Return to the Cloudy Nights Telescope Reviews home pageAstronomics discounts for Cloudy Nights members
· Get a Cloudy Nights T-Shirt · Submit a Review / Article

Click here if you are having trouble logging into the forums

Privacy Policy | Please read our Terms of Service | Signup and Troubleshooting FAQ | Problems? PM a Red or a Green Gu… uh, User

Astrophotography and Sketching >> Beginning and Intermediate Imaging

Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | (show all)
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Imaging Challenge Understanding
      #6140039 - 10/15/13 11:22 PM

While it is not in the rules, I wonder if we can come to an understanding on who should (or should not) post entries in the imaging challenges. I'm thinking especially of the Beginning Challenge, but these thoughts may also apply to the others as well.

Once you have won a certain challenge once, twice, or maybe three times, you should refrain from entering that challenge again. You have demonstrated your expertise at that level and should now "play in a higher division".

I suppose this idea could be incorporated into the rules, but it might do just as well to have general agreement on this issue. There should probably be an exception for the months when only one entry is submitted.

We have some imagers here who do awesome work, and I assume we are all here because we want to have fun and discover ways to improve. The encouragement and constructive criticism found here is great. Thank you to all who participate.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6140549 - 10/16/13 09:59 AM

I could certainly support that idea for the beginner challenge only, after two or three wins.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6140581 - 10/16/13 10:18 AM

I think most people see it as an unwritten rule or right of passage that once you win the beginner DSO challenge, you graduate to the intermediate DSO level. The win would not count if uncontested.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
jrcrillyAdministrator
Refractor wienie no more
*****

Reged: 04/30/03

Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6140587 - 10/16/13 10:20 AM

Quote:

I could certainly support that idea for the beginner challenge only, after two or three wins.




Already there.

Quote:

2. In order to provide a level playing field and to encourage participation by novice imagers, entrants in the Beginning Imaging forum who win the semi-finals poll in the CN Imaging Contest a total of three (3) times - or who win in the finals regardless of the number of times they have won the semifinals - will have demonstrated sufficient proficiency at astrophotography to no longer be considered a "beginning imager".




Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6140599 - 10/16/13 10:24 AM

John,

My understanding of that rule is that it is for the big contest where we compete against the other forums. What about the small contests like the bright, wide, intermediate DSO and beginning DSO challenges. I think that is what iverp is refering to.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
jrcrillyAdministrator
Refractor wienie no more
*****

Reged: 04/30/03

Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Jeff2011]
      #6140617 - 10/16/13 10:33 AM

Quote:

John,

My understanding of that rule is that it is for the big contest where we compete against the other forums. What about the small contests like the bright, wide, intermediate DSO and beginning DSO challenges. I think that is what iverp is refering to.




Ah. Those are the only rules I found. There must be rules somewhere for the small contests; maybe Charlie will pop in here.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Gary Minder
member


Reged: 06/23/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6140637 - 10/16/13 10:42 AM

I guess I've been misunderstanding the intent of the categories. I assumed the terms "beginner" and "intermediate" referred to the complexity of the target, not the experience of the photographer.

I say that because in many cases in the last 6 months since I joined CN, I've seen entries of a quality far in excess of "beginner" or "intermediate" status.

I've been working on a NGC 281 Pacman image for the October "beginner" contest and I saw a Pacman image posted yesterday which was stunning and clearly the work of an advanced imager and processer. If it shows up as an entry this month it would pretty much make the word "beginner" meaningless.

Maybe there needs to be contest categories for "Advanced" and "Expert" I know this is the "Beginner and Intermediate" forum, but there are many accomplished APs submitting entries who are at or near the top of the learning curve.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6140654 - 10/16/13 10:54 AM

Quote:



Already there.






Well, I guess that shows how much I have bothered with the imaging challenges to this point!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6140679 - 10/16/13 11:13 AM

Quote:

Already there.

Quote:

2. In order to provide a level playing field and to encourage participation by novice imagers, entrants in the Beginning Imaging forum who win the semi-finals poll in the CN Imaging Contest a total of three (3) times - or who win in the finals regardless of the number of times they have won the semifinals - will have demonstrated sufficient proficiency at astrophotography to no longer be considered a "beginning imager".







There is no such rule set out in the Beginner DSO, Wide Field, Bright, or Intermediate DSO Challenges.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
jrcrillyAdministrator
Refractor wienie no more
*****

Reged: 04/30/03

Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6140686 - 10/16/13 11:16 AM

Quote:

There is no such rule set out in the Beginner DSO, Wide Field, Bright, or Intermediate DSO Challenges.




That does appear to be the case. I agree that there should be such a rule.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Phil Hosey
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/29/08

Loc: LaGrange, GA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6141074 - 10/16/13 02:51 PM

Quote:



There is no such rule set out in the Beginner DSO, Wide Field, Bright, or Intermediate DSO Challenges.




