Nikoncafe-Challenge is taking a break....

Joined
May 9, 2008
Messages
2,510
Location
houston tx
Perhaps I'm too much of an engineer, but I have a really hard time getting a photo assignment and in a week or two thinking up a photo for the contest, setting it up, processing it, and uploading it. I'm not like a photojournalist who gets an assignment and in a few hours has a picture for the paper.

I think I would benefit by having an advanced schedule. Currently there is this topic, but next month will be that topic. I would thus have several days more to try to get creative.
 
Joined
Jul 30, 2006
Messages
11,564
Location
Southern California
Just to add my $.02 to the thread... I know that personally, my involvement in the challenge ebbs and flows. Right now it is in an ebb. I tend to check up on it periodically, but lately, I have not had the time to participate. For me, this is because I am busy right now with other things, mainly trying to grow my own photography business, added to other personal interests. That doesn't mean, however, that I won't find/make the time in the future. I don't want to see the Challenge go away completely, but I wouldn't find a break to be unwarranted... I have seen the participation dwindle... I don't think that's b/c of the topics, however. I think many of us are just very busy, and will be getting busier with the "hollies" around the corner.
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2009
Messages
429
Location
Montana
These things can easily go in cycles that are not easily explained. Just like in a restaurant business, one day it can be crowded and another day be virtually empty all day. Most restaurants don't close down just because they had a bad day. Now, if they had a bad day every day, then that would sure be reason to shut down...

The participation ups and downs just happens. There are just going to be a few that gets low turnout. Shouldn't be too concerned...
 
S

Steve_b

Guest
awww...bugger! i just joined!!

Where I'm not proficient, yet/ever?, this can be a fun way to interact and get critiques from other photogs!

Any "contests/challenges" don't have to be set up weekly, but could be a monthly thing (especially across holidays and summers)....
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2006
Messages
428
Location
NYC
I liked the challenges. I've participated in a few, but always enjoyed the photos. Is there enough foot traffic? That is, do a lot of people read the thread? Is it a matter of prominence on the website (perhaps a flashing yellow sign is needed)?

My 2 cents worth. I know that in the last few weeks, I've been busy at work...but I'd say to keep the challenges going.
 
Joined
Dec 28, 2007
Messages
93
Location
Florida (mostly), USA
It seems like many of us (me included) are saying the same thing, too busy to get an assignment done, but still really interested in the challenge format. I think a little longer challenge period, maybe including at least two weekends, would help. Or maybe even a slightly different format to allow a monthly challenge. I seldom get a chance to get out during the week.

Although my participation has been sporadic, I really like these when time allows. I'd hate to see them fade away.
 
Joined
Jan 26, 2009
Messages
853
Location
Woodstock GA
I love this thread I try to join in when i can i can't always comply with the date request but still it will be a shame to see it go.

Maybe one simlar but longer time and a T shirt prize or something could be run, just a thought !
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,235
Location
Hong Kong, China
How about making it into an annual event with 12 contests?

Each month there will be a different topic, the winners will be awarded points similar to say, formula one races.

The mods can decide and announce topics maybe one or two months in advance so that we have a bit more time to prepare.

Maybe after a few months it will become a competition among a few members, but we can probably try it for a year. There can always be rules to limit how many points a member can get over a certain period of tme.
 
Joined
Apr 13, 2008
Messages
861
Location
Seattle, WA USA
Michael, I love the challenges but haven’t been able to get out and take a picture for a while due to a medical problem. I hope you bring it back and I’ll do my best to participate in one way or another.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
5,916
Location
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Michael,

I can see your point for taking a break but have you had any challenges for the Retouching Forum where I spend a good amount of my time? If not, you might consider running one over there for us on say using Topaz Adjust. It's a really big thing going on now over there and it could have quite a bit of a turnout if you did hold one. I would be interested. That's for sure. I am sure there would be more than you think.

Give it a try and let me know and the group know. Maybe you could put some feelers out in the retouching forum and see what you get back. Couldn't hurt.

Thanks for listening.
 
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
4,122
Location
Newark, Ohio
Michael,

I've been following this thread from the get-go. I too have participated a few times. And there have been challenges in which I didn't participate. I suppose one finds it difficult to be everywhere at once...:redface:

In my thinking about this thread, there are some things that I think would be relevant in increasing participation in the Challenges. The Challenges forum has a lot of similarities to the Collective Shoots. The CS's have a dedicated coordinator who has worked with the mods to advertise the CS existence - getting stickies posted, changed each week as we move from one theme to the next, etc... Thru a series of meetings, the CS has been "streamlined" with consideration given to our global membership. The shoots run from Thursday to Thursday - creating an overlap on Thursdays - and eliminating downtime between the shoots. So I would say that the Challenges need to be consistently structured from one to the next: Shooting & posting time, Judging time, The results, and then on to the next. I think the Challenges need a dedicated coordinator overseeing things so that they run smoothly.

