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I'm entering a photograph contest in national geographic traveler magazine.

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My apologies for photobombing the huddle lately. I was twiddling my thumbs at work the other day and randomly came across a copy of National Geographic's Travel magazine. On the last page I saw an large photo submitted by an amateur photographer, with a brief description of the location and the thought behind the shot. The bottom of the page announced that the magazine publishes a piece of work from amateur photographers taking pictures around the world once per issue.

Getting a piece of work published would be pretty prestigious at my level, and would go a long way towards getting me established in the rather ambiguous field towards which I am headed. I'm going to post a collection of photographs I've taken over the last two years.

I need feedback - I can only submit one picture. Which one is the best? Consider all the elements of composition and clarity as well as the location and subject. The Huddle is pretty well-rounded as far as demographics, backgrounds, and interests, so I figure this is a pretty good spot for varied opinions.

Thanks in advance!

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/WatArun.jpg[/IMG]

Wat Arun - "Temple of the Dawn" in Bangkok, Thailand.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/VangViengbyBike.jpg[/IMG]

Karst peaks rise through the mist in the highlands of central Laos.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AngkorWat.jpg[/IMG]

Ceremonial pool near the west entrance of Angkor Wat, Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/SydneyOperaHouse.jpg[/IMG]

The iconic Sydney Opera House, shot at night from the equally famous Sydney Harbour Bridge in (you guessed it) Sydney, Australia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/SwingsetCambodia.jpg[/IMG]

Joy explodes across the face of this youngster on a swingset in downtown Phnom Penh, Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/OverlookingCookIsland.jpg[/IMG]

A scrawny tree attempts to take root on a rocky peninsula overlooking Cook Island, named for the region's first European explorer, near Fingal Head, Australia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/OutsideAngkor.jpg[/IMG]

A small temple lies beyond the more famous Angkor Wat, behind its east gate, near Siem Reap, Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/NicaraguaFlower.jpg[/IMG]

Bright colors define the communities of Managua, Nicaragua, and this large hibiscus flower is no exception.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AngkorWat2.jpg[/IMG]

Another shot of an interior basin in Angkor Wat, Cambodia (of the two similar shots, which is better?)


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/MekongBoat.jpg[/IMG]

The view from the rails of a Mekong River longboat, journeying from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang, Laos.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/KohSamuiFlower.jpg[/IMG]

Small flowers bud in the springtime on the island of Koh Samui, Thailand.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/FingalHeadPeninsula.jpg[/IMG]

The edge of a rocky peninsula overlooking the Pacific Ocean on Australia's eastern coast.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/LuangPrabangFlowers.jpg[/IMG]

Ornate bouquets decorate the exterior of a hillside shrine in Luang Prabang, Laos.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/BetioGunEmplacement.jpg[/IMG]

Rust proves to be an indefatigable foe for this Japanese gun emplacement, which itself was the bane of U.S. Marines attempting to land on the beaches of Betio, Tarawa, in 1943.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/LaotianCat.jpg[/IMG]

This Laotian kitten's reaction to seeing a white person isn't all that different from that of the locals living in the tiny border town of Huay Xai, Laos.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/LaoFoodMarket.jpg[/IMG]

A gastronomical delight: these vibrant colors are typical of platters in a food stall in Luang Prabang, Laos.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/KhmerRougeSkulls2.jpg[/IMG]

Skulls leer from a glass-walled tower containing almost 8,000 more; they are the remains of victims killed during Cambodia's Khmer Rouge, at the killing fields of Cheoung Ek.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/Journal.jpg[/IMG]

A hastily scrawled map of Southeast Asia betrays destinations to come.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/FlowerontheBeach.jpg[/IMG]

This beach outside of Nadi, Fiji, was littered with bright flowers.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/CrossingtheMekong.jpg[/IMG]

Crossing the Mekong River on a skiff, at the Thai-Lao border of Chiang Khong/Huay Xai.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ChildrenofHope.jpg[/IMG]

