Being a judge photo contest : 35 awards experience (part 1) 35 awards is a Russian photo contest with multiple themes from people to underwater. Judge by 50 jury members all great winners in photography photo contest, one per country. After getting some photos honors and winning images I asked them to be part of the jury for France. So welcome to the other side of photo contest. First 35 awards got 3 level of contest in the first one all public can vote to select the images to the second level. Second level is for professional votes and the 3rd level for jury members only.
1 level : I start by what I practice the most underwater and wildlife. First you need to think when you decided to,submit images to be original and different not to be the same or a copy. Even the image is good it’s not enough you need to think great, original and different Choose very well your categories : Aerial, children, wildlife lot of subject underwater few. Wildlife around 4500 photos, Aerial 5000, underwater, 2600 etc… 3s on each first round. In wall of pictures my eyes are directly attracted by colors and light, frame. Even without watching them directly some pictures catch your eyes with colors.
The subject : choose something unusual or shoot something common in an unusual way too much seaturtle, fisher king, bears, squirrel…… If you shoot something do it special. Work your images for example the squirrel just eating a nuts…… nothing special. But if you live near a tree with squirrel take your time to catch a squirrel just from a tree to another or a mating moment between a male and female or a mum taking care of her babies squirrel…… think the shot, visual it in your head. It’s that first making a photography it’s not a snapshot. When you have to go at sunrise or sunset to get special light or in blue hours to get shades and lines. What I was looking about photos in the first level and advice : - Colors and bokeh - Use of light or flash - The composition and frame - Not common subject or situation or emotion or behavior - Eye contact - Ambiance - Over retouching - Known image (already wining contest) - Not being distracted by something in the frame from the main subject - Using the good lense and setting camera - Watch judges work not to copy but to see what kind of pictures they love, how they put the subject in the frame. - In wildlife and underwater think conservancy - Think shapes, reflection, lines - Do not use same effect what seems great when you see it for the first time can become boring if you put same techniques with different subject and can also means you are not sure of the winning one. Use it for a serie keep this special and unique.