Thursday, September 20, 2007

So I Figured as Much

I gave this a few days so I could try and be calm and rational about this. Heh, we'll see.

As I predicted, my photos didn't get any recognition at the show. I still believe that it's because the subject of the prints was literally above the heads of the judges. Plus, looking back, the stars visible in the images might have been mistaken for dust spots.

I went to the unveiling, and I only asked my friend Sasha to attend, because she's about the only one who understands my feelings towards my work. So I get there, find her, and we look around. My photos are on a side table with some other pictures, as they didn't have enough of the presentation panels for all the images. Eh, whatever.

Many of the submitted images were very good, but there were some that just weren't my taste. However, what I alluded to actually happened: of the top six pictures, one was of a kitty-cat, and one was of a frog. So of course, I got kind of pissed off. But it's my fault, because I had actually started to think that I might have a chance at someone liking my work. So I got kind of down in my attitude, and just moped around there for about another half hour and then left. Sasha said she only had to hit me three times - or was it four? (She knows).

So the prints are hanging in a local township office for a month during the show, and then I can pick them up. And since I have no use for them, the will go in the back of the closet, possibly to not see the light of day for a long long time.

I don't think I will allow myself to be talked into doing anything like this again.

Monday, September 17, 2007

I Really Did It

Well, tomorrow night is the big reveal, and I'll see if other people think my photos are any good. Last night I did get an email from the show official, thanking me for my contributions, and letting me know that they are part of the show (106 images in all for the show).

They also said that during the show opening tomorrow night, there will be a "People's Choice" vote for the images. Heh, maybe I should get a bunch of people I know to show up and vote for my stuff. I had invited Sasha and Tony to come, and I know a couple of others who will be there because they are part of the event. So there's a few votes. But I purposefully didn't tell anyone I did this. Mainly because A) like I said, I don't think I'm any good, and B) I don't really want the attention. So on the off chance I do win something, no one's likely to know except me. I don't even know if I will tell my family. And even though I put a price on my prints, I seriously doubt anyone will want to buy them. So when the show closes in another month, I will have two framed enlargements that I can set in my closet and collect dust.

Oh well, just over 24 hours will tell...

Monday, September 10, 2007

So I Did It

I broke down and actually submitted some photographs to a local show/contest.

I was told a few months ago that there was going to be a photo contest in the surrounding townships to "explore the beauty of nature around you." People were encouraged to "discover the hidden gems of nature in your backyard."

Well, the person who told me of this thought that my photographs of the aurora (northern lights) over the observatory would be perfect: it's in a township, and it's nature. How much more do you need?

Well, I said yes, but didn't really mean it.

Fast forward to the last week of August. For reasons that are too painful to go into, I decided to enter this show. But I had one possibly insurmountable obstacle: where were the negatives for photos shot nearly six years ago? I have a terrible filing system - no system. All of my negatives are in three big boxes (you know, the kind you get 10 reams of copy paper in?) and that means I have to go through them. It took a while, but I eventually found the negatives. Now I had to get some good prints of them.

The only place to go is the local pro lab - Corporate Color/Prolab Express. So here's my daily journey to getting my negatives made into prints for the show...

August 30 - Drive out to the new place where CC/PE is (even father away from my house, but better than downtown). I had the negatives to my friend Sasha who works there, so they can be scanned for printing. I am having four negatives scanned at high resolution, and small prints made of each for color comparison. They will be ready after the Labor Day Holiday.

September 4 - Back out to CC/PE to pick up the CD-rom of the scans (plus the original negatives and prints). Now I need to take them back home, make sure I don't need to adjust anything, and get the back out to the lab. I can do it all via the interweb tubes, but wish to make this personal. Because I have some questions, Sasha agrees to help me that evening with the scans. She does, but ends up taking the CD-R home to work on them. I already have the copies on my laptop, so I will try my hand as well.

September 5 - After I put the touches on the scanned images, I upload them to my account at CC/PE, but then I drive all the way out there to do the actual order. Sasha thinks I should just get some 4x6 copies to double-check the color saturation, which I do. Meanwhile I ask around about mounting and framing, and a few places want nearly $150 for each print. Mind you, I'm currently unemployed. I can't afford anything like that.

September 6 - Drive back out to the lab again. I look at the prints with the help of Sasha, Becky, and Kathy, and decide on the two I will have made into enlargements. I order them via the computer, and come home. Two hours later I don't have the confirmation email, so I check my account - oops! I never hit the "submit" button, so the order was never processed. I quickly rectify the situation.

September 7 - Back out to the lab to pick up the 8x12 enlargement prints. They look okay. Sasha, Becky, & Kathy think they are great; sure winners. Kathy gives me suggestions on naming the images. I thank them, then go and find out about mounting/framing. To save money, I have the prints mounted at one place, and I purchase a frame at another one. I then take everything home and proceed to put them together: Clean the glass, make sure there is no dust on the glass or prints; glass in the frame; then print; then fasten it all in the frame.

All weekend - Worry about why I am doing this.

September 10 - Deliver the prints to the Township Hall. It's out of my hands now.

Judging will be later this week, and an "artist meet and greet" next week Tuesday, when the winners will be announced. Also, the top twelve images will be made into a 2008 calendar.

Now, because I don't think my stuff is any good, I'm really not sure why I entered this show. I really have no great expectations (please, no Dickens comments) about my changes for recognition. The main reason is that while my photos do show the "natural beauty" of the area, because it is about astronomy, it might be (literally) over the heads of the judges - who are all local professional photographers. They might not like it because they can't understand it.

So that is okay, I guess. But if I find out that I lost to someone who took a snapshot of a deer in their yard, or a rock, or a duck, I'll be pretty pissed. We'll find out in just over a week.