Picture This Photo Contest – October 2011

This months theme is Fill the Frame.

succulent tapestry

We will be looking for photos that use the entire canvas with well constructed compositions.  The succulent tapestry above from Jeff Moore’s garden in Solana Beach, CA was carefully composed in the camera’s viewfinder to include blocks of complementary plant material, overlapping triangles with strong lines and shapes to achieve a balance that fills the entire frame.

Let’s look at other ways to consider the topic of ‘Fill the Frame’.

I well remember the first time I saw culinary sage (Salvia officinalis) flowering in a garden.  I could not believe that I had been so unaware of the spectacular flowers, nor could I believe my good luck in finding it in such a fine garden.  I knew I had a great photo opp.

herb garden with flowering sage

Like many of us when we know a good photo is staring us in the face, I quickly took a picture before the moment passed.  All I got was a snapshot of the garden, not a picture of the flowers.  I had not stopped to analyze what I was seeing and what I wanted to say.

It is not a bad picture, and even has some of the block compositional elements of the succulent tapestry, but it isn’t what I was seeing.

Lesson #1 in all my workshops is to analyze what you are seeing and make the camera say what you want it to say.  Fill the frame with your message.  Don’t waste space in the photo with information that does not tell your story.

The first photo I took is a story about an herb garden not the sage flowers.  The solution was to get closer and fill the frame with the flowers.

But I still need to get closer so that the flowers become the whole story.  I was sure to use the yellow-chartreuse of the golden oregano as one of the bands of color behind the Salvia, and made a composition that cut off the tops of some flowers in order to hold the eye in the frame.

flowering culinary sage

This months contest is also a photography lesson.  The collective results will be the ultimate lesson, and in the judging I will be sure to comment on the ways I see good composition making the image whole.

Good composition is the art of filling your frame with elements that contribute to your story.  There are many, many ways to achieve this.  So long as you make conscious decisions on the make-up of your photo there are no rules, though the photo should be easy on the eyes and invite a long look.  The most interesting photos are always the ones that somehow hold your gaze as you wander around it, wondering about how it was put together.

Filoli autumn trees

I am particularly partial to wide views of gardens that are well enough composed to fill and burst out of their frame.  This autumn color study of Filoli makes you want to crawl into the scene and see more.  Extra points for these garden landscapes that fill the frame.

But I also love carefully constructed images that balance line, shape – and negative space.  Note the equal weight, here in this Tupeleo leaf, of those negative spaces, balanced by the edge of the frame itself.

Tupelo, nyssa sylvatica leaf fall color

And sometimes negative space can dominate the frame, filling it by dominating it.  I think this portrait of the summer’s last tomato certainly uses the whole frame, though the red orb itself certainly doesn’t fill the frame.

Last ripe tomato

So think about ways you use your camera to frame what you see.  Fill the frame consciously and send in your photo.

 

RULES FOR ENTERING THE CONTEST

1.  You must have an active blog in order to participate. To be eligible for judging, you need to leave us TWO LINKS – a direct link to the image, and a link to your blog post that includes the image (and that says you are entering the Gardening Gone Wild Picture This Photo Contest )– in a comment on this post. Your links need to be correct in order for your photo to be entered into the contest. If need be, check out previous Picture This contests to see how others have done it.

2. You are allowed one entry per contest; your photo must be able to be copied from your site. That makes it possible for us to collect all the entries in one place for easier judging.

3. The long side of the image needs to minimally be 800 pixels

4. Because of the enormous amount of responses we receive, you can’t change your mind once you enter a photo into the contest.

5. The deadline for entries is 11:59 PM Eastern time on Tuesday, October 25,  2011. There are no exceptions.

 

All entries will be posted in The Gallery within 48 hours after received (as of 10/15/11).

About Saxon Holt

Saxon Holt is the owner of PhotoBotanic, a garden picture resource for photographs, workshops, and garden photography stories. A landscape photographer and award winning photojournalist with more than 20 garden books, he lives and gardens in Northern California.

