Sunset Print Award Grand Prize Winner: Permanent Bond

Permanent Bond by Tammy Bevins

The judging panel for the first annual National Sunset Print Award described the First Place Grand Prize winner – Permanent Bond by Tammy Bevins – as “flawless,” “masterful” and “fully resolved.” The image depicts the bond her twin sons have had since before they were born.

In fact, there was little debate about the print, other than how perfect each element of the image – from composition to lighting – was absolutely spot-on.

Permanent Bond was one of 29 prints judged at LexJet headquarters in Sarasota, Fla., on Thursday, Nov. 13. All of the entries in the National Sunset Print Award competition won a Sunset Print Award at state and regional competitions across the U.S. in 2014.

Permanent Bond won the Sunset Print Award at the Professional Photographers of South Carolina (PPSC) competition, and was thus automatically eligible for the national competition.

Sunset Print Award
One of Tammy Bevin’s twins prepares to get into the water tank for the Sunset Print Award-winner, Permanent Bond.

“It took four minutes to photograph something, but it took me four years to come up with the idea,” says Bevins. “For several years I’ve been trying to come up with a concept to show the bond my twins have with each other and what it means to be a twin. It’s one of the most amazing experiences to have twins that look so much alike and have been best friends. Over the years I didn’t come up with something I was inspired to do until I came up with Permanent Bond. I wanted to position them like they were in the womb together, and I used rope to signify the umbilical cord.”

The shoot actually took more than four minutes as Bevins built a water tank in the back yard filled with a few inches of water and dry ice to create the fog effect. What you see is basically what Bevins captured; there was very little Photoshop work done to the image.

Bevins captured the image with a Canon 5D Mark II with a 24-70mm lens at 1/200, f/4.6, and 160 ISO. Master printer Jonathan Penney, Center Moriches, N.Y., printed the image on fine art paper.

Sunset Print Awards
The judges at the first annual National Sunset Print Awards evaluate Permanent Bond by Tammy Bevins. Photo by Billy Elkins.

“I used available light and a 2×3 soft box. I had the soft box on pretty low and wanted the light skimming across them and coming up from the top a bit,” explains Bevins.

Bevins runs Nuvo Images in Charleston, S.C., with her daughter and son-in-law, both of whom are award-winning photographers as well. Bevins has nine children – six girls and three boys – ranging in age from 13 to 29. The twins are the third and fourth out of the nine.

“I grew up in West Virginia, and everyone in my family were coal miners. I moved to South Carolina after I got married and was in the medical field. We started having children and I stayed home with the kids, which gave me some time to explore my creative side,” says Bevins. “About 13 years ago I started taking art classes in oil painting at the local museum and I absolutely loved it. My husband suggested I take photography classes, and it really exploded for me and fit my lifestyle. My first year in business was 2004 and I immediately joined PPA and PPSC, and shortly thereafter got interested in print competitions.”

The National Sunset Print Award judging panel - from left to right,  Carmen Schettino, Julie Hughes, Jessica Vogel, Tom Carabasi and Rich Newell - with their choice for First Place, Permanent Bond by Tammy Bevins. Congratulations, Tammy!