I know for certain that there *used* to be rules governing this. The rule used to be that if you won the beginner challenge twice then you could not submit entries to it anymore and you had to move to the intermediate level, then, once you won that one twice, you could not enter it anymore.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Phil Hosey
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/29/08

Loc: LaGrange, GA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Phil Hosey]
      #6141104 - 10/16/13 03:02 PM

I just picked a post at random from a time when the rules were stated for each challenge, there is one such post from two years ago, post #4086595. I apologize I can't seem to create a proper link to the post, but in that post, rule number 9 explains how to deal with winning a challenge twice and then graduating to the next level. These rules used to be included in every challenge post in this forum but they stopped some time a while back.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #6141350 - 10/16/13 05:29 PM

Quote:

Quote:

John,

My understanding of that rule is that it is for the big contest where we compete against the other forums. What about the small contests like the bright, wide, intermediate DSO and beginning DSO challenges. I think that is what iverp is refering to.




Ah. Those are the only rules I found. There must be rules somewhere for the small contests; maybe Charlie will pop in here.




Sorry I'm a bit late to the party, I'm off work this week and hadn't checked in since Monday.

I'm really glad you folks have brought this up. The rules for the Challenges are posted in the submission threads. They are the same for all Challenges:

Quote:

The rules:

1. All entries must be captured within the same season as the contest. For example, if the subject was Orion Nebula, than any photo captured during this particular winter (or period that it was visible) would qualify for the contest. Entries must be made prior midnight of the last day of the month.

2. Images to be considered for entry to the Challenge must be posted to and visible in the challenge submissions thread. A link to an off-site image without a version that is actually displayed in the Challenge submissions thread will not suffice and is subject to disqualification.

3. Images to be considered for entry to the Challenge must conform in all respects with the site wide image posting requirements. Entrants may elect to set this "entry image" up as a "clickable link" to a higher resolution image if they so desire, and entrants may also elect to instead provide a separate link to such an image if they so choose. If the entrant provides a legally sized and working "clickable link" as their "entry image", that "clickable link" will be included in the polling thread so that voters can examine the high resolution image before voting. However, any "entry images" displayed on the CN site that do not meet the file size and pixel dimension requirements will subject the entry to disqualification. Any questions on this rule? Just ask.

4. Please include the equipment used to take the image. Scope/Mount/Camera/Focal reducers/Barlows...whatever. Also include your location.

5. Please do not post comments in the entries thread. It is just for these wonderful images you all will be submitting.

6. The equipment must be yours. Doesn't matter what it is. 20" RC, ETX70, 2" Tasco or an 8" TMB.

7. No collaborations. You must be the operator. You must setup, align, take the exposures and process them yourself. You can have help mounting that 26" RC if need be. No remote scope images. Unless you own that remote scope and have set it up aligned it and hooked your camera up. Then you can use it. No pay by the hour renta-scope images will be allowed.
*If you have a physical disability which prevents you from being able to set up your equipment, you may still post images in the contests. However, you must own the equipment.

8. Most importantly! Have fun. Support one another's efforts. As we all can learn from this and enjoy each others accomplishments.




Seems to me that if you are posting in the Intermediate Challenge you consider yourself to be good enough to win the day. If that's the case, it also follows that you do *not* consider yourself a beginner. There's no rule stopping it per se, but it only seems fair to a)give the real beginners a place to enter where they have a real shot and b)take note of folks who don't do so and vote (or withhold your vote) accordingly.

That said, there's nothing to be gained by pointing fingers at anyone - the rules were not broken. The best thing to do in my mind is that going forward, we give some weight to the level of experience that should be on display in a contest, and vote for the best submission that falls within that criteria.

As an example, I would not consider narrowband imaging and processing to be a skill set that a beginner would be able to easily master even if they decided from the start to buy the gear and learn it - it takes time and practice to develop the skill set. Your average beginner needs time just to work out the basics, like guiding and basic stacking and processing. This should rightly show in their work, as well as improvements they make over time. We should keep all this in mind when judging a beginner contest and vote accordingly.

Charlie


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Gary Minder]
      #6141352 - 10/16/13 05:33 PM

Quote:

Maybe there needs to be contest categories for "Advanced" and "Expert" I know this is the "Beginner and Intermediate" forum, but there are many accomplished APs submitting entries who are at or near the top of the learning curve.




There are already challenges in the DSLR and CCD forums that folks can "graduate" to from here, so there is an outlet for the very best of us...


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Phil Hosey]
      #6142425 - 10/17/13 08:20 AM

Quote:

I just picked a post at random from a time when the rules were stated for each challenge, there is one such post from two years ago, post #4086595. I apologize I can't seem to create a proper link to the post, but in that post, rule number 9 explains how to deal with winning a challenge twice and then graduating to the next level. These rules used to be included in every challenge post in this forum but they stopped some time a while back.




@Phil: Excellent hunting, sir! Here is the link to the post you mentioned, and indeed the rules are a bit different than what we are using today.

