Critique the Community


Submit your best image that fits the theme "technology" for a chance to win a free Fstoppers tutorial.
  • Submission Deadline: Thu, 28 Mar 19 03:45:00 +0000

    This contest has ended.

  • Voting is closed.

  • Congratulations to the winners!

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Technology is constantly changing but it always requires good imagery to sell. See if your images are portfolio worthy by putting them in front of the Fstoppers community to be judged. 

Between now and March 27th, you have the opportunity to submit up to two of your best images featuring technology for this weeks episode of Critique the Community. We will be selecting twenty images to provide feedback to on the Fstoppers YouTube channel. Two entrants will be given a free Fstoppers tutorial of their choice. The first winner will be decided by the highest average community rated image. The second winner will be chosen at random.

Once you've submitted your image, we encourage you to scroll through the rest of the submissions to give feedback of your own. The easiest way to assign each image a rating is to use your key and number pad. Feel free to also leave encouraging and helpful comments on images where you notice an area that could be improved. 

A big thanks to Lilly Rum who provided the featured image through Unsplash.

  • Submission Deadline: Thu, 28 Mar 19 03:45:00 +0000

    This contest has ended.

  • Voting is closed.

  • 300 people have cast a total of 12,160 votes on 138 submissions from 102 contestants.
  • Congratulations to the winners!

    View Results


Thousand shots of smartphones incoming.

And newest photo gear.


Ready for my machine shots?

come on people! Stick to the contest. a lake shot with trees is not technology.

If someone is going to post something that they perceive fits the contest theme they should write something in the caption so we can understand how they see it. That person clearly hasn't even taken the topic into mind so the 42 people who have voted on that image shouldn't have voted at all, they are probably all 1 stars because its off topic.

I agree. I was not voting on those I see as off topic. Would you recommend not voting for off topics or giving them a 1 to indicate an unsuccessful submission? i would appreciate your input.

You get a 1 from me if off topic, as a penalty, regardless if the pic is good.

Thanks for replying. Just trying to wrap my head around the overall actual votes vs the criteria. The votes here seem really low on some images that couldn't possibly be considered a snap shot. The 1s must be for off topic or really disliking the shot. :o)

I only give a 1 for off topic or an actual snapshot, bad photos that have thought still get a 2 from me but I can't speak for everyone.

I've watched a lot of the critique videos. Off topic photos rarely make the video, but when they do, they don't get 1 star ratings just for being off topic. 1 star is reserved strictly for low effort photos, and I think a lot of users on here have just kind of invented their own rating systems. However, I have seen "off topic" used as justification to lower a rating from a 3 to a 2. The reason being that a 3 star image is one you could put in a portfolio to get hired by someone who wants this specific type of photo.

Hum. I don't know that this makes sense. I can put in anything as long as it's good? I wish I'd known that. I would have put in a bee in flight and called it "nature's technology". The voting here is just off base. Half of the voters think Matt Katsenberger walked by a computer wired to a book and just snapped a shot of it like he passed it on the way to the loo? I need to hang out with Dan Grayum if he finds guys with wires attached to their heads just standing around to take a snap shot of with a cell phone. And half of the people who voted in my Jacob's Ladder thought I just snap shot a image of an electrical current traveling up a pair of wires in the dark without any thought or planning? Those shots can get mostly 1s but an off theme shouldn't be penalized? Don't think I'm on the same page here.

I think the fact that people here divvy out 1 star ratings to photos that clearly have some effort put into them is its own issue. They're just being unfairly harsh in their ratings.

But, in case you haven't seen the critique videos, one of the FStoppers editors will hand select 20 images from the submissions to appear in the video, and of those 20, the highest rated one and a random one win free tutorials. If your photo is off topic, it's almost certainly not going to get into the video, and therefore will be ineligible for the actual prize, which is a penalty in and of itself.

Plus, like I said before, once an off topic image gets into the 2 star range, you start thinking of it in terms of what a client seeking a specific type of image would want to pay for, and it becomes difficult to justify rating it any higher than that.

I'm on the same page here. I vote most offtopic images 1. The rest I vote according to the scale, my amateur photography knowledge and my taste.

I also remember now people here are all for commercial value where I am less so, more for personal pleasure and challenge - regardless of earned revenue.

I was rating off topic photos 1 but now after reading these comments. I'm not gonna vote if i feel its off topic. There should be a zero for snap shot. And off topic should get a one.

Neither is two people sitting on park benches smoking!!!!

What's the point. Last contest they chose the pic that was raided the least by trolls and then just picked a random no matter how bad it was. These are a joke.

honestly, I think that if people want to submit images not related to the topic I'm happy to rate them. I get why they do it since this is pretty much the only way to get an image rated by more than 3 people.

