A handful of local photographers found their hands full after winning a Chemainus photography competition.
Winners of the Capture the Moment photography contest, sponsored by the Chemainus Business Improvement Association (CBIA), were awarded individual shares of prize money totalling $1,700.
Doug Smith, president of the CBIA, awarded a total of six prizes to the creators of photos belonging to two categories: Architecture and Lifestyle.
Submissions to the contest were reviewed by Teresa McKinley, publisher of the Ladysmith-Chemainus Chronicle; Warren Goulding, editor of the Chemainus Valley Courier; and Cim Macdonald, a Chemainus artist and photographer. McKinley, Goulding and Macdonald selected finalists in each category then posted the photos online, leaving it up to the public to decide who won.
Greg Cooper’s photo Stairway, shot using a Canon T3i, earned him first place in the Architecture category and a prize of 500 Chemainus dollars (CHD).
Second place and $250 CHD went to Art Carlyle for his photo Chemainus Ferry while Darren Burry’s photo Chemainus Bridge earned him a third-place prize of $100 CHD to round out the Architecture category.
Kayla Kerrone of Duncan took home a first-place prize of $500 CHD in the Lifestyle category for her photo Driftwood.
Burry earned himself an extra $250 CHD by placing second in the Lifestyle category with his photo Sax in Chemainus, and Karen Holmes received $100 CHD for her photo Red Hat.
Twenty-three-year-old Cooper said he loves shooting landscapes, but “macro photography” — capturing detailed images of an insect’s eyes or water droplets on the edge of a leaf from up-close — is definitely his favourite.
Cooper learned of the contest from his parents, he said, and decided to enter a photo he’d recently taken while walking around his hometown of Chemainus.
He considers photography — and especially photography contests — an ideal means of sharing with people how he sees the world through the lens of a camera.
Cooper had yet to decide how he would spend his winnings, but he said in all likelihood, he’ll exchange his Chemainus dollars for real-world currency to tide him over while he searches for work as a freelance video editor.
“I actually went to college for two years for multimedia production,” Cooper added.
Kerrone said she started shooting with film cameras while in high school. She bought her first digital camera after graduation and has never looked back.
Now 21, Kerrone said she works as a server in her hometown of Duncan while working as a photographer on the side.
She shoots weddings and portraits, but her favourite subject is “definitely landscapes.”
Kerrone plans to spend at least some of her winnings in Chemainus.
“There’s some neat shops here,” she said. “Willow Street Café is a good place to eat. My boyfriend lives here, and we’re always going out for food and spending money somewhere.”
Two-time winner Burry said shooting digital photos reignited a passion for photography he once had with film.
He plans to use his winnings to purchase a new lens for his Nikon D600 camera.
Smith said the photography contest was such a huge success this year that he’ll ensure the Chemainus BIA hosts it again next year.