Weekly Competition #73 - Glass Competition

Competition Details
Closing Date: 30/11/2008
Judge: Daniel Bridge

Hmmm, took a while to come up with something that hadn't been picked before, and that I thought should throw up a decent number of entrants, without being too odd or too simple.

So the theme this week is 'Glass', interpret it as you will!

Dan
Competition Entries

davidtrout

Link Posted 24/11/2008 - 16:38
Good choice Dan, crystal clear. Hope you get some smashing entries.
david.
PPG: http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidtrout
Last Edited by davidtrout on 24/11/2008 - 17:21

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 12:21
Right, sorry for the delay in the results, I had good intentions to make notes as the week went along but...

Anyway, here are my thoughts, feel free to disagree!



randall85 - What a great shot to start the competition with! It's such a dominating presence in the room, but strangely my eye gets drawn to the people in the shot - I especially like the lady on the right walking away from the camera. Composition-wise I like it, although perhaps getting the top right hand corner of the glass in shot might have improved it more. Good photo.

beebee - Another good shot, without the title it would have been pure guesswork figuring out what it was, but I like the effect and the colours. Perhaps cropping a little on the sides would tighten it up a bit, I think there's a bit too much plain blue, especially on the left hand side.

Belinda B. - Again, another great image, full of colour and an abstract again. The only thing that would improve this for me would be to tidy up the background, I can't tell what the shapes are, but I find them distracting. A sheet of black cloth would have cleaned that up nicely, but of course may not be at all practical.

Deecy - A lovely idea, but I think the out of focus white flower grabs the attention too much. I'm also not too sure about the jaunty angle, I realise it's supposed to be like this (or perhaps this is after a bottle of champagne? ), but it doesn't quite work for me.

Prieni - I think I've seen this type of picture a few too many times since it was featured in the P.U. mag a year or so ago, but you've done it well, and the etching on the glass is a nice touch. I think I'd have rather seen a little more of the stem of the glass, the crop looks a little tight at the bottom, and I don't like the shadow of the glass on the background - having the white background further away and/or lit separately, would have avoided this.

johnriley - I'm guessing this is another slide sandwich, as the perspectives are wrong for the flame to be actually in the glass, and there are little red areas bottom left which I'm guessing is the top of the candle? The actual shot of the glasses is nice enough, and the composition is fine, but that flame... :-/

josh - A familiar type of shot, but again, well executed. The contrast betweeen old and new is great, and I like the effect of the open windows.

GlynM - You done very well with the focusing here to get the glass sharp and the camera body, and it's a great idea that you've acieved well. However, that green colour doesn't do it any favours, and where's your tripod? ISO800? Also not too keen on the shadow under the camera and lens, a bit of fill in, either with flash or a reflector, could have lifetd this a lot.

davidtrout - Such a nice piece of glass, well shot. A crop of the right hand side (to remove that little bit of red rising in the background) and along the bottom (I think it's a little too bottom heavy at the moment) improves things for me, but I love the colours and the shape, and the background's not too distracting.

Dr. Mhuni - I'm glad you said what it was, because I was struggling, it looks a bit like the bottom of a bottle. I'm guessing the flash reflection meant the image was under-exposed, and you've boosted exposure afterwards, because it looks very noisy for an ISO400 shot. I'm afraid the shot just doesn't grab me, and it's probably a combination of harsh lighting, with drab colours. Could you have tried it outside in stead of using flash? Or used a tripod?

Darkmunk - More of a shot of the fly than the glass, but an excellent shot, full of detail, and I love the reflection of the fly too. Nice clean background and good colour in the glass.

hefty1 - A great idea, and one that works well on some levels, but come on, kitchen door handles??? I'm not sure how else you could have arranged the shot to get a better background - a plain board under the camera would probably have looked too dull. Looking at it again, I think the best shot for me would have been a tight, square crop on the screen, with just a little of the 'rebate' around it. The gridlines and rebate would have shown what the picture was. ALthough, then you might have wanted a more interesting view than a Cyclamen on a window sill.

Hyram - An eyecatching shot, and although I'm not that keen on these types of ornaments, I like the sparkle and colours you've got here. Was it lit with LEDs? I'd crop some off the left and top, I find the bear's head a little too central, bearing in mind it's looking to the side a little.

mikew - 'A glass in the grass'? When was the last time you mowed your lawn? Did you arrange this, or was it found after a friday night? I can't say that it does a whole lot for me, the leaves are somewhat tatty, and the glass is lost amongst them, which may well have been your point, but it doesn't work for me I'm afraid.

