Weekly #571 - Flower Power Competition

Competition Details
Closing Date: 24/06/2018
Judge: GlynM

Here in the UK garden flowers are appearing in abundance. However I want to make this competition open to a wide interpretation so I would like to see images that can be a specific flower shot or just a picture that contains one or more flowers within the image. It does not even have to be real flowers, for example, if you have a picture of a VW Camper Van with a flower painted on its side that would still be fine. I will though be looking for the usual well-crafted images that create some impact to draw the viewer in.

The usual weekly competition rules apply. Entries can be shot for the competition or taken from your archives. It must though be shot using a Pentax camera or their closely related clones.

The winner is expected to set, comment on and judge the next competition.

The competition closes at midnight BST on Sunday, 24th June. Good luck and I look forward, with anticipation, to seeing your entries.
Winner
Competition Entries

GlynM

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 00:12
Many thanks to all of you that entered pictures for this competition. I think we have a nice combination of flower portraits and other pictures that provide some excellent context. It was also great to see the impressive number of entries which certainly exceeded my expectations. As always it is an excellent and well-crafted collection of pictures and it has been fun and a privilege to review your work.

Pink Poppy – tyronet2000
I thought this was a lovely picture to start off this competition and was impressed how fast it appeared, only minutes after I had set the subject. I love the combinations of colours and the angle at which it has been shot.

Carnaby bloom – Perspicador
A nice combination of colours although the composition is perhaps a little centric. While I like the soft background I feel that the subject could have been a little sharper. However as presented it does portray a lovely dreamy image.

Winter Olympics – Nigelk
I think this is a fantastic combination of foreground and background subjects with a nice dark background lifting the bright foreground subject. A well perceived, composed and beautifully shot image.

A Winter Periwinkle – Aitch53
We have some of these under the trees in our garden but they do not look as nice as this example. I like the composition which helps portray some height. While the sharp subject is nicely complimented by a soft background I find the out of focus top to the stalk in the bottom right foreground just a little distracting. However it is otherwise an excellently well-crafted image.

Summer – davidwozhere
This is the first of a couple of images in this collection that combine a sharp subject off to one side with a soft background dominating the majority of the image. I had not really seen this approach before but I am rather taken by it. It certainly adds a nice dreamy effect to the image. I also like that you captured a lovely sharp rendition of bee.

Life over adversity – Ricardo
I think this is a really clever shot and like it a lot. It is certainly makes a fantastic use of leading lines. However having spent some time looking at it zoomed I do not think there is a flower to be found anywhere in the image which unfortunately was the primary requirement of the competition. It though remains an excellent image.

Foxgloves with a visitor – Sparkie67
I think this is an interesting image. It is an unusual way of depicting fox gloves which I would have done in a portrait mode. However, shot from a near ground level aspect, I think it works well to create a wonderful impression of a forest of these flowers. It is also nice to see the bee as well.

Spring – Mag07
Magdalena has provided the second of these horizontally offset images that combine a sharp subject off to one side with a soft, dreamy, background dominating the majority of the image. Like the previous example it also has a seasonal title. It is also nicely crafted and I think the colour combinations work really well.

Blue flower – retsoor
I love the way a very shallow depth of field has been used to highlight a single bloom against a soft green background with soft hints of the other flowers providing some context. I also like the diagonal aspect of the plant stem which I think works well.

Poppies and Periwinkles – MikeInDevon
While the majority of the images in this competition are flower portraits it is nice to see Mike’s different approach here. I like this image because it has an element of storytelling in the way it portrays the determination of these flowers. Lots of sharp detail makes this a well observed and crafted image.

Pink Geranium (Focus Stack) – Abe_Normal
I am an enthusiastic user of focus stacking so it was good to see the description of how this beautiful image was created. I am also impressed that CombineZP was used to process the focus stack. I used to use this software a lot but moved to a paid-for application when I found I had to do the extra work of reducing the size of my K-3 images to prevent CombineZP from locking up. All the production and effort that must have gone into creating this image has certainly paid off. I think it looks fantastic.