Copied from that post:

Quote:

1. Have fun! Support other contestants and be polite with your comments.
2. All entries must be captured within the same imaging season. For example, if the December target is the Orion Nebula, you must use images taken during the current winter, not any other year. For Lunar targets the image must have been captured within the 12 months preceding the
date of submission
3. Image size is limited to 800x800 pixels and 98k in size. The image may either be posted in the appropriate thread, or you may use UBB code to import the image from another site on the web. Imported images must meet the size criteria. Please note the kb size for the challenge is not the same as the size allowed by the forum.
4. A separate submission thread will be created for each category. Please post your submissions in the proper thread.
5. Please do not post comments in the submission threads. You may post your comments about the submissions here in this thread.
6. Any equipment is allowed to be used in the images including rental equipment.
7. All image taking and development must be done by you. The one exception to this is that husband/wife teams are permitted.
8. Each person (or husband/wife team) may submit only 1 entry per month in each category. However, you may edit your submission and replace the image with a newer one if you wish using the Edit function. The edit function is available for three days after the original post. After that contact one of your moderators.
9. If you win a Beginning Challenge 2 times (2 times for DSO or 2 times for Bright Objects), you will officially "Graduate" from that Challenge Category and may no longer submit images in the category that you have "Graduated" from. If you win the Intermediate Challenge 3 times, you will officially "Graduate" from that category. This is intended to encourage successful imagers to continue to sharpen their skills and increase their level of challenge, and also to give those who have not yet won one a clear shot at the title! When determining how to cast your vote in the beginner or intermediate challenge polls, it is encouraged that consideration be given to what the entrant's actual skills are. For example, advanced imagers, entering the beginner challenge just because they are permitted to do so by the rules, should be judged accordingly. We also caution that: some true beginners enter stunning images.




I have no idea when these rules were changed, although there have been quite a few changes in the overall rules governing images on CN and it seems likely that this may have been the catalyst for the change. Rule #9 seems to lay out my earlier suggestion exactly - I would not be opposed to adding it to the current rules.

What do you folks think? In light of this discovery, are there any other changes to the rules that you would suggest?


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rflinn68Moderator
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/09/12

Loc: Arkansas
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6142546 - 10/17/13 09:47 AM

Quote:

What do you folks think? In light of this discovery, are there any other changes to the rules that you would suggest?




This sounds fine to me. I would also like to add back these rules. I think we should be encouraging family members to work together when getting started and help each other, not just husband/wife but maybe father/son, etc......
7. All image taking and development must be done by you. The one exception to this is that husband/wife teams are permitted.
8. Each person (or husband/wife team) may submit only 1 entry per month in each category.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Raginar
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: rflinn68]
      #6142814 - 10/17/13 12:08 PM

I think the change is good. Might encourage more people to post!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Raginar]
      #6142981 - 10/17/13 01:41 PM

As the OP, I like rule 9. But I think the last part about "advanced imagers" does not need to be included. It just complicates things, and can not be enforced. Who determines who is advanced, and how can we know? Anyway, if they insist on overwhelming the others despite their unfair advantage, they would be removed from the challenge after two or three wins anyway.
I do like to see what can be done by others with the same target I am working on. And the point of this is not about the "win" anyway. It is about enjoying what we do, and learning how to improve.

Also, and maybe this should be a new topic, is there a way we can comment on the entries submitted, other than to just congratulate the winner? For example, I would like to make a suggestion to NeilMac about his Moon Mosaic for the September Bright Challenge, but don't know how to do that except through a PM.

And also again, is there an easy way to find old challenge entries without going through the "Search" function?


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: rflinn68]
      #6143900 - 10/17/13 10:38 PM

Quote:

Quote:

What do you folks think? In light of this discovery, are there any other changes to the rules that you would suggest?




This sounds fine to me. I would also like to add back these rules. I think we should be encouraging family members to work together when getting started and help each other, not just husband/wife but maybe father/son, etc......
7. All image taking and development must be done by you. The one exception to this is that husband/wife teams are permitted.
8. Each person (or husband/wife team) may submit only 1 entry per month in each category.




Although I do recall the origins of the "husband and wife team" addition to the rules, I don't know when or why it was dropped. For what it's worth, I really don't have any objection to adding the rule back in as a "family team" exception, but I think that it might be best to put that sort of change to the vote. In that way if there was a valid reason for the repeal of the rule it should come out.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6144076 - 10/18/13 12:55 AM

Quote:

As the OP, I like rule 9. But I think the last part about "advanced imagers" does not need to be included. It just complicates things, and can not be enforced. Who determines who is advanced, and how can we know? Anyway, if they insist on overwhelming the others despite their unfair advantage, they would be removed from the challenge after two or three wins anyway.




Good thought. I don't see a problem with leaving that part of it out.

Quote:

I do like to see what can be done by others with the same target I am working on. And the point of this is not about the "win" anyway. It is about enjoying what we do, and learning how to improve.




