Photo Feedback

When judging photographs, I have some basic expectations - and I think most other judges are the same. The photograph should be sharp (focused) in the right places (although blurred images can be wonderful in context); they should be correctly exposed (not too light or too dark); and they should be appropriately framed. There’s nothing worse than a fantastic subject being overcrowded by unnecessary information or a busy background. Deciding what to leave out of your photographs is just as important as what to leave in.

This doesn’t mean that I won’t award a prize to a blurred image with poor print quality – there could be emotional or pictorial aspects about the image that either justify the blurred image, or override it. This is a subjective process and what a photograph can be is so varied, you can never be assured of impressing the judges.

However, you can expect to achieve a good score for a high standard. You can aim for a Silver Award and when they are easy, aim for a Gold Award. Don’t expect to win a competition the first time you enter, rather look at it as a process of learning so that at some stage in the not too distant future, your work will be good enough to be up there with the winners.

And look for judges whose work you appreciate. While there are no guarantees, judges whose work you like are more likely to point you in the right direction when they score your images. 

The 2018 Better Photography Magazine Photo of the Year Award is now on! Entries close on 31 October 2018 (late entries possible until 7 November) and there is $17,000 in cash and prizes on offer. Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards will be handed out and every entry will receive a short comment or suggestion from the judging panel.

Check out our e-book on How To Win Photo Competitions on our Better Photography Education website - you can find it here.

And, of course, you can enter our current Better Photography Photo of the Year Competition. Entries close 31 October and details are here.

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