SPB - I wondered where this one had gone, and it's now back looking a bit different. Had I done what other judges do, and judge as the week goes along, I'd be a bit peeved! Anyway, I have to say I find this a little uninspiring, a small ornament lost in a sea of grey. I'd rather see the top gold piece in focus too, but a more creative way of approaching the subject would be helpful here I think.

scottthehat - Does no-one have tripods anymore? Shake reduction's great, but for a shot like this use a tripod, keep the ISO down, and make absolutely sure there's no camera shake. It helps with focusing and composition too, it's just so much easier! Good use of overhead lighting has lit the angel/fairy nicely and produced some nice patterns on the tabletop. However, I find the bright top to the cube a little distracting.

Unlocker - I like this shot a lot, different from the typical photo you might see of this car. Does it illustrate 'glass'? Well, there's actually loads of it in the pic, but as most of it's a mirror, I lose the idea of glass for this bit of it. I find a crop on the right to the edge of the mirror frame tightens up the composition, and gives you two halves to the photo.

Coriander - Glass blowing was a shot I thought might turn up, but not like this! Does the PSP work improve it? Well, inverting it to see (roughly) how it was before does show it's a bit dull, but I'm not sure it's any better after the 'unspeakable things'. The problem with these sorts of shots is getting the subject to stand out from the background, as the workshops are usually very messy. Sorry, this isn't a winner!

Ben76 - Another subject I was expecting to see, and very nicely done. Exposure's good, and for a modern church the glass is quite traditional. Perhaps not the most creative way to approach the shot though.

chelseablue - The first rule of shooting through a window is make sure it's a clean one! Apart from the slight lean to the right, and the chopping off of the bottom of the glass, and the dirty window, this is quite a nice, illustrative shot. A blue sky would have set off the view better I think.

womble - I think the better picture here would have been a close crop on the old door, with the old glass, rotting frames and 'cat's bum' tea-towel holders. Over all, this shot is too busy for me to see it as 'glass', but well done for seeing a different sort of subject.

Haworth - A nice way of presenting the ear rings, making use of a glass for that, but I find the pale colours of the crystals in the middle get a bit lost against the background. I like the idea of the different coloured crystals, but feel that choosing a suitable background colour is nigh-on impossible.


So my winners are:

First Place: davidtrout
Second Place: randall85
Third Place: Hyram

Highly Commended: beebee, Darkmunk, josh
Commended: GlynM, Unlocker, Belinda B.


Thanks for taking part, hope you found the judging useful.

So David, it's over to you!

Dan

Prieni

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 12:40
Congratulations to David, a good choice of winner!
Thanks Dan for a thorough and fair judgement. My fault that I don't read the P.U. mag, otherwise I wouldn't have bored you with this subject (but would have found another one to do so ).

Cheers,
Prieni
How inappropriate to call this planet earth when it is quite clearly Ocean. - Arthur C. Clarke
Prieni's PPG page

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 12:59
Prieni wrote:
My fault that I don't read the P.U. mag, otherwise I wouldn't have bored you with this subject.

Well you didn't bore me with it, it's just that once you've seen a shot like this, unless it's done in a spectacular way it doesn't really stand out from the crowd.

Dan
K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...

Hyram

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 13:01
Congratulations to davidtrout and thank you Dan for my 3rd Place. Not quite the coveted 2nd Place but as randall85 sits behind me at work, overall a pretty good result

I sat the crystal bear on a dark blue piece of card, with another dark blue piece of card as the backdrop. The light source was a fairly powerful Maglite LED torch with focussing beam. The torch was selected for its white LED light and its focussing beam.

I fiddled around with the angle of the bear to the camera, the angle of the torch to the bear and the focussing of the beam to achieve the effect that I was looking for.
Hyram

Bodies: K20D (2), K10D, Super A, ME Super, Auto 110 SLR, X70, Optio P70
Pentax Glass: DA* 300, DA* 60-250, DA* 50-135, DA* 16-50, DA 70 Ltd, FA 31 Ltd, DA 35 Ltd, DA 18-55 (2), DA 12-24, DA 10-17, M 200, A 35-70, M 40, M 28, Converter-A 2X-S, 1.4X-S, AF 1.7, Pentax-110 50, Pentax-110 24
Other Glass: Sigma 105 macro, Sigma-A APO 75-300
Flash: Metz 58 AF-1 P, Pentax AF160FC ringflash, Pentax AF280T

Prieni

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 13:22
Daniel Bridge wrote:
Prieni wrote:
My fault that I don't read the P.U. mag, otherwise I wouldn't have bored you with this subject.

Well you didn't bore me with it, it's just that once you've seen a shot like this, unless it's done in a spectacular way it doesn't really stand out from the crowd.

Dan

Dan, I do understand that. I was only sulking a bit...
How inappropriate to call this planet earth when it is quite clearly Ocean. - Arthur C. Clarke
Prieni's PPG page

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 13:38
Hyram wrote:
The light source was a fairly powerful Maglite LED torch with focussing beam. The torch was selected for its white LED light and its focussing beam.

I thought it might have been an LED because there's very little red or yellow in the spectrums, and most white LEDs are quite blue in hue.

