Judge: Barry O'Brien

Many times, over the years I have judged this competition, I have emphasised the importance of expressions in lifting a picture from ordinary to excellent. Expressions, especially on static, set-up pictures, usually don't just happen.

The photographer must first describe what he or she is looking for, go through the antics of demonstrating the required look-then be ready to capture that moment as it may only be evident for a split second, especially if the subject is not outgoing.

The sought after expression may not happen immediately, through self­consciousness or lack of understanding, so the photographer must persevere until achieved.

The Gawler Bunyip had all the potential for a great picture with the subjects in costume and makeup. Later, the design team altered the background to create a darker feel. But the picture was let down by the bland expression on the principal character. Nevertheless, I gave it a Highly Commended.

Third place to the Plains Producer for the lovely, natural light picture of the Tarlee farmer in the woolshed, by Lisa Schultz.

Second place went to The Border Watch for Amelia Pepe's gas drilling protestor. The subjects in the winning picture had great expressions, the action was good and it was well planned.

First place to The Courier and Elisa Rose for the Leon Bignell header.


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