2019 National Image Salon: Entries and Results
Documentary , February 26, 2019
As a professional photographer who specializes in documenting family stories, it’s important to me to always improve my skills. This is one of many ways that I work on my craft every year, so that I can be a better photographer for the families that invite me into their lives.
Each year, the Professional Photographers of Canada holds, each year, a National Image Salon competition for Accredited members.
“One of the cornerstones of the Professional Photographers of Canada is the PPOC Annual Image Salon. This juried exhibition showcases the best of the best. Within this Salon Exhibition, you will find the most creative, the newest and most cutting edge, and finest technically executed images produced by our members.” – PPOC website
I earned 2 Accreditations in 2016: Fine Art and Child Study, which allowed me to finally enter the National Image Salon. So, it is with pride that I enter this exclusive arena to compete each year. I have had my work included in the National Image Salon every year since 2016. I work hard to select and hone images that are worthy of being included in the Salon and that round out my skills.
There is so much to learn from this whole process. You have to pay very close attention to impact, composition, vision and, of course, technical excellence. I love to take risks, but I always get butterflies when my images come up before the judges. Their standards are extremely high and many great photographs do not make the cut.
Here are my entries for 2019:
"Nestled" - Animals Category
This is one of the best dogs in the world: Nelson. I photographed his family a couple of years ago. This was a very natural moment that took place during a documentary session that we were doing. We had already been for a walk, thrown tennis balls, jumped in the river (him, not me!) and were heading home. We were taking a little break at a particularly stunning outlook, when he nestled into the grass and looked over at me. Great moment.
"We've Come A Long Ways" - Pictorial/Floral Category
My twin sister and I like to get away when we can for a ‘photography field trip’. This one was literally in Field, BC. If you’ve been to Emerald Lake Lodge, you will immediately recognize this as being from there. It was early in the morning on a misty, cool fall day with a cold drizzle that splashed off the branches and onto my skin. I can practically feel that cold wetness even now. I love the drama that the weather brings to landscapes such as this one. The story is really about these tourists braving the inclement landscape, which is the dominant element in the frame.
"Boy In Blue" - Child Portrait Category
Ok, I know I tend towards photojournalism and not interfering with the integrity of the moment, BUT… this was a small exception.
This is my friend, Lindsay’s, son, Wyatt. We two Moms and our kids were hiking his amazing Sunshine Coast trail together in the fall of 2017. We passed this spot on the way out and I made a mental note to make this picture on the way back (it didn’t come together for me on the way out). As we were passing it again on the return, I could see that the scene was not going to build itself and there was NO WAY IN HELL I was going to miss this opportunity. So, I simply asked if any of the kids could just go up on that rock and walk down off it to the left (silhouettes need profiles). My kids don’t listen to me, but thank goodness for Wyatt agreeing to perform this small favour. I gave it one shot and didn’t ask him to repeat it: my philosophy is that I either got it, or not. No big deal. Fortunately, I did get it. This is one of my very favourite photographs. I have a canvas of it over my mantle at home. It just feels good to be around.
"Two In Water" - Fine Art Category
I took this years ago while on vacation in Hawaii (Kihei, Maui). This is a long exposure of the ocean, taken at about 5 am. There’s something about early mornings that is so clean, fresh, calming. My husband, Brandon, has been bugging me for years to enter it into competition, because he absolutely loves it (it’s hanging in his office downtown). I always felt that I was drawn to this composition because I am a twin and I like to see things in pairs.
Three out of four! Woot!
My “Two In Water” didn’t make it in. It’s actually one of my favourite photographs that I’ve ever taken (so, yeah, it kind of hurts).
Four of the judges scored it Not Accepted and 1 scored it Merit (that’s high!). So, thank you, Merit judge! (from my ego).
… And, had it been accepted, I would have qualified for Photographic Artist of the Year… le sigh. This makes it 2 years in a row that I narrowly missed this qualification. It’s a goal I’ve been setting for myself.
Well, you can’t win ’em all. But damned if I’m not going to try!
Huge thanks for reading this.