Some thoughts and questions:
This is from the copy on the 8x10 competition via WPPI:
/soapbox Ok, so the thing that gets me is, why should the subject NOT be in the direct center? There are loads of photos in the Gallery that have just this; center subject. Now, I don't think that a picture with some naked lady softly lit on the beach way off to the left is any more attractive than an orchid direct center, hard lit with loads of contrast.Look at the lighting and posing – your subjects shouldn’t be dead-center in the image, lighting should be subtle – no hot spots or blown-out highlights. And check out your enhancements – does the image look over-photoshopped? Have you lost the real meaning of the image by adding too many treatments? If so, then you shouldn’t be entering those images.
Second, if I think an image needs the highlights blown out, then I do it. I mean, I understand that this competition is for people that want to fit a cookie cutter, which is NOT me, but the question remains.
I don't know how to even approach the last statement. I don't know anything about "treatments" and "enhancements" in photochop, but could the same thing be said about darkroom time? Could a photo be too burned or dodged? I don't think so. Why should the light be subtle. What if the bride specifically asked to be lit in hard shadows because she is having a murder mystery wedding and wanted a noir feel?
Sure, some of these images are good, but I don't get it.
I don't think competitions like this make art, photographers, or unique images. I think they shouldn't be called competitions. Well, maybe if they want to be called "everyone should make the exact same image competition".
I searched for any information I could find on WHY one would not put the subject in the center, and then I found about 8 trillion images from 1850 on with just that. I just can't wrap my mind around it.