An orphaned Cambodian boy awaits a tuk-tuk ride to the local soccer field in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ChiangSaen.jpg[/IMG]

An ancient dynastical temple rises skyward near the town of Chiang Saen, Thailand.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ByronPeninsula.jpg[/IMG]

Pastel blues suggest a beautiful underwater reef on the outskirts of this peninsula on Australia's eastern coast.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ChiangMaiWall.jpg[/IMG]

This crumbling stone wall hasn't been much of a match for the march of time, but it kept many an invader from breaching the Old City district of Chiang Mai, Thailand.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/CeibaTreeGuatemala.jpg[/IMG]

The ancient Mayans worshiped Ceiba trees like this one located near Tikal, Guatemala.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/BuddhasEverywhere.jpg[/IMG]

Statues of Buddha line the walls of this ornate temple in Chiang Rai, Thailand.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ByronBayLighthouse.jpg[/IMG]

Freshly-painted, this lighthouse stands sentinel over Byron Bay, the easternmost point on the Australian continent.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/Bumpercars.jpg[/IMG]

Bumpercars slide across the pavement in this Phnom Penh, Cambodia, arena.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/BrisbaneSkyline.jpg[/IMG]

The Brisbane River Bridge is beautifually illuminated by spotlights like this one; the Brisbane, Australia cityscape in the background gives it a run for its money.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AntiguaVolcanoesandCathedral.jpg[/IMG]

Standing atop a destroyed cathedral in Antigua, Guatemala.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/BetioSunset.jpg[/IMG]

The highway west to Tarawa's sleepy capital town of Betio is illuminated by this sunset, a typical skyscape in the equatorial Pacific nation of Kiribati.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AntiguaCathedral.jpg[/IMG]

Massive fissures in this Baroque-style cathedral betray the destructive energy of an earthquake that tore through Antigua, Guatemala in the 17th century.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AngkorWat3.jpg[/IMG]

Angkor Wat's east gate is visible through twin stone pillars in northern Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AngkorExtraneousTemple.jpg[/IMG]

The murky interior of this exterior Angkorian temple exudes an Indiana Jones-esque aura near Siem Reap, Cambodia.


[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/FijiSunset.jpg[/IMG]

A fishing boat is silhouetted by the sun setting over Nadi, Fiji's western shores.
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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/FijiPalms.jpg[/IMG]

A row of spindly palm trees lines a beach on the western coast of Viti Levu, Fiji.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/KohSamuiSunset-1.jpg[/IMG]

A sunrise over the Gulf of Thailand, shot at dawn from the island of Kohn Samui.

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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/AntiguaPanorama.jpg[/IMG]

Antigua, Guatemala's iconic city arch is a fantastic spot for viewing the region's surrounding active volcanoes, if not particularly legal.

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HUGE thanks (and copious amounts of pie, of course) to anyone who contributes opinions. I am headed to Peru in a few days so hopefully I'll be able to grab a few more there to add to the collection.

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I like the pics of the kids the most, followed by the first pic.

The Sydney Opera House has been done to death, although your pic is very beautiful. The kitten pic makes me sad. They are all outstanding.

I really love the pic of the kid on the swing. That's my favorite.

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[quote name='sunbunny']I like the pics of the kids the most, followed by the first pic.

The Sydney Opera House has been done to death, although your pic is very beautiful. The kitten pic makes me sad. They are all outstanding.

I really love the pic of the kid on the swing. That's my favorite.[/QUOTE]

thanks for the feedback. why does the kitten make you sad?

this picture isn't in the running by any stretch but there was a good half dozen kittens running around and they absolutely made my day.

[IMG]http://a6.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/268204_890440178831_25010071_41265300_5010714_n.jpg[/IMG]

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I was a journalism major in college, mostly wrote, but took some classes on photo journalism. Some of these you have here are really great for various reasons.

The skinny tree photo is beautiful.

The one of the pink flower. Close up shots always seem to make great pictures in my opinion, couple that with the bright colors and I think that one's a winner.