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57 Responses to Picture This Photo Contest – October 2011

  1. Ronnie Tyler October 5, 2011 at 4:36 pm #

    Hi, I hope I have interpreted your instructions correctly and that my photo is the right size. I would like to enter your competition.

    My blog address is: http://wp.me/p1jkAI-OV

    The photo link is: http://bit.ly/o7XSNo

    If I have got it wrong please let me know and I will try again. Many thanks Ronnie

  2. Donna October 6, 2011 at 12:50 am #

    Question. Is it necessary to maintain the 4:3 aspect ratio or is cropping permissible? I ask because as said, “carefully composed in the camera’s viewfinder” would seem to mean the image would be better if all the framing and composition was considered before it hits the editing window. Or can we change it to 3:2? I almost always crop, so I thought to ask.

    Donna – While I encourage my students to frame in camera to distill what they are seeing, I certainly crop myself. Some scenes are meant to be square or panoramic. “Fill the Frame” really means fill the frame you show your audience, fill the frame of the photo you submit. – Saxon

  3. Christopher C NC October 9, 2011 at 9:55 am #

    It has been a while since my last entry. I’m busier these days.

    The blog post: http://outsideclyde.blogspot.com/2011/10/fill-frame.html

    Direct link to picture: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7lSn0mzGO0c/TpDEDrqZf8I/AAAAAAAAl-I/7Vq4eSvzepw/s1600/100_6811.jpg

  4. John October 9, 2011 at 10:53 am #

    Thanks again for hosting the contest.

    I’ve posted my photo link at http://wp.macfusion.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Aibika-Abelmoschus-manihot-detail-1.jpg

    The blog posting is http://macgardens.org/?p=2588

  5. ESP October 9, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    Here is a link to my post:
    http://www.eastsidepatch.com/2011/10/picture-this-photo-contest-oct-2011/

    And here is a direct link to the image:http://www.eastsidepatch.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/DSC08296.jpg

    Looking forward to seeing all the entries.
    Thanks GGW for another interesting challenge.
    ESP.

  6. Ailsa October 10, 2011 at 1:33 am #

    I don’t have my own garden, so parks and wildlife sanctuaries are my playground. Here’s my picture:
    http://ailsapm.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/berries1.jpg
    and here’s my post:
    http://ailsapm.wordpress.com/2011/10/10/watcher-in-the-rye/
    Good luck, everyone :)

  7. Donna October 10, 2011 at 10:58 am #

    Here is my submission. The post explores the sunlight over the meadows.
    Image:http://orchardparkway.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/asterssunset.jpg
    The post: http://gardenwalkgardentalk.com/2011/10/10/meadows-in-their-best-light-ggw/

  8. Tropical Nature Photos October 13, 2011 at 2:58 am #

    Thank you for hosting this monthly contest. I always look forward to it. The photos above are gorgeous. My favorite is the red orb. :)

    Url – http://tropicalnaturephotos.blogspot.com/2011/10/fill-frame.html

    Photo – http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-n0yEAVb5uNE/TpaZcYx4KNI/AAAAAAAAFeI/i9y8gGnV3dw/s1600/IMG_2697.JPG

  9. John October 14, 2011 at 5:21 pm #

    For some reason my posting has not been retained. I know I submitted this last week but I don’t see it online now. My blog post is

    http://macgardens.org/?p=2588

    and my image posting is at

    http://wp.macfusion.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Aibika-Abelmoschus-manihot-detail-1.jpg

    John….
    It’s my fault. I’ve been out of commission this past week due to some family stuff. Will get it up the gallery within the next 24 hours. Fran

  10. Janet, The Queen of Seaford October 16, 2011 at 5:02 pm #

    It has been a while since I entered one of the photo contests.
    Here is the blog posting http://thequeenofseaford.blogspot.com/2011/10/cant-get-enough-of-it.html

    and the photo by itself– https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Ox5he224OAf5sW5HJ8jEGno-63AtUMWF9Cujn54ZkIE?feat=directlink
    Great photos already entered! Good luck to all.

