Getting noticed

 

I’ll be honest, things were a little slow for M4Photo during 2016.  I’ve continued to work with Eclipse Gymnastics and Archers of Raunds and I had a great three days shooting with the Barbara Hooton School of Dancing.  Otherwise, it was pretty slow.

 

It’s not all been doom and glom though.  The brand new Archers of Raunds website features a lot of my images as key eye candy on each of the websites pages and the images really make the site pop.  I also managed to capture a good number of great photographs at the recent Eclipse Gymnastics Xmas show and the feedback this year has been wonderful.  The dance school shoot had me utilising some long forgotten knowledge to get some good posed shots and the whole shoot was a great success.

However, a website that I was working on for a brand new start up business has fallen flat for the moment owing to things beyond my control and I really did not find the time to get out and explore my landscape photography, let alone attempt to put together a couple of landscape related projects that I’ve been thinking about.

So, with three acknowledgements in as many weeks from photographic websites and people that know what they are talking about, I guess that someone is trying to tell me something for 2017.

Gurushots is a website where photographers can upload their images and submit them to challenges.  Other photographers are then able to vote for their favourites and I always seems to do pretty well.  I was therefore pleased to find one of my images of Bodie selected from thousands of black and white images for an article entitled 30 Stunning Black And White Photos Proving That Colour Is Not Always That ImportantTo be selected for one of the top 30 images was really nice.

Then today, Gurushots picked up another of my images for one of just 34 lakeside images for an article entitled SPALOOSH! 34 Photographers that were Willing to Get Wet for Our Viewing Pleasure.  Featuring my image called Mono Lake Rainfall (shown above and which is one of my favourites in my portfolio) it quickly became my most successful image of 2016 with two Guru Picks during the year.  Whilst the votes are nice and it’s great to break into the top ten, it is the recognition from the guy that set the challenge that I really value.

Viewbug is another portfolio based photograph website where photographers can post their images and enter them into paid and free competitions.  My image looking across the Bay View Bridge towards San Francisco was recently place pretty high in the rankings.

It is interesting to acknowledge that all three of these images were captured on one of my workshops with Paul Reiffer.  I was lucky to spend two full weeks with him in California and he took us to some amazing locations and taught us how to get the best from each location.  The accolades mentioned above and linked on my Facebook page, really do show the value in Paul’s knowledge of photography and his unique ability to educate his students in a relaxed and informative way, whilst also letting them explore their own style of photography.

Maybe during 2017, I’ll get out a little more, work on some of these projects that are bubbling away in my mind and maybe, just maybe, I’ll have another crack at the local clubs to help to make some new memories for people.

Watch this space!!

 

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More Recognition

1

As many of you will know, I occasionally put some of my images onto Gurushots, mostly  just to gauge how well they are received. Gurushots is an online resource where photographers can upload their images to different challenges, people then vote on their favourite images and as you get votes you climb the rankings.  I usually wind up somewhere in the top 5% and I have been in the top 1 and 2% on a few occasions.

However, what I really like is when the Guru selects one of my images as worthy of their vote.  The Guru being the person who set the challenge and who naturally has their own idea about what makes a good photograph within the definition of the challenge.

I have had a couple of my images that have been voted for but the current cityscape challenge is one that has some great images.  There are some great city skylines around the world and some amazing photographers capturing them.

This morning was one of those special days.  Overnight I have received notification that one of my Bay Bridge shots from my road trip with Paul Reiffer has made the grade, got noticed and it has been awarded a vote by the Guru.  In the images above, that accolade is noted by the star.

Paul advised and educated me throughout the two week long road trip and this was one of the last locations that we shot together.  I was able to bring everything that I had learned together and his workshop style tuition definitely paid off on this occasion.

Paul is running more workshops all around the world and you can find out more about his amazing work and these special workshops on his website using the two links.

You can see more of my work from the road trip on my website here.

M4Photo takes People’s Choice award

Hay Bales at SunsetOver the summer I have been uploading some of my images to a handful of photographic websites where people can view, comment and, on some of the more competition based sites, they can vote for their favourite image.

The Harvest at Sunset image above, was entered into a ‘Harvest Time’ photo challenge on www.viewbug.com over the summer and I received an email this afternoon to say that it had won the ‘People’s Choice’ award.  The URL below will take you to the award page.

Another image won the overall competition which was judged by the person setting the competition and mine won for the most votes by the general public using the site.  It would have been nice to be the overall winner because they are looking for the most technically correct and pleasing image, but without the leading lines in mine I was extremely excited to have my award which required a far wider level of appreciation.

