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23 accepted for the library. See them all at this link, or by searching for 'bokeh 13' with editorial selected. Judging these does not get any easier.
With the bokeh subject, in seeking a winner, we have looked for images where the blur is aesthetically pleasing and adds to the image overall, as well of course for a image with good lighting, composition etc, and with visual NZ associations (us having been rightly reminded of the importance of this recently in a forum posting).
A short list of images with aesthetically pleasing bokeh elements was initially generated - which unsurprisingly was not very short! So this was reduced further by selecting those with the best photograrphic treatment and NZ associations. After several cuts, 3 remained. Not in those three but with great elements we wanted to commend are the following;
#100468_547 by Alistair Lange with a really nice flow of the colour from the Pohutukawa flower into the bokeh pattern beyond. This was a late removal from the shortlist, when being really fussy about composition.
#102995_468 by Stu Hastie. An image that graps attention and where the bokeh patterns around the highlights work really well with the Christmas decoation subject theme. This one came in and out of the final shortlist a few times, but on balance was considered to have a little too much going on in the image.
#100193_5703 by Michi Kruass. Again this image catches the eye and has nice shadow effects and some soft Bokeh patterns. The team prefer however the more balanced composition and lighting of a similar image of Michi's already in the library.
The shortlisted 3 (the birds have it this month) are as follows;
Graham Prentice's "Mother blackbird feeds 3 chicks in nest". #102325_215 We think most will respect the difficulty of achieving such a wonderful shot of the chicks beaks (in razor sharp focus), with the mother alongside in NZ bush for context.
Some bokeh is there doing its job nicely taking some of the background clutter away and replacing it with an aesthetically pleasing more neutral effect. Great image, and being a bokeh competition it could have won with a bit stronger bokeh effect to further declutter the image, and or other enhancements to composition.
Natalia Duncan's Pohutukawa bloom. #103058_158. Many great Pohutukawa images are received, held and sold.
This bloom image appealed to the team becuase of its very pleasing overall composition, the lighting giving prominence and natural colour to the blooms, and the way the soft and varied bokeh creates an interesting, but non-intrusive background - with some copy (text) placement potential as well. A little someting more would be needed to win, and a touch more grain showing here than ideal.
Ray Salisbury's South Island Bush Robin on Lyell Walkway, Old Ghost Road, Westland #103494_537. The Robin here has a stunningly sharp eye/beak which is what the team almost always look for first in bird images. Along with the great highlights at the top of the eye, the image commands attention, in a way that also suggests potential anthropomorphic interpretation.
The branch provides a good clearly bush context for the bird without clutter, and the expansive bokeh effect with the green Beech forest creating an interesting backgound without grabbing the attention. Well done on being winner this month Ray, $150 goes into your account tonight.
For the main summer mychillybin photo competition, we will run with 3 available subjects, open already, till 5pm on Sunday the 16th February 2014. The 3 subjects are:
1. Kiwi Kai (food)
2. Bivvy or Bach (or between e.g. camping, tramping huts)
3. Summer Selfie. (* see note below)
Big thanks to all those who contributed very helpful ideas on the forum for this subject selection. Hopefully there is something here for every taste, as well as for those who are up to the challenge of producing three sets of 3 great images.
Very importantly, in each case we are looking for compelling photographic treatment, as well as inclusion of subtle or stronger distinctly NZ visual content. Must be new images, not already submitted to mychillybin.
Entries available; up to 3 images per subject, so up to 9 images in total. Please include the subject number or name in the Caption when uploading. Upload sequentially as complete or in 1 batch - your choice.
mychillybin will award 5 prizes as follows;
a. best image in each subject,
b. best set of 3 images (one of each subject)
c. best image in any subject that includes visually observable multi-ethnic, or minority ethnic (i.e. non white) content.
Property releases and model releases, where needed, to be included at time of image entry. Let us know by email if you would like some Keep-It-Real release forms mailed to you.
To avoid a backlog on competition closing, and so we can all enjoy seeing progress, entries will be processed through to being live on site soon after being received unless you include Please Hold in the caption text.
* Selfie - mychillybin is keen to see images submitted in the style of selfies described in the Wikipedia definition, although more traditional self portraits will also be accepted in the competition. Image quality standards clearly need to be maintained given the market we operate in - so take extra care with any mirrors used, and no camera phone images please.
Thanks to Pippa for supplying a quick icon image for this competition.
Sales December 2013
Another December sales record, over 30% higher than any previous December. December payments will be made as per usual in the first few days of January 2014.
Roll on Christmas, New Year and summer days ... looking forward to seeing more great Kiwi images.