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Tiffany Brook's "Grrrr 2010" image chosen as winner of Sept '12 Photo.net "Children at Play" photo contest...

Josh Root , Oct 18, 2012; 01:11 p.m.

Photo.net member Tiffany Brook's image "Grrrr 2010" has been chosen by the judges as the winning entry in Photo.net's Sept 2012 photo contest, "Children at Play".


The Images

All of the entries for the "children at play" contest can be seen here:

September 2012 Photo.net photo contest: Children At Play


Tiffany's Winning Image:

About the Image:

"Grrrrr 2010" is really special to me, because the image is of my son , Ziggy. His sister wore the outfit in 2005. I have photos of both the kids as a Halloween tiger or a "Striped Tiger" as Ziggy called it.

The photo was shot with a Nikon D300 at F6.3/20mm using 2 strobes. Editing is minimal. I darkened the background a bit and gave it a vignette.

Kids are my favourite subject to capture with a camera. And Halloween is one of the best times to catch their most playful moments. -Tiffany


Judges' Comments:

Tracey Clark - Expression is what makes this shot so special for me but even beyond that, the way the photographer framed this ferocious tiger is what makes it a visual delight. Well lit, beautifully composed and delightfully whimsical, this image is a very creative representation of a child at play! Intriguing, clever and hilarious the boy in the tiger suit is giving it his all and the photographer captured the moment at the exactly right time, creating a classic portrait of childhood with a fantastical twist. Super fun shot! Grrrrr!


Tammy Lee Bradley - I love everything about this photo... the crisp colors, facial expression, and the focus. I can almost hear the "RAWR" that goes with that claw hand gesture. Allowing your child to play in this studio setting added personality and charm to a shot that could have otherwise been too serious. Very well done.


Josh Root - I really like this photo because straight-off, if you've ever been around children, it says "here's a goofball kid". The body position, the face expression, the hand. The kid is a showman and knows it. Then you look a little closer and notice that it is really a nice photo on a technical level. The lighting, vingetting, sharpness, and color 'pop' all work well together. Now, there is an argument that a studio portrait doesn't really fit the idea of a child being 'at play'. It's a point worth making, and perhaps debating. But my own view is that, if you've ever tried to take realistic (meaning not formal) portraits of children, you know that letting them goof off and screw around is one of the best ways to get away from the forced-smile snapshot. To me, this image hits on all cylinders.

The Judges:

Tracey Clark

Author, mother, and blogger, Tracey Clark, introduces her newest book Elevate the Everyday: A Photographic Guide to Picturing Motherhood through Focal Press. Focusing on the beauty of ordinary moments, Tracey offers inspirational ideas that will jumpstart your photographic energies and enable you to see your children and yourself in a new way through the lens of your camera. She is the founder of Shutter Sisters, a collaborative photo blog and thriving community of female photo enthusiasts, and currently hosts the Picture Series, photo workshops, with Big Picture Classes. Tracey is also the author of three other books, including Waiting for Baby and Baby of Mine, and coauthor of Expressive Photography : A Shutter Sisters Guide to Shooting From the Heart. In her spare time, she enjoys sharing her passion, know-how and photo-philosophies at conferences, events, and gatherings nationwide.


Tammy Lee Bradley

Tammy is a 2012 Olympus Visionary Photographer, the founder of Mortal Muses, a photography collaboration with female photographers from around the globe, a freelance photographer & writer as an Everyday Storyteller for Paper Coterie and Olympus PenReady Photographer #800. Tammy works as a lifestyle, portrait, and stock photographer. Follow Tammy online at www.tammyleebradley.com


Josh Root

Josh Root has had his editorial images published across the globe and has done work for clients as mainstream as ESPN, as trendy as Bust Magazine and as offbeat as Yoyofactory. These days he chases his kids around the house and chases 1's and 0's around the internet as the Editor in Chief, Community Director and Official Mop/Bucket Man running Photo.net.


Honorable Mention Images:

Title: The Best of Times Photographer: Carlos H.

Tracey: This image caught my eye and immediately drew me in. Even beyond the captivating subject matter—I have never seen inter tubes at the ocean—all of the elements in the shot work so well together to tell a poetic story of childhood. From the ominous sky to the softness of the sea and sand, the choice of near painting-like monochromatic processing was a perfect way to turn a moment like this into a quintessential classic. A full range of tones, from black to white and everything in between, is captured beautifully and the photographer’s ability to use the light in this scene to help him create such an exquisite photograph is impressive. Bravo!

Title: Untitled Photographer: Janis OKelley


Tammy: Your processing on this photograph is lovely. The tones and the fog have created a vintage feel. The varied distances of the people in the playing and in the background give depth to the scene that I find very appealing. You have captured the soccer action and set the mood of this early morning scene perfectly.

