RickBuddy

RickBuddy

Lives in United States Benton Harbor USA, MI, United States
Works as a Writer
Joined on Dec 27, 2009
About me:

I've worked in advertising agencies for over 30 years, as a writer, art director and
creative director.

I enjoyed photography as a child. After a prostate cancer dx this fall, I made a
commitment to enjoy life more. I quit putting off what I enjoy, and I am here to learn
how to improve so I can enjoy photography more.

I have a very good design sense -- at least the awards in the books and on the walls
seem to confirm it. But I am very poor technically as a photographer.

I learned a lot with my companion Argus C-3 and a darkroom as a kid. Light, density
and that kind of stuff. But forgot a lot, too. Digital cameras baffle me. I put mine on
'M' and don't bother much with the tomfoolery. BUT, I love manual white balance.

I have friends who help me learn stuff. I read a lot. And I'm dedicated to working hard
to improve. I supervise shoots (studio and field) and sometimes I model, so I know
how hard photographers work.

I own a Nikon D90 and I'm learning and purchasing equipment.

I approach the challenges as class assignments. I don't have a big portfolio of photos
to rely on. I had a lifetime of photos, along with a few thousand taken from a year's
sabbatical on the road, stolen from me.

That is OK. I am here to learn. I always take constructive criticism well. Except when I
don't.

I hope to make a lot of friends here and share information and some good shots.

Comments

Total: 53, showing: 41 – 53
« First‹ Previous123Next ›Last »
On Watching the clouds in the Day Dreaming challenge (24 comments in total)

doady wrote:

> Why should you actively give a neutral rating? A neutral rating means you go out of your way not affect the final outcome. Then why vote at all?

Doady,

You do affect the vote.

My understanding is that the rating is a statistical interpretation of the results, which allows the scoring to account for the varying number of votes each photo gets.

In essence, the voting is a poll. The more votes a photo gets, the more accurate the poll is in representing the collective feeling on how the photo should be graded.

The form of statistics they appear to use (Bayesian Statistics) is based on a calculation that starts with an assumed value. I believe that value is 2.5 -- the mean between 0 and 5, middle of the Bell curve, it is what it is, a starting point. Scores above and below that score move the score up or down. Eventually, if votes show otherwise, the assumed score becomes practically irrelevant and final score appears.

A 2.5 vote could be considered an "endorsement" of the starting value (an assumption that all photos are average until proven otherwise).

If I understand Bayesian Statistics correctly (and it has been a long time since I took stat and its second cousin marketing research) the calculation is done on a running basis, where each vote is calculated against the original assumption to create a new value.

As for not having a zero vote, hmmmm, maybe it's because zeros do funny things in math calculations: zero times five equals zero, zero times a bajillion is zero -- forever.

And point-fives? In numerators they will half a value -- OUCH!

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 5, 2010 at 16:50 UTC as 2nd comment
On Watching the clouds in the Day Dreaming challenge (24 comments in total)

I could not edit the post, I meant it reduced the value of the confidence, which in turn reduced the score.

--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 5, 2010 at 02:09 UTC as 13th comment
On Watching the clouds in the Day Dreaming challenge (24 comments in total)

Steve Throndson wrote:
> Buckshot,
>
> I have read DPR's 'voting tips' - several times.
>
> What I still don't know is this - does the total number of votes affect the outcome?
>
> Seems a simple enough question - Anybody know?
>
> . . . Steve
>

Yes, according to the description, the total number of votes does affect the outcome. It is a variable that is described as a "confidence". Confidence is a term used in statistics that describes a variance from a predicted outcome.

(I believe somebody once commented the mathematics used is called Bayesian statistics -- wiki describes it)

For our purposes, I think I'm safe to say you can consider it form of a weighted average.

There may be a basic assumption that all photographs are weighted at the mean value of 2.5, and as a statistical formula proves otherwise, then the number moves either upward and downward from the mean.

