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September contest voting update

Posted by Teresa Hanafin  October 6, 2008 04:43 PM

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There is one photo entry that is not showing up in the Voting Machine; I've written to the photographer asking her to check her permissions and safety levels on her Flickr account to see if any of those settings are preventing her photo from being accessed. As soon as we hear from her, we'll see if her photo shows up; if it doesn't, we'll substitute a photo that was on the bubble when John Blanding made his choices, and we'll open up voting.

BTW, to avoid future headaches, please check the Privacy & Permissions tab on your Account page. For example, make sure that under Defaults for New Uploads, your Safety Level is Safe and the Content Type includes Photos. Also, under Content filters > Search settings, make sure SafeSearch is On and the Content Type includes Photos. Thanks a lot...

Meanwhile, here's a little insight into how Globe assistant chief photographer John Blanding narrowed the 109 entries down to a manageable 50. How did he do it?

"By looking for a mix of compelling images that were interesting, dramatic, or just fun to look at, and that fit within the theme of 'My neighborhood'," he said. In some cases, he acknowledged that neighborhoods often are about people, "so a photo that had people doing things in a neighborhood setting was attractive. It reminded me of newspaper photography, where just about everything we do is about photographing people."

In other cases, he recognized that landscapes or architecture or street scenes "also tell a story about a neighborhood or give you a certain feeling." The end result was a good mix of city, suburb, and country -- neighborhoods that were lively and active, and neighborhoods that were quiet and serene.

Based on his examination of the entries, he had a tip: "Many of the photos had better potential than the photographer realized," he said. "One of the most basic steps in improving photographs is to tighten up the images through cropping." Ideally, you crop in the camera -- eliminate extraneous elements that don't add to the photo while you're shooting it (see Globe photographer Suzanne Kreiter's tipsheet on this very subject). If you miss that well-composed shot, crop in your software, and see how much better the photo can be. "The next time you’re shooting," John said, "I guarantee you’ll do it in the frame."

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