1st CPNO International Exhibition of Photography

This is the first time I’ve entered an exhibition in China and didn’t really know what to choose to send…so decided to hedge my bets and send a bit of variety.

My entry of four comprised “Heroes of the Ice” and “Ivy Impression” (two of my two most successful images ever, but less traditionally photographic) plus “Free Range” and “Rain & Sun”. Acceptance mark was 14 (max 22)…scores as follows…Heroes 12, Ivy, 13, Free Range 14, Rain & Sun 17….so it looks like the more conventional-looking images went down best in Macau.

These were the accepted ones…

Rain and Sun

Rain and Sun

Free Range

Free Range

EFIAP Bombshell

Excuse me if I’m slightly hopping mad this morning! I opened my post!!! It doesn’t usually get much reaction from me….a dentist appointment, a club reply form and a bank statement might be typical of our morning post. But this morning….A BOMBSHELL!!!

Having achieved AFIAP last February (2008) along with Maureen and Mike from the group, I set about the next task of reaching AFIAP. By June last year, I had reached the required target number of accepted images and awards, new works, percentages outside UK and countries … and all I had to do was to wait until December 2010 to apply. That’s why my entries to salons have fallen lately – no need to spend the money!!!

EFIAP requirements were: After achieving AFIAP… 60 new acceptances and 3 new awards over another three year period. 15 new pieces of work must be used and work must be accepted in a minimum of 5 countries.

From today, everything changed…the letter was from Ian Platt of the PAGB…the new EFIAP requirements have been published and they’ve moved the goal posts!

The first thing that I saw was that you must now hold the AFIAP for only ONE year before applying for the E. New requirements for EFIAP take into account your AFIAP acceptances and awards as well, so there is no longer a line drawn under the AFIAP, which meant that you, in effect, started from scratch for the E. That sounded pretty good…but then I read on….

Here are the new regulations:

Total acceptances, including AFIAP acceptances = minimum 150
Different works (images) = minimum 50
Number of different salons = minimum 30 ( a salon is a competition with a different name, not the same salon in different years, so Smethwick, for example, counts as ONE salon, however many times you entered it, also circuits count as one salon, even though there may be 5 different competitions in the circuit).
Number of different countries = minimum 15
Number of awards = minimum 5

So, I did a laborious tot up of where I’m now up to. There was good news and there was bad news….I had more than enough acceptances, awards and different images. I only have 13 countries, so immediately I realised that I’ll have to enter a couple more countries….that’s not really a problem…should be able to pick up the odd acceptance in two more countries without too much problem.

but….and it was a very big but….

30 different salons? no way….counting the Austrian Supercircuit and the Holland Circuit each as one salon, I have only 16 out of 30 FIAP salons required. So, suddenly I feel I have to start all over again…I need 14 more salons!!! and that looks like a lot of money…

To add 10 extra countries is bad enough, but to introduce a minimum number of 30 different salons seems very unfair without giving at least a couple of years notice, especially when that hasn’t been a stipulation at all before.

So, whilst I’m licking my wounds this morning, take heed…if you are embarking on this course of AFIAP and EFIAP, get your work entered around a lot of different salons from the word “go”.

Now, where’s that salon list…must get started….14 more competitions to find….

Pooooooh, not fair.


Southampton International Exhibition

Recent acceptances in the Southampton International:

Mike Lawrence: 3 acceptances

Josh

Josh

Nationalist Youth

Nationalist Youth

and in the travel section:

Awaiting the Last Metro

Awaiting the Last Metro

Christine Widdall: 7 acceptances

Free Range

Free Range

Country Bride

Country Bride

Between Rain

Between Rain

Iris

Iris

Highly Commended:

Ivy Impression

Ivy Impression

Tulip

Tulip

Solitude

Solitude

Geoff Robinson: 7 acceptances

Road Rage 2

Road Rage 2

From Dawn to Dusk

From Dawn to Dusk

b1-fins-aint-what-they-used-to-be

Fins aint what they used to be

Good Morning

Good Morning

Iron Maiden

Iron Maiden

Millenium Bridge at Night

Millenium Bridge at Night

Old Time Racer

Old Time Racer

Noel Morgan 3 acceptances

Evening at Buckley Wells

Evening at Buckley Wells

Out of the Past

Out of the Past

Tulips in a Vase

Tulips in a Vase

International Overload!

Last Sunday marked the closing day of Smethwick’s 2009 International Exhibition of Photography. We had unfortunately left it too late to book for the opening night, which was fully subscribed before I got around to trying to book, so were lucky to get places on the last Sunday…though, in fact, there were a few seats to spare…where were you?

John Mike and I set off at noon and arrived just after doors opened. You’d think that, with 6 hours before the end of the evening, we’d have time to get round and see all the prints! but no, the first thing is that you see all your friends from other parts of the country and spend a little time catching up with each. Before we knew it the digitally projected shows were starting and we’d only seen about 25% of the prints.

Pictorial images were divided into two showings…with a welcome tea break in the middle and didn’t we need it! talk about image overload…the standard of the images was very very high, in fact the whole exhibition was probably the best yet. Standards just keep going up and up. Usually, with the digitally projected images there’s more than a handful that you might wonder how they got in….but this year WOW, some very inspirational images.

After the pictorial images came a longer break for food and we took the opportunity to view the monochrome images in the main hall and only just got round before the natural history and travel shows began. Digital monochrome has really come of age now. I felt really pleased to have a couple of my monos shown on the walls…they never have room to hang all the accepted prints, so those that aren’t hung get shown on a flat screen monitor in one of the side rooms – we never got to see those!

“Birds in Flight” were popular this year largely, it seems, due to improved camera design, for quick focus and following of fast moving objects. Tony Wharton, as always, proved a fountain of knowledge on almost every species…don’t ever mis-name a fungus if you’re sending to Smethwick!!!!

The Travel section left us slightly baffled…quite a few images seemed to have been manipulated more obviously than the rules seem to indicate is allowable, according to the PSA definition. We accept that it can be difficult to spot this during quick-fire judging. There was quite a bit of evidence of overuse of fill light without corresponding correction of blacks, even in the awards section and this was more prevalent in the travel section than the pictorial. In fact, throughout the exhibition this year, there were lots of examples of what looked like HDR images, some well done, some less so. Is this the new trend? I think perhaps that in a few years time, HDR will be the norm rather than the exception in landscape and interior shots.

A last quick look at the remaining prints and perhaps it’s worth mentioning that there were a lot of accepted landscapes this year, which pleased me of course. Is this another trend along with HDR or was it just the preference of that particular panel of judges? Only time will tell. There were fewer “faces in backgrounds” and those that were there, on the whole, were better cutout than previously, though a few still exhibited that uncomfortable “different perspective” feel. The images, in general, were darker and stronger….fewer light delicate images…fewer obviously “created” images.

Last thoughts…digital imaging keeps on improving…the standard of the open and nature sections were particularly high. It leaves us with a huge challenge…to keep moving forward, improving our skills and keeping up with trends. A fellow visitor (actually a woman, not a fellow) remarked that you can no longer just take a shot and enter it…images now need to be optimised to get the very best light and feeling out of them, even more than before.

Are we downcast then? No!!!!! We’ll do our best to rise to the challenge.

Have a look at the winning images