Jump to content


Photo

Photographing For Entering Contests?

Judges?

  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 Biglou13

Biglou13

    Advanced beginner pottery, Advanced in other art

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,033 posts
  • LocationNorth Florida

Posted 30 May 2014 - 08:54 PM

I have a few woodfired pieces I want to enter in a contest. (Finally)
Problem is you can't show the qualities of the piece in one image. Especially wood fired.
What is your opinion on submitting 2up or even 4 up images. As the single image submitted. Why don't the contests allow multiple images.
I think video would do more justice for contest submission.
It's frustrating, even though a picture may be worth a thousand words.
I need at least 4000 words to give a taste of what pot has to offer.

What say you?
Especially those that have judged these contests.

I haven't set up the studio shot yet. But I do have EXTENSIVE experience as a photog. Which is more frustrating be cause I can't get one image to say it all.

http://community.cer...hino-woodfired/

The last 8 images in gallery are of 2 bowls..... Gives the idea of variance on same piece.
Caution big brother is watching.
The beige is blinding!!!!!!
The middle of the road is boring

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.
-Albert Einstein

#2 bciskepottery

bciskepottery

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,554 posts
  • LocationNorthern Virginia

Posted 30 May 2014 - 09:07 PM

Some shows/contests allow for/require one close-up/detail shot in addition to the overall picture.

#3 Colby Charpentier

Colby Charpentier

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 173 posts
  • LocationProvidence, RI

Posted 30 May 2014 - 09:36 PM

I don't know much about contests, but shows occasionally allow multiple images. The real thing to consider when you're representing your work through photos is that the photo IS the product. The photo of the work needs to get the work in, and a single stunning image is going to go a lot further than a bunch of nice images..



#4 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 874 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 31 May 2014 - 08:41 AM

From someone who also gets frustrated sometimes that a photograph can only be taken from one angle .... you still need to choose the "best angle" of your pot.

If the "best angle" blows the judges' minds, you don't need anything else. Maybe you'll leave them wanting to see the other angles, but they will have to wait.

If the "best angle" does not blow the judges' minds, the other angles won't either.

If your intention is to enter competitions regularly, Colby is correct in saying your entry is the photograph, not the pot. Therefore, you should be thinking about the photograph as you make the pot.

Read the entry instructions carefully. If they don't allow multiple views, or don't mention it, then submit only one photo.

Good luck!
Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#5 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,798 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 31 May 2014 - 09:19 AM

Most shows don't have the time to view multiple angles of each piece. Judging a show is very time consuming and exhausting.

 

You've run into one of the issues with trying to photograph wood fired pieces- they look different from every angle. For most pots, like mine, this is not an issue. The 'front' looks the same as the 'back'. Just pick the best side. In my experience wood fired pots usually have a good side and a not-as-good side anyway.

 

Also be prepared for the fact that some really nice pots make really bad photos. If you want to get into the show, look for the best photo, not necessarily what you think is the best pot.


Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#6 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,021 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 31 May 2014 - 11:44 AM

This is an ongoing issue here in the US.  Shows typically get juried by slides.  (In Japan... pieces get sent in. Yeah... expensive.)  So the photograph is at LEAST (if not more) important that the piece.

 

If you do not follow the entry guidelines exactly... you'll get instantly and brutally edited out of the running before the juror(s) ever even see the images.  That is the exhibition organizer's job.  Pre-screen the submissions for compliance to the rules.  The juror gets it all after that has been done.

 

Jurying a show is a really difficult task.  When you look at the slides/images for jurying.... you might be confronted with at least 100 or maybe up to 300-400 choices of pieces (or more), depending on the show.  The piece's image is on the screen for a second or two before the conscious decision is made to leave it for a moment longer to think about it... or just move on.  That image has to POP on the screen to catch the attention.  If it doesn't......... next slide.

 

Lots of poor pots with good photos get juried in,........ and lots of killer pots with poor photos get juried out.  Way of the world.  OCCASIONALLY... a piece that had as killer photograph... but in person does not live up to that photo.... gets pulled from the show.  But that is rare,....and it has to be very blatant.

 

(We won't get into the factors of show themes and/or juror's taste bias and such.  That is all there also.)

 

And some great work just is VERY difficult to photograph well.  The more wabi-sabi and subtle it is... the harder to photograph and make it "zing" fro photo jurying.  Those works are about quietness.  "Quietness" does not get into most American shows.  Particularly these days.

 

This is even true with woodfire work, with all its potential subtelties,...... it is the "dramatic" woodfire pieces.... the "in your face" ones ........ that typically get into the juried shows.  You see more variation in the nature of works in the invitational or the solo shows.