The rocky cliffside photo is my favorite. The contrast in the colors from the foreground to the background is great.

The bouquet and Buddha pics are really nice. I always like the long, close up shots.

That cat is awesome.

Brisbane River Bridge: I'm sure you know about the rule of thirds in photography, but when I saw that picture that rule really stuck out in my mind. To me that picture is so much more effective because the location of the spotlight and the rail divides the picture into thirds and creates great focal points. Not to mention how great the background looks. Ah, another tidbit on that one. Not that this has any real value that I know of in photography(but I'm a relative novice) the way the spotlight runs exactly parallel to one of the skyscrapers looks super neat.

At any rate, all of the pictures were great in my opinion. Just thought I'd highlight some of the ones I thought were the best of the bunch for different reasons. Good luck with the competition!
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I picked pics that made me "feel" something. The boy swinging brought a smile to my face. The kitten pic makes me sad cause they're homeless. The orphan boy got to me. The flowers, while beautiful, were just pictures. They didn't make me feel anything.
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[B][COLOR="DeepSkyBlue"]Those pics are awesome!! Will take a lot of thought to pick a favorite.[/COLOR][/B]
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For me, most of them would fit NG... but I think my favorite and the most fitting is the one of the orphan boy in the tuk-tuk in Cambodia... His eyes make you curious to his life experiences...

Also, the kid on the swingset, I'd change that description to something that sounds a little less perverted... lol... "Joy explodes across the face"

;)

Good stuff, though... and good luck!
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First, throw out the pics with the extreme tilt. Tilting screams "I am not yet comfortable in my compositions so let me tilt it and make it cool". Every photographer goes through it, some never make it past.

To me if it goes in a travel magazine it needs to tell the story of your travels. So throw out the flowers.

Also, a brilliant travel picture needs no captioning to tell the story. It tells the story within the frame.

They probably get tons upon tons of shots of the local architecture shot the same way, throw those out.

If the first kitty shot had a wider depth of field so that I could make out the foreign surroundings it would be worth submitting, but since its pretty blurred, could have been taken anywhere. throw that out. The second kitty shot, same thing, does not tell the story of location. Could be a shed in SC.

So for me, I would go with the the blue boat shot.


Its dynamic, colorful, and tells the story. The red bags make a good strong focal point. I assume they are plastic bags you put your belongings in to stay dry? Again, it tells the story. Its taken at a vantage point that puts you in the travelers seat.
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[IMG]http://i1213.photobucket.com/albums/cc476/epicnomad/Nat%20Geo%20Application%20Shots/ChildrenofHope.jpg[/IMG]

That is the one I am talking about... His eyes just made me think back to this iconic NG cover...

[IMG]http://cts.hss.uts.edu.au/students08/girl/National%20geographic.jpg[/IMG]

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I love all your pics but the ones that stood out to me were, of course the one with the kitten..the one with the ceiba tree and the one with the view of crossing the mekong on a skiff.

good luck!

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im with jsqaured. that pic was the only one that made me think whats going on here. the rest seemed great but sort of standard.

where the kid seems to fit with what NG seems to capture at least to me.

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Excellent pics... I vote for the kid on the swing. More of a story behind that one to me...

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I like the pic of the scraggly tree. It seems to represent the struggle to maintain life in the tough times in that area, and how even in the toughest times, if you can get a foothold, you can manage a productive, if meager existence.

But the is jmho.

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I agree with Zod about the tilting. I don't know anything about photography, so I can't comment like Zod can, but when I saw them I wondered what the scene was like without the tilt. Still liked them though.

I'd go with the skiff with the red bags, or the kid in the tuk tuk. To me, the kid on the swing is nice, but doesn't scream NG to me. I kind of liked the first pic on the Mekong too. If the passenger up front was leaning out a little more and their face was clear it would be my first choice. I also liked the shot of the food.

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The food shot would have been a winner if you could have shown maybe the server prepping it or something along those lines. Something that tells me where its at.

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^^It sure aint' Clover SC :)

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