4th. Mono Scores & Comments

Hemel Hempstead Photographic Society

4th Monochrome Competition

8Ashridge mistJohn HumphreyA20
10When I’m cleaning windowsPeter CottonA19
23Cuba streetJohn HumphreyA18
9Woman in chairRob HarleyA17
7Shape form and shadowRob HarleyA16
4Dusty bottlesPeter CottonA15
5And all that jazzJohn MarshallA15
17FarmyardVicky SinclairA15
11Logged onJohn MarshallA14
14DramaVicky SinclairA14

1A photo opportunityLinda van GeeneB20
20In loving memoryPhilip ByfordB18
2Old resting PlacePhilip ByfordB17
21Studley CastleRichard AnthonyB17
18Market square KrakowMike MitchellB16
3Stairway to the skylightRichard AnthonyB15
15Margate not VeniceMike MitchellB15
6Armenian priestLinda van GeeneB14

22MillieGraham HutchinsonC19
12The parish churchSue CaseC16
16I dare youBrian HowardC16
24Fly in your eyeGraham HutchinsonC16
13Care to join meBrian HowardC15
19TwistedSue CaseC15

Hemel Hempstead Photographic Society

4th Monochrome Competition


1, A Photo Opportunity

Shadows and highlights well handled, leading the eye through to the Treasury. The people provide scale.

2, Old Resting Place

Lots of texture and the sepia effect is in keeping with the age and condition of the bench. Very close to the edge at the top and may have been “more comfortable” with a little more space.

3, Stairway to the Skylight

It does appear that all the interest is on the left-hand side. If it was possible to move left a little that would help to balance the composition. Adjustment to skew (pull up the right side) would also reduce some of the distortion introduced by the lens. The direct flash has flattened the staircase in the lower half. Where the flash has not reached in the upper section there is more texture and shape.

4, Dusty Bottles

A great subject for monochrome but it does need a better lighting. It appears to be outside and very even light. Some side lighting would bring out the shape of the bottles. Moving in closer would remove the lawn (?) and concentrate on the bottle shapes.

5, And all that Jazz

Studio lighting provides good flesh tones and shape to the face and body. However, we have no “involvement” with the image and the model lacks interest/rapport with the photographer.

6, Armenian Priest

I keep wanting to peek around to the right to see what he is doing! The light is very contrasty – the table (altar?) is over-exposed. If it was possible to photograph from the front then there would have been a great halo lighting affect using the bright sunlight and more involvement with the subject.

7, Shape, Form and Shadow.

The side lighting has produced excellent shape to the body. The lighting does need to extend slightly higher to incorporate the hair/head, as it seems to cut off at shoulder level. The right arm position produces a very angular right shoulder that does not compliment the lines of the body.

8, Ashridge Mist

A great feeling of a gritty, misty day. Interest is held in by the trees at the edge and the central tree dominates. A feeling of space has been created as the trees seem to go further and further back.

9, Woman in Chair

Good control of illumination, the soft lighting providing excellent skin tones and shape to the body. Unfortunately, the model does appear to be staring at the upper corner of the room and doesn’t look comfortable with the pose.

10, When I’m Cleaning Windows

A very unusual angle to photograph and a great character to capture. Lots of involvement with the subject. Need to reduce the brightness of the bottom left corner as it does lead the eye away from the subject. If there is a little more detail to bring out in the shadow areas that would help to separate the man’s body from the background.

11, Logged On

This image does look very uncomfortable for the model and looks though she needs her left hand to hold on. The lighting is fairly flat and therefore doesn’t show the roundness of the body. Her hair is also very untidy and completely hides the face. That can be an interesting approach but, in this image, it looks as though it was taken just before she fell over.

12, The Parish Church

The side three quarter lighting provides a 3D image of the building. The structure and texture are clearly seen. Good support from the tombstones on the right side but the pathway takes us off to the left and away from the church. Toning this down would help. A wide-angle lens has been used producing the converging verticals particularly on the left side. “Straightening” the building would make more comfortable viewing.

13, Care to Join Me

A great character model. Stronger, more directional, lighting would help accentuate the facial characteristics. Perhaps a crop to a landscape format would help concentrate the attention on the face and offered bottle.

14, Drama

The sky is dramatic but the strong foreground prevents the eye travelling through the picture. A lead-in, (path through the grass?), would help to take the viewer into the image.

15, Margate not Venice

Good lead-in lines and structures, yacht and lighthouse, to frame the image. Unfortunately, the lighting was not in favour as the distant shoreline is in shadow. Adding some brightness to the central white building would help to take the eye through to the background area.

16, I Dare You

He does look menacing. Losing some highlight detail due to the bright sunlight conditions. Perhaps a wider aperture would concentrate focus on the head and blur the background a little.

17, Farmyard

The strongest part of the image is the wooden planking as the iron hoops have a similar tone and tend to get lost. It would help if there was strong side lighting producing long hard shadows from the hoops making a much more dynamic image.

18, Market Square, Krakow

The top half of the image is great in that the ornate lamp stands out well against the sky. The lower half becomes confused with the trees, tables etc. A wide aperture would have helped to concentrate the focus on the lamp and blur the background.

19, Twisted

The difficulty in photographing snow, particularly in the UK, is that it needs to be white and preferably sparkly. Cameras tend to underexpose snow and that makes it look grey. The twisted tree is fascinating with its intertwined branches. There is competition with the very dark conifer on the left side and it may be better to make it a square image with the twisted tree the main subject.

20, In loving Memory

This tells a sad story. An overgrown and forgotten plot in the cemetery with the engraved words “In Loving Memory”. Focus very much on the words with the blurred church background. The sepia effect also helps to give it “age” The camera was at a low level to emphasise the engraved words. Perhaps taking the camera a little lower would emphasise the grass in the plot against the building and reduce the “break” between the plot and church?

21, Studley Castle

A very commanding building. A good lead-in from the bottom right. Perhaps crop in a little on the left to the stone pillars as the eye is “pulled” that way by the high contrast of the tree/sky in that area. Enormous amount of detail in the building due to the overall lighting conditions. However, the disadvantage is that we lose the three-dimensional effect/shape of the building. A wide-angle lens has been used and there is some distortion, particularly in the turrets – they should be octagonal.

22, Millie

A very alive and involving image. Taken using window light (see the reflections in the eyes!). The lighting is fairly even and we lose a little of the shape of the face. There appears to be heavy vignetting around the face slightly out of keeping with the youth and vitality of Millie.

23, Cuba Street

A much photographed part of the world. (Trinidad, Cuba?). Good lead-in both along the pavement and the wet centre of the road with some interesting buildings along the way. The lamp/power posts providing a frame on the right side. The cloudy sky supports the image. The lighting is almost “straight-on” and that has reduced the separation of the buildings.

24, Fly in Your Eye

Profile of a sleeping (?) rhino. Focus is directly on the head and the background nicely blurred. The head filling the frame with enough room around it. Perhaps a little crop on the left to remove the rounded knee (?) just breaking into view. The lighting is almost directly overhead and that has prevented the skin texture really showing and it has lost the shape of the animal.