Every year, the Wikimedia Foundation – the parent organisation of many well-loved projects, such as Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Wikiquote and Wikiversity – runs the Commons Picture of the Year competition.
The aim of the competition is to identifyÂ “the best freely-licensedÂ images from those that during the year have been awarded Featured picture status”; an accolade awarded by the community indicating that a picture is one of the finest released into the commons.
With the first round of voting due to end on the 4th of May, the Fifth Annual Wikimedia Commons Picture of the Year competitionÂ has now started. If you’re eligible, get voting: the winners and runners-up from previous years (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009) are absolutely breathtaking and this year is sure to be no different.
Nikon D90 users who take photographs outside of the F2.8 to F5.6 aperture range and with a fast shutter speed are the best photographers on Flickr. If they also post-process their images with anything but the manufacturer-supplied software, and license their images with Creative Commons licenses, then they’re even better again.
Using a variation of the Elo rating system to objectively rate the quality of photographs, these are the results from ELOgrade’s calculations looking at the quality of photographs compared across various EXIF data categories.
Of course, they went and spoilt the fun:
Please keep in mind that correlation does not imply causation as well as the sample methodology and size used by this report.
But I did like this comment, on discovering the correlation between Creative Commons licensed photos and higher quality ratings:
Maybe people who take the effort to make it easier to share their work do tend to take better photos.
After travelling to Sydney, I somehow managed to miss the spectacle that was the biggest dust storm to hit the city in over 70 years by going somewhere else for a week.
While I was in Melbourne preparing for a road trip down the Great Ocean Road (and generally avoiding the earthquake and the collapse of one of the Twelve Apostles minutes before we arrived) The Big Picture was on the case preparing a fantastic set of pictures of the phenomenon.
Those I have spoken to in Sydney have attested that this is exactly what it looked like to the naked eye.
I’m now reading Wikipedia’s list of extreme weather events.
Laying dormant at the bottom of my bookmarks was this article Jason pointed out over four months ago: photographer Bruce Haley’s Tao of War Photography.
1. Â To begin with, practice this sentence: “If I get out of here alive, I’ll never do this again.” Â Youâ€™ll say this to yourself every single time an already dangerous situation really turns to shitâ€¦
63. Always keep in mind the following when you photograph people in war zones and other awful places:
a. You’re there because you want to be – they aren’tâ€¦
b. You can leave – they can’tâ€¦
Beware, the Flash interface makes my eyes bleed.
I have recently become enamoured with two photo projects showing two very different sides to my home city, Cardiff.
The official word on the cityÂ is slightly amusingâ€¦ in a cheesy, sales-pitch kind of way.