Title: Hands Photographer: Gillie Bengough


Josh - I really liked the composition of this image. The hands show exactly what the girl was doing and peeking through them frames her face and creates a nice point of interest. I also think fingerpainting is one of those activities that, for many of us, evokes fond (and cute) memories. The strong green, blue and yellow colors work nicely. The eyes are a little more shaded than I would have liked, but the catch-light helps significantly and gives "life" to the image.

Title: No Boundaries Photographer: Jaap Voets


Tracey - The unexpected and compelling perspective that this shot offers is part of what makes it so unique. For such a challenging style of photography (shooting underwater) I am in awe that all of the compositional elements came together in a way that feels well thought out and executed very deliberately by the photographer. The use of shape, color, and angle makes my eye never wants to leave the frame. And with the subject matter as universal to childhood as this one, it’s also the story that excites me. The expression on the young boy’s face feels like the icing on the cake. It’s awesome. I only wonder how many shots it took to get an underwater shot as perfect as this one? Well done!

Title: Exuberance Photographer: ML M


Tammy - Wonderful focus and depth of field! Your use of the 50mm and an aperture of f1.6 makes this image really work and showcases why they usually call this lens the "nifty fifty." This angle is playful and allowed you to fill the frame nicely with nice bokeh in the background. Great job nailing the focus on the eyes too... probably not an ease task while he was swinging and upside down. This photo just screams CHILDHOOD and the simple moments that we often try to capture.

Title: Untitled Photographer: Andre Torres


Josh - As a "moment" I love this photo. It honestly made me chuckle. You notice the girl and boy in the foreground initially as the setup, then you see the kids in the background and that is the punchline. These kids are playing and having fun and don't care what anyone else thinks. Bottom line, a wonderful moment and one I would have been pleased to have captured myself.

Title: At Work :) Photographer: Katarzyna Gritzmann


Tracey - The way this shot is illuminated is one of my favorite parts of this beautifully candid portrait. The sweetness, softness and stillness of such a tender scene as this one is even further elevated by the intimate angle that the photographer used to capture it. We often use high energy shots to tell stories of childhood but these more subtle, everyday moments are what can tug at your heartstrings, especially as a parent. The simplicity of the scene, the activity at hand, and the intent and engaged expression on this little girl’s face makes me long for the days when my girls were this young. I love the photographer’s interpretation of the theme and appreciate how well-executed it is. I give it a glowing review!

Title: A Kiss Photographer: Andrey Antov


Tammy - Superb composition and timing. With the positions of the whale and the girl falling close to the rule of thirds lines, you get a nice visual impact. The tippy-toe stretch to get the kiss and the look on the whale's face just add to the magic . I love that despite having her back to the camera, I can clearly see the little girl's "smile" in her body language. A delightful shot.

Title: Fountain Photographer: Stephanie Luke


Josh - This image does something that isn't particularly easy given the subject matter, and that is to present us with a strong graphic and artistic image. The high shutter speed has stopped movement of both kids and water and combined with the backlighting and silhouettes create an image that is quite unique and stands out clearly from the other submissions. It is always a pleasure to see someone approach a subject differently than most others do.

Facebook "Likes"

A special thank-you goes out to José Manuel CRuz and Janis OKelley for their truly outstanding social media promotion. They brought a lot of new eyes to the contest (and to Photo.net) by encouraging their friends and family to "like" images in the contest.

José achieved over 1200 "likes" for his image of children in Indonesia.
Janis achieved almost 1100 "likes" for her combined submissions including over 700 for her soccer image that appears in the "Honorable Mention" selections.

Thank You

Thank you to everyone who participated. There were many wonderful images and many special moments captured. Please keep an eye out for the October contest "Wedding Emotions". -Josh


Janis OKelley , Oct 18, 2012; 02:51 p.m.

Congratulation's Tiffany Brook! "Grrrrr" earned it's place as the winner of the "Children at Play" contest without a doubt. Judge's, my sincere THANK YOU for the Honorable Mention...you put a smile on my face today!! janis o'kelley

Louis Meluso , Oct 19, 2012; 03:19 a.m.

Thumb's up, Tiffany! The Honorable Mentions sure look great too, beautiful work all! Janis, I really loved your shot of the three kids with ice pops.

Hosteen Yendikeno , Oct 19, 2012; 07:00 p.m.

Congratulations Tiffany! Fun contest - looking forward to the next one.

Emmanuel Enyinwa , Oct 22, 2012; 03:06 p.m.

Congrats all....

José Manuel CRuz , Oct 24, 2012; 02:27 p.m.

Congratulations Tiffany. It was on may top five on the contest. Definitely one of the best. José

Tiffany Brook , Oct 27, 2012; 10:10 a.m.

Thank you! I was really quite surprised when I was notified. There were so many really amazing images in this contest.
I am very honoured to be part of PN's maiden voyage into contests. And again, this image is pretty special to me. Parents are always partial to their own photos of their own kids. It is nice to be recognized. And yes...Ziggy is quite the character. More so with each passing year.
Congrats to everyone who participated...wonderful and inspirational work!

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