I agree.

Quote:

Also, and maybe this should be a new topic, is there a way we can comment on the entries submitted, other than to just congratulate the winner? For example, I would like to make a suggestion to NeilMac about his Moon Mosaic for the September Bright Challenge, but don't know how to do that except through a PM.




I agree that this would be desirable, but it's also problematical.

For a while we had many complaints of having too many sticky threads in this forum. The first page was literally loaded with them.

Right now there are 5 imaging contests in this forum. With a commentary thread for each challenge and keeping the congratulatory threads until the next winners were chosen, these threads really needed to be trimmed down.

That is why things are how they are right now.

Quote:

And also again, is there an easy way to find old challenge entries without going through the "Search" function?




If you're referring to the submissions threads, the only way I can think of to make it dead easy for folks to find them would be to create links to them in the "best of" thread. Frankly, that would be a lot of work to maintain, and that is an important consideration.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6144373 - 10/18/13 08:22 AM

I'm pinning this thread to the top to see if we draw any more commentary.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6144519 - 10/18/13 09:46 AM

I support rule #9 as it gives clarity to what I have already assumed. The wins however should be contested to count.

I don't know if the rules were changed to increase participation since it seems like there is only a small group of people that participate in these competitions every month. If there is not enough newcomers, then participation will drop off to where no one participates in some of the challenges.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Jeff2011]
      #6144545 - 10/18/13 10:02 AM

Part of the problem as I see it is the targets themselves. I looked at the beginning target this month and it is the Pacman. I simply don't consider that a beginners target*. Not surprisingly, the submissions are fairly advanced with one exception.

*[It is Ha, it is large, and it is not particularly bright - try observing it visually and you'll see what I mean.]

Edited by Madratter (10/18/13 10:03 AM)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6144616 - 10/18/13 10:51 AM

That is a good point MR. The winner chooses the next target. The choice of target is an indication of the level of participation. No offense to whoever chose the Pacman. The main issue I have with these challenges is the vague guidelines.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Phil Hosey
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/29/08

Loc: LaGrange, GA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6144809 - 10/18/13 12:41 PM

Another thing I'll throw into the mix. I remember in the past passing on the challenge because either the object selected for the particular month wouldn't be in a favorable position until well after midnight, or the object required a focal length that I didn't have equipment for. Unfortunately, restricting targets on this basis, including making sure it is a beginner friendly target, would mean that there are very few if any targets available for a given month.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
nodalpoint
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 06/03/13

Loc: FEMA camp
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6144830 - 10/18/13 12:51 PM

Quote:

Part of the problem as I see it is the targets themselves. I looked at the beginning target this month and it is the Pacman. I simply don't consider that a beginners target*. Not surprisingly, the submissions are fairly advanced with one exception.

*[It is Ha, it is large, and it is not particularly bright - try observing it visually and you'll see what I mean.]




I wasn't planning on entering any contest, but because of someone else's great photo of this one I spent about two hours on it and it most certainly is not a "beginner" target! With an unmodded dslr what I recorded was so faint there wasn't much there to work with.

Maybe a true beginner challenge shouldn't be target specific, or at least give a choice of several targets.

This was as far as I got on it



Edited by nodalpoint (10/18/13 01:08 PM)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Bill McNeal
sage


Reged: 10/07/07

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: nodalpoint]
      #6145138 - 10/18/13 03:53 PM

What kind of prizes do the challenges grant the winners?

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: nodalpoint]
      #6145139 - 10/18/13 03:55 PM

At least at that scale, you did well Nodalpoint. And I would enter that if I were you. But it does kind of make my point about this not being a beginners target. For an unmodded camera, it requires hours on target, and probably doesn't look very good when blown up to any extent. It is a great intermediate target.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6145216 - 10/18/13 04:43 PM

Nodal,

I agree with Madratter regarding entering your image. Earlier in this thread Charlie had commented about judging accordingly. You never know.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
MikeKy
member


Reged: 01/15/12

Loc: Lexington, Ky
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Phil Hosey]
      #6145299 - 10/18/13 05:38 PM

Quote:

Another thing I'll throw into the mix. I remember in the past passing on the challenge because either the object selected for the particular month wouldn't be in a favorable position until well after midnight, or the object required a focal length that I didn't have equipment for. Unfortunately, restricting targets on this basis, including making sure it is a beginner friendly target, would mean that there are very few if any targets available for a given month.




Exactly the issues that made this month's challenge the first one I have been able to enter since I started imaging DSOs 18 months ago. I definitely consider myself a beginner. Others may consider themselves beginners even though they have graduated to narrow-band imaging with a monochrome CCD and have much higher-end equipment while still others may consider only those with practically no experience to be beginners.

