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Desolate
1st PlaceDesolate
davidus428


Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Failure (Basic Editing III)
Camera: Nikon D100
Lens: Nikon AF Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 VR DG IF-ED
Location: Golden Acres Home for the Aged, Phils.
Date: May 17, 2006
Aperture: 2.8
ISO: 900
Shutter: 1/125
Galleries: Emotive, Black and White
Date Uploaded: May 17, 2006

took this at the Home for the Aged. It is called Golden Acres where 213 abandoned elderly women are housed.

Just noticed I was the first one to submit an entry. Usually, I'm one of the last ones.

-----
post voting:

thank you, thank you for all your votes and encouraging comments.

i wanted to enter the Success challenge at first. I took photos of elderly women smilling toothless, wrinkles and all. Till I glanced at this sight. She captured my heart even before I was able to capture her photo. A series of 4 shots and I was asked to leave the door of the room where I was standing by.

I had the chance to talk to and pray for some of them. Somebody must have failed, somewhere, for them to end up desolate in this place.

Statistics
Place: 1 out of 129
Avg (all users): 7.0664
Avg (commenters): 8.0000
Avg (participants): 6.6327
Avg (non-participants): 7.1864
Views since voting: 8785
Views during voting: 341
Votes: 226
Comments: 50
Favorites: 8 (view)


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AuthorThread
01/26/2007 09:43:47 AM
Originally posted by iamwoman:

Damn, this photo is gripping - I want to look away and yet I can't stop staring.

You are very brave to take such a photo, you inspire me!


I can't put it any better so i'm not going to try. Amazing.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/25/2006 09:26:16 PM
Damn, this photo is gripping - I want to look away and yet I can't stop staring.

You are very brave to take such a photo, you inspire me!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
09/25/2006 12:41:30 PM
This is a terrific capture!

Hard to describe the feelings it evokes when looking at it. It makes her pain to jump out of the image and hit you right on. It just hurts...

I am so glad to know you were able to pray for and help some of them.

God bless you, your family and your ministry!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
07/04/2006 02:56:36 AM
bro, this capture is overflowing with raw emotion. i was browsing your portfolio and this photo caught my attention. a great capture of a pure, 100% real moment!

kudos!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/13/2006 09:10:43 AM
A very moving photograph which looks great on my screen. I don't understand the negative critiques personally. Great work and I appreciate all you said about how and why you took it.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/08/2006 08:32:08 AM
hi heather, thanks for your critique.

just want to respond to some of your comments

- the room was really dimly lit. Fortunately there was a small window about 6 feet over her head which was my only source of light. I couldnt use flash and there was not much preparation to take the shot. I just took it. I was by the door, outside the room full of beds where all these women were lying (you could see the next one behind her which I cropped). i was about 30 feet away.

- i enhanced the photo using curves, rendered in black and white and then used curves again. in my monitor, only the lower part of the face is dark but i still can see some details.

- the eyes really have no glow, no whites. old ladies with almost dim vision (or lack of sight) would have reddish rather than pearly white eyes (of the pro models). In fact, i was happy to capture two tiny white dots (catch lights) that show her teary eyes.

- the white "thing" hanging on her mouth are actually pieces of rice. somebody was not finished feeding her, I guess, before the photo was taken. more than distraction, it added to the story IMHO.

- the lady can't fend for herself, the hands were awkwardly positioned, yes, but that was it that caught my attention. you're right tho, there's nothing appealing with a sad photo like this.

- there were aroung 30 women there in that cramped, dark room. I only took pictures of two ladies and this was the one I chose to enter.

- if i had my second chance, i'll give more attention to add more sharpness.

thanks again.

Originally posted by HBunch:

*Critique Club*

This image is so very dark. The 2 areas of interest to me are the face and hands, and they both seem to be hidden away in the darkness. I would have preferred to see some extra lighting or something in those areas. The eyes for example are too dark for me to really gather an expression from her.
One thing for me that is a distraction is the thing hanging out of her mouth? It's so much lighter against the darkness of the photo in that area that it stands out a lot and is definately unappealing.
Now, I would expect a photo of 'failure' to probably not be very attractive, but non the less, it doesn't make it any more interesting for me to look at.
The shot evokes emotion. I feel bad for the lady and am saddened by her situation, but at the same time, it's just not appealing to look at as an image.
Maybe a good photojournalism shot. Focus is dead on. Nice crisp lines throughout, with a properly blurred background to eliminate background distractions.
I like the positioning of her, and the framing you chose. He hands confuse me. They are at a very awkward angle, almost like there is another person's hand in the pic.
Overall, powerful image. Not much else to add.
~Heather~


Message edited by author 2006-06-08 08:40:09.
06/06/2006 10:50:54 PM
David,

This picture is amazing. It's not just the way you've captured it in such a small amount of time, but what was captured. Pictures of sadness and grief, especially ones that capture the real situations of the world, will always come out on top.

So, what I'm saying is take pictures of things most people would disregard, like abandoned women, or starvation, etc.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/06/2006 03:26:53 AM
*Critique Club*

This image is so very dark. The 2 areas of interest to me are the face and hands, and they both seem to be hidden away in the darkness. I would have preferred to see some extra lighting or something in those areas. The eyes for example are too dark for me to really gather an expression from her.
One thing for me that is a distraction is the thing hanging out of her mouth? It's so much lighter against the darkness of the photo in that area that it stands out a lot and is definately unappealing.
Now, I would expect a photo of 'failure' to probably not be very attractive, but non the less, it doesn't make it any more interesting for me to look at.
The shot evokes emotion. I feel bad for the lady and am saddened by her situation, but at the same time, it's just not appealing to look at as an image.
Maybe a good photojournalism shot. Focus is dead on. Nice crisp lines throughout, with a properly blurred background to eliminate background distractions.
I like the positioning of her, and the framing you chose. He hands confuse me. They are at a very awkward angle, almost like there is another person's hand in the pic.
Overall, powerful image. Not much else to add.
~Heather~
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/04/2006 08:27:08 PM
Congratulations on your Blue with this overwhelming image of human suffering. It is a subject we like to avoid but one that is ever so close to us all. You did a splendid job.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/04/2006 05:58:35 AM
Strong image, congratulation on your blue ribbon!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/03/2006 01:07:37 PM
So....wow! I completely had that wrong. I love it when I am a complete idiot, it signifies a rapid growth spurt. LOL. V

