Five prestigious judges convened at the LexJet headquarters in Sarasota, Fla., last night to determine the top three prints in the second annual National Sunset Print Award.
Each year, photographers enter prints in their Professional Photographers Association of America local and regional Sunset Print Awards. The winners of those awards then compete in the national Sunset awards. This year, 28 prints were entered into the competition.
We’re pleased to announce that Kari Douma from Grandville, Mich., was the first place winner in the national award for her print, “Aged Gracefully,” pictured above. From the first moments of judging, jury chairman Rich Newell said, “That’s a keeper.”
Coming in second was “Mirror Mirror,” at left, by Wilton, Iowa, photographer Ben Shirk. (See the full image here.) “It’s telling the story of the magic mirror,” said judge Chuck Hill. “The image feels heavily treated, but it’s honest, as well.”
Third place, below, went to Randy McNeilly of Shelby, N.C., for his print “The Colonel at Twilight.” “This is a rare breed,” said judge Carmen Schettino. “There’s something beautiful about the position of his body … and the lighting.”
During the judging, the panel whittled down the 28 prints to 11 in the first round. These three images continued to score well throughout the entire deliberation, making them the clear standouts among the best-of-the-best Professional Photographers Association of America’s images.