I have been quite successful in competitions and exhibitions over the years, and have found them a great way of improving my photography. I don’t enter as many now as I used to as I have largely achieved everything I want to, and hope to hear about the last piece in the puzzle, my EFIAP platinum application, in the next month or so.
I tend now to produce images for myself and the models, rather than having competitions in mind, and I like to enter exhibitions with a print element, especially local ones as I can get to see the exhibition. I have been quite successful in some recent ones, and here’s the results.
The most recent exhibition I entered was the London Salon, a very highly regarded print exhibition that is judged by all the members of the salon who attend the judging day, they try to select images a bit different from normal camera club stuff, to quote their website they are looking for images with “distinct evidence of artistic feeling and execution”. I first entered the salon in 2011, and was most fortunate to win a medal with “Pearls” which I wrote about at the time. I have not entered for a few years, concentrating on other distinctions, so was really pleased when I entered this year and achieved the maximum two acceptances.
The two prints accepted were “The Cross” with Kayleigh Lush and “Quilts” with Zoi. I was very pleased as these were probably the two I would have chosen.
I also entered MidPhot, which is the annual exhibition of the Midlands Counties Photographic Federation. Out of 16 prints and 8 digital images entered I had 19 accepted with 5 awards. After saying that I like to enter print exhibitions so that I can visit the exhibition I managed to miss the whole of Midphot as I was up in Scotland touring with my camera club talk.
The image “The Staircase” with Elle Beth won The Best Contemporary Image, I have no idea what “Contemporary” means, but I’ll take any trophy going thank you very much :)
“Piano Repose” with Anete won a judges medal.
“The Orange Room” with Lulu Lockhart won an MCPF Ribbon.
“The Gallery” with Anete won a Highly Commended.
“The Sculpture” with Lulu Lockhart also won a Highly Commended.
The other competition was between all of the clubs in the Midlands Counties Photographic Federation, and my club, Smethwick Photographic Society, selected some of my images to use. I don’t get nervous when entering things for myself, but when I’m representing my club I get very nervous as I don’t want to let the club down, it’s made even worse as you don’t get to choose which images they use.
There’s actually two separate competitions, one for prints and one for digital images, my club entered 2 of my images in each section, coincidentally all 4 images were of Lulu Lockhart, and I was extremely pleased that all 4 images were awarded the maximum score of 15, with one print getting a judges medal.
Here’s the images, with “Waterfall Beauty” entered into both sections as my club selectors thought it was so good.
It’s good to be able to enter only what I want to, rather than having to have a schedule of what to enter to meet distinctions goals, and it’s nice to see that I can still be successful when competing even though now I am really just producing images purely for pleasure.
While I no longer have to produce so many images for competitions I’m still shooting just as much, if not even more, as I just love producing images. Many thanks to all the great models for making the shoots so enjoyable and productive, which keeps my enthusiasm going.