In the recent Butterfly Challenge, the winning score was 3.457, but the average score tallied up to 3.478. A few low-value votes on the lower side of the mean value pulled the average down. They may be considered statistical anomalies but they were enough to reduce the "confidence" in the higher score.

As for my voting, average photos get the median score of 2.5. Outstanding photographs get a 5.0. Bad snaps from group tours to see wild animals get 0.5.

As for photos of cats. I am highly allergic to cats.

RB

--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Apr 5, 2010 at 01:58 UTC as 14th comment
On Light House at 6F in the Best of the Nikon D90 challenge (3 comments in total)

2thdr wrote:
> Congratulations on a beautiful picture. I took notice when we were commenting on the DQ competition. Will be looking for more of your shots.

Thank you, 2thdr very much for the kind words.

It's great to have a fan. If you are ever in the area, come over and visit. I'm new and I bet I could learn a lot from you.

I am working very hard. People are very generous here with valuable tips and photo inspiration (and sometimes B. S.!).

I'll admit, I read the forums in the days before this shot and learned a lot about how to shoot the moon. I did not sleep that night because I did not want to miss the opportunigy. I got there early, too. Kid at Christmas.

I think it is appropriate this photo did well in the "Best of the D90" just because the camera worked flawlessly for over an hour in 6F cold. I could not feel my fingers when I pressed the shutter to start the timer for this shot! Batteries did well, too.

This is a popular site. Right after I took the shot a dozen others showed up and started to set up their tripods. But the moon dove into the cloud and everyone else missed it.

Some things I learned is shooting takes hard work, warm mittens and showing up in time for the magic.

Like Sam Goldwyn said, "The harder I work, the luckier I get."

Have a great day!

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 23, 2010 at 00:06 UTC as 2nd comment
On Pier #1 in the Disqualified entries only! challenge (2 comments in total)

I think there were many good photos in there. I look at the good ones that did not place as well and smile and think I must be getting better.

I have the same feelings with this photo as you have with your bus stop photo (which I really like alot). Not many people like this as well as others, but I really do. The girl in the white jacket cracks me up.

I gave your photo a good grade. I like it, plus I added a grade to any photo that reflected the spirit of the challenge, but got DQd on a ticky-technicality. Your canyon photo was surely about walking.

Keep shootin' and keep smilin'!

RB

--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 17, 2010 at 03:21 UTC as 1st comment
On Melt in the Winter details challenge (4 comments in total)

I appreciate the comment, bulldog.

I tried a few singles, and they bored me.

This shot reflected my mood and the day. We'd gone over a month without seeing the sun, it had been cold and it snowed heavily every day.

Then the sun came out and everything started to melt. The staccato of dripping was everywhere. Near, far, everywhere.

I wanted to catch that feeling and I really thought I did.

Thank you.

RB
bulldog213 wrote:
> For what its worth I like the shot...maybe just just one with a drip coming off would have scored higher ...but again I think good overall pic...
>

--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 3, 2010 at 01:27 UTC as 2nd comment
On The Squad in the 'Birds Of A Feather Flock Together' challenge (7 comments in total)

Spring,

You missed the tongue I had firmly planted in my cheek.

You may have also missed my commentary on the winner. It had two seagulls voiding themselves as they took of into, into what? Yes a sunset.

Nice photo, but I mark down for that kind of stuff, unless it's for a DPs funniest bloopers challenge.

Remember in first grade where all the girls drew v-shaped birds in the sunset? People still vote photos that way.

;)

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 3, 2010 at 01:20 UTC as 2nd comment
On The Squad in the 'Birds Of A Feather Flock Together' challenge (7 comments in total)

I'm going to have to disagree with you, respectfully.

After following the challenges for a while it very much fits the rules of the challenge and the way folks vote.

First the rules: There are some birds and they are together. Boom. Done.

Compare that to the migrating animals challenge, where the host wanted large groups of animals. The winning entry had three animals. THREE, Nice photo, but it's been a while since I regarded three as a large number.

Next Voting: Does it have a sunset or a landscape in the background? Those get big votes. Both this entry and the migrating animals had them.

Sunsets. Landscapes. Nothing else matter. Relax.

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Feb 3, 2010 at 00:40 UTC as 4th comment
On Melt in the Winter details challenge (4 comments in total)

I've had lesser photos place a lot higher.

I have objects over three feet apart on two different lines. I wanted to get some in and some out of focus.

I got a bunch of .5s, 1s, heck most under 2.5 here.

This was a detail challenge and landscapes placed higher.

I just don't understand it.

RB

Direct link | Posted on Feb 3, 2010 at 00:13 UTC as 4th comment
On Seagull Sunrise in the 'Birds Of A Feather Flock Together' challenge (8 comments in total)

One of the problems I have with lens jockeys -- and I'm using this to differentiate them from photographers -- is that they don't know the subjects they are shooting.

This is an excellent example.

The subject is "Birds of a Feather"; people were allowed to draw outside the lines and include like things other than birds. But if you shoot birds, then you better know their habits.

Some behaviors cannot be prevented, but they can be predicted. And the behavior of gulls taking off is very predictable. Kids will say, "Get a room!" I say, "At least use clone tool."

People -- VOTERS -- at least look at the large view of the shot when voting. Understand what you are looking at. Resist the temptation to lose your mind over a pretty sun or moon, and really take a look at the subject matter. Ask yourself, "Can I see it? What do I see?"

I know this is going to hurt a lot of feelings at a lot of "camera clubs", but why don't you look past the f-stops, lens profiles and histograms and actually look at what people are seeing.

I see guano falling from the sky here.

Unless this is submitted to an article on the evacuation habits of sea birds, this photo is unpublishable.

Don, I don't mean to rain on your parade here; the birds are doing worse. The bird on the upper left, and a bird on the upper right: both are defecating.

There were some very good photos with birds in them in this challenge, and those did not have bird poop.

A spade is a spade. The king wears no clothes. Crap is crap.

RB

Direct link | Posted on Jan 30, 2010 at 04:20 UTC as 8th comment
On Lonely bench in Finland in the Chairs, with an artistic effect challenge (9 comments in total)

Challenges admin wrote:
> http://www.dpreview.com/challenges/downloadoriginal.aspx?id=0205875
> *Series:* A bit of everything
> *Challenge:* Chairs, with an artistic effect
> *Entry:* Lonely bench in Finland
> *Entry by:* malextrolli
>
> http://www.dpreview.com/challenges/Entry.aspx?ID=205875

Yes that is your opinion.

As I read through the rules on a lot of challenges I'll see they require cropping and standard PP only and emphasize "NO HDR!"

All those rules would lead me to believe that HDR is an artistic effect. On my own I believe it to be.

Also looking at the shadows cast in the snow and the focus of the bench, it seems like there may be some layering, blur and opacity settings changed to emphasize a wistful, lonely feeling.

I may be wrong.

I see your point, however it seems like the host and many voters disagree. Stuff like that happens.

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Jan 28, 2010 at 20:20 UTC as 3rd comment
On Ecce, Homo Sapiens in the Knowledge challenge (6 comments in total)

Valentino Antonio wrote:
> What I would like to know is WHY 7 people gave this image .5 . . . at the very least 1 . . but .5!? If you look at the eyes ( the stare he gives) and the fact that he looks worn. He's savvy he has been around, and his worn look and stare gives an idea that he has been around and not fooled as easily. It's knowledge earned not from a book but by living. . . . . and to give it .5??????

Ahhh, Valentino,

Your last sentence may contain a clue.

I gave your photo a much higher score than a .5.

I think it is a much better photo technically than the one I shot -- much, much better. And I think it would have scored much higher in any of the portrait challenges.

I saw what you were doing, but did the masses?

In the USA, your statement that this fellow without book learning is a knowledgeable man may be taken as a political statement. Art and politics don't mix well.

There are people in the USA who are accused of being stupid because they are educated. Showing somebody who appears wise, but uneducated may remind many educated people in the USA of Katrina, 9-11 and double-digit unemployment -- all brought about by a philosophy that some could interpret as represented in your photo: "You got's book learnin'? Why youse a stupid, elitist, liberal, pro-terrurist, commie!"

Good art is not always popular art.

RB
--
Enjoying life one moment at a time.

Direct link | Posted on Jan 19, 2010 at 04:16 UTC as 5th comment
On Ready, Willing & Abel in the Knowledge challenge (1 comment in total)

Well that was certainly an intellectually challenging challenge, eh?

My hats off to the winner with the "Stepping Up" photo. That is a very, very good photograph and and excellent concept. Excellent! It reminded me of Sir Isaac Newton's quote about standing on the shoulders of giants.

I entered the, "Ready, Willing & Abel" photo at the last moment. I did not have time to add a comment. So I will now. OK?

Like I indicated, it was a very intellectual subject. My score for my photo: High concept. Crappy Photo. Don't disagree with the voters. Surprised that it placed in the top third. Thank you especially to the people who voted on concept on this!

I work as a Creative Director and knew this was a difficult subject. I knew there were going to be some great ideas by great photographers, and there would be some expected ideas by some excellent photographers (just look at the repeated themes), so if I would place anywhere near the top I would have to have a good idea. My skills are limited. I'd all but given up on entering.

Until ...

Five-O-Five EST, with less than two hours until deadline, I get the idea driving home from work. Hmmm. Movie blood needs red dye, corn syrup and chocolate sauce. I need Red Delicious apples and I eat Galas. Need to shop. Oh, and I don't have seamless, but weren't we doing a mock-up at work with some white plastic film? Drive back to work, pull stuff out of trash. Drive to store and buy supplies.

It's Six, with an hour to go.

First, I mix up the blood. My wife is a surgical nurse. "Honey does this look like blood?" She says it has to be darker. I learn too late that surgery blood and photo shoot blood are two different things.

"Honey, where are my lights? I haven't seen them since we cleaned the garage in October (Cancer dx in October and I lost track of everything for a while). Can't find the lights. Use workshop halogens hung from basement rafters with duct tape. Jeez, they are throwing hot spots. I have no soft boxes. "Honey, have you seen my diffusion gels?" No answer. I'm going to have to overexpose and pray.

I have only one decent lens. A fast, cheap 50 mm I got for Christmas. I figure f 5.6 would put me in the sweet spot of the lens. 1/150 to 1/500 exposure. I set up with an unbitten apple and I'm close.

It's Six-thirty. Thirty minutes until deadline. The 50 isn't working. I can't get the angle right. The only thing I have is the kit 18-105. I hate that lens and it hates me. At least we agree. I should stop down more with this lens, but forget. So I throw a few shots down and I'm hating the glare on the upper side of the apple, plus I'm blowing out the highlights in the bite.

I check the LCD and the composition looks right, but the photo needs something and I'm too dumb to know what that something is. It's 6:50. I have ten minutes to PP and convert to J-Peg. I do some minor corrections, but don't have time to correct all my errors..

Go with what you have. Jeez, I'd like to deal with that flare. That bite could be higher. That blood looks crappy. I throw the RAW photo into Image Ready to make sure the final is under 1 meg, hit the dpreview button on the bookmark and hit enter. It's 6:59 EST, 11:59 GMT.

So, given the time, what would you have done differently?

I'm here to learn.

BTW, post-surgical cancer prognosis is pretty good. I should have some time to learn a few things.

RB

Direct link | Posted on Jan 19, 2010 at 03:43 UTC as 1st comment
Total: 53, showing: 41 – 53
« First‹ Previous123Next ›Last »