Colin Franks: I'm often perplexed at what wins in photo contests.
I will agree that they are not the best I've seen. But, did you see the entries? Does this contest require a fee? Yes, you do make a valid point - I probably would not stop and look at some of these photos. But, I still don't like that you and other call them "horrible." It just seems like every time there's actual photography featured on this site, there's a ton of comments about how "poor" or "horrible" the images are, etc.
Colin, I do understand your point of view. You disagree with the judges, I get it. I just think it's arrogant to call the work of others "horrible." I like the photo with the crooked horizon. I like most of the shots that won.
Colin, I read it. And, I disagree. Calling another image "horrible" requires some credibility (besides being disrespectful and ignorant). What you consider "jaw-dropping," credible judges probably consider rote. A "great" image is defined by much more than if it has "crooked horizons."
I'm often perplexed by clearly amateur photographers who feel it's okay to call winning images from a well respected contest (with very qualified judges) "horrible" without any reasoning. That's especially true when the criticism is coming from someone who specializes in generic bird photos, sunsets, and other cliche images. Do I love everyone of the winning images? No. Do I understand why they won? Yes.
spencerda: Hi all,
Enjoyed the video. Bit of a puff piece. Would any pro really use instead of a full frame for their own paid work? Is the Fuji any better or worst than say the Oly 10 or what ever is the competing model? Anyway I did enjoy.
Own the XT-1, do mostly travel and landscape work, still trying to get the best from the camera. Great Jpegs best I have seen. Canon Jpegs suck big time.Still need to find a good Raw converter, any advise is appreciated. As a long time Canon user always shot and worked with Raw.
I'm a professional. I use Fuji. It replaced an entire 5DII kit.
arvivaz: To the Apple Haters and the Shamsuckers, so sorry but it's a given. Just as the iPhone became the template for smartphones, and the iPad became the same for the tablet, the Apple Watch will most likely end up being the product template for the rest of the smartwatch industry to copy. The look and feel, the level of integration, the ability to do so many things, etc. will influence their product design and content. And Shamsung, which in the past couple years have been trying their darndest to predict the next big thing and as usual lose its pants due to a crisis of vision, will have found inspiration in the Apple Watch. And, like with a bad habit, develop a timepiece that's practically a clone of Apple's product. They are probably hours into the meeting right now measuring screen captures of Apple's new toy.
@Thatcannonguy - do you have a point? Are you saying somehow that all watches are the same because they all give you the same time? Good grief.
@Sonyalphashooter - yes, I watched the video. How old are you? Do you have a job in the business world? It's already annoying enough when people can't even hold a conversation with you without looking at their phone every 2 minutes...so, now we are all going to be sitting in meeting looking at our watches every few seconds??! Great.
Of course, "give me an Oris, Rolex, Omega, etc." is my own opinion. But, really, the extreme minority?? I think "regular" watches currently outsell smart watches by a wide margin. But, we'll see.
Does anyone really want one of these smart watches? I have multiple iPhones and iPads, laptops, cameras, and I wear a Jawbone UP. These smart watches are redundant feature wise. And, nothing beats a high end, classy timepiece. Give me an Oris, vintage Rolex, Omega, etc. I'd be embarrassed to walk into a room if everyone had the same watch. What's next, the iShoe?
More predictable than the sun rising, the collection of people here calling someone else's work nonsense and worthless. Probably the same people who walk into a modern art museum claiming, "I can do this...what's the big deal?" Well, here's the thing: you did NOT do it. Someone else did, and this is the case here, too. Maybe one day your pictures of puppies, cute kids, sunsets, and flower macros will be in an art gallery, but until then, try to be more respectful and understanding. Maybe you'll actually learn something.
Dylthedog: Interesting selection - the perception of photos is definitely changing. I'm struggling with #7 as the winner for landscapes though.
Do you mean to say the single image #7 isn't interesting, or do you not find all 12 of his images in the portfolio interesting, along with the context of "examining the relations between the natural world and the man-made in a land that has been so dramatically changed over the course of history"?
Jeff Seltzer: Unfortunately, as usual, too many of the below comments and replies got personal. Let's talk about photography, instead. So, for all you folks that are calling the images "crap" and "ordinary" or "nothing special." Let's understand why? Remember, these images are from a series. The judges were not evaluating them individually, but rather as a project - so it seems fair you should evaluate them in the same way. That said, let's take a look at the "Photographer of the Year" Sara Naomi Lewkowicz. What about her project is "crap" for you? Why do you feel she didn't deserve the top honor for her project on domestic violence?
Thanks for proving my point.
mcshan: Whenever DPR posts a story about photos winning awards it is always the same handful out here that wrap their arms around the results and lecture others on how to define art. Art is very subjective. Award winning? Milli Vanilli won a Grammy as best new artist in part for their singing.