Unless a more restrictive definition of "beginner" is put forth in the rules, I don't think there's a reason to bar anyone from placing entries here unless they either win the contests, as stated in the rules, or no longer consider themselves beginners. It is, after all, a "challenge" contest and I like to compare what I'm able to do with others using the same level of hardware and experience. I don't consider myself to be competing with the entries of those with more experience or advanced equipment but I like to see what might be possible for me to accomplish with a little more of either.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
SMigol
sage


Reged: 07/30/10

Loc: California, USA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: MikeKy]
      #6145379 - 10/18/13 06:33 PM

I think when I selected the Pacman was because I'd seen so many good images of it in the various fora. It also looked like it would be good for a variety of different image scales. I did consider that it would be well-placed for work through September and early October for people to gather data. I didn't realize how difficult it would be for unmodified cameras.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
ldesign1
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 09/17/09

Loc: Northern Illinois
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: MikeKy]
      #6145597 - 10/18/13 08:57 PM

Quote:

Exactly the issues that made this month's challenge the first one I have been able to enter since I started imaging DSOs 18 months ago. I definitely consider myself a beginner. Others may consider themselves beginners even though they have graduated to narrow-band imaging with a monochrome CCD and have much higher-end equipment while still others may consider only those with practically no experience to be beginners.

Unless a more restrictive definition of "beginner" is put forth in the rules, I don't think there's a reason to bar anyone from placing entries here unless they either win the contests, as stated in the rules, or no longer consider themselves beginners. It is, after all, a "challenge" contest and I like to compare what I'm able to do with others using the same level of hardware and experience. I don't consider myself to be competing with the entries of those with more experience or advanced equipment but I like to see what might be possible for me to accomplish with a little more of either.




Considering the timing of this post, I figure it was inspired by my recent victories in the Bright Challenges. But in my defense, I agree with the above quote that a better definition of a "Beginner" needs to be established if it is causing issues with some who feel that maybe they should have won if not for someone "more advanced".

I pretty much just started to use video more seriously as an AP medium this year. After comparing my result with a DSLR and what others were doing through video, I decided to shoot this entire year exclusively with video. I examined other members image posts, I asked lots of question, I experimented on my own, I tried things (techniques) that I would have never thought of if not for some of the more seasoned video imagers. I considered myself a [Beginner] in this area because I had never taken much interest in it before except a few planetary attempts in past years. I didn't have the patience before to figure out why one imager would produce a 10x better picture of Jupiter or Saturn with the same equipment. This year I faced the challenge a made the most of it. Now, having won a surprising three in a row, I will not be entering any more Bright Challenges.

I would encourage more "beginners" to enter the challenges no matter how good or bad you think your entry may be. I have to admit that I was very surprised at my winning of the Lyra Double challenge from August. I thought mine would have received the fewest votes, but it turned out to be the overwhelming favorite. I didn't even vote for myself.

About votes, I think that contestants should not be allowed to vote in a challenge they have entered. Sometimes I wonder if anyone else get embarrassed when they only received 1 vote which was often times self imposed. I sometimes think, "How can that one, get a vote when clearly this other one was so much better?" I understand that everyone has their own criteria for judging but personally I rather get 0 votes than for someone to think that I ignored other entries to make myself feel good.

About entries, I don't think it's much of a contest when there's only two contestants out of so many that browse through the Beginner and Intermediate Imaging forum. I don't think it gives the contestant a good feel of how much they've improved or how much better they are than others to be confident enough to advance to the next level. I know that we can't control how many people participate in each challenge, but those should be freebees just like the uncontested wins.

Now my question to Charlie is: What level is the Widefield Challange? I'm asking because I plan to move on to that one because I want to experiment with camera lenses. I've always had unpleasing result with less than perfect focusing, and weird star effects. Since this will be something fairly new to me and I don't believe that I'm even in the same league as some of the entries I've seen posted, would I be barred from entering if it is also considered a "Beginner's Challenge".

If you were to look at my gallery, many here in this forum may think that I am an advanced imager. But I see it differently. None of those image every won more than one or two votes in the DSLR forum. I have no idea how they vote over there. Even the one that I think should win gets very few votes. That's why I'm here in the Beginners and Intermediate Imaging forum to find out what I'm lacking to advance further to win in some of the specialty challenges.

I hope that I didn't offend anyone with this post because that was not my intention. We are all hear to learn and have fun, so don't get discouraged by lack of votes or criticisms. We all got started one image at a time and then we grow enough to give advice.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: ldesign1]
      #6145676 - 10/18/13 09:56 PM

It is all good Stephen. The problem wasn't you picking the Pacman. The problem has been a lack of clarity about what these contests are for, and who they are aimed at. Within the context of how things were going, the Pacman was reasonable. Hopefully, what will come out of this is better clarity.

Same thing with you Ralph. Hopefully, we will reach some clarity and things will be good. I have no idea how the "bright challenge" should even go. Is it a beginners category or not. I really don't know.

