May LLTL Contest – The 26 Choices
Update May 31
Diane Varner has kindly agreed to comment on each entry in the May LLTL Contest and I have modified this posting to include Diane’s comments below each photo. Diane says of the contest:
What an honor it has been to look through all the participant’s images and portfolios of work. I’m humbled, amazed and inspired. And what a challenge! I want to thank Darwin for this opportunity to really study each of your photographs and articulate the feelings they evoke within me.
Each image here, is well executed and exquisite in its own right. WIth that said, I wanted to take time with each photograph and let you know (briefly) my thoughts on each image….
Dennis, this is a dynamic composition with the placement of the textural rocks and the energy of the swirling water coming towards us (feeling as if it could almost swallow us, if not careful). I really like the push-pull element of the clouds pointing toward the horizon and the foreground literally sucking us in.
Lon, I really like the delicate, lacy feeling of this image especially since it is a contradiction to the subject matter — tree branches that are solid and strong, able to withstand the winter that has left them leafless. There is a sense of gracefulness in the composition in the way the branches curve towards the middle, creating a focal point that takes us beyond them and into the darkness.
Arun, your composition is provocative as the eye descends onto the footprint-like puddles (that make us wonder what formed them) and is then carried to the lone rock, surrounded by the quiet waters and sky. For me, there is a sense of “something about to happen” as all sits, very silent and motionless.
Dave, what a beautiful, majestic landscape. Your strong, contrasting tones are just outstanding, creating a very 3-dimensional quality to the entire scene. I especially like the dark sky that sets off the snow-capped mountains as well as the soft mist included in the composition as it brings another level of energy to the image.
Giovanni, I can only imagine what it must have been like to have viewed this scene first-hand. There is a sense of sweeping motion as the eye is drawn in by the softly toned waters and is then taken back farther and farther into this vast landscape. You definitely captured the feeling of timelessness in this one.
Tom, your sense of contrasting tones to emphasize shape and form is exceptional in this image. The dark, dynamic sky really sets off the rock formations and their corresponding textures and shapes. The light falling on the objects is just beautiful, creating the sense of solidness to the landscape’s elements.
Dan, this has a strong surreal mood that I really like. The soft focus contributes to this but the flat pier, appearing to sit above a clouded sky (the reflection), is what really creates this dreamlike atmosphere for me. I like how the pier seems to invite us into the composition with its seemingly animated tilt at the end.
Jordan, the soft, tinted tones are just lovely. I really like the overall quietness of this image, coupled with the fine, delicate detail of the pedals that is created via shadow and light. This photograph has a whimsical, almost magical feeling that I really like as the blossoms seem to be softly floating within the frame.
Victor, this looks like “the land of perpetual winter.” A daunting scene yet beautifully captured with the perfectly toned, textural nuances and organic forms. I like how the lone pine tree is is just above the skyline and how its sways to the right, pointing us towards the foggy horizon that we could easily miss.
Wayne, this image possesses the dynamism of a perfect landscape. First off, the exquisite overall quality, the very 3-dimensional detailed foreground that has energy of the swooping branch, the mirror reflection, the jetting motion of the clouds caught in the reflection, the light and finally, the overall composition that is perfectly balanced.
Darren, the overall quietness of this image is what drew me in immediately. I like the perspective that you took this from, which allows the viewer to “feel” the textural quality of the rocks and ice along with experiencing the very shallow shore that takes us into the landscape. The reflections as well as the tones are soothing and dynamic at the same time.
Floris, I looked at this for quite awhile, marveling at the abstract, graphic quality of this as well as the movement of the lines as they seemed to literally “dance” in this photograph. When viewed at a larger scale, the image “pops” with dimension that is created with the light and shadows that you captured with your perfect focusing.
Kent, this is quite the unusual “landscape” and begs the viewer to gaze upon it for some time to understand what they are seeing….. something from another world, perhaps. I like the contrasting foreground with the background which creates a line of separation from the opposing textures and forms. The tones are just beautiful.
Jim, I am drawn to the simplicity of this composition that is formed through the use of lights and darks. There is a sense of movement in the shapes of the petals that gives this image energy. I like the detail and the highlights, right down to the way the petal seems to wrap around and caress the stem.
Paul, this is a wonderful, expressive portrait. I really like the negative space around the giraffe which emphasizes the elongated shape that these creatures are known for. The isolation of the body makes one really study the giraffe’s features, noticing the details that would probably be missed otherwise.
Anil, I applaud your courage to break away from the norm. This possesses a strong, graphic quality that I have always admired in graphic design. I like the way the image cascades down from the tiny bird that becomes significant via the large shape below. This shape can either be a rock form or flat landscape—the beauty is, the viewer gets to decide.
Andrew, the detailed textures in this image are intense coupled with the contrast of the soft, flowing water. I found myself wanting to reach in and feel the roughness of the rocks. There is an abstract quality to the overall image that I find interesting as well, perhaps created by the even lighting.
Jack, this is such a quiet, serene landscape. If I hold my breath I think I can hear the distant song of a bird. The horizontal composition somehow enhances the feeling of calm that stretches over the landscape. You could have used your artist license to heighten the contrast but by not doing so, you created an atmosphere that exudes tranquility.
Ilya, there is a sense of vastness and infinity that really appeals to me in this panoramic scene. The contrasting tones are just as vast and capture that sense of infinite space. The composition and perspective gives the feeling of being among the clouds as we gaze down and drift into the landscape.
Seung Kye, your tones are just beautiful as well as the perfect placement of every element in this image. This is one of those photographs that I could melt into, finding the sense of peace that I think we all long for. The way you’ve composed and captured the rhythm in the sand is outstanding as it ushers us into the calmness and balance of life.
Tim, this image grabs my attention immediately. I am drawn into the darkness of the shape that asks for recognition yet gives no clues. Still, I find myself admiring the beauty of the light in the folds that could be nature-based or not. Looking for a final hint but finding none, I imagine this to be a curtain, opening to a world of brilliant light.
Dan, I can feel the cool air and hear the stillness. This image holds a sense of the mystical with the soft, diffused light and the ancient tree limbs. The foreground becomes the vehicle that moves us into this realm. I really like the overall use of soft tones that help to create this quiet, undisturbed mood.
Prashant, there is a minimalism here that is very compelling. The subtle tones in the landscape are rendered beautifully, especially in contrast to the very dark, graphic tree. You have brilliantly created a composition that contains just a few elements that explicitly expresses solitude, serenity and silence.
Ray, the warm gray tones that you have given the overall image creates the perfect ambience for this scene. There is a softness and quietness coupled with the long-exposured, cloud-like water that possesses a sense of mystery. All this lures me in and makes me want to sit for a long while.
Tom, you have captured an image that exudes the power of nature. The eye quickly scans all the different textures and gorgeous tones, feeling the rush of movement of the cascading water in all it’s different speeds. Your gradation of black and white shades in this image are just masterful.
Brad, the flat, textural quality of this image is wonderful and can only be really appreciated when viewed larger. There is energy in the vertical, pencil-like strokes of the grass that creates a wonderful, rhythmic tone to the overall image. In looking at it, I want to tap my foot to the “staccato sound” (if you will) that it makes for me.