2018 Topic Guidelines (draft)

Introduction

Every month we have the following topics available. You can enter 4 photos per month into any of these sections;

  1. Topic of the Month
  2. Technique of the Month
  3. Open Manipulated
  4. Open Not Manipulated

General Rules

  1. Our Conditions of Entry will apply. If you submit an image, it indicates you agree to these conditions.

Open Manipulated

Topic

  • An open and pictorial topic.
  • This section is intended to allow any method of post processing on an image, and to allow multiple photographs to be combined into a single image.

Not Allowed

  • No special rules apply to this section.

Allowed

  • Any manipulation is allowed.

Beginner Tips

  • Ideas: travel, portraiture, landscapes, fashion, architecture.
  • When photographing people or pets, it is important that the eyes are in sharp focus.
  • Be aware of how to compose a good picture. Read more here.

Open Not Manipulated

Topic

  • An open and pictorial topic, with special rules that limit the kind of post processing that is allowed.
  • Some popular genres of photography, such as Photojournalism and Wildlife, have limitations on the kinds of post processing that is allowed. This section is intended to cater to this.

Not Allowed

  • Any adding or removing of pixels. E.g. No cloning or modifying of individual pixels. (Cropping is allowed. Removing dust spots is allowed.)
  • HDR or stacking.
  • Do not change the story or remove elements of the picture by cloning pixels (You may remove dust spots only).

Allowed

  • Crop and rotate the image.
  • Clone out minor imperfections such as dust spots.
  • Levels and contrast.
  • Saturation or desaturation.
  • Borders are allowed.
  • Sharpening.
  • Dodge and burn.

Beginner Tips

  • When photographing a wild animal, you should not show man-made objects (such as roads). Radio collars or identification tags are acceptable.

2017 Topic Guidelines

Introduction

Every month we have the following topics available. You can enter 4 photos per month, and a maximum of 2 of those entries into one topic;

  1. Topic of the Month
  2. Technique of the Month
  3. Open
  4. Manipulated Nature
  5. Wildlife
  6. Macro / Close-Up
  7. Creative / Altered Reality
  8. Photo Journalism / Sport

General Rules

  1. Our Conditions of Entry will apply. If you submit an image, it indicates you agree to these conditions.

Open

Topic

  • An open and pictorial topic.

Not Allowed

  • Anything that would be better suited to another topic. E.g. Rather put your bird picture into the Nature topic.

Allowed

  • Any manipulation is allowed.

Beginner Tips

  • Ideas: travel, portraiture, landscapes, fashion, architecture.
  • When photographing people or pets, it is important that the eyes are in sharp focus.
  • Be aware of how to compose a good picture. Read more here.

Manipulated Nature

Topic

  • The subject is an animal or plant in a natural-looking environment.
  • This topic is similar to the Wildlife topic, but it is more relaxed.

Not Allowed

  • Hybrid plants, like roses or orchids.
  • Domestic animals like pets or farm animals.

Allowed

  • You can freely edit your photo, including removing pixels by cloning, etc.
  • You are allowed to show man-made objects, e.g. roads or tracks. Be aware that some judges might prefer if these elements are not prominent in your picture.
  • Captive animals (zoo) are allowed, but don’t show the cage.
  • Radio collars or similar man-made conservation tags.
  • Landscapes which do not include man-related objects such as fences, tractors, sheep.

Beginner Tips

  • Don’t crop off part of the animal (e.g. tail).
  • Better to have a good pic of an ordinary animal than an out-of-focus pic of a rare animal.
  • Be careful of pics of tiny animals or plants – might be better placed under Macro.

Wildlife

Topic

  • The subject is an animal or plant living free and unrestrained in a natural environment.
  • This topic is similar to Manipulated Nature, but it is more strict. The aim is to photograph an animal or plant in the wild, and to strictly limit what editing has been done to the image.

