by Mike McNamee Published 01/02/2014
16 x 20 = 573 The Societies 20x16 Print Competition
Mike McNamee's Thoughts!
The 16x20 Competition remains and integral part of the Convention experience and an increased display area was needed to accommodate the increased entry level. This year 573 prints were entered, a 66% increase over last year. The general standard of work remained high throughout the categories and this included the new Nuveau category, for first time entrants. This itself attracted an entry of 155 prints many of which scored highly enough to have contended in their specialist category.
The judging extended over two days and began with a complement of 22 judges, two chair persons and two judging rooms. The metadata of images shows the briefing starting at 10am on the Wednesday and the final judges group shot at 7:02 the following day - all-in-all quite a session and special thanks should go to Dennis Orchard and Terrie Jones for the chairing, along with Damian McGillicuddy who chaired the Qualifications panels, which ran through the Wednesday.
Once again the Graphitec viewers were superb to work with.
As ever, the first look the writer got of the back of the prints was in great privacy, while the images were reproduced for the dinner slide show. Once again the names revealed came as a surprise, some you sort of expect, some are new names but always many names come out as unexpected. The top placings were scattered all round the world, confirming the international nature of the event these days.
Favourable reports filtered back from the watching public (all but the final judgements were open house) and it does seem that the number of outside observers is growing. This is good as you really get to understand the nature and quality required for high scoring. The final selection of prints with merits really enhanced the foyer area and were much admired and commented upon by both Convention delegates and the various members of the public with whom we shared the hotel. The aircrews showed a lot of interest both in what was going on and who we were. Security staff even reported people viewing the prints at 4am!
As ever, a number of prints fell just short of the magic number of 80 marks required for a merit and selection. It cannot be over emphasised that the judges look very closely at every print, taking it in turn to move forward to examine each print in close detail, when needed, under the unforgiving high luminance light stands (once again kindly provided by Graphictec).
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