"AUTUMN LEAF" by VICKIE HILL; Grade: Acceptance.
The picture captures a feeling of abandonment, end of the season. The background is nicely diffused in the top right. Unfortunately, in the central left area it is rather bright and distracting.
"BELOW ZERO" by PHIL BLAKELY; Grade: Highly Commended.
It feels cold, and bleak and winter. A slow shutter speed has been used to smooth out the water. I appreciate the way the poles coming in from the top L lead the eye to the distant peaks that are nice and sharp. Possibly there was a case for including a little point of interest in the open stretch of empty water in the central area?
"DISCOVERY" by VALLARIE POHIO; Grade: Highly Commended.
It’s beautifully sharp and well lit. Our eye goes directly to the figure of the little girl discovering stuff on the lake edge. She is perfectly positioned, with plenty of space on the open R side. I just wish we could see her face.
"PORTRAIT OF A POLE DANCER" by SHEREE McBETH; Grade: Honours.
A cheeky title. It’s bold. It has impact. It scores on almost all the A P P L E S elements: Angle of View, a Person, Pattern, good Light, a cheeky Expression and Simplicity.
"SUNSET OVER BENDEMEER" by COLIN WALKINGTON; Grade: Merit.
It captures the feeling of a quiet evening. I think a bit too much has been included. While I appreciate that the clouds and distant trees on the R balance the shape of the trees on the L, my eye tends to jump backwards and forwards between the two. I also think you’ve included a bit too much sky.
"OTHER WORLDLY" by JO BOYD; Grade: Merit.
I appreciate the Angle of View – creating a picture by looking up from a low viewpoint. I enjoy the rich colour and the repetition of circular shapes. The highlight in the bottom L corner is a bit distracting – as is the smaller one, bottom right.
"ARROWTOWN RELIC" by CHRISTOPHER HANSEN; Grade: Highly Commended.
Nice and simple. The bike is clearly a relic. Good that you’ve come in close. To give a bit more impact, I would suggest shooting from an even lower angle.
"RED NOSE DAY" by WAYNE HANSEN; Grade: Highly Commended.
An excellent example of ‘colour-popping’. Humorous. The positioning of the red balloons on an oblique line from top L to bottom R give the image a sense of motion. It could be tidied slightly by toning down further the back of the car on the R edge. Also clip off the bit of highlight stick in the extreme bottom left corner.
"HANDBUILT FOR GOD'S GLORY" by SUE KELLY; Grade: Acceptance.
The large piece of tussock in the front fills about a third of the frame. I would like my eye to be able to travel more easily into the picture. The image is more about the textures of the tussock, the grass, the stones and the slate than the church building, as such.
"FROG ON DANGEROUS WALKABOUT" by COLIN KELLY; Grade: Merit.
Nice and crisp. Positioned well. You’ve correctly placed more space in front than behind, so he has space to move into. The dark shadow beneath the head is a bit of a problem. Consider using flash
"FUNGUS SCULPTURE" by JOHN HARRISON;
The square crop has balanced the light and dark areas. The main problem is lack of sharpness. Very little appears to be in focus. The bottom part, sweeping in from the left, is particularly problematical.
"IPRESSIONISTS VIEW OVER OPHIR GORGE" by PETER BARBER; Grade: Highly Commended.
I assume you used a post-production treatment that makes the picture look like a painting. The distribution of light is subtle. I’m particularly curious about the distribution of light on the sheep (bottom L).
"EYE ON YOU" by LYNLEY FOOTE;
I like the title. The image is nice and crisp and there are no distracting elements. However, in photographic competitions you must avoid being accused of copying someone else’s artwork. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t photograph sculptures etc but you need to add something of yourself.
"ON THE LOOKOUT" by ALISON METHERELL; Grade: Merit.
Good title. He’s well positioned in the frame. The background is fairly well diffused, though a bit bright directly behind his head. You’ve done well to get some light in the eyes. The head is not as as sharp as it needs to be. I suspect he may be moving.
"REFLECTIONS OF PAST" by SANDRA DAN; Grade: Highly Commended.
Appeals for its bold colour. Its square format adds to the boldness. There are lots of potential pictures here.
"INTO THE DISTANCE" by SARAH SMITH; Grade: Honours.
You’ve captured the stillness of the lake on a cool morning. My eye goes down the wharf to the peaks beyond. The irregularity of the vertical struts adds interest. As does the subtle pink of the water towards the top right. You made the right decision to minimise the bald sky.
"NYMPH OUT OF WATER" by PHILIP GREEN;
The creature is very small and occupies only a small proportion of the picture space. I’m afraid almost nothing is sharp. I suspect you were experiencing a bit of camera shake.
"WALL" by MISAO ANDERSON; Grade: Acceptance.
Whenever you have writing in a picture, it will grab the eye. Once I get beyond that, I find quite a pleasant balance between the solid grey block on the right and the lighter block, on the left. The vine usefully breaks up the lighter area. I don’t think the image is helped by the bits of metal in the bottom right corner.
"SPECIAL MOMENT" by CHRISSIE VISSER; Grade: Honours.
An emotional image. You’ve done well to come in so close. There are no unnecessary elements. The hand adds to the feeling of affection. As does the fact that the horse’s eye is closed. I’d love to be able to see the person’s eye.
"WAITING FOR THE TIDE" by BILL WRIGLEY; Grade: Merit.
Conveys mood and feeling. I welcome the inclusion of a person. The figure and boat are well positioned. The horizon is running down on the right. The sky occupies more space than it merits.
"ATTRACTED TO LAVENDER" by TAMSIN GORMAN; Grade: Honours.
Love the oblique lines of the lavender. I feel they are blowing in the wind (though I think you’ve actually photographed or cropped them on an angle). The depth of field is well selected, so the background is impressionistic, while you’ve focused attention on the bee, which is in a strong position.
"TRANQUILIT Y." by VALLARIE POHIO; Grade: Highly Commended.
A slow shutter speed has given a silky feeling to the water. You have also used a high f stop that gives good sharpness from the foreground to the background. The composition is pleasing. My eye moves into the picture and wanders down the stream in the middle-distance.