Maybe I can do this photography lark and maybe I’ll try to get out and about a little more.

http://www.viewbug.com/challenge/harvest-time-photo-challenge-by-hartmanc10 

A nice surprise on Gurushots

Mono Lake Rainstorm  – Rain teems down form the heavens over the mountains alongside Mono Lake, Mammouth Lakes, CA, USA - Copyright 2015 Martyn Phillips, M4Photo.

For a while now I have been submitting some of my images to online website that give people and photographers the opportunity to vote and comment on my images.  These sites primarily include 500px which is mostly other photographers, Flickr which is more mainstream with anyone viewing the files and GuruShots which the most photographer centric of the three in my opinion.

These submissions were initially to gain some feedback on whether my landscape images are worthy of anything, or whether I should just stick to event photography.  I am pleased to confirm that the response has been over whelming with great results across the three sites.

With regards to Gurushots.  This site is based on photographers uploading images to certain challenges.  These challenges are set by the Gurus and they cover a multitude of subjects.  Other photographers that are registered on www.gurushot.com then have the opportunity to vote blind on a selection of images in each challenge.  Your images (or images) begin in the Popular category and then as you get more votes your placement progresses through Skilled, into Premier and then into Elite.  It is Elite where I have been fortunate to find most of my images (or image sets) climbing the ranks and into.

However, I was really excited to learn that one of my image sets that have been entering into “The Vast Outdoors” challenge has made it passed the Elite category and into the All Star category, being the highest level possible.  At the time of writing there are still a number of days of voting to go, but I’m sitting 40th out of around 2500 people and 8674 images.

If that was not good enough, one of my images (Mono Lake Rainstorm) has been picked by the Guru himself, placing a star on the image and qualifying it for a bonus to the vote count.

It is great to finally make the All Star rating, but getting an acknowledgement by the Guru himself really puts the icing on the cake and it really made me smile today.

Maybe, just maybe, I’ll keep taking photographs and see what other successes I have over the coming months.

Followed by a good, good day

Mono Lake Rainstorm  – Rain teems down form the heavens over the mountains alongside Mono Lake, Mammouth Lakes, CA, USA - Copyright 2015 Martyn Phillips, M4Photo.

Mono Lake Rainstorm – Rain teems down form the heavens over the mountains alongside Mono Lake, Mammouth Lakes, CA, USA – Copyright 2015 Martyn Phillips, M4Photo.

Had a good week at work and I have been out scouting for some photographic landscape sites near to home and I have found a few already.  Now I just need to get permission to park on the reserve overnight.

Then, I checked my results in three online free to enter photography competitions to find that I achieved 77th out of 1305 images, 44th out of 1236 and 46th out of 1836.  No finalist places but I’m happy enough to consistently be in the top 6% and to make the top 2.5% in one of the competitions.  All of these were images from my recent road trip around California.

Paul Reiffer, you are one hell of a tutor my friend :D.

Eclipse smash it at Kings Lynn Gymnastics Club

eclipse-2015-kingslynnIt has been a busy couple of weekends at Eclipse and AoR, and this weekend I was over at Kings Lynn Gymnastics Club with Eclipse for one of their main external competitions.

The competition in Kings Lynn is one of the highlights on the Eclipse calendar and for some of the more experienced gymnasts, it is a chance to go up against some stiff competition.  For the younger, less experienced gymnasts, it is a chance to gain some valuable motivation and inspiration.  That came in spades during the lunchtime break when some of the best Kings Lynn tumblers put on an amazing display of their talents, including one lad who took on a move which ended in four rotations about the body – simply stunning.

That said, this year the gymnasts from Eclipse seem to have gone above and beyond.  Medals seemed to be coming left right and centre, from just about every category entered and every age group.  At one point the podium was completely blocked out (bronze, silver and gold) by nine of the girls from the club and getting some presentation photographs was often night on impossible with so many people moving around the podium.

The kids work really hard throughout the week on their acro routines and their tumble skills, and the coaches work just as hard to help get the best from the kids.  This weekend was a reminder of just how hard everyone at Eclipse gymnastics works, how that commitment on both sides can pay off and how a few people can help to enrich the lives of so many kids and their families.  Eclipse is a wonderful friendly club and all credit to Terry and his team who have built up this ‘family’ of gymnasts over the last few years.

Well done to everyone involved.

Anyway, the photographs from the weekend are now online and available in the usual Eclipse Gymnastics photo gallery.  If you need the username and password, please ask one of the coaches.  For child protection reasons, I’m not permitted to share the login details with people.