Our PSA-PID History
Our club has participated in the PSA's Projected Image Division (PID) open inter-club competitions for almost a decade, and lot's of our members' images have won awards. Last year (2021) for example, we did great, tied for 2nd Place in Group D, and moved up to Group C for this year.
2021 Group D Results: PSA-PID (APS tied for 2nd Place among the 25 competing clubs)
Also last year, two of our APS photographers received "Best of the Best" awards: Michael Amos - HM for Feeding Time, and Jenn Cardinell - HM for Under Mom's Watchful Eye.
Feeding Time by Michael Amos
Under Mon's Watchful Eye by Jenn Cardinell
But, until now, we hadn't assisted with judging these PSA competitions.
We Volunteered to Judge
Marc McElhaney, our coordinator for the PSA-PID competitions, agreed that it was "high time" for us to help PSA with the judging. So we volunteered, and were assigned to judge this year's round 3 for Group A, the highest, most experienced and most competitive group in that competition.
Quite a responsibility! (After all, we are in Group C, middle of the pack - so to speak.) Note the geographic diversity of the twenty-six (26) Group A clubs listed below: twelve (12) from the United States, and fourteen (14) from all around the world.
2022 Group A Clubs
Adding to our angst, for the first time ever, our club's latest entries (round 2, Group C) didn't get any awards. That didn't inspire confidence. And it prompted Marc to say, in a very kidding & facetious way, "...our photos were extraordinary, but the judges, in my opinion, were biased, demented and artistically-challenged." Horrors! What will the Group A clubs think about our judging?
Our Atlanta Photographic Society Judges
Three of our members volunteered to do the judging for Group A - Mike Shaefer - an APS Distinguished Master Photographer, Jim Harrison - also an APS Distinguished Master, and Darryl Neill - an APS Master Photographer.
Mike Shaefer - Past President and Distinguished Master Photographer
Jim Harrison - Past President and Distinguished Master Photographer
Darryl Neill - President and Master Photographer
The Judging Was Tough!
Jim Harrison's Thoughts
Judging Group A was definitely a difficult task! Mainly because there were so many great images. I had to do a lot of "splitting of gnat's hairs," 2nd, 3rd and 4th close looks at the images, and deep plumbing of my own emotional reactions to the photos to come up with my scores.
To me, the very hardest thing was limiting the Honorable Mentions to 10%. To my eye and initial scoring, well over half of the images deserved that distinction! The skill and creativity of the photographers represented in Group A is extraordinary.
Mike Shaefer's Thoughts
I very much enjoyed judging for the PSA. The variety and quality of images made the process challenging in a good way. Images that exhibited technical skill, excellent composition, and creativity are the ones that stood out to me.
I also found working with the other two judges to be an equally enjoyable experience. Seeing images from another person's perspective is always a plus. I would enjoy the opportunity to judge again for PSA.
Darryl Neill's Thoughts
Like my colleagues, I found judging the Group A images to be challenging! After individually examining the images and assigning scores, we had a surprisingly civil phone-with-online viewing discussion about them. Surprisingly civil because we were intimidated by the difficulty of the task! Nonetheless, we persevered and submitted our results and hope that the creators who submitted images realize that we tried to be fair and reasonable.
Our Judging Results
The scoring for this competition used a 1-5 scale, 5 being the best. Just two (2) images from the 157 entries received the maximum score (a score of five (5)) from all three of our judges, and both received a Merit Award. They are:
Eye Lash Viper by Doug Fischer of Film Pack Camera Club - Washington State, USA, and
Illustrated Butterfly Encyclopedia by Sharon Prenton Jones of Eryri Photo Group - Wales
Please spend an enjoyable few minutes viewing those two, the rest of the Group A award winners on the PSA website (and the winners in all the other groups). It will be time well spent! And hopefully inspiring - as we aspire to eventually move up to Group A!
For the Group A clubs and their talented photographers: we did our best and hope everyone is satisfied with our judging results. If not, you are welcome to quote those prescient words of our club's PSA competitions coordinator, Marc McElhaney, "...our photos were extraordinary, but the judges, in my opinion, were biased, demented and artistically-challenged."