The South Devon Salon of International Photography 2016

Chairman's Notes

Our 5th International Salon is now finished, and work starts again for next year. It was very gratifying that entrant numbers were up by nearly 40%, and entries by 90%, and much of this increase was due to the Open Mono section we added this year. With the millions of people around the world taking pictures with their mobile phones, it shows that quality photography and photographers are still very much to the fore.

My thanks, as always, go to you the entrants for showing us your images. Regrettably you can't all have your images accepted, but a failure with us doesn't mean that a judge in another Salon won't find something in your image that they like.

 

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The Open Colour section once again provided a wide range of subjects for our Selectors to enjoy, and showed visual awareness and technical ability. The biggest criticism again this year was in the use of nudes: nude art photography is a very challenging subject and unfortunately we saw a large number of images where naked ladies (and in a few instances men) were photographed in situations that they had no business being in, and detracted from the image rather than added to it. Nudes can be great photographic subjects but should be in context with their surroundings and with subtle use of light and shade.

The lack of borders was noticeable this year and this is right: borders detract from an image in Salon judging and are rarely helpful.  The use of HDR has also been less this year, and where used has generally been of benefit to the image. We want to see the best of your images, and subtle use of HDR works well in the right context.

The Open Mono section was one we were looking forward to and did not generally disappoint. There were a number of images that had just been de-saturated, but most showed a good degree of skill in managing Mono work. Having seen all of your images come through my computer as thumbnails it was a revelation to see them on a big screen and see the quality of Mono work.

I always particularly enjoy the Creative section, and this year saw a number of new photographers with excellent images entered. Awarded images were of the highest order and generally had an underlying theme. Our Selectors enjoyed the storytelling of these images.  

The Nature section showed the lowest increase in entrants and images for this year, with again fewer plants and fungi. Please be aware that the best images show the subject in context rather than taking up the full frame and should attempt to show the subject in action where possible. There were a number of landscapes in this section which may have done better in the Open Colour section as they didn't really fit into the Natural History category.

My apologies must be made for the problems we had this year with computer servers. This was very frustrating and partly caused by my own inability to follow complex instructions!

 

More thanks go to our Selectors who did a great job this year. To Alan Boothman from our club who does a fabulous job with your images on our website and sorts the technical details on Selection days. To Chris Tickle on advertising: Phil Gill, David Knowles and Christopher Marsham for support.

Special thanks to Greg Duncan of Kenebec for the K-Salon programme we use and for his patience with me, and to Pete Howell from the Bristol Salon for help and advice.

 

Finally, huge thanks to Rob Phillips and his fantastic staff at The Dolphin Hotel, Bovey Tracey (the gateway to Dartmoor) for the venue, food, beer and bacon rolls during the selection days.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Trevor Ashford