Not Allowed

  • Any humans or anything man-made, even roads or tracks.
  • Hybrid plants, like roses or orchids.
  • Domestic animals like pets or farm animals.
  • Captive animals (zoo) are not allowed.
  • Photo editing rules are quite strict. No adding or removing pixels. (Cropping is okay. Removing dust spots is okay.).

Allowed

  • Radio collars or similar man-made conservation tags.

Beginner Tips

  • Don’t crop off part of the animal (e.g. tail).
  • Better to have a good pic of an ordinary animal than an out-of-focus pic of a rare animal.
  • Be careful of pics of tiny animals or plants – might be better placed under Macro.

Macro / Close-Up

Topic

  • Photograph something tiny to show us the beauty in the details.

Not Allowed

  • The subject needs to be something small that has been enlarged to bigger than life size. It can be an animal or plant or something man-made.
  • No inserting of other subjects/objects into the picture.

Allowed

  • Any manipulation is allowed.

Beginner Tips

  • Ideas: insects, flowers, machine parts.
  • When insects, it is important that the eyes are in sharp focus.
  • Use a flash – it makes the animal must easier to capture.

Creative / Altered Reality

Topic Includes

  • Fine Art photography, which aims to evoke an emotion or feeling in the viewer. You have aimed to express yourself rather than realistically capturing a subject.
  • Create an image by altering reality in an obvious manner. You can use any method in camera or in post-processing, but the result should still have photographic content. The aim should be to create a new image that embodies a concept, or that conveys a specific feeling, a message, or a story.
  • Read more here.

Not Allowed

  • Any elements that you combine in your photograph must be created by you. You can’t use clip-art or similar sources created by others.

Allowed

  • Any manipulation is allowed.

Beginner Tips

  • For Altered Reality, manipulation of the image is key to success.

Photo Journalism / Sport

Topic

  • Record an event in an objective and narrative way.

Not Allowed

  • Any adding or removing of pixels. E.g. No cloning or modifying of the image (Cropping is allowed. Removing dust spots is allowed.).
  • HDR or stacking.

Allowed

  • Sports events, news stories.

Beginner Tips

  • Black and White popular, but not compulsory. Increase the contrast to make your blacks black and whites white (but don’t blow-out your whites too much!).
  • In this topic, a pic that tells a great story is rewarded, even if not the best technically. But get your basics right.

Giba Gorge Outing

On Saturday morning we went in search of waters edge at Giba Gorge. After a short hike to find the waterfall, we split up to see what shots we could find. We are on the look out for “waters edge” ideas because of our inter-club challenge vs Bluff Camera Club. Afterwards, a great breakfast and coffee!
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Fungi – Outing to Vumbuka

Our club topic for February is “Fungi”. So we headed out into nature to try and find some mushrooms. We went to Vumbuka, a little known nature reserve near Amanzimtoti. It was hot, but we had a good time strolling around looking in the undergrowth!
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Change of Venue! Change of Day!

As was announced at our meeting last night, from January 2016 we will be moving to a new venue! And we will be changing from Tuesday to Wednesday night!

The new venue is: Kloof Country Club in the Malcolm Holdsworth Room.

Digital Evening will be on the 2nd Wednesday of the month, and Photo Evening will be on the 4th Wednesday of the month.

Our next meeting will be a Photo Evening on 27 January 2016.

Bluff vs Highway Club Challenge – “Shadows”

A year ago, Highway Camera Club issued a challenge to Bluff Camera Club for a friendly inter-club competition. The topic was “Shadows” – which turned out to be a difficult topic! Each club had to select 20 images (with no more than 3 images from the same photographer), to be judged by external judges.

The evening was a success! Snacks, laughs and fun.

The final result was a win for Highway, with a total score of 182. Bluff achieved a total of 142.

The judges Best Image was awarded to Keith Rein for his image, “Arrowhead”.

In reply, Bluff has issued a new challenge for 2016, “The Waters Edge” which seems to be a great topic!

Click here to view the images.