Very good shot, I never meant to take away from that with my comment below, as a matter of fact I was pleasently surprised to see this get the recognition it deserved. Congrats.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/02/2006 06:54:21 AM
Very dramatic and well deserving of the blue ribbon!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/01/2006 10:25:11 PM
OK, so I made a fool of myself not knowing you were in the Philippines.
It must be late in the night or past my 2nd cocktail to be so rude. Please forgive me and just a high 5 to you for a job well done.
Here in the USA we are restricted in a hopspital situation to take these type of photos without consenting releases . I am so embarrassed.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/01/2006 10:15:49 PM
Just a great shot. But a note of caution...when taking these kind of pics at a nursing home these patients are protected by a federal law of anonymity. Without signed releases you can be held libel. It is the privacy act under federal HIPAA regulations. Sorry, not trying to take away your thunder. It is a great shot. Congrats.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
06/01/2006 06:21:59 PM
quite an amazing shot. so much emotion caught in 1/125th a second in time...bravo.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 11:40:46 AM
So the first entry gets the highest votes :-)
Congratulations on you ribbon.
This picture is great and shows so much feelings.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 10:58:53 AM
Isn't it sad to think that people have to live like this when we have the Donald Trumps of the world??

This is more than telling. A great piece of photojournalism, without saying a word. Congratulations.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 09:59:16 AM
Well done - as I said in my first comment below, it makes me feel too uncomfortable to vote... but that is surely the sign the photographer captured something worthwhile...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 08:35:26 AM
Congratulations on your ribbon! Great shot.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 08:33:14 AM
Congrats
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 07:04:08 AM
A very powerful and moving photo. Congratulations on your blue ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 06:32:24 AM
Congratulations on a very impacting photo...thoroughly deserved. When you read the story, you realise so many of us complain about silly things...hope you get many more
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 03:11:34 AM
Massive congratulations on yer blue, Blue...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 01:40:17 AM
A brilliant image for this challenge, shows a true failure of life, Congratulation on your ribbon.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 01:28:50 AM
Congrats on your Blue. This is a very good capture and the black and white really suits.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 12:23:53 AM
Congrats! I didn't get enough time to vote on this challenge, but knew yours would be one of the best! It hurts, seeing this picture.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/31/2006 12:17:14 AM
Powerful! Congrats!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
05/30/2006 11:59:41 PM
Seems a litte dark, but, does give the dosolate feeling. I having the chance to see this in real life know how helpless anyone is when seeing this and there is nothing one can do.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/30/2006 10:11:33 AM
I am kind of stumped here, I really like the photo, it's in and of itself a great shot. It really doesn't say failure, though I can come up with a thousand reasons why it would. Looking through the challenge, it seems like it was pretty tuff to get a blatent failure photo, and I don't want to take away from the people who really nailed it.
What I really want to say is, this is a great shot, and it might not get what it deserves in this particular challenge. GL.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/28/2006 08:32:57 AM
What a sad and moving image.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/28/2006 02:14:46 AM
Outstanding photo in a challenge that is sadly lacking any. Bravo! In my favorites now. Yes it's hard to look at, but as a PJ I know how hard these are to get. Keep up the good work! 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/28/2006 12:43:33 AM
Possibly the most emotive and dramatic entered for this challenge. All I can say is.. Excellent in all repects. Well done!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/27/2006 10:19:29 PM
What can you say.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/26/2006 06:52:18 PM
You can almost feel the pain she feels. Awesome job!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/26/2006 04:53:37 PM
Remarkable shot! Top score from me.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/26/2006 05:31:13 AM
might just be my monitor butthis seems a bit too dark, great texture here though.-6-
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/25/2006 07:56:06 PM
While I am a bi fan of sepia toning, I think that it really hurts this capture. By converting to sepia, some of your details blend together and get lost here. Great composition and I like the moody feeling, but I get more of a sense of pain and loneliness than failure.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/25/2006 06:45:51 PM
beautiful image.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/25/2006 11:19:17 AM
This photo makes me too uncomfortable to vote on. Not even sure it represents failure.
05/24/2006 05:50:43 PM
Looks more like Pain than a failure. Powerful image though.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 04:49:42 PM
The failure of life, fits challenge well,with great impact IMO....gets my TOP SHELF vote...10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 04:44:18 PM
amazing - truly amazing - I have just sat and stared at this photo for 15 minutes and it has really moved me. The crop is perfect, focus is really sharp. I wish I could score you more but it only goes up to 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 04:05:53 PM
very moving...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 02:49:07 PM
fantastic image and must surely get a ribbon. The tones and textures in this are just perfect. 10
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 02:33:40 PM
Excellent conversion. Very powerful.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 12:09:18 PM
Amazing photo. Incredibly well done. Please tell more of the story.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 08:18:23 AM
great portrait!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 06:04:34 AM
Wow, such an emotive shot. A tad too dark as you can't see her expression properly.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 03:42:36 AM
Great shot, but were you inferring that *she* was a failure? That there was some sort of 'failure' that made her like this?
  Photographer found comment helpful.
05/24/2006 12:50:35 AM
Amazing textures...
  Photographer found comment helpful.


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