Flower Boat – noelm
I love this image and think it works really well. I had not come across the flood filter add-on before so had to look it up and while some of the examples I found looked over done here I think it has been very cleverly used. I am tempted to have a go but expect that it will require a lot of practice to achieve anything near as good as this image. noelm is certainly to be congratulated in pre-visualising the result and having the knowledge plus skills to achieve it.

Blue Rose – vic cross
I’m not sure but think that blue is not a natural colour of a rose and particularly with the pink centre of this flower believe that this is a dyed or manipulated example. However it is a great shot. Perhaps a little bit centric and just going a little soft at the petal edges it does though work well against the soft and dark background and probably has a great element of fun.

Miniature rose – wozfromcov
Another nice example using focus stacking and I think as an early attempt at this works well. It certainly provides a marvellous amount of foreground detail nicely set against a very soft background. While it is quite tightly cropped I love the way the flower travels across the shot and points into a corner.

Jewels in the hand – JAK
I think this is a really clever, well perceived and crafted image and certainly stands out in this collection. I love the diagonal composition which I think helps draw the viewer in to be surprised by the lovely detail in the water droplets. A terrific image, well done.

Daisy, daisy – snakey
I think this is a lovely close-up image of a single daisy. I love the way the long stem travels across the shot from corner to corner. I think the portrait aspect also helps create a nice feeling of height. The shallow depth of field certainly helps provide a good soft and otherwise empty back-drop which helps emphasise the sharp petals. I think I might have gone with just a fraction more depth of field to provide a sharper stem and possibly increase the sharpness of the centre of the flower. However it remains a well perceived and crafted image.

Wild Iris Reversed – Noelcmn
An interesting and unusual image which certainly provides a unique flower image in this collection. I am glad you explained how it was done as I would have never had worked it out. I think the technique works really well. Composition wise it feels a bit centric and think I would have twisted it around a little to perhaps make a slope with the stalk. However the unusual, well perceived and implemented approach stands out as something different certainly gives the image an edge.

Flowers by The Canal – timcx500e
A beautiful colourful and sharp depiction of a pair of tulips basking in bright sunlight set against a soft background. The background is perhaps a little busy and therefore slightly distracting. However the composition and camera settings work very well to create some terrific impact.

True blue! – drofmit
I like this image, that looks like another excellent use of a D-FA 100 macro variant, which uses a shallow depth of field to highlight a sharp depiction of two or three flowers, illuminated in bright sunlight, set against a nice soft background which provides the context that these flowers are not alone. I like the composition with the sharp flowers offset to one side. The vertical aspect also provides a nice feeling of height. A very nice image to see in the closing stage of this competition.

The suns place in the Cosmos– johnjm
I love this image which uses the low position of the camera to set the flowers against a bright sunset (or sunrise?). I think this use of the bright lighting creates a nice contre jour effect that works really well. The foreground flowers are nicely sharp but perhaps the lighting is making the colouring just a little pale. It is a pity we do not have any exif info to see how this excellent shot was achieved.


I have really enjoyed reviewing these images. It is a wonderful collection of pictures and I am impressed with the range of interpretations and approaches used. The quality of these pictures have certainly made the task of judging and ordering quite difficult but after some careful consideration here are my results:

1st – noelm for “Flower Boat” – For the foresight and skill used in creating such an outstanding flower image.

2nd – JAK for “Jewels in the hand” – For such a fantastic image, on multiple levels, that draws the viewer in to find little jewels in the water drops.

3rd – Abe_Normal for “Pink Geranium (Focus Stack) ” – For such a well-crafted focus stack image plus the inclusion of all the detail of how it was done

Highly Commended, which I decided to use to highlight some of the different approaches, to Nigelk, davidwozhere, MikeInDevon, drofmit , retsoor, johnjm and Sparkie67.

I think this completes my responsibilities here and hand over to noelm for the next round.

Glyn

noelm

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 01:09
Must be first time lucky! Thanks to GlynM for his considered comments on all the images and especially for his kind remarks on mine. Congratulations to all the other award winners. All I have to do now is to find out how to set up the next competiton. Any help gratefully recieved.
noelm

drofmit

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 06:15
noelm wrote:
Must be first time lucky! Thanks to GlynM for his considered comments on all the images and especially for his kind remarks on mine. Congratulations to all the other award winners. All I have to do now is to find out how to set up the next competiton. Any help gratefully recieved.
noelm

Hi Noel, you will receive a message from John Riley which links you to the set the competition page.... so just think up your theme for the moment.... and I love your shot, a worthy winner.
Never be afraid to talk about your techniques...
"Give a thousand photographers...
the same camera, lens and scene...
and you'll always get a thousand different takes!!"
Anon.

drofmit

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 06:43
Thank you Glynn for the HC.... and the comments, timely judging, et al....
hi Al...
congratulations to the winner, the other podia and my fellow HCs...
I have enjoyed looking at these as the week progressed...
given the number of entries, I think Pentaxians like flowers!?!
It isn't the lack of people interested in entering, I think, it is.... perhaps....
more the fact that our "themes" don't grab.

I subscribed to Photocrowd just over a year since....
in that time, I have entered two competitions out of around a thousand eligible ones posted.
Purely because the themes don't grab my attention enough to want to sit and work up a photo....
simply that... it could be the theme... it could be the way the competition poster has worded the description...
some, I am afraid I nat'rally avoid... they have the mark of a picture editor looking for a cheap photo stamped large!!

Looking forward to Noel's competition....
Never be afraid to talk about your techniques...
"Give a thousand photographers...
the same camera, lens and scene...
and you'll always get a thousand different takes!!"
Anon.
Last Edited by drofmit on 25/06/2018 - 06:44

JAK

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 11:30
Ah, that coveted second place. Thanks! Well done to noelm (super shot btw) and Abe_Normal for their placings and to all the HCs. Also to GynM for the competition and prompt judging.
John K
Last Edited by JAK on 25/06/2018 - 11:31

Noelcmn

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 12:34
WOW,, what a lovely winning image, well deserved first spot. Congratulations Noel. And extended to JAK and Abe_Normal, and not forgetting the HC's Nigelk, davidwozhere, MikeInDevon, drofmit , retsoor, johnjm and Sparkie67. Wonderful challenge, a popular subject, yet still with a spectacular array of images. Thanks are in order to GlynM, for the Comments and Critiques. As always, much appreciated.

MikeInDevon

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 14:11
Hi GlynM, many thanks for the HC and congratulations to the winners and other HCs. There are lots of lovely different images to enjoy and get ideas from which is why I like these competitions so much. A very nice set of comments from you GlynM and so prompt!

Cheer
Mike

tyronet2000

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 14:20
Congratulations to the Winner and other places. Some lovely images posted so must have been a bit of a task judging them, Thanks GlynM for the interesting subject the judging and the comprehensive comments.
Regards
Stan

PPG

Abe_Normal

Link Posted 25/06/2018 - 16:51
Thanks to Glyn for running a competition that attracted a good number of entries and pleasingly agreeable ones at that; also for prompt judging and considered comments.

Well done to the winner, noelm, and second place, JAK; plus all the HCs.

GlynM wrote:
I am also impressed that CombineZP was used to process the focus stack. I used to use this software a lot but moved to a paid-for application when I found I had to do the extra work of reducing the size of my K-3 images to prevent CombineZP from locking up.

Unnecessary parts of the image were cropped out as part of processing the RAWs. The input and output from CombineZP were 3200x3200. That was cropped further to give the large version of the final image at 2560x2560.
There are six different methods within CombineZP that give slightly different outcomes. I tend to run them all and see which I like best: very much a matter of making a hot beverage and doing something else for 20 minutes.
I do have problems with it; typically when something become very blurred between the first and last images, or when there's a thin fibre/hair/strand that's only in focus in one frame
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