APOY Round Seven – On the Streets

**Entries must be received by 5pm on 24 August 2012**

Please visit the APOY12 home page to find all the rules for entry, terms and conditions, the APOY entry email address, and the disclaimers that must be copied and pasted into an email entry.

Round 7 of this year’s Amateur Photographer of the Year competition, sponsored by Samsung and Jessops, is On the Streets (street and documentary). Street photography has become something of a phenomenon recently. The streets offer countless photographic opportunities and are a rich source of composition, colour and mood, whether at home or abroad. They can also offer a number of strange and interesting scenes, so an eye for the absurd is going to be of great benefit here. Don’t be fooled, though, as street photography is not as easy as it seems.

If you want some ideas on how you can make the most of your photographs please carry on reading. Images likely to catch the judges’ eye are those that are creative, skilfully composed and technically excellent. As always, we have thousands of pounds’ worth of fantastic camera equipment up for grabs, as well as the chance to be crowned Amateur Photographer of the Year 2012. The closing date for round 7 is 24 August 2012. The top two winners will each receive a fantastic Samsung camera, while the third-prize winner will receive a £250 Jessops voucher. The top 30 highest scoring photographs will be published in our 29 September issue, while the scores from the top 50 images will be posted on our website.

photo by Miko Coffey

For information explaining how to enter can be found on the APOY 2012 home page. Please use your full name as the file name and paste the disclaimer into the body of your email if you are sending your entry electronically. We also need to know where and how you took your image, plus the camera and lens used with aperture and focal length details. Also, include a telephone number and your postal address so we can contact you if you win.

For round 7 of APOY, we’re looking for eye-catching images taken on the streets. It doesn’t matter whether the things you photograph are taken at home or in far-away lands, streets the world over can provide the photographer with all manner of fascinating images. It’s just a matter of staying patient and keeping your eyes peeled. This round offers huge scope to create all manner of creative, dynamic shots. Take a wander through any busy town or city and you’ll be immediately struck by the sheer diversity of elements you are faced with. The streets are teeming with colours, shapes and captivating characters, playing host to all walks of life. There is plenty of inspiration around, so why not take a look at a few of the many exhibitions being held or one of the many books that are hitting the shelves and you’ll soon see that no two street images are the same. A word of caution, though. Just because someone or something can make for an interesting subject doesn’t make it right to just snap away. Consider your reasons for taking photographs of people. Will your image be exploitative in any way? If so, then think again. Ethics play a big part in street photography and an awareness of this can save you a lot of bother.

1st prize
The first-prize winner will receive a Samsung NX210 with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, Samsung 16mm f/2.4 Ultra Wide, Samsung 20mm f/2.8 and Samsung 30mm f/2 pancake lenses, and a 16GB SDHC Plus memory card, worth a total of £1,595.99. The NX210 is an advanced compact system camera with a 20.3-million-pixel, APS-C, CMOS sensor.

It has 8fps continuous shooting, built-in Wi-Fi for email, social networking and transfer, and an ISO range of 100-12,800 that lets you take high-speed photos even in low light. Samsung’s slender, all-purpose i-Function 16mm lens offers great versatility, with quick and easy one-touch access to all your camera’s manual settings.

2nd prize
The second-prize winner will receive a Samsung WB850F compact camera and a 16MB SDHC Plus memory card worth a total of £288.98. The WB850F travel compact has a 16-million-pixel, BSI (Back Side Illuminated) CMOS sensor to help reduce image noise and distortion, even in low-light conditions and 21x optical zoom lens (23-483mm equivalent). The Samsung WB850F also has built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, so users can email photos or share them on social network sites quickly and easily.

3rd prize
The third-prize winner will receive a £250 Jessops Gift Card. Jessops Gift Cards are only redeemable in store and not online. Overseas winners will be contacted by phone about how to claim their prize.

Here are some tips and suggestions to help you get started

Why not try…

photo by Craig Reilly

Perhaps the best tip that can be offered when dealing with street photography is to keep your camera settings simple. As soon as you get into a scene, take a lightmeter reading through your camera. That will then mean that your camera is ready for whatever may occur. There’s nothing worse than missing a golden opportunity because you were too busy fiddling with your camera’s aperture and shutter speed. On that note, it is worth mentioning that tripods are perhaps not the best idea when attempting candid shots. Not only are they cumbersome, but they will also make you easily identifiable as a photographer. Remaining inconspicuous can sometimes be the key to a successful shot.

photo by Mark Cutler

One of the most obvious things to shoot when out and about on the streets is people. Look hard enough and you can find all manner of interesting and funny characters going about their lives. It can be as simple as someone wearing a bright and colourful piece of clothing or something a person is doing that appears to be absurd and unusual. Also, be prepared to remain inconspicious and try to blend in. In that way, you will not influence the situation by the subject of your shot becoming aware of your presence. If your subject sees that you are photographing them, then their behaviour may change.

photo by Gemma Padley

Composing your Shot
Taking photos on the street is not an excuse to take snapshots. In fact, the rules of framing and composition are even more important when faced with such a busy and vibrant environment. Knowing how to arrange the elements within the frame will help you create order from chaos and clearly identify what it is the viewer is meant to be looking at. There are a great number of ways to experiment with framing, perhaps using doorways and archways, or even reflections and shadows. Using architecture could also be a point of consideration and an element that can lend your images a dynamic edge.

Please visit the APOY12 home
page to find all the rules for entry, terms and conditions, the APOY
entry email address, and the disclaimers that must be copied and pasted
into an email entry.

If you wish to enter by post please remember to include your entry form.

**Entries must be received by 5pm on 24 August 2012**

 In association with Samsung and Jessops