  11. Rosie@leavesnbloom October 19, 2011 at 4:04 am #

    It’s been ages since I last entered here. My blog post is here:
    http://leavesnbloom.blogspot.com/2011/10/garden-bloggers-bloom-day-october-2011.html

    and the direct link to the image is here
    http://i1215.photobucket.com/albums/cc518/Centreofinterest/f8404030.jpg

  12. Benjamin Vogt October 19, 2011 at 10:12 am #

    Here’s my entry of wild senna leaves. The entry is the leaves, not the close up shot of a pollen-drenched bee.

    Post: http://deepmiddle.blogspot.com/2011/10/leaf-project-and-bee-tude.html

    Pic: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-byDmgVbHJh4/Tp7lnHanr1I/AAAAAAAADNc/DQFnHvBvNw8/s320/Cassia+Hebecarpa.JPG

  13. Donna October 20, 2011 at 10:24 am #

    Take a walk into the fading evening light of the forest and back again to see the sun break through in the morning. The images fill the frame with light. This is the GA submission for the GGW Picture This Contest.

    Image: http://greenapplesgarden.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/woodssunset.jpg

    Post: http://greenapplesgarden.com/2011/10/13/ggw-into-the-woods/

  14. Carolyn? October 20, 2011 at 1:39 pm #

    I’ve been admiring your photo contest from afar but have never had the courage to join in. Well I finally decided to give it a try… so I’m giving it my best shot.

    Photo URL: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-FVzpE0lpeeA/TqA1jOuUY1I/AAAAAAAAPB4/DBKEm7IXYk0/s640/144final.jpg

    Blog Post URL: http://www.thisgrandmothersgarden.com/2011/10/giving-it-my-best-shot.html

  15. cheryl monroe October 20, 2011 at 2:42 pm #

    I just love looking at not only everyones photos, but all the individual takes on a theme. My frame is filled with green(s) which when pictured together all look so different.

  16. Greggo October 20, 2011 at 9:03 pm #

    thanks for hosting the contest. the photos are excellent as always. good luck to all.
    Blog URL:http://greggosgarden.blogspot.com/2011/10/fill-frame.html

    Photo URL:http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-hrfNEzZpAO8/Tp870DP1MVI/AAAAAAAAB4M/fP33JFlmFkA/s640/IMG_2759.JPG

    I guess that will work. Greg.

  17. Pam/Digging October 22, 2011 at 11:15 am #

    I like this theme, and Saxon’s two posts were very helpful in explaining it.

    Here’s my entry.

    Photo URL: http://www.penick.net/digging/images/2011_10_22/Yucca_amid_salvias.JPG

    Post URL: http://www.penick.net/digging/?p=14027

  18. Autumn Belle October 23, 2011 at 10:17 am #

    Thank you very much for hosting the contest. My entry is as follows:

    Blog URL: http://www.mynicegarden.com/2011/10/images-of-repose-word-for-wednesday.html

    Photo URL:
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OBOZNAOs-1w/TouMFGBjhGI/AAAAAAAAEa4/bgNOsO6eQ54/s1600/P1100781.JPG

  19. Dewi October 23, 2011 at 2:39 pm #

    Thank you for hosting this month event. This will be my first GGW event to participate. Here is my entry:

    Blog URL : http://gardenatninaplace.blogspot.com/2011/10/clematis-for-ggw.html

    Photo URL :
    https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/s6ZejjU_Kfb3KnMqRGvqLLszaVChsyshVq-T5ysxtJE?feat=directlink

    Cheers,
    Dewi

  20. Caroline October 23, 2011 at 5:22 pm #

    Thanks to GGW for hosting and to Saxon Holt for judging. Good luck to those entering. Here’s my contest entry.

