Community Guidelines

About Photo Critic

Photo Critic is a photography community network created and maintained by DPC | Digital Photography Courses and both past and present students of DPC enjoy access to the service. Photo Critic is an extension of DPC’s photography courses where students and photographers will receive constructive, honest feedback on their work from expert photographers as well as the community.

Our sole aim is to elevate our members’ overall standards of photography and visual literacy, whilst providing a community forum for like-minded photographers.  It is within this forum that we can learn from one another through various activities.

Summary and benefits of Photo Critic

  • Community-Driven Learning Platform
  • Expert Photo Critiques
  • Photo Competitions
  • Customisable User Profiles
  • Social Media Integration
  • Updates on Upcoming Events
  • Discussions
  • Specialist Groups

Membership Categories

By default, all DPC students get access to the Standard membership and subsequently free catalogue of Photo Critic services, while those members who wish to derive even more benefit from Photo Critic’s services can subscribe to our Premier Membership (F/11-Group).

 

Regular members

Regular members are those who choose not to pay a subscription fee. Regular members will be restricted to one photo upload weekly and are not guaranteed a photo critique - especially where it is deemed that previous critiques on similar images submitted have not resulted in improvements. The primary aim of Photo Critic is to encourage personal growth within our community, and this is only achieved through constructive critiquing and improvement processes.

 

Premium members

Members who pay a subscription fee of $160 per year, become members of the F/11 group. F/11 members are eligible for three photo uploads and two guaranteed Photo Critiques per week. Additional benefits will include a one-to-one Portfolio Review session, as well as access to exclusive events.

Click on the button below to subscribe and take advantage of our valuable Premium Membership:

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Rules for Posting Images

For 2019, Photo Critic is making a few changes to the image posting rules. The changes are aimed  at improving the standard of service as well as encouraging members to expand their vision and push their own creativity.

 

  1. Regular members may only post one (1) image per week and are not guaranteed a critique, while Premium members can post three (3) pictures per week and are guaranteed two (2) critiques.
  1. We expect that everyone who actively post their images, to also comment on other members photos.
  1. Add suitable titles for your photos.
  1. Provide your camera settings:
    1. Camera, lens and focal length
    2. Program used
    3. ISO
    4. Shutter Speed
    5. Aperture
    6. Metering Mode
  1. Provide additional info:
    1. Did you take the picture handheld, or did you use a tripod?
    2. Did you use flash or a reflector? If you did, explain your setup.
    3. What post processing have you done and what software did you use?
    4. For composites, or advance edits, provide a detailed description of your editing processes.
    5. Tell us how and why you’ve taken a photo and explain your thinking processes.
    6. Also, don’t hesitate to state why you feel it is a good photo and where you think you could have improved on it.
  1. Image Sizing:
    • Our minimum upload size for pictures is 1440 pixels on the long edge, but we strongly recommend 2100 pixels at 200 dpi.
  1. Watermarks and Branding
    • As from May 2019, we will no longer allow any watermarks since branding is irrelevant on a non-commercial, community platform like Photo Critic, where aesthetics come first.

Rules on Digital Manipulation

Retouching has always been part of photography and we cannot negate the importance of appropriate retouching. We accept that suitable digital retouching is as much a part of the photographic process as is the taking of photos. In fact, we assume that all photo submissions are edited to some degree, in order to present your work in a thoughtful and respectable way.

We allow composites and serious digital photographic manipulation as well. However, since we are first and foremost a Photography Platform, we prioritise good photography, storytelling, and solid photographic technique over digital manipulation. In case you're submitting composites, and extensively digitally manipulated work, please state and explain your processes; from the shooting stage, through the digital manipulation processes. In the case of composites, we might require you to also submit the original source images from which you've made your final image.

Approval of Images

We will not approve every image that is uploaded. The reason for this is that we often receive photographs where zero photographic principles have been applied; such as when the image is completely out of focus (without reason), or when no thinking went into the composition etc.

In other words, we would like to see that you adhered to the basic elements of good photography that we teach. Elements we will consider are:

  • Composition (is it interesting and thoughtfully framed?)
  • Emotional content (does the image move you, or make you feel something?)
  • Exposure and lighting
  • Timing
  • Technical skill
  • Careful retouching (not flat, or overdone) 

Where applicable, a reviewer may still provide feedback to the photographer (in the form of a private message) without displaying the image online, as we do encourage growth and learning from mistakes.

Featured Photos

To get your image approved is the first milestone in the Photo Critic community. After that, having your image featured by a reviewer is the next achievement in your progress as a photographer.

Typically, a photograph will be featured if:

  • It demonstrates a technical mastery of the basic (or advanced) photographic techniques shown in correct, or appropriate use of exposure, focus and light.
  • It shows visual intelligence and the application of forethought to colour, composition, story, movement and emotion.
  • The editing process has enhanced the image rather than distracting from it and has avoided the pitfalls of over-or under-application, clichéd or trendy techniques and overall quality.
  • The image shows originality or explores a well photographed subject in a new, interesting way.

Only images that adhere to the “Rules for Posting Images” above will be featured.

Member Ranking System

Photo Critic is a member driven platform that encourages interaction between reviewers and members alike. As a measure of a member’s interaction and contribution to the platform, a new feature included is the Member Ranking System that rewards contribution and interaction on the platform.

 

The ranking system uses approved content, commenting, liking and other general interactions to add points to a member’s profile,  It also encourages friendly competition and personal progression on the platform.

Commenting on Photos and Posts

Remember, our member ranking system favours those members who participate and comment in activities.

We encourage you to comment on as many images as you can, preferably on images loaded in the same week as yours. Being able to analyse and critique other photographs helps you become a better photographer by knowing what to look for in your own work. 

Commenting on other’s images may not be as daunting as you may think. If you have just started out and are still inexperienced, try to stay clear of giving advice about settings etc. Rather say what you like about the image or what you don't like. If you are an experienced photographer, do not hesitate to critique the image. If there's room for improvement you may provide constructive advice. You can also share tips and ideas on how the image could have been improved.

Always be honest yet keep it constructive and courteous! Never attack another photographer’s work or opinions, and don’t make it personal. Also stay clear of personal preferences. If you don't particularity like a specific style, accept that photography, like any other art form, is very subjective.

Favourites

New to Photo Critic 2019 is favourite button (Star Icon) on top of each photo, or content screen when viewed at full size. Only signed-in Photo Critic members can  favour content and you can only favour content once. Favouriting photos or content will promote it and bring it under the attention of others. This is a great way to let members know that you enjoy their work. However, we encourage you to thoughtfully consider whether a photo really deserves a favourite vote in order to keep the standards high.

How to Upload Photos and Content

Uploading photos and content is easy! If you want to add content, simply click on the + Sign!

Email Frequency

We know that everyone find too many emails distracting and annoying. The platform offers a solution to  this by condensing your Photo Critic notifications into a daily summary. You can set your email preference by following the link below: