Photography Blog Follow up
I recently posted a blog entitled, “Photography – The Multi-faceted Hobby.” I touted my new hobby of photography as a creative outlet, a medium for social interaction, adventure and potentially a source for income, and last but not least a competitive outlet for those so inclined.
The social, creative and adventure aspects of the hobby are easily achieved, but alas, engaging in photographic competition brings in the issue of subjectivity. In my years as a competitive athlete, I knew that winning was in my hands – not the hands of a judge. If I crossed the finish line first and/or had the best time of the day, I won. With photographic competition, if the judges are changed, there is a good chance that the results will also change.
I decided to enter my first photographic competition, the Boyd Hill Nature Preserve (St. Petersburg, FL) 31st annual photography competition. It was contested in 7 classes with cash prizes and ribbons to the first through third places in each class and in addition a grand prize of $200 and ribbon to the Best Of Show photograph. The judges, a panel of professional photographers, could also award honorable mention ribbons at their discretion.
I entered one of the photographs that I used in my first photographic blog, a picture I call, “Direct Eye Contact with a Cormorant.” I ordered the print mounted in the size of 11 x 14 in metallic finish in that metallic makes the eyes of the cormorant jump out at the viewer. I was more than disappointed when I received the finished product from the lab and discovered that they printed the photo in luster rather than metallic finish. I hoped this was not a harbinger of things to come. As required, I dropped off the photo at the facility a few weeks prior to the awards ceremonies, which took place last Saturday.
The awards ceremony was held at Boyd Hill Nature Preserve at an awards breakfast in conjunction with a weekend Wildlife Encounter event. I arrived early and discovered that temporary walls had been installed throughout the facility with all of the finalist’s shots mounted on the walls for viewing by the public. As I strolled about viewing my competition, my hopes of winning even an honorable mention ribbon began to sink with great rapidity – there were some amazing photographs. As I wandered about with my diminishing hopes, I noticed a rather large gathering around one photo. I could not see what they were viewing as I approached, but I heard them using some rather glowing adjectives to describe the photo under discussion. Finally, as I joined the group, I noted that the photograph under discussion was mine! Needless to say, I pumped out my chest and immediately claimed ownership of the shot. One of the group turned to me and said, “Your photo won Best of Show award!” Needless to say, I have not yet come down from the experience, which was three days ago!
I did mention the possibility of income generation from the hobby. I was informed yesterday by the facility that there is so much interest in the shot that they requested that I drop off some of my business cards as soon as I could. Of course I had none so I got busy on the Internet, designed a card (it has the winning picture on the front), and will happily drop them off in the near future.
Photography is truly an amazing, fun hobby!!