Wow! What a week I had down in London attending The Societies Convention 2018 held in the Hilton Metropole in Paddington! The Convention is a must in my business diary as its 5 days packed with learning, networking and awards! I’ve been lucky to have been nominated twice before for Baby Photographer of the Year however this year I never entered the competitions regularily enough to warrant a nomination, however I did enter the 20″ x 16″ International Print Competition which attracts 1000’s of entries from all over the world
I entered 3 images which were printed by my preferred professional printing lab, The Print Foundry, however I didn’t actually see the prints beforehand as they were sent straight from lab to the Societies HQ, so I had no idea how the images would look once printed up and mounted. I needn’t have worried as The Print Foundry are meticulous with their standards of presentation and printing and the images looked outstanding!
Wednesday and Thursday were devoted to the Print Competition where there are several rooms running different categories of Prints from the Wedding Category and Portrait Category both having sub-categories within them. The prints are then judged live by panels of 5 Fellowship Judges for criteria such as Impact, Creativity, Composition, Lighting & Colour Balance, Technical Excellence, Technique and Storytelling. Each image is then scored out of 100 using an International Scoring System. Image scoring starts from 75 for images that are deemed to be above average. Images from 80-84 are Merit, 85-89 are Excellent, 90-94 are Outstanding and 95-100 are Exceptional. The image below is from The Societies facebook page and it shows how the images are displayed to the judges with a specialist lightbox for viewing. Judges are free to sit and look at the images or get up and look closer if they wish, however they are not allowed to touch the prints.
I was in the judging room when my images were being viewed and I was able to hear the panel of 5 judges from the UK & USA (all Fellowship photographers themselves, 3 being Masters and 1 a Grand Master!) discuss the qualities of the images individually and hear the scores being read out by the Chairman of the panel. I was over the moon when I learnt my images scored 80, 85 & 86 points, placing them in the Merit & Excellent scoring range. Images over the magical merit score of 80 are placed in the foyers of the Hilton for visitors to the Convention to view as they walk from Trade Show to Masterclasses. In the photography world its deemed an honour for your image to be “hung on the wall” so to have 3 out of 3 of my images displayed was a very proud moment for me. The photo below, again from The Societies facebook page shows one of my images of Amy hung on the wall, the other 2 are around the far side on opposing walls.
I’m sure you’ve all seen these images already but here they are again….for the final time! I am looking forward to developing this style although maybe not so avant garde, toning it down but still creating beautiful images of children and families that will be timeless and elegant, to be hung on the wall and admired.
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