Weekly #750 Steps Competition

Competition Details
Closing Date: 16/01/2022
Judge: RayW

Wow! thanks for the winning vote. I'm trying to keep it simple. Given the time of year, something you can capture indoors or out. My chosen topic is Steps. Anything to do with steps, not the band but the ones you walk up and down. Make them as interesting as possible, with great composition.
Competition Entries


Link Posted 17/01/2022 - 08:26
Thank you all for your entries this week they were quite a selection and all have their different merits. This is the first time I have judged a photo contest, I hope my comments make sense. And please tell me I havenít just judged an entry by the David Bailey (which didnít influence my thinking by the way!)

I declare the winner to be Mirador de Fito by mr.mellow, it just jumps off the page to me. I look forward to your challenge for next week.

For me the complete podium is:
Winner: Mirador de Fito by mr.mellow
Second: Silo Steps by Noelcmn
Third: Garden Steps by MHOL190246
Hon mention: Up! by Simonmac

To The Lighthouse by Perspicador
A nicely captured picture, I can clearly see it has a story, the two people about to visit the lighthouse. Lots of dynamic range here, the lighthouse roof slightly blown out. The rails could possibly have been levelled up in post. However it meets the spec in that there are steps to the lighthouse, but I was looking for the steps to be more significant in the image.

Mirador de Fito by mr.mellow
This is a super picture and is spot on the spec, to the extent that the steps donít even go anywhere! Great depth of field, especially for f5.6 and the lens at full width. Composition is great, showing us the steps on the right and the view on the left. It looks like a postcard. I would have preferred it without the watermark though. Taken well within the dynamic range of the sensor. You can almost feel the heat of the sun.

Bolsover Castle by PRYorkshire
Here we have a bold set of steps from and centre, clearly on spec. Also from the cropping its an unusual aspect ratio, and works well with the steps leading the eye onwards and upwards towards the battlements. As it has been cropped, it might benefit from a little perspective change to make the walls vertical and a little more contrast. Lots of detail, good focus, I presume the wide aperture was to keep the shutter speed fast.

Garden Steps by MHOL190246
I like this one a lot. The composition has the steps on the diagonal which works and take the eye across the image. And then at the top the path disappears and I wonder where does it go next? The damp steps gives good contrast to the plants. The strong red flowers distract slightly but not too much. And the square format works well with the 45 degree diagonal.

Just a bit of fun by Vic Cross
First thing I see is the obvious joke Ė standing by the ďNo LoiteringĒ sign, well spotted and captured. And several points of intrigue. What are the two ladies watching and smiling at? Why is the other not looking at it? Where do the steps lead? It would benefit from more contrast, and being slightly sharper. The steps are there but in this image they arenít the main point of the image. Still very enjoyable to look at and ponder the mystery.

Several storage steps by drofmit
Quite an original idea for a still life, so many are on a flat surface. And a good crop, those hubbards and crown prince squashes grow large. Lots of good colour especially the blue/green against the orange. It is focussed on the foreground, I wonder if it would be better with a shallower depth of field and more blur as the eye goes up the stairs. Very much on spec for the topic.

Up! by Simonmac
This is a well composed image. At first I thought Iíd like to see more of the destination at the top of the steps, but actually its better being a bit of an intrigue. Good and level, the monochrome processing works well with the harsh daylight and strong contrast. Good sharpness front to back and the eye is led nicely through the image.

Tidal Steps by Flan
Good to see a picture dated this week, perhaps taken for this contest. From the EXIF data I canít verify that it was taken on a Pentax or derivative (happy to be corrected). The angle of the steps I find slightly jarring, neither straight nor on a diagonal, but I like the detail of the ring being central horizontally and on the golden ratio vertically.

Theatrical Steps by retsoor
I recognised the location straight away. This definitely meets the spec with lots of steps. Compositionally I find it to be very ďbusyĒ, and although the topic is Steps, the main subject Ė the theatre Ė is obscured by the rail in the foreground. Itís a difficult location to photograph.

Silo Steps by Noelcmn
It took me a while to read this image, and without the title I might not have worked it out. Itís a clever tight view of the steps and the shadows. I donít know what the constraints were outside the frame, but it might be better still if the crossing of the stairs was closer to the rule of thirds. The verticals and horizontals are correct, and itís a clean image with very little to distract from the steps as the subject of the picture. I wonder what it would look like in monochrome?


Link Posted 17/01/2022 - 13:56
Thanks for 3rd place and congratulations Mr Mellow - a brilliant entry. Congrats also to Noelcmn and Simonmac. Finally thanks to RayW for a great competition.



Link Posted 17/01/2022 - 15:08
Congrats to Mr Mellow and runners up, and to the judge for critique and a fine summary
I judged once before so I know the feeling
Link Posted 17/01/2022 - 18:07
Thanks to Ray for the competition (good subject) and the judging and comments. Well done to mr.mellow for 1st place and to Noelcmn and MHOL190246 for 2nd and 3rd respectively. Congrats also to Simonmac for hon mention, all good photos.


Link Posted 17/01/2022 - 21:33
Congratulations to Mr Mellow and the runners up... great set of pix, too.
Great subject Ray, and thanks for the speedy adjudicqation, too.
Those Crown Prince are all between 8 and 16 kilos, and the "Hubbards" actually aren't... they are Red Kuri and should be around 1 kilo and soupbowl size.... but they went mad! And we couldn't see them under all the leaf!! We also had 102kilos of courgettes [assorted fortunately... and friends who like them as well] We haven't grown pumpkins since this glut... we've still got bags full in the freezer!! And any takers for Courgette and Ginger Jam - vintage 2018??
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!!"


Link Posted 18/01/2022 - 08:05
Congrats Mr Mellow, awesome image, superb composition, worthy winner! And extended to my fellow podia placed MHOL190246 and simonmac for his HM. Thanks too for my 2nd spot, and the challenge, C&C's. As noted, wonderful images in this challenge. To answer your questions, outside the frame is more steps and some urban decay, and would have made the image quite cluttered. Did try B/W, but not nearly as nice as the color version!


Link Posted 18/01/2022 - 12:11
Thank you Ray for the competition. Loved your observations.

Thank you for the HM and well done to the winner and places!

All the best!
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