 

When I submit work to the competitive Western Chawan (teabowl) shows...... I typically submit at least one piece that is "in your face" and one that really is the best bowl when it comes to the spirit of Chanoyu.  9 times out of 10.... I can predict that the one (or ones) selected will be the "dramatic" one(s)... not the really, really good "quiet one".  And it almost always is.

 

I have to say the Chawan I just got into the Kansas City Teabowl National 2014 coming up this fall was a surprise.  There were two "in your face" kinds of pieces.... and the really good-for-actual-Chanoyu bowl.  That more subtle one was the one that was picked for the show.  Plaudits to the jurors!!!!!  That is rare for that type of work.

 

 

best,

 

...................john


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#7 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3,052 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 31 May 2014 - 12:26 PM

The yardstick is the same for all

one photo-pick your angle-its frustrating especially for a bowl-its true for all bowls not just woodfired ones.

The deal is bowls are harder to get this right than other forms-so thats the whole deal-I raely shoot them or send them becuase other forms photograph stronger.

I'm also a photo guy so I suggest woodfiring another form just for this purpose.I like bowls but they are not the best photo subjects.

Mark


Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com

#8 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,021 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 31 May 2014 - 01:43 PM

Lou,

 

I looked at those photos.  Suggestions for submitting to juried shows (not necessarily "craft fairs")..........

 

The backdrop you are using needs to change.  It has beecome pretty much a "standard" format these days.  Seamless backdrop, hopefully fading from white in the foreground to dark grey to black in the background.  You COULD use all white or all black,.... but that will present some "photographic issues" also.

 

The pot image itself needs to really fill the visual field of the image.  Not a lot of backdrop..... but "enough".  That "enough" is hard to define.  And the balance of the image should be such that the bottom of the form just weights the visual feel to the "bottom" of the field of view.  Makes the piece feel like it is "sitting" correctly.  Usually this means that there is a tad less space of background below the piece than above it.

 

For the small bowls you shot, the side views are "too low".  Too square on.  Loses the roundness and the interior.  Camera a tad higher.  The angle you hit for this is critical.  No easy answers..... custom for each piece. 

 

best,

 

................john 


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#9 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3,052 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 31 May 2014 - 04:56 PM

Fading grey to white backdrop is the standard-also next to near full frame of photo.

There has been many a thread on this.

Mark


Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com

#10 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,798 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 31 May 2014 - 05:09 PM

I do not use a graduated backdrop like many people do. I light the piece in such a way that the fade occurs naturally, that is mostly from the top. I use a middle gray paper backdrop, Savage #27 Thunder Gray, which shows up as far lighter in the brightest lit area in front of the pot. I find that using paper lighter in color than that results in too much reflection/glare on the bottom of the pot, since I use a lot of glossy glazes. As for the angle of the shot, for vases and other cylindrical open top forms, I like to have the camera just high enough that I can see the back of the lip of the pot. This helps to show the actual size of the pot, as well as the glaze on the inside of the pot. Too high and perspective gets out of whack. Too low and the same is true, although not as much. The depth of filed must be great enough that the back lip is in focus, too. None of the pot should be out of focus.

 

I agree with Mark that bowls are the worst to shoot. Teabowls with more vertical sides are okay, but shallow bowls are the worst. It's very difficult to light the underside unless you have a graduated backdrop, and in general they make for not-so-exciting photos. A photo of a pot in the vertical format is generally more pleasing to the eye than in the horizontal. Plus bowls are nice for their insides as well as their outsides, and it's very difficult to show that in one photo.


Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#11 Biglou13

Biglou13

    Advanced beginner pottery, Advanced in other art

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,033 posts
  • LocationNorth Florida

Posted 01 June 2014 - 06:20 PM

Thanks all
These were iPhone/ipad quickies
Ill post images with real camera when done.
Caution big brother is watching.
The beige is blinding!!!!!!
The middle of the road is boring

The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination.
-Albert Einstein

#12 Chris Campbell

Chris Campbell

    clay stained since 1988

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,284 posts
  • LocationRaleigh, NC

Posted 02 June 2014 - 09:10 AM

One of the great things about using the standard gradient set up is that your images look the same year after year so you can pull any group of them and they will look great together. Same lighting, same background gives you flexibility.

That said, most shows I've entered allowed two images of each entry. As a judge, i want the best information so I can present a good, solid show.

Chris Campbell
Contemporary Fine Colored Porcelain
http://www.ccpottery.com/

https://www.facebook...88317932?ref=hl

TRY ...   FAIL ...  LEARN ...  REPEAT





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users