Wesley LapointeJudges Comments
This series of images tells a comprehensive story about wildfire management and some of the deeper issues behind wildfires in Oregon. The story also personifies and humanizes the people who manage the fires and gives a glimpse into the work required in this job, and the personalities of the people who do it. The captions all add helpful information, adding to the overall understanding of the issue. In terms of the editing and sequencing, there are a few images in this edit that feel a bit redundant, either in terms of activity and/or composition. I would recommend removing any images in your story that aren’t advancing the narrative forward or sharing new information. Sometimes less is more! I would also recommend not opening or closing a story with detail images. For opening images, it’s important to choose an image that quickly engages the viewer, so an image that introduces the characters or sets the scene could be a better contender for an opener.
Chris DayJudges Comments
This is a nice story about a small community, and I feel like I get to know the people of the town through the photographer’s reportage. They did a nice job of capturing emotion, different situations, and sense of place that give a sense of who the characters are, and what the town is like. They also did a good job of finding a variety of vantage points and distances to photograph this community, and you can tell they spent a significant amount of time with them. Even though this story is a nice profile of a town, it seems to lack a bit of a narrative, and I don’t get a sense of the tension mentioned in the opening caption. It would have helped to be able to see what this town used to be like, perhaps through family photos of the people they photographed, or archival images from the town. Again I think sometimes less can be more. Some of the images that aren’t as compositionally strong or informative should be removed. Similar to the story in first place, I would also suggest swapping out the opener to one that introduces the town and the personality of the town right away.
Judges: Mallory Benedict/National Geographic