Open Competition 2 (Mono)

Diana Magor
Diana Magor
As I dialled into the Zoom meeting, I cast my eyes on our judge for the night I noticed it was Diana Magor, that could only mean one thing – it was mono night, the only dedicated competition that Mid-Cheshire Camera Club holds to raise interest the within the club in the mono genre. For the last few years, Diane has been our preferred judge for this competition. She is a specialist in the subject knowing exactly how she wants her highlights, mid-tones and shadows to look like. Diana (EFIA/b, MPSA, CPAGB, LRPS, BPE3*) is the current President of Hoylake Photographic Society. Diana comes from a photographic family and developed the bug at an early age joining Canterbury Camera Club.

A health group of twenty-three club members dialled in to watch Diana judge 54 images. Due to not having a large print section so far this year, judges have had a few more minutes to spend critiquing each of the digital images which must be a good thing.

Despite being a dedicated mono competition, in terms of oof submissions, it is still an open competition. Genres from tonight’s selection of images included: Portraiture, Journalism, Record, Architectural and Natural History. So, what is a good mono image I hear you all say? Well, it is a fact that not all colour images make a good mono conversion with one of the other image elements having to make up for the loss of colour. Therefore, images with strong lines, texture or shape tend to do well.

Diane got started with her feedback straight away. Feedback centred around the following points:

    * Feeling of movement in an image if the subject was moving
    * Don’t cut off elements that support the composition
    * Crop correctly to enhance the story
    * With Portraits the pose should enhance the body
    * Crop out distractions
    * Detail required in shadows and highlights
    * In mono don’t be afraid to brighten highlights if required
    * Do not centralise foreground detail in Landscape compositions
    * Mono images need tonal contrast. Some images were too flat (grey) not enough black through grey to white
    * Subjects in silhouette with a white plain sky do not work. Adding a vignette may work
    * Ensure image has a proper focal point
    * Level horizons
    * Images that had a story did better and proved it was not just about the tonal quality of an image
    * Images have to be technically correct especially if you are adding light in post-production. The added light has to be realistic i.e. to be coming from the same direction as the sun
    * When dodging and burning watch out for halos (a white highlight that surrounds subject)
All feedback is good despite being sometimes difficult to swallow, the secret is to learn from it especially if we want to improve. Focusing back on the competition, the results were in.
PositionAuthorTitleLeague Marks
1stIan WhistonChimpanzee20
2ndJoff TrotmanMonsall head waterfall19.5
3rdPaul WilcockOn the Run19
4thRay HillThe Stand off18.5
5thPaul WilcockCathedral Jam18
A compilation slideshow of all the images entered in this competition can be viewed in the Youtube viewer below.

The league table results for the MCCC PDI Photographer of the year are as follows;
Congratulations to all the winners and runners up and a thank you to all the members taking part. A final big thank you to our Judge, Diana Magor who provided sound and honest feedback throughout the whole evening. We look forward to hopefully seeing her next year.

For more information about the Mid-Cheshire Camera Club visit our website at or come along to a meeting on Wednesday evening at 7.45 for 8pm at the Dingle Recreation Centre, Winsford.

Paul Wilcock
Press & Publicity Officer