I really don't have a dog in this fight since I don't participate in the challenges (I don't even like that word associated with them for reasons that aren't worth going into). But I know some people do take them seriously, and clarity would be good for all involved.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Gary Minder
member


Reged: 06/23/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6145874 - 10/19/13 12:02 AM

Seems to me the issues discussed could be fixed by changing the contest terms "beginner" and "intermediate" to "easy" and "intermediate" and have the words describe the target, not the photographer. The forum community could reach a consensus on a pool of suitable targets for each month/season in each category. The winner each month could pick the next target from the pool so that appropriate targets were always in play.

Anybody could submit to either category and the advanced imagers would quickly win their maximums and would clear the field for others.

Trying to have categories related to ability is problematic. The October Beginner DSO challenge is a great example. There is an amazing image entered this month. It's a NB/RGB image taken with two different cameras on two different scopes of different FLs and presumably different image scales. It's beautiful and it will probably win in a rout. But in what universe could a beginner astrophotographer produce it?

If NGC 281 was selected from a pool of "easy" targets and an advanced astrophotographer who hadn't already won their maximum wanted to enter, have at it. But when someone who is clearly in sight of the top of the learning curve enters a "beginner" contest, it is very discouraging to real beginners who want a chance to put their work up against others similarly skilled.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Gary Minder]
      #6148607 - 10/20/13 03:37 PM

I guess that for me this all falls back to the original purpose of the forum, which was for beginner imagers. There were two Challenges originally, one for DSO's and one for "bright" objects. While someone could choose an easy target, it was never the point to make things easy on the contestants. The point was to put them into learning situations.

Things have changed significantly since then.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6148848 - 10/20/13 06:25 PM

I very much like the idea of selecting targets that will give beginners a challenge. The competition aspect really is not as important, but it does give us a bit more motivation to do our best. I feel that the learning aspect gives us all the more reason to discuss and to have constructive criticism on the images we submit. Perhaps we could just discuss the challenges in the regular forum, and not as a pinned item. Then when there is no more to talk about, it post will just go the way of other worn out discussions.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6166263 - 10/30/13 12:02 PM

Quote:

Typical beginning imaging equipment will include webcams, the Meade DSI and other low cost imagers.



Note that this quote comes from the Beginning and Intermediate Imaging Forum description. I think we should keep this mind as we try to distinguish between beginning and intermediate imagers.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
terry59
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 07/18/11

Loc: Colorado, USA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Gary Minder]
      #6166757 - 10/30/13 04:22 PM

Ok, Wow. I just stumbled across this thread. The discussion is very interesting and I find my entry to be an example.

This is quite a difficult thing to deal with and getting a group of people to agree on a "contest" or "challenge" structure will be problematic. Some excellent questions are being asked to that end and I hope some clarity emerges.

I think now that I should not have entered this contest, even though I'm sure I meet the current criteria. If you could remove my entry that would be great.

Thanks


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rflinn68Moderator
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/09/12

Loc: Arkansas
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: terry59]
      #6166873 - 10/30/13 05:16 PM

Quote:

I think now that I should not have entered this contest, even though I'm sure I meet the current criteria. If you could remove my entry that would be great.




Yeah I was going to enter mine but decided not to after seeing this. I've not even been imaging a full year yet but I dont know if I have won the Beginners Challenge before or not since I couldnt find the past winners. I do know I've won the Intermediate a time or two so I didnt submit my picture. I thought this was fun and tried to shoot a month ahead of time so I could enter a nice picture. The "winner" doesnt get money or anything and I thought it was just for fun, but oh well. They arent lacking for entries so I guess there are still plenty of other beginners. I will watch from the sidelines I guess.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
SergeC
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/23/12

Loc: Gainesville, FL
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: rflinn68]
      #6166985 - 10/30/13 06:13 PM

Apparently some people take "challenge" to mean "must-win contest". Too bad, since seeing what others are capable of gives one something to aim for, and has been a huge part of my development over the last year. That, and the enormous amount of selfless help provided by the more experienced imagers that participated here, especially from many of the same people who've been taken to task for posting superior quality images (and not necessarily in the challenges). I guess their hard-won experience isn't worth tapping into.

Now we see an insistence that only those using 10-year-old, entry-level technology be permitted to enter the challenge. Ah well. As a dolphin friend of mine says, "So long, and thanks for all the fish."


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6167061 - 10/30/13 06:57 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Typical beginning imaging equipment will include webcams, the Meade DSI and other low cost imagers.



Note that this quote comes from the Beginning and Intermediate Imaging Forum description. I think we should keep this mind as we try to distinguish between beginning and intermediate imagers.




Oh yikes, I'm sorry! I didn't intend my post to discourage entries.

Maybe the forum description needs to be revised?