    Photo URL: http://www.flickr.com/photos/carolinehomerphotography/6274333282/

    Blog post URL: http://shovelreadygarden.blogspot.com/2011/10/october-ggw-picture-this-photo-contest.html

  21. Hoover Boo October 23, 2011 at 8:28 pm #

    Everyone’s photos are lovely!

    I guess what I intended my photo to say is that a arid climate, unirrigated garden can still be quite lush!

    photo:
    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v115/HoovB/forSep11/Late2297-1.jpg

    blog post:
    http://pieceofeden.blogspot.com/2011/09/late-summer-sunset-in-mediterranean-dry.html

  22. Carolyn October 23, 2011 at 9:42 pm #

    My blog title is now included in your gallery, but no pictures is showing. Do I need to do something differently?

    Carolyn..
    Am I glad you checked in with me. I did post a photo with your name captioned below. BUT it was the wrong one. That’s what happens when you try posting this stuff late night. Thanks for catching me on this. Fran

  23. Autumn Belle October 24, 2011 at 4:20 am #

    My entry is a scene from a rooftop garden here:

    Blog URL: http://www.mynicegarden.com/2011/10/images-of-repose-word-for-wednesday.html

    Photo URL: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-OBOZNAOs-1w/TouMFGBjhGI/AAAAAAAAEa4/bgNOsO6eQ54/s1600/P1100781.JPG

    Note: I have submitted my entry yesterday but it did not register here, so I’m trying again.

  24. Autumn Belle October 24, 2011 at 4:22 am #

    I’m so sorry, can you please delete the extra duplicated comments. It just appeared on my computer screen now.

  25. Les October 24, 2011 at 6:17 am #

    Thanks once again for this fun opportunity, and I appreciate your second post to further explain the theme. Hopefully I paid attention.

    Here is the blog link:
    Little Green Apples from A Tidewater Gardener

    and here is the direct link to the photo:
    >a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/atidewatergardener/5080161604/sizes/l/in/photostream/”>Little Green Apples

    Thanks again!

  26. Les October 24, 2011 at 6:18 am #

    Let’s try that direct link again, sorry.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/atidewatergardener/5080161604/sizes/l/in/photostream/

    Les…It’s posted….Check it out. Fran

  27. Melody October 24, 2011 at 11:22 am #

    Direct link to my photo:
    http://merriemelody.com/fotofolio/2011/10/24/petals-on-the-plow/

    Link to my blog post:
    http://merriemelody.blogspot.com/2011/10/gardening-gone-wild-photo-contest.html

    There are so many great pics already posted! I’ve enjoyed looking at them all!

    Thanks to Saxon for the great instruction and beautiful illustrating pics! And to Fran for organizing it all! It is great fun to learn more about taking a better picture and to participate in these photo contests :)

  28. The Sage Butterfly October 24, 2011 at 4:51 pm #

    Thank you for hosting. You always find ways to challenge us in our photography, and I learn so much from that. Good luck to all!

    Blog post: http://thesagebutterfly.blogspot.com/2011/10/ggw-photo-contest.html

    Photo: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-81rwyo0I_OQ/TqXZqrDsG1I/AAAAAAAAA0g/YAxQyM-e–E/s1600/sunburn-1.JPG

  29. Les October 24, 2011 at 9:49 pm #

    I am feeling stupid here. I thought I had posted my entry this morning, but do not see it, so here it goes again. If this is a duplicate, or I accidentally put it on the wrong page, just ignore it.

    Here is the blog link:
    http://atidewatergardener.blogspot.com/2011/10/little-green-apples.html

    and here is the photo link:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/atidewatergardener/5080161604/sizes/l/in/set-72157627567482495/

    Thank you!

  30. Kelsie October 25, 2011 at 7:34 am #

    Saw the contest and just had to enter…Thank you for hosting.

