Thursday, October 13, 2011

Faces in the trees

Glazers annual Holga Contest has come around again. 

This year they've changed things up a bit, narrowing down the contest to only one category, one entry per person.  This worries me a bit... I hope that scaling back this year's 9th annual Holga contest doesn't mean we won't see a 10th next year.  When I went to drop off my entry today, though, I noticed a massive display of various toy cameras (dianas, lomo, fuji, holgas... some with flashes, some with Polaroid backs)  so I'm hoping their passion for film at the store will continue to fuel this fun contest.

So the category this year is "Portrait" - not really my forte in the realm of shooting with my Holga, (most of my people-pictures are full length from a distance) but I did have this one shot I'm particularly fond of... wood carvings which were set on display on a banana leaf tree on the beach in Jamaica.

"Faces of Jamaica"

I matted my print on a basic black mat and dropped it off this afternoon.  I have no idea what kind of competition I'm up against this year, but my fingers are crossed.

Monday, October 03, 2011


Washington Trails Association is having their annual photography contest, and while I did not get up to the Olympics to hike this season (where I'd intended to attempt some spectacular landscapes for just such a contest occasion) our camping trips to Blake Island offered me some opportunities to haul out some limited gear and see what I could do.

The rules of the WTA contest are pretty strict - only one photo per category, must be shot on a Washington Trail - so my entry this year is limited to two shots.

Under the category "Flora/Fauna" I have the Fawn:

This baby deer could be found in the field adjacent to the hiking trail pretty much every morning.  Mom would drop him/her off and meander around near the campground while the little bugger munched away, largely ignoring the hikers passing not 30 feet away.  This was one in a series of shots I took using my "approach wildlife slowly" technique.  Once I spot a creature, I zoom in and do the best framing I can from where I'm at, meter the scene and get a few shots.  From there, I approach slowly, one step at a time, to try to improve the framing/cropping/angle as best I can without disturbing the animal - both to not bother the animal, and to not scare it away and ruin the shot for the people behind me.  This fawn was remarkably unconcerned with just about anything I did, and I was able to sit on the ground and scoot a few feet at a time, coming within 10 feet of it before I decided I might be pushing my luck.
(Side note:  when I sat with my camera in my lap, watching the fawn eat, I noticed quite a few hikers breezed right past me.  Any time I had my camera up to my face, however, they would pause to see what I was shooting, and only then notice the brave fawn standing in the middle of a wide open field.  You can miss some pretty amazing things if all you're doing is looking at the ground directly in front of your feet.)

Under the category "whimsical" I have entered this:
G on the Trail.  All in all I was generally unhappy with my inner-forest trail shots (they all looked so flat and lifeless) but this, at the entrance to the interpretive trail by Tillicum Village, was nicely lit.  G ran over to the informative post and said "Look!  I'm the little trail guy!" so we took a few minutes to try to pose her just like the sign.  Someone stuck a blue hat sticker and mustache on the little dude in the sign, and while we couldn't find a hat for G, at least the color happened to match her skirt.

I have little idea of my chances of being published with these for this contest, but they were fun to shoot and you never know unless you try.