First Photo Contest

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Blooze, Sep 19, 2008.

  1. Blooze

    Blooze

    19
    Mar 8, 2008
    texas
    Well, I entered 5 pictures in the Tri-State Fair this last weekend and they finally did the judging. They had about 300 color prints and 70 B&W prints in the adult amateur division to the best of my counting. I ended up getting a 3rd place in the color division and 2 honorable mentions (they gave about 20 or so honorable mentions). One color print did nothing, but it was a small 5x7, and no 5x7's did anything. I got an honorable mention in the B&W (5x7--see "Ivy after the Storm"--should have made it an 8x12 ), of which they only gave a 1st place (I couldn't find 2nd and 3rd and neither could anyone else with us???) and 6 HM's. So I didn't do too bad. I think I won 10% of the total entry fees in the color division for the 3rd place, which should be around $150. The pic that took 2nd in the color was a very good one of an old truck in the field (cliche I know, but it was quite nice and better than mine), but the one that got first I didn't think was anything special, not any better than mine, but it was also a nice print.

    Not bad, considering all but one were some of the very first pics (the one I got 3rd place with was about the 35th) I took with the new Nikon D40 and kit lens. Gives me encouragement to get some better glass and take some more trips to better scenic locations.

    The pro division was a complete letdown for me. All portraits of course, most of them senior or wedding pics--snooze......... There were a couple that were quite outstanding portraits--reminded me of some of the good Nat'l Geo pics. There were only 5 pics that weren't portraits for the landscape division, and only one of them that was any good at all. The other four looked like some of the snapshots my 10 year old has taken. In fact some of her's were alot better.
     
  2. luke_28

    luke_28

    506
    May 12, 2008
    North
    Congrats on 3rd place. It's amazing what the little D40 kit lens can produce in capable hands.
     
  3. rotxlk82

    rotxlk82

    Jul 20, 2007
    UK
    You did great, well done.

    I wish you many more future sucesses.
     
  4. Blooze

    Blooze

    19
    Mar 8, 2008
    texas
    Thanks!!!

    Here's a link to the pic that got me third. It's the Salt River bridge. Robert was right about it being a decent pic.
    https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/showthread.php?t=181423

    I should be getting $150-200 dollars for my efforts, AFAIK. So I need to spend that on more camera equipment I think.

    I don't have a lot of $$$, but is the 55-200VR kit lens worth getting, or would it be better to save my money and get the 70-300? I know that I want to get a macro 105 at some point as well, but that'll have to wait.

    Also, any suggestions on a decent tripod/head combo for doing macro and landscapes? Weight is not really an issue FWIW.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  5. rotxlk82

    rotxlk82

    Jul 20, 2007
    UK
    The light really makes that bridge pic, you were there at just the right time!

    If you can spare the cash I'd take the 70-300vr over the 55-200vr, not that the 55 is exactly "bad" but the 70-300vr is known to be excellent glass for the money. There are stacks of threads here supporting this.

    That said all of the ~105mm macro lenses are very good, I got the Sigma 105mm as my second lens after the kit 18-55 and was totally blown away by what it could do. However the vast majority of what I shot is macro or at least close-up and therefore it really was the right lens for me.
     
  6. Blooze

    Blooze

    19
    Mar 8, 2008
    texas
    Yes, I want the Sigma 105mmm just for Macro. I've always been interested in macro shots. They are always the ones that grab and hold my attention.

    I think it might be worth saving for the 70-300vr.
     
  7. rotxlk82

    rotxlk82

    Jul 20, 2007
    UK
    The Sigma 105 is great! I can't say enough good stuff about it! The bulk of my photos with the D50 (and even some with the film SLRs) have been made with it.

    It has 2 problems however:

    1. The cosmetic surface of the body scratches very easily, it looks very scruffy
    2. It'll make your kit lens look like junk, especially in terms of overall sharpness and bokeh, you'll be forever a lens snob after a few shots with the 105.

    Check out any of my postings in the Flowers/Macro forum if you want to see samples.

    By the way, you do realise that because the Sigma isn't a HSM model it won't autofocus with the D40, D40x or D60?
     
  8. Blooze

    Blooze

    19
    Mar 8, 2008
    texas

    Well, gosh--those problems would really bite :wink:

    I knew it wouldn't autofocus. I've never owned an AF camera till I got this D40. Last time I was using a camera was over 20 years ago and it was defintely manual focus. I have found that many times I can't get the D40 to focus exactly like I want it (or where I want it to ) anyway and end up putting it to manual.