Projected Digital Image Competition No 1, judged by John Nathan ARPS

by Sep 20, 2023

Our first open projected digital image (PDI) competition of the club year was held this Wednesday 20th September, judged by John Nathan ARPS.  John has been a judge or provided talks at our club on many occasions, but this was his first visit to our new home.

A total of 32 images had been submitted for critique and scoring, with a very wide range of styles and subjects apparent, all within one single class.

John began the evening by explaining what he looks for when reviewing images.  These can be summarised as follows:-

  1. The ‘WOW’ factor
  2. Composition
  3. Technical aspects of the image production

One frequent comment received during his critique today was the matter of key-lines around the image.  As we have heard from so many judges before, John considers that a key-line is needed to define the edge of an image against a dark screen background.  Whilst this is essential for a darker image, it also provides a finishing touch for brighter images.  Additionally, at times during the evening John commented on a couple of images where he considered that a key-line had been made too broad so that it pulled the eye away from the picture.  His advice was that a key-line should not be wider that 10 pixels to avoid this issue.

Some twelve images were held back for a second look and final scoring.  Of these four received a score of 9½ , and three scored 10 points from among which our overall winner was selected. These top scores are all reproduced below.

The first image viewed on the evening to receive a score of 9½ points was ‘Ballet dancer’ by Roshan R.  John’s comment here was to mention the distractingly broad key-line (not apparent on this white webpage), and also that he felt the crop is too tight onto the red cape at both sides of the image.

Ballet dancer, by Roshan R

The second image with this score was ‘Praying Buddhist Monks’, also by Roshan R.  John commented on the lovely soft light in the image, together with the colours of the monks’ robes, and the drape of their fabric.  He admired the leading lines provided by the small walls at each side, but was concerned that the yellow cupboard at the left was a distraction which would have been better if toned down considerably.

Praying Buddhist Monks, by Roshan R

The third image scoring 9½ points was ‘23, 24, 25, zzzzz’ by Brian C.  John commented on how atmospheric the image felt, and that the fleece of the sheep had not been burnt out, despite the challenge this would have likely presented.

23, 24, 25, zzzzz, by Brian C

The last image seen scoring 9½ points was ‘Ms Jones’ by Paul S.  John pointed out that with this image was really looking at three people, including the poster of Hitchcock.  He commented on the lack of key-line, but felt that the monochrome presentation was very strong, with a background that did not adversely distract from the subjects.

Ms Jones, by Paul S

Three images went on to score 10 points, and are reproduced below

The first image scoring 10 seen on the night was ‘Moth Orchid’ by Dave S.  John’s comments were that this image was very appealing, with a composition featuring a strong diagonal and soft backlighting.  The image was sharp where it needed to be, with a soft , out-of-focus background.  The ‘moths’ have been crafted from the flower image in post-production.

Moth Orchid, by Dave S

The second 10 score was ‘Evoking Escher’, also by Dave S.  John described this image as a pattern picture that does not require a focal point.  He also commented on the strong vignette at the margins of the image.

Evoking Escher, by Dave S

Our final 10 score, and the overall winner on the evening, was ‘Harvest Mouse’ by Mandy B.  He described this as a very strong image, well composed, with good leading lines, very sharp especially around the eye, and with an effective keyline.  He pointed out that as this was an open competition he did not have to wonder how the image had been captured.

Harvest Mouse, by Mandy B

So, with congratulations to our top scorers, and indeed to all who entered on the evening, our thanks go once again to John Nathan for providing his critique and advice, and for his scoring on the night.

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