Just posted my weekend experiment. I was surprised because very few posted on this session, but the theme was something very interesting, challenging and not so common.

I think an "off-topic" option should be available for these contests and if a photo is marked as off topic by say 20 people, it's deleted from the contest. It would save everyone time and avoid the whole rating argument for off-topic photos. I currently give off-topic photos a 1-star, simply because I will only use the rating system for on-topic photos.


This has been a harsh one. I keep going back to the rules and reading the criteria. A minimum of a 2 if any effort/thought was made ... And so many without comments. Looking forward to the next contest already.

Yup. I posted a stacked macro of a circuit board (on topic) using 43 stacked images exposed under artificial light in my studio. How can that get a 1 (snapshot) rating?
I usually rate all the images in each contest - mostly 2's and 3's. I think I gave a 1 once and 4's several times. If it's off-topic, I typically rate it a 2 even if it would be a 3 or 4 as a general (non topic specific) post.

Your photo has indeed a good level of technical difficulty but I think it lacks art direction. The final outcome lacks an interesting factor. Maybe some creative lighting or a composition showing the subject in a more appealing way, would elevate your effort. I shot too a circuit board using macro but I tried to create a mood out of it. Technical difficulty is not always the point.

Good points, Nestoras. I have no problem with a 2 rating and I agree thatthe image needs improvement. It ain't a #1 snapshot by any definition, though.

Thanks, Yavaor. I find I get good ratings for non-contest photos. Either contestants voting photos down or just a tougher crowd on contest ratings.

Jim the work in your portfolio is absolutely stunning and leaps and bounds beyond the circuit board shot you submitted. It's definitely not a 1, but I would argue it does need work before being put in your portfolio (especially having seen the caliber of images you are capable of capturing). Some thoughts:

- It looks like there are some artifacts as a result of focus stacking (blur around some edges/areas)

- it looks like there is diffraction happening. I'm guessing it's from being stopped down too much?

- it looks like there is also a fair amount of aberration happening

- the circuit board looks a bit dirty and old

- it'd be so nice to see some more play with lighting on it.

I do agree with your overall sentiment though.


Many thanks for the detailed critique, Marek!

Cheers, Jim!

yeah, your portfolio is awesome! we share subject matter, I'm all about insects, birds, and flowers as well. why are almost all macro photographers also fascinated with telephoto...we like the extremes! I'm wanting to get into underwater super macro after i get my padi

It would be nice if the people that are giving me bad ratings could tell me what my photos are lacking

You are absolutely right. I just gave my response (y)

Thanks I appreciate it. I'll reply to all the responses later.

Just curious as to the timeline?

I just joined Fstoppers and I'm relatively new to photography as a serious hobby. I have to say, I am a little disappointed with this contest. Sure there is a problem when the submitted pics aren't related to the contest theme but what I find even more disappointing is the lack of interesting photos. Sure, most may be on theme, nicely lit, framed, focused, etc but a picture of a camera, lens, phone or any other technology just sitting on a table that I see everyday is just not interesting at all. I'm personally more intrigued by a photo that's worth taking a few good moments to look at and think about. I believe a good photographer knows what's interesting and/or beautiful and they either recognize that when they are on the street and shoot it or they are able to produce it in their studio. That's where the art of it is IMO and I think more weight should go to this when rating. Not to be sour grapes but I think my pic, although not the greatest technically, is at least interesting to look at, but I received zero comments and it is rated worse than several other images that from my viewpoint show very little effort and are just boring.

Your photo should have been 2 stars minimum since it is on topic and looks like some thought was put into the composition. I personally don't find it that interesting, but its definitely original. I have similar ratings on mine. I'm cool with it though. You can't please everyone my friend.

Thanks Dan, I appreciate your comment and agree that I can't please everyone and nor do I want to!

Thats the only way to live! :)

If I see one that has nothing to do with the topic , I'll ask them what the hell it has to do with the topic......

I agree with you so much , I'm a self taught photographer who's only been doing this for three years now and find favoritism on sites, because either they know the person or follow each other or they have a better profile, because of better camera/lenses or they're pro.....

Exactly. And people who vote my photos down because they don't like me or my comments.

Hopefully not the case!

Hi All, A few us have been talking about a new group. While we wait to see the outcome of this challenge, check out Minimalism, Abstract and Beyond. If you like it, It would be great to have you join!

Contest Submissions

Click on the thumbnails below to comment and vote on each image.

Click here to learn about the Fstoppers rating system and what each star value means.