I had a great time Sunday helping judge the South Carolina News Photographers Association Pictures of the Year (SCNPA) contest at The State newspaper in Columbia, SC.
Fellow judges Stacy Pearsall, Michael Holahan and I reviewed some fantastic photojournalism. Congratulations to Photographer of the Year Gerry Melendez of The State and to all of the winners.
Having entered hundreds of photography contests over the years, I knew how important they can be to the photographers and we worked hard to come to a consensus on what we thought was the most outstanding work. The single category competition is open judging so photographers and students can listen to the critiques and use them to improve their work.
It was great catching up with some old friends and meeting some new ones.
Stacy and her husband, Andy Dunaway, have done some amazing work as military photographers. Stacy, who is one of only two women to win the National Press Photographer Association’s Military Photographer of the Year competition, is now the owner/director of the Charleston Center for Photography. The center is a great resource for professionals and photo hobbyists and is offering some terrific workshops.
Michael is a talented photographer working on the staff of The Augusta Chronicle. His resume includes many awards including an honorable mention as photographer of the year in smaller markets in the NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism contest.
Congratulations also to my friend Travis Bell for winning first place in the Sports Action category. Like me, Travis started in newspapers before leaving to do wedding photojournalism. He still does a great deal of sports photography for the University of South Carolina and Clemson University. Myrtle Beach photographer Randall Hill, who did an amazing job helping me at a wedding on the Grand Strand, took home numerous awards for his fine work.
Thanks to the folks from SCNPA for inviting me. Look here to see all the winners.