I honestly am not a "win by any means" kind of person. As a matter of fact, I would hope that more people will submit their entry even if they feel it doesn't "measure up" or have a chance of winning. I assume the Beginner Challenge is still open to everyone. Unless the rules are changed, go ahead and enter. We can all learn and hopefully improve our skills as we compare and discuss what we have done.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rflinn68Moderator
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/09/12

Loc: Arkansas
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6167536 - 10/30/13 11:33 PM

I do understand and support a way to give everyone a chance to win. Just the word Challenge invokes competitiveness in me. I've always been a competitive person in everything from baseball to drag racing. I admit that I like to win. Who doesnt? Who doesnt enjoy winning and having other people admire their work, no matter what they are doing?

That said, the truly competitive person will want to test his or her skills against the more accomplished in his craft no matter what it might be. When you dominate something it isnt really a "challenge" anymore is it?

So I do understand and dont want to sound like I am taking my scope and camera and going home. I am open to whatever the forum seems appropriate. My picture wasnt good enough anyway.

While it is good to have the encouragement and the admiration of your piers (certainly helps me from time to time!!), its not a necessity in reaching ones goal(s). As someone once said, "You are confined only by the walls you build yourself". Ultimately, it isnt really about winning. Its about getting better and sharing our knowledge and experiences as a group.

The motto by which I try to live my life came from the mouth of the great Albert Einstein. He said, "Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value". At this point in my life this seems to be an easier road because I'll never be a success.

We have a lot of intelligent people here so surely we can get something decided. So you guys can let me know when that decision is made.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
CounterWeight
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6167566 - 10/30/13 11:57 PM

i think a lot of the requirements are at best really outdated! The imaging world has changed hugely since a statement like that made any sense at all(if it ever did).

We could endlessly whine and ninny nance the subject to death, but why bother - get yer gear and start getting photons! If you can't get photons then read and ask questions here and everywhere else you can if you are serious. Ask questions about whatever... jeez... there is a problem? I don't get it.

Roll lowball or highroll or somewhere in-between, but roll... motion, movement, action, activity... get it done and be happy, thankful even.

If you are here to win contests that is another barrel of fish. In the years I've been here I think I've submitted maybe 3 images to the various contests and never won - oh well, no problem here with me. Maybe I am just old fashioned but if the object was winning... well then you do what it takes, whining and excluding and narrowing down who can enter I guess one way. Or that old fashioned way of just getting better yourself to where you prevail, whatever it takes.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #6167640 - 10/31/13 01:07 AM

After thinking about this some more I am ok with leaving things the way they are with the exception of clarifying the terms beginner and intermediate. My feeling is there ought to be a DSO challenge for those just starting out and struggling to learn the basics. I don't think this can be quantified by time, equipment or techniques. I will leave the wording defining these terms to someone smarter than me. I believe if the intention of the challenge is made clear, then people will decide for themselves if they are at a beginner or intermediate level. The problem was that these terms were never defined, so it was left open to everyones own interpretation.

I also believe that purpose of these challenges is to provide a fun way for us to learn from each other and improve our skills through a little friendly competition. I also enjoy seeing all the different variations of equipment, integration time, processing and colors. The more people that participate the better.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
terry59
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 07/18/11

Loc: Colorado, USA
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Jeff2011]
      #6168120 - 10/31/13 10:18 AM

Since getting agreement on what constitutes a beginner would be difficult or impossible, either in skill or equipment, maybe the target should be the focus. For example, only wideband targets for beginners and include narrowband for intermediate. Just a thought...

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rflinn68Moderator
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/09/12

Loc: Arkansas
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: terry59]
      #6168227 - 10/31/13 11:10 AM Attachment (15 downloads)

Ok, here's mine. See, the color just doesnt seem quite right.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Madratter
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/13

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: rflinn68]
      #6168255 - 10/31/13 11:22 AM

I don't know, Richard. The orange is just about perfect somewhere in that graduated blend. Now I just need to figure out where!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rflinn68Moderator
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/09/12

Loc: Arkansas
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Madratter]
      #6168446 - 10/31/13 12:58 PM

Quote:

I don't know, Richard. The orange is just about perfect somewhere in that graduated blend. Now I just need to figure out where!




See what I mean! Lots of good people here always encouraging each other. Thanks Madratter! I'll keep working on it.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6169184 - 10/31/13 08:14 PM

I really look forward to discussing the images submitted in the challenges. I'm sure we agree that we should wait for that until after the voting.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Framis
super member


Reged: 04/07/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6184937 - 11/09/13 03:45 PM

Quote:

As an example, I would not consider narrowband imaging and processing to be a skill set that a beginner would be able to easily master even if they decided from the start to buy the gear and learn it - it takes time and practice to develop the skill set. Your average beginner needs time just to work out the basics, like guiding and basic stacking and processing. This should rightly show in their work, as well as improvements they make over time. We should keep all this in mind when judging a beginner contest and vote accordingly.

Charlie




Hmmmm..... well stated Charlie, but it looks like 45% of the voters believe taking NB, using multiple scopes, and cameras over a few days to be that of a beginner's level. while the rest of the contestants finished as well as a one-legged man in an arse kicking contest. ohh well... it is what it is.