As the CS coordinator, I keep a calendar that is solely for keeping track of who has volunteered to host for which week, and what their chosen theme is. I do a lot of theme-storming with the hosts many weeks before their scheduled hosting period. Yes - this means a little bit of work, but I do this so that potential themes are kept as broad-based as possible, not limiting with regards to geography, society, etc... It also assures me that a given week has a committed host, and that that person isn't desparately trying to come up with a theme off the top of their heads. I have a "standard reminder PM" that goes out on Tuesdays (also noted on the calendar) to the upcoming host for the next shoot. And every host gets a heartfelt 'Thank You' PM after the wrap-up of their week. It only works because being proactive and each host have played a part in making it work.

Of course, the CS's are geared towards the collective spirit that makes the cafe the wonderful place that we all love. It doesn't have the competitiveness of the Challenges. But the CS's do pull in a pretty consistent average of 10 views for every post made. 900+ views and 90+ posts each week isn't as much as some other threads on the cafe, but we're doing it every week. And the mix of participants is comprised of newbies and veterans, amateurs and professionals, and even the moderators.

And here is where I think you could implement one small change in the Challenges: The Challenges are the only threads that I can think of that don't offer any type of C&C. And isn't that one of the core reasons why we're here? - To gather together, To share the fruits of our labors, And to learn how we might do better the next time. So, one solution to this could be to change the voting to include a C&C by each voter as to why they are picking one image over another.

Here's where I got the idea from: When I showed horses for years, after each class was the time for participants from the previously judged class to ask the judge what they did wrong, could have done better, etc... And in all my years of horse-showing, I don't recall a judge not taking a minute to explain why they placed the participants in the order placed. In fact, most judges were happy to do so because it showed them that the participants wanted to learn.

I have yet to place in a Challenge. And I have yet to learn what I could have done better in the ones in which I have participated. I don't think asking the voters to include a bit of C&C with the casting of their vote would be too much to ask. Keep the structure of posting each vote the same, so that the tally can be done easily. Perhaps add comments below their vote.

Or, wait a minute...perhaps an even better idea: Maybe we could have place where everyone who views a given Challenge thread could post their comments? :wink: Any thoughts on that?

Well, as in anything, those are my thoughts for now. Thanks for reading. :smile:
 
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Messages
34,666
Location
Arizona
I'd like to reassure everybody that the Challenge will return. We are taking a break for the time being, and expect a new Challenge, hopefully in early 2010. All of the suggestions being floated here are GREAT! Please continue to post your ideas for how to improve Challenges, especially those which will increase participation.
 
Joined
May 14, 2009
Messages
74
Location
Detroit, MI
Maybe change gears a little and create more of an assignment that must be completed.

for example, theme the month circles, and in that month period we must all go out and shoot a new picture that in some way incorporates circles.

Sure the idea has been done before, but its a change of pace around here anyways.
 
Joined
Jun 28, 2007
Messages
1,092
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Greetings... I did a few of the challenges when I first signed up. I thought it lost something when the winner was no longer posted up on the banner. I also think the banner lost something without a photo.

Cheers,

-Yamo-
 
Joined
Apr 12, 2006
Messages
11,912
Location
Central Georgia, USA
The assignment sounds like it might work. I hate to see it stop, but I have not contributed, buy would in the future.

I will have to say I am blind, this forum has been invisible to me, I have been here awhile and am just now noticing it and I would have missed the 2009 best pics thread if a member had not pointed it out. For some reason I just do not see this forum on the home page. i wonder if I am the only one.

I have participated in the challenge in the miscellany thread but not often.
 

McQ

Just your average, everyday moderator.
Moderator
Joined
Feb 8, 2007
Messages
8,569
Location
Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Real Name
Glenn
The assignment sounds like it might work. I hate to see it stop, but I have not contributed, buy would in the future.

I will have to say I am blind, this forum has been invisible to me, I have been here awhile and am just now noticing it and I would have missed the 2009 best pics thread if a member had not pointed it out. For some reason I just do not see this forum on the home page. i wonder if I am the only one.

I have participated in the challenge in the miscellany thread but not often.
You're not alone, Tom. I don't really notice it either. It was also brought to my attention by another very kind member. So this is my first submission too.
 

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