I’m thinking of entering some pictures in a photo contest. The magazine I read is doing a Pet Photo contest, and goodness knows I take enough photos of mine. So I thought I’d enter.

The thing is, how do you choose which ones to enter?

It’s hard to be objective about pictures. Every photo I have of the cats is because they were doing something cute or funny or whatever, so I took some pictures. I think they’re cute. I think they’re charming. But I know, from looking at other people’s photos of their pets or their babies or their kids, that beauty is quite often most definitely in the eye of the beholder. Painfully so, in some cases.

Cute just doesn’t translate well in many cases if you don’t know the subject intimately. I mean, I love my cats, so everything they do is cute in my eyes.

The same thing goes for pictures of people. We are usually very harsh on ourselves when it comes to personal photos. Personally, I absolutely hate getting my photo taken. I avoid it like the plague. And that is because I am unfortunately really, really not photogenic. Not. At. All. Or maybe it’s that I am really that unattractive in real life and it’s only in photos that I actually am faced with it. Either way, there are precious few photos of me around. And I am horrified to the point of panic at the thought that others might have pictures of me in their possession. Seriously. It really upsets me.

So when it comes to choosing a photo based on the merits of “cute” or “attractive”, it’s hard to say what is and what is not.

Then I thought maybe I could choose something that is a nice photograph. You know, where there’s good light or the subject is framed well or whatever. But the problem is, I don’t know sweet Fanny Adams about photography. I realized in looking at all these pictures that I wouldn’t know a well-framed shot if it jumped up and bit me. I have no idea what it means to have good composition. I know when I see a photo in a magazine or a book that there are certain things that catch my attention, and that certain pictures are pretty, but I could not tell you WHY. And I certainly couldn’t say if any of my own pictures have those qualities.

So in the end I’m just going to choose some that I like best, and send them in. Because it’s just for the fun of it.

Besides, I don’t ever win any sorts of contests I enter — no winning lottery tickets, no shouts of “BINGO!”, no big stuffed teddy bears at the fall fair. Not. One.

So why enter at all?

Well, it’s simple. If YOU owned the cutest pets in existence, wouldn’t YOU want to spread the joy of seeing them around??

Uh oh. There’s that objectivity thing I was talking about…

2 thoughts on “Objectivity

  1. My vote would be for one with Duncan inside the bag. I love that one, or sleeping with his hind end hanging off the edge of the chair/couch/bed, that is too funny.

  2. Well of course, Duncan WILL be featured prominently in the entries I send in… After all, he’s 25 pounds of cute in a 10 pound bag. Not to mention, he’s got a penchant for hilarity.

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