I like the effect, good choice.

Dan
K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...

GlynM

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 13:44
Dan, thanks for the commendation.

I did actually use a tripod. I had to because the amount of lighting needed to create a reasonable reflection washed out the front and the camera & lens in the shot. Therefore the resulting picture was made up from a combination of two shots. One with & one without the light illuminating the glass. I new the result was not perfect, and certainly a bit noisy, but I was fairly pleased with it.

Unfortunately the green backdrop was the only velvety material, that would not show any creases, I could find

Glyn

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 13:52
GlynM wrote:
Therefore the resulting picture was made up from a combination of two shots. One with & one without the light illuminating the glass.

You did that well, because it certainly wasn't obvious. I did wonder whether you had used two exposures, but couldn't see any sign of it, and I'm a bit of a stickler for that sort of thing.

Still not sure why you couldn't have used a lower ISO though.

Dan
K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...

hefty1

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 14:10
Nice judging Dan and well done David - my favourite this week too
Joining the Q

GlynM

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 14:14
Daniel Bridge wrote:

Still not sure why you couldn't have used a lower ISO though.
Dan

You are quite right of course. Lower ISO with a longer exposure would have produced a better result. The high ISO was a result of having the camera set to auto ISO, 100-800 which is my normal default setting. It did not matter for the brighter shot but with the darker shot I should have forced it to a lower ISO.

Cheers,

Glyn

Dr. Mhuni

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 14:57
Cheers for the judging Daniel, and congrats to the winners. For me, Hyramís was the stand out shot.

As for my pic, I actually did use a tripod. But I shot it in a dark room using the flash alone for light (hence the noise) Ė in order to get the maximum reflection on the rim of the lampshade. Couldnít move it to the garden in any case as itís attached to the ceiling! Thatís a light bulb in the middle. I have to say itís a bit like those pics that used to appear on Ask the Family yonks ago of everyday objects from bizarre and/or close up angles that contestants had to work out.
Mhuni

500px

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 15:56
Dr. Mhuni wrote:
Couldnít move it to the garden in any case as itís attached to the ceiling!

Ahhh, I could tell it was a light bulb, but for some reason I was thinking we were looking down on a table lamp.

Dan
K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...

Ben76

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 16:38
Thank you for the judging, davidtrout's was indeed one of my favourite photos this week along with randall85's. So congratulations to the winner!
BenoÓt
Last Edited by Ben76 on 01/12/2008 - 18:17

davidtrout

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 19:12
I've posted the next subject 'Brewing Up A Storm' and added some comments on what I had in mind but when I went onto the next competition site I got a message saying this site no longer exists or something along those lines. I had written that the subject suggested moody landscapes with brooding skies and the threat of bad wetaher on the way. These pictures make great images but I also urged photographers to 'think outside the box.' It could indicate something awful is about to happen and the proverbial is about to hit the fan. Its over to you creative souls, best of luck.
david
PPG: http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidtrout

Belinda B.

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 19:35
Thank you Dan for my 'commended' and congratulations to davidtrout.

I agree with you about the slight distraction in the surround, which is a glass plate with decoration that I used to support the glass ornament off the light source. Ideally I would have used a plain frosted glass plate or got rid of the pattern in PS but my PS skills do not go that far

What we really need for these indoor shots is a studio, rather than the dining room table
Belinda B.

Daniel Bridge

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 20:50
davidtrout wrote:
...when I went onto the next competition site I got a message saying this site no longer exists or something along those lines.

It's those back-slashes that have done it, and if you didn't put them there, then they appeared automatically because of the quotation marks. Then the URL for the competition page was automatically generated, but the slashes messed that up!

I've sent through a bug report. But at least we can all have a think about what we're going to enter.

Dan
K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...

davidtrout

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 20:59
Yes, I added quotation marks. Didn't know they were bugged.
david
PPG: http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidtrout

Coriander

Link Posted 01/12/2008 - 23:17
I had sweaty palms all the time since adding my enty into this competition believing that I had a sure fire winner. Well, can you imagine my relief!

Thank you Daniel for having the insight and instinctively knowing how to let me down gently...

David, don't let Daniel's innate judging abilities put you off giving my next entry the cursory glance it will deserve..

(it's not the winning, it's the taking part that matters )

....... I really don't want to win, I dread the thought of being a judge....... but it's so addictive!!! .......
K10D with Grip, 28mm,50mm,135mm,18-55,18-200,70-300mm, Meade 2000mm catadioptric, dodgy tripod and luck

davidtrout

Link Posted 02/12/2008 - 09:32
OK Coriander, but trust me, if you enter the best image it WILL be made the winner, no reduction in sentence for good behaviour when I'm judging!!
But believe me its a thrill to win (OK its easier on the nerves to be second) and its fun to pick a subject and see how everyone interprets it. Judging can be tough but rewarding.
david
PPG: http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/davidtrout
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