If the "award" in this story was titled "best Photo by a Soccer Mom" would the photos be heralded in the same way? I am not so sure.
It is nice that Sony gives out awards but in the end it really doesn't mean much.
jkoh2 - not sure what your point is?? Can you clarify?
Inframan - you make a valid point. If you Google her name, you will see many blog entries, etc. addressing this issue. It's something lots of people have discussed.
By the way, in addition to being recognized by Sony, Sara Lewkowicz's work has been published Time Magazine, Stern, L’Espresso, Das Magazin (Switzerland), Opzij (The Netherlands), Claudia (Brazil), Days Japan, Internatzionale, Politiken (Denmark), the Baltimore Sun, and numerous other magazines and newspapers. She has won several grants and awards, including the 2013 Alexia Student Grant, first place in contemporary issues in World Press Photo and the 2013 Ville de Perpignan Remi Ochlik Award, and she has been named the 2013 College Photographer of the Year by CPOY.
MAYBE you ought to at least pay a little attention to the "handful" of people here...or at least give an explanation as to why you don't think Sara deserves to be honored by Sony. I guess that's my problem - lots of people saying "crap" but few people giving a reasonable argument as to why it's crap.
jkoch2: If I had to pick the "best" of 140,000 photos, I confess I might have to start by dumping 99.9% to reduce the heap to the 25 to 50 that my poor mind might be able to assess with care. So, yes, I would probably throw out all the pictures of pets, wild animals, muscle autos, cycles, air shows, seacoasts, weapons, flowers, sports, sunsets, touchdowns, and whatnot that the DOWG* crowd savors, but whose culinary equivalent would be a Big Mac with fries.
Art, like religion, pierces complacency and makes us humble.
But let's also be honest that most photography is staged, selective, and impossible to separate from bias and the whim of taste. No different than music, food, or camera brands.
* Disgruntled Old Wood Guys
I don't disagree - of course, it's subjective. But, it's still surprising how quick many below dismiss the winning images as "crap" and "ordinary" without any real understanding of the projects themselves. Judged in isolation, I agree that some of the shots look like snapshots. But, so do some of the most important/impactful images in the history of photography. I just got back from Paris where there was a large exhibition of Henri Cartier-Bresson. If you take one of his images in isolation, it's easy to say "gee, I could have taken that." But, viewed as a body of work, most come to a very different conclusion. It does make me upset (unfortunately) that so many amateurs on this site are so dismissive of working professional's work. They should stop, slow down, and try to appreciate a little more.
Unfortunately, as usual, too many of the below comments and replies got personal. Let's talk about photography, instead. So, for all you folks that are calling the images "crap" and "ordinary" or "nothing special." Let's understand why? Remember, these images are from a series. The judges were not evaluating them individually, but rather as a project - so it seems fair you should evaluate them in the same way. That said, let's take a look at the "Photographer of the Year" Sara Naomi Lewkowicz. What about her project is "crap" for you? Why do you feel she didn't deserve the top honor for her project on domestic violence?
Photoman: Some of the images are alright to good, but the rest are bland like butter. Photography should invoke emotion and some of these images don't invoke any emotion (good or bad) in me at all.
Go to the website and view the series for each. Look at the first image, for example. Not very exciting, right? Now, check out the entire series and tell me it's not emotional. Take some time. DPR is doing a disservice by just posting one "representative" image from each series. Remember, these are working photojournalists and documentary photographers being honored not just for a single image, but for a PROJECT.
Jeff Seltzer: It's really so unbelievable how many people don't get it. These images are not winners because they are beautiful, technically perfect photos. They are images from a series. The first image, for example, Sara Naomi Lewkowicz, is a well regarded photojournalist that as documenting domestic violence. Just look at many Pulitzer winning images - would you necessarily want them hanging on your wall because they are beautiful? If you want technically perfect images of sunsets, etc., then look elsewhere. The second image from Ludovic Maillard - he's a well regarded professional with a long CV including dozens of exhibitions. His images are not meant to be decor. Those criticizing these images as "ordinary" should AT LEAST do a little homework and research. Really, embarrassing for you.
That's your problem - you don't care. My assumption is that you just browsed the representative images that DPR posted vs. actually going to the website and trying to understand why these WORKING PROFESSIONALS were honored. But, my guess is, as you say, you don't care.
babart: This is the reason I rarely enter photo contests. What were the judges smoking?
Those complaining about negative comments must be art reviewers. Many of these photos are very ordinary, if not surprisingly bad. So what if they're part of a "series?" They're still not good. There are some quality images, but the architecture and landscape shots make me wonder what was going on at the judging.
This is why you don't enter contests? I'm sorry, are you a professional photojournalist or documentary photographer? If not, you would't even be eligible to enter this category. If you were, you would understand why these won.