Now lets see some M42's =)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Magellan
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 01/26/06

Loc: Enfield, NS Canada
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Framis]
      #6192722 - 11/13/13 01:58 PM

I also almost didn't enter either, mine was Ha only because I didn't have time to shoot unfiltered. After seeing that amazing image I knew I wouldn't win, I had detail but no color, but I also didn't get a single vote, which is discouraging but challenges me to do better, I since added color.

Most of the images I post here only get 1 - 3 replies, thats ok, I do more posting on Facebook, google+ and Flickr.

I suggest for "Beginner" we stick to the Messier list, most objects are relatively easy although M42 being bright is a tough one to process due to the high dynamic range.

I remember I won beginner once with my M13. I try to pick objects that both modded and unmodded camera's can shoot nearly equally. m13, Open clusters, M45.

Perhaps we should just ban narrowband images for the Beginner challenge?

I am going to continue to enter, regardless! however I think this months is M42, unless I can use the data earlier in the year I won't enter. I shot M42 so many times I just want to shoot something else


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Framis]
      #6198421 - 11/16/13 04:14 PM

Quote:

Quote:

As an example, I would not consider narrowband imaging and processing to be a skill set that a beginner would be able to easily master even if they decided from the start to buy the gear and learn it - it takes time and practice to develop the skill set. Your average beginner needs time just to work out the basics, like guiding and basic stacking and processing. This should rightly show in their work, as well as improvements they make over time. We should keep all this in mind when judging a beginner contest and vote accordingly.

Charlie




Hmmmm..... well stated Charlie, but it looks like 45% of the voters believe taking NB, using multiple scopes, and cameras over a few days to be that of a beginner's level. while the rest of the contestants finished as well as a one-legged man in an arse kicking contest. ohh well... it is what it is.




It's easy to see that when folks who have advanced skills post to beginner contests it chases away legitimate beginners because they do not feel as if they can compete.

This issue is compounded and possibly even rewarded by folks voting for the advanced photos.

We're having this conversation because *it* doesn't really *have* to be what *it is*... we just need to work out the best way to change it.

If simply pointing out out the problems with what's going on and asking the people involved to help fix it doesn't seem to help, then we at least need to make sure that these folks quickly "graduate" out of the competition.

We have typically dealt with this by applying what I've called the "three and out" rule. If a person wins the contests three times (uncontested wins do not count) then they will "graduate" and be ineligible to enter that contest again.

It's intended to move folks along to greater challenges in the CCD, DSLR and Solar System forums. So far it's only active in the main Imaging/Sketching contest.

I think we should apply the "three and out" rule for the challenges as well - but I'm considering a twist.

Typically, folks who go uncontested do not have their win counted against the "three and out" rule. Perhaps we should remove that exception, and in its place have a poll put up whenever someone hits three wins - contested or not - to determine if the entrant has displayed enough skill to "graduate" or not.

In this way folks could continue to vote for what they consider to be the "best" image without regard to the experience level of the entrant if they want to. Three wins under these conditions and then we ask these same folks to decide that they are good enough to "graduate". A few rounds of this should level the playing field a bit.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Jeff2011
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/01/13

Loc: Sugar Land, TX
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6199147 - 11/16/13 11:31 PM

Quote:

Perhaps we should remove that exception, and in its place have a poll put up whenever someone hits three wins - contested or not - to determine if the entrant has displayed enough skill to "graduate" or not.




I don't know Charlie. Voting on an image is one thing, but voting on someone's skill level is another. This could cause some hard feelings. Perhaps it should be left as win three times and you move on. Just my thoughts.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Charlie HeinAdministrator
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Jeff2011]
      #6215158 - 11/25/13 01:36 PM

Hmmm... sorry to seem a bit disconnected, there are lots of (good) things going on for me personally at the moment that are taking more of my time than usual. I'm going to read back through this and try to encapsulate what we've discussed into "resolutions" to consider. Once we have those set I'll put up a poll to vote each up or down, and then we'll amend things as required.

Charlie

PS - Jeff, I see your point. We'll just consider "three and out" as we do in the main contest. CH


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
iverp
super member


Reged: 04/16/10

Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #6218341 - 11/26/13 11:03 PM

Fret not, Charlie. We are all here for the enjoyment. It's not like a corporate web site. Thanks for what you do, and enjoy the other good things in your life.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Framis
super member


Reged: 04/07/09

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: Imaging Challenge Understanding new [Re: iverp]
      #6229535 - 12/02/13 04:05 PM

Personally I am on the 1 and out track... I think if I can win the beginner DSO then its time for me to invest more time and effort to compete at the intermediate level. I am not saying that everyone should do that... that is just for me...

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | (show all)


Extra information
17 registered and 16 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  Knuklhdastrnmr, fishonkevin, WOBentley, rflinn68 

Print Thread

Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is disabled
      UBBCode is enabled


Thread views: 3097

Jump to

CN Forums Home


Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics