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DPChallenge Forums >> Challenge Suggestions >> A Learning Series
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07/05/2005 12:24:52 AM · #1
Turn DPChallenge temporarily into a photography school by hosting a consecutive series of challenges designed to improve the overall quality and capabilities of the photographers who are here to learn. We have had some of these challenges in the past, but they have been random. Hosting these in order would help create a very strong learning environment based on the concepts presented in each challenge. The top 10 photos in each challenge should be used to create an on-site tutorial with examples.

Challenge: #1: Fill the Frame

Description: Many photographers often stumble upon very interesting subjects for photographs. You pull out your camera, make a photo, and move on. In this exercise, your objective is to fill the frame with your subject. You donít have to completely fill the frame, but your subject should be isolated within the image space by occupying a majority of it.

Challenge #2: Isolating Interest

In the last challenge, we filled the frame with our subject. In this challenge, we will do the same thing but we will be isolating some particularly interesting part of a larger subject. What specific part of an antique car makes it interesting to you? What specific part of a flower draws your attention? What part of an old abandoned building creates a feeling of desolation? These are just some examples of what you can look for in your pursuit of this challenge.

Challenge #3: Adding Dynamics

In the previous two challenges, we isolated our subject by filling the frame with them and isolating specific areas of interest. Building upon those two ideas, letís add some dynamics to the images by choosing out-of-the-ordinary perspectives. Try tilting your camera, shooting from above, or shooting below. Be creative in your pursuit of creating a dynamic point of view.

Challenge #4: Lines and Curves

Create a photograph where lines and curves play a strong role in the composition WITHOUT becoming the subject of the photograph. Let the lines and curves lead the viewer through the scene, creating depth and perspective along the way. Try to use concepts learned from the last three challenges in your entry.

Challenge #5: Shallow Depth of Field

Create a photo where shallow depth of field isolates your subject or area of interest within the photograph.

Challenge #6: Deep Depth of Field

Create an interesting photo where the depth of field is deep and everything is in focus. Your subject/scene should be naturally deep as well.

Challenge #7: Stopped Motion

Use a fast shutter speed to create a photo of a moving subject and have it frozen with no motion blur.

Challenge #8: Motion Blur

Create a photograph with a relatively slow shutter speed to create blur in the image.

Challenge #9: Natural Light

Create a photograph with an interesting use of natural light. Do not use a flash, strobes, or an artificial light source.

Challenge #10: Artificial Light

Create a photograph with an interesting use of artificial light. Use flashes, strobes, or any other light source other than the sun.

The first three challenges teach lessons that most all good photography is based on. The following challenges teach basic camera techniques that can be used to enhance given situations. They also make a photographer better prepared for various situations they may encounter in their hobby.


07/05/2005 12:26:03 AM · #2
quite a nice idea john, i support it.
07/05/2005 12:27:24 AM · #3
those are generally the challenges i prefer. both to vote on and to submit to.
07/05/2005 12:31:57 AM · #4
Excellent idea!
07/05/2005 12:54:13 AM · #5
this is a great idea
07/05/2005 01:51:08 AM · #6
Even if it weren't a regular challenge, I'd love to see some of the more seasoned photo experts set us there own challenges through the forums with these kinds of assignments. I think the descriptions given above are good enough that almost everyone could go out and do those in a week or two and we could all critique the photos through the forums and learn a little bit more. I know I would benefit from something like that greatly.
07/05/2005 02:00:14 AM · #7
I just made a copy of that whole list of assignments for myself to complete. I will create a special portfolio with just images from each assignment. I hope this will really help me learn the concepts of photography.
07/05/2005 02:12:37 AM · #8
I love this idea! I like challenges I can learn from. Even though I didn't enter the leading lines challenge, I still learned a lot from the photos and now I am trying to think more about the composition of my photos. I think topics like this would help even more.
07/05/2005 03:28:57 AM · #9
A wonderful idea.. and, as Hiral touched upon, not something that necessarily requires everyone to wait for official challenges to attempt. These types of photo exercises are often considered the best way for people to expand their photographic 'vision'. Other examples that I can remember off the top of my head include taking all of your shots during one session from ground level. Use one lens for an extended session - you may pass up a certain number of shots that you would like to take, but it will force you to look for other things that will work with the lens you have (assuming that you're an SLR user). I'm sure that others might have similar exercises that they could come up with in order to help break out of a certain mold/rut.
07/05/2005 04:35:49 AM · #10
good idea to teach myself again

these are the basics !
try to narrow you down on one subject for one week or day and learn a lot !!
07/05/2005 07:10:48 AM · #11
This is one of the better suggestions to come a long in a long time. So good, I would like to see it as the 'third challenge of the week', say Thursdays!

The long drought between challenges tends to leave me bored, and very un-dpchallenged.
07/05/2005 07:13:20 AM · #12
Another great idea by Mr. Setzler. I'm marking this thread "Watched" so I can refer to it & try the methods whatever the case.
07/05/2005 07:19:29 AM · #13
Originally posted by ClickNSee:

So good, I would like to see it as the 'third challenge of the week', say Thursdays!


Hey, there's one good idea on top of another! Hope we'll get started soon!
07/05/2005 07:29:46 AM · #14
As a new and still growing photographer I think this sounds great! I am definately up for the challenge. (forgive the bad pun plz)

07/05/2005 09:14:17 AM · #15
John,

Great ideas. If not in challenges then maybe we can do it together as a website. I am new to photography and still very much an amateur. I have made a copy of your list and will "Challenge Myself" to complete this like Hirel has already stated. I think everyone should do this and we can have a kinda forum from learning this kind of stuff.
07/05/2005 09:42:46 AM · #16
Good idea. Maybe we can have a third challenge type? As rex says, if DPC won't integrate the challenges a weekly thread could be created by us plebians..
07/05/2005 09:50:59 AM · #17
What would the editing rules be with these challenges?
My personal opinion would be that since these challenges are designed toward promoting improved photographic skills, no editing should be allowed. With the obvious exceptions of resizing and possibly cropping.
What say you?

07/05/2005 11:31:36 AM · #18
Good idea John, works for me.
07/05/2005 12:01:39 PM · #19
Originally posted by jaxter:

What would the editing rules be with these challenges?
My personal opinion would be that since these challenges are designed toward promoting improved photographic skills, no editing should be allowed. With the obvious exceptions of resizing and possibly cropping.
What say you?


In my opinion, part of becoming a good digital photographer is learning how to edit effectively. Pressing the shutter release is only the first step in creating a finished photograph, so I would be against 'no editing' as I always have been.
07/05/2005 12:05:26 PM · #20
Originally posted by jmsetzler:

Originally posted by jaxter:

What would the editing rules be with these challenges?
My personal opinion would be that since these challenges are designed toward promoting improved photographic skills, no editing should be allowed. With the obvious exceptions of resizing and possibly cropping.
What say you?


In my opinion, part of becoming a good digital photographer is learning how to edit effectively. Pressing the shutter release is only the first step in creating a finished photograph, so I would be against 'no editing' as I always have been.


I would think with that opionion, that instead of making them all editible that perhaps there should be another level in there using editing skills. Maybe more than one. One on blur, one on getting rid of backgrounds, etc etc. Perhaps (assuming this is a plebian challenge as suggested) both the edited and UN-edited to show how much diffence good editing can do should be shown.

(Oh and I heartly applaud the idea, that's what I'm here for.. to learn)
07/05/2005 12:17:31 PM · #21
I like this idea, it really focuses on the basic techniques of photography which, once mastered, improve your images without you even concentrating on them.
Maybe this could become a series of additional challenges. Or invitationals.
07/05/2005 01:05:29 PM · #22
I'm all for technique based challenges and this seems like a great series, leading on well from one to the next...
07/05/2005 04:46:15 PM · #23
I think the series approach would be very beneficial as a learning tool. These basic concepts, especially the first three, are often overlooked.
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