expect some voters to understand your photo without a written explanation. Whatís obvious to you may not be obvious to others.

6. Pay attention to the comments people make. Even if they are repetitious or mean spirited.

5. Comment on others photos. Comment on others photos the way youíd like to have them comment on yours. Include an alternative suggestion if possible to improve the shot. Youíll be suprised how much you learn from their feedback.

4. Discard your first 5-6 ideas on any given challenge. These will be the most common.

3. Donít go for shock value. Every challenge does not have to involve depression, blood, or nudity.

2. Always enter something with a definite subject, voters are not mind readers.

1. NEVER, EVER post a picture of a cat!

Message edited by author 2004-03-25 09:50:15.
03/25/2004 10:07:37 AM · #2
All very good advice. Although some of the most popular photos on this site involve cats and/or nudity (haven't seen any fully clothed cats yet).

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03/25/2004 10:09:47 AM · #3
Originally posted by Glen King:

5. Comment on others photos. Comment on others photos the way youíd like to have them comment on yours. Include an alternative suggestion if possible to improve the shot. Youíll be suprised how much you learn from their feedback.

Youíll be suprised how much you learn from your feedback.
03/25/2004 10:14:26 AM · #4
Originally posted by Glen King:

Top 10 List
Things Iíve learned on DPChallenge

1. NEVER, EVER post a picture of a cat!


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third place :)
03/25/2004 10:27:46 AM · #5
cats are not very photogenic, also hard to get close too, especially
big cats. people have said some weird and cruel things here about
cats, hoping its black comedy.
what about other household pets?
03/25/2004 10:29:56 AM · #6
I have learned alot from DPC, biggest thing i have learned is to be open minded, I used to think and still do think one dimensionally i.e if the challenge is orange than first thing that would have come earlier would be say Orange or Orange Juice( It is just an example) but as i have seen past challenge , i love way people think multi dimensionally and don't go for most obvious subjects like a Orange Juice or an Orange
03/25/2004 10:46:48 AM · #7
Originally posted by joebar:

Originally posted by Glen King:

Top 10 List
Things Iíve learned on DPChallenge

1. NEVER, EVER post a picture of a cat!


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third place :)

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Last plce Zodiac Challenge.

I'm not gripping. It wasn't a great photo. I really hope people pay attention to the remainder of the list. Especially with all the discussion about comments or lack thereof.
03/25/2004 10:53:05 AM · #8
>snip>>>>[quote=goodman] cats are not very photogenic,.....

Sure they are.
Look in the challenge archives.

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03/25/2004 10:58:13 AM · #9
I've learned (and continue to re-learn) some of those lessons. Off the top of my head I'd add:

- Use a tripod
- Work on the lighting (flat lighting isn't a plus). Adjust the source(s) of light to see the effect. Watch for shadows - use light to take out the ones you don't want
- Pay attention to the full frame - the background should show off your subject not distract the eye
03/25/2004 10:58:23 AM · #10
Originally posted by Glen King:

1. NEVER, EVER post a picture of a cat!


Rule #1! Funny how this has turned into a cat thread. ;-)

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03/25/2004 11:04:08 AM · #11
i have read many times, Flat Lighting, even some of my photographs have been said to have flat lighting, what does it mean
03/25/2004 11:21:18 AM · #12
Originally posted by General:

i have read many times, Flat Lighting, even some of my photographs have been said to have flat lighting, what does it mean


Boring, dull, uninteresting.

Photography is about light - everything else is secondary.

Very few entries on dpc really seem to grasp this idea. They usually win.
03/25/2004 11:28:24 AM · #13
Hi Glen... These are some valid points and I have commented on some of them below....

Originally posted by Glen King:

Top 10 List
Things Iíve learned on DPChallenge

10. Never post an out of focus picture hoping itís mistaken for soft focus.


This is true. Out of focus and soft focus are two entirely different things. A good soft focus photo, IMO, is actually in focus with soft highlights only. I don't think this effect is easily achieved without a soft focus filter on the camera or by using gaussian blur layers in photoshop. Without these tools, the photo does just look out of focus most of the time.

Originally posted by Glen King:


9. Use the full 150k that is allowed.


This always depends on the image itself. Images with a lot of detail and contrast benefit from the extra file size. Other images look just as good at 50k as they do at 150k.

Originally posted by Glen King:


8. Compose your shot very carefully. Otherwise itís just a snapshot.


A carefully composed shot can still appear to be a snapshot :) It just becomes a snapshot with good composition :) Snapshots, as generally discussed in these forums, are photos that seem to have personal appeal only to the photographer who made it... something that would go well in a family album.

Originally posted by Glen King:


7. Donít expect some voters to understand your photo without a written explanation. Whatís obvious to you may not be obvious to others.


You really shoulnd't post photos to challenges that can't be taken at face value. In a challenge with 250-400 photos in it, you aren't going to get any significant amount of viewing time from any single voter. Your photo needs to be clear and concise. You can always continue to post photos that are more esoteric in nature, but you are right. The viewer won't get it quickly and won't think twice about it. There are always a few who will though. Whichever route you take, make sure you are happy with your submission before you submit it. Then nothing can go wrong :)

Originally posted by Glen King:


6. Pay attention to the comments people make. Even if they are repetitious or mean spirited.


I haven't received too many mean spirited comments. However, when I have, I try to look at it differently. My photo sparked a strong enough emotion in the viewer to generate a strong feeling in the comment. I may have gotten a low score for it, but the photo had impact.

Originally posted by Glen King:


5. Comment on others photos. Comment on others photos the way youíd like to have them comment on yours. Include an alternative suggestion if possible to improve the shot. Youíll be suprised how much you learn from their feedback.


Commenting on photos regularly is beneficial in more ways than one. You will start to remember comments you have made when you are out in the field making your own photos. It simply strengthens your ability to produce good photos. I have tried to get away from offering alternative suggestions, especially on composition. As a viewer, I don't know what would be introduced into a frame by expanding a composition. I have gotten to the point where I do see a lot of smaller compositions within a larger one though, and I will sometimes comment on those. I don't care as much for literal views of things. I enjoy seeing the interesting detail within a larger scope.

I like to assume that what I see is exactly what the photographer intended me to see. If I don't like it for some reason, I can say that and then the photographer can determine whether or not it can/could have been fixed.

Originally posted by Glen King:


4. Discard your first 5-6 ideas on any given challenge. These will be the most common.


This is one that I will generally disagree with. Well done photos of a common subject will do well here. They have in the past. When you have an idea that you believe will be commonly done for a challenge, you have an extra challenge of finding a way to do it better.

Originally posted by Glen King:


3. Donít go for shock value. Every challenge does not have to involve depression, blood, or nudity.


I don't care much for shock value either. I too often see photos that are setup on shock value and don't have any great photographic quality of any sort to go along with it. The shock value alone won't get you far unless there is something to push it beyond that level.

Originally posted by Glen King:


2. Always enter something with a definite subject, voters are not mind readers.


I think this is pretty much the same as #7.

Originally posted by Glen King:


1. NEVER, EVER post a picture of a cat!


I'm just as interested in a great cat photo as a great photo of anything else. :)

Thanks for posting your thoughths. This is good advice. Now I would like to add my two cents....

Everyone has to keep in mind that there is a very diverse group of photographers who participate on this site. A lot of people participate here simply because they have a digital camera and they like to make photos. Some do not have aspirations of making images that would look good hanging on the wall somewhere. Since we all don't have the same goals, there will always be photos in challenges that cover every aspect of style and quality.


03/25/2004 12:09:19 PM · #14
Originally posted by Glen King:



4. Discard your first 5-6 ideas on any given challenge. These will be the most common.

Don't you believe it - the number of times I thought along the lines of "no way am I going to submit a picture of a gas hob, every bugger'll be doing that" and discarded what I felt to be a rock-on shot and only two out of 130+ submissions happened to go for that particular and obvious route. By being bloody obvious you can actually end up a bit of a unique entity - so it doesn't pay to be too clever.

I have also learnt that motion blurring rocks! I have been having big fun going click whoosh! never did that before.

03/25/2004 12:59:03 PM · #15
Originally posted by jmsetzler:

Hi Glen... These are some valid points and I have commented on some of them below....

[quote=Glen King] Top 10 List
Things Iíve learned on DPChallenge

Everyone has to keep in mind that there is a very diverse group of photographers who participate on this site. A lot of people participate here simply because they have a digital camera and they like to make photos. Some do not have aspirations of making images that would look good hanging on the wall somewhere. Since we all don't have the same goals, there will always be photos in challenges that cover every aspect of style and quality.


Thanks for your thoughts. It really helps me learn more here and that's the object. Don't stop replying folks, I want to learn more.

03/25/2004 01:16:10 PM · #16
Take your camera everywhere!!!

Oh and three words: Tripod, Tripod, Tripod!
03/25/2004 02:25:51 PM · #17
Also, ...wait one day before PMing in response to a perceived rude comment. In most cases you'll let it pass.
03/25/2004 02:30:53 PM · #18
My photogenic cat...
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Message edited by author 2004-03-25 14:32:45.
03/25/2004 05:03:59 PM · #19
Originally posted by TooCool:

Take your camera everywhere!!!

Oh and three words: Tripod, Tripod, Tripod!


While that's good advice, I think I'd add one more thing.

Use a tripod.
03/25/2004 05:07:32 PM · #20
Originally posted by lenkphotos:

Also, ...wait one day before PMing in response to a perceived rude comment. In most cases you'll let it pass.


this might be off topic but i thought it would be illegal to respond to a comment while the voting is ongoing... i've had a couple of questions on my orange entry and was inclined to wait to answer. am i allowed? i guess clarification would be optimal but i don't want to misbehave.

?

03/25/2004 06:14:07 PM · #21
Originally posted by daisy77:

Originally posted by lenkphotos:

Also, ...wait one day before PMing in response to a perceived rude comment. In most cases you'll let it pass.


this might be off topic but i thought it would be illegal to respond to a comment while the voting is ongoing... i've had a couple of questions on my orange entry and was inclined to wait to answer. am i allowed? i guess clarification would be optimal but i don't want to misbehave.

?

No, it's not illegal to answer them during the challenge. SOME people frown on it, some don't ..but there is NO rule. You can answer their question-or whatever.
03/26/2004 10:24:57 AM · #22
thanks

Message edited by author 2004-03-26 10:25:47.
03/26/2004 12:09:34 PM · #23
Also, don't be shy about snapping more images of the scene than you might think is necessary; especially in a dynamic environment (i.e. outside) where the conditions may not be the same again for a long time. Also, what looks good enough on your cameras' viewscreen may not translate well on yours and others' monitors.

Best,
Stu
03/26/2004 12:20:35 PM · #24
Stick to your guns. Explore yourself and the world. Take chances. Chase visions and women, not scores.
03/26/2004 12:33:40 PM · #25
YES! Take your camera EVERYWEHRE!!! You never know when...
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