    My subject is Wisteria on Barn

    My post link is
    http://kelsie74.blogspot.com/2011/10/fill-frame-photo-contest-entry.html

    My photo link is
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ctdhE0GFt7w/Tqare6OguiI/AAAAAAAADBQ/nS3Q7_ZcxmQ/s1600/wisteriaonbarn.jpg

    Kelsie

  31. One October 25, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    Thank you for hosting interesting photo contest each month. I’m filling the frame with bokeh.

    Blog url : http://onenezz.blogspot.com/2011/10/gbbd-oct-2011-at-onenezz.html

    Link to the photo : http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-s7hw53zJhrk/TpeGnxvx6rI/AAAAAAAAFeQ/s6FUxStWKOA/s1600/IMG_4264.JPG

  32. Christina Salwitz October 25, 2011 at 12:28 pm #

    Thanks for this months contest. I’m SO excited about this one! The Gallery look beautiful today. :-)
    Here’s my Blog Link:
    http://personalgardencoach.wordpress.com/2011/10/25/gardening-gone-wild-photo-contest-fill-the-frame/

    Photo Link:
    http://personalgardencoach.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/slide11.jpg

    Cheers!

  33. Craig @ Ellis Hollow October 25, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

    Had to go to the archives for this month’s entry. Love the theme. But lack of time and subject matter limited my efforts.

    The post: http://remarc.com/craig/?p=1342

    The picture: http://ellishollow.remarc.com/images/20110421hellebore3x2400.jpg

  34. Indie October 25, 2011 at 7:45 pm #

    Thank you for hosting this great photography lesson! I enjoyed the challenge!

    Blog link:
    http://www.redhousegarden.com/2011/10/stretching-to-fill-frame-photography.html

    Photo link:
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BvyWV4w7otk/TqdVPh9Qg-I/AAAAAAAAAu4/9dgLREJrWpQ/s1600/IMG_5287+-+Version+2.png

  35. Cathy October 25, 2011 at 9:26 pm #

    After much deliberation, my husband says this picture of a butterfly and hummingbird clearwing sharing a wand of buddleia flowers is the one I should submit:

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-d1bMlCN5DNE/TqbJUTxKyPI/AAAAAAAACj4/T-K-ltUpBF0/s1600/2011-07-31+garden+1+close+up+120.JPG

    The blog post can be seen here:

    http://thewiedersgarden.blogspot.com/2011/10/filling-frame-october-ggw-photography.html

    Good luck everyone!

  36. Gillian October 25, 2011 at 9:47 pm #

    I hope I have worked out the time right and am not late.
    Here is a link to my blog post
    http://africanaussie.blogspot.com/2011/10/picture-thistorch-ginger.html
    Here is a link to the photo I am submitting
    http://africanaussie.blogspot.com/2011/10/picture-thistorch-ginger.html
    thanks

  37. Chris October 25, 2011 at 10:50 pm #

    Thanks for hosting this contest. I had fun choosing a photo to enter:

    Blog URL: http://redneckrosarian.wordpress.com/2011/10/25/fill-the-frame-gardening-gone-wild-post/

    Photo Link: http://redneckrosarian.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/cherry-parfait-grandiflora.jpg

  38. oogren October 25, 2011 at 11:30 pm #

    Not sure if it’s too late, but here is the corrected photo link:

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-R6hwG6H3BdI/TqeIkMJjZwI/AAAAAAAAAfw/8LY4h1Hvkyg/s1600/WrkshpSunAM_9856.jpg

  39. Malinda October 26, 2011 at 12:52 am #

    Thank you Saxon – I learned a lot and very much enjoyed thinking about filling the frame all month while shooting photos!

    Blog:http://www.thepotagerpage.com/2011/10/my-entry.html

    Photo: http://thepotagerpage.typepad.com/.a/6a012876998603970c0162fbec473b970d-pi

  40. Diana October 28, 2011 at 6:50 pm #

    Good luck everyone… how I manage to miss the deadline, I’ll never know. Can’t wait to see the winners.