Thanks to all the well-wishing I walked away pretty thrilled with the outcome of the Mountaineers' photography show. Three of my photos took awards, including the Best in Show:
Best in Show & Best Plant
Honorable Mention & Best Macro
First, I didn't name any of my photos, the only photographer, I think, who did not. Throughout the evening I kept hearing "D-S-C-1-2-3-4 by Brian Zimmer" — never again.
I was happy to get some constructive criticism from the photography chair, John Davis. One of the unique aspects of the show for me was seeing my photos projected onto a large screen. The Best in Show photo had a serious flaw in my eyes which I had never noticed until last night: there are some residual clouds at the top of the photo distracting my eye. John suggested cropping the clouds a bit tighter.
I re-cropped (mouse over to see the original) and prefer the change.
It was also suggested I horizontally flip the Honorable Mention photo, so I tried that too.
This really works for me (mouse over to see the change) because my least favorite aspect of this particular photo is the out-of-focus flower stalk in the background. With the photo's movement going from left-to-right rather than right-to-left the stalk now completes the half-circle — it feels a lot better to me.
There were other photos I really enjoyed
and I'll try to get a link for them (follow the link). One was taken on Mt Ellinor by the husband of his wife whose hair was standing on end from the residual electricity produced by a lightening strike on the summit of the mountain next to them, over the wife's head was a mountain goat — really cool, if not a little scary as stated by the photographer. This photo deservedly won Humor in the Outdoors.
The same couple produced another image I really enjoyed: they were sitting on a pier on Lake Crescent, their backs to the camera, her head resting on his shoulder looking at the perfectly calm Lake — I loved it, it's a perfect photo of a content couple.
Another really amazing photo was taken by a kid, maybe 7-9 years old, of some cups he stacked into a tower. He then, I think, laid on his back and shot up into the cups creating a really pleasing geometric shot. The photography chair commented on it being a "really mature photograph" and I agree — the kid was clearly into taking photographs and I hope he continues because some of his shots were really good.
Another great photo had three boys intently gazing at some insects held in a small pie tin by their teacher caught in a salmon stream seen in the background — as a father I really identified with the "teachable moment" aspect of the photograph.
Finally, after the show a gentlemen came up to me, introduced himself, shook my hand and wanted to "ask a favor". He would like to use the tulip and sunset photos as models for his watercolor paintings! How cool is it that?