Photo Feedback

Photography competitions are based on opinions. And everyone has an opinion, so that’s a good reason to enter photography competitions that are judged by people whose opinion you respect. You mightn’t always agree with the judges, but you have an understanding of who they are as photographers and so you are more likely to be accepting of their opinions.

However, as an entrant, you only get to see one score, the average. As a judge, we don’t get to see the other judges’ scores, so we might score an entry 95 while the other two judges are on 75. What we considered to be Gold ends up as a Silver – and what the other judges considered to be Bronze is elevated to Silver.

If you get a score that is just below a bronze (or a silver or a gold), there’s a very good chance one of the judges thought it was a bronze (or a silver or a gold). But the other two didn’t quite agree. And this is why it is so hard to get a gold award. To start with, there are very few entries a judge will consider gold. Then to finish, you need to have two or more of the judges agreeing it is a gold. More often than not, one judge will be on gold and the other two in the high silvers – with the result a high silver.

There can also be up to 20 points difference between scores, but this is very unusual. It is also unusual for all three judges to give exactly the same score. Generally speaking, I’d suggest there’s a spread of 5 or 6 points between the judges score – so we’re usually in the same area, but it can be the difference between, for example, a bronze and a silver.

However, the good news is that while two judges might drag a score down, two judges often drag scores up as well. The point to note is that a judging score is a combination of well-intentioned opinions.

And if you’re like me, time has a habit of flying past and there are things you wish you’d done a little earlier – like entering the Better Photography Photo of the Year Award. There’s still time in the Late Entry period – the price is the same, but there’s no ‘every fifth entry free’ discount. So, the very last date is 7 November 2018 - and who knows, you could be part of the $17,000 prize pool too! For more details, visit now!

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