AustralianLight - Landscape Photography AustralianLight - Landscape Photography

AustralianLight - Landscape Photography is my new site with my good mate Bernie. If you have found my blog posts useful over the years, then how about giving us a hand to promote AustralianLight.

We are doing everything we can to get our australian landscape photography out there and guess what..... it's bloody hard work!! So please visit the gallery and if you like what see, share it with your friends.

Thanks, we really do appreciate your help. - Russell

Monday, 26 September 2011

What is going on with Photo Competition results?

Recently I have entered a few online photo competitions, only to be shocked by some of the results.

Poorly constructed, technically woeful images making the finals and often even winning the competitions overall!

As a photo competition judge myself, this has really bugged me. I spend hours viewing images and take all of their expects into consideration.... from artistic nuances to technical titbits.

Yet, here are images that would not even get a second look from me, winning competitions and collecting some pretty major prizes.

What the heck is going on with photography these days?

Now many of these comps are decided by the votes of Facebook friends.... so there is problem number one. An image need not be a good image to win, the photographer simply needs to have heaps of Facebook friends and be willing to prostitute themselves to them for votes.

The danger of deciding photography comps this way, is that it lowers the standard of winning images, while at the same time, promotes them as "good photography" to the general public. Sadly, this blurs the lines with regard to what makes a good photograph.

What if the competition is judged by a professional?

Great idea... this should solve the problem.

Rarely does it do this unfortunately, as the overall standard of the "professional photographer" has been bastardised in recent years. Thanks to digital, every man and his dog are calling themselves "professional" and these "professionals" generally have no formal training, no formal study and started by taking a couple of happy snaps at a friend's wedding. This leads to other "low budget" wedding gigs and on it goes.

Now give one of these guys a competition to judge and we are in a position where the finer aspects of what makes for "good photography" are simply overlooked, in favour of .... well who knows what... "puppies are cute" or whatever.

What if a true "professional" is the judge?

You would have to think that this IS the answer, but again, WTF is going on with these pro's? Some of the results are simply unbelievable.

Are they trying to be controversial? Are they trying to be "arty-farty"? Why do they set a brief and then pick images that don't even follow their own brief?

I have no idea sadly. All I know is that it makes me feel ill, as this has to be playing a part in undermining the public's perception of what makes good photography and in turn, undermining the industry as a whole.

After all, who is going to pay extra money for a good photographer, when they can get things done by a so called "Award Winning" photographer at less than 1/2 the price.

Excuse my language, but "Shit is very different to clay" and at the moment this difference is getting blurred in the eyes of the general public and many of these so called "photography competitions" are to blame, just as much as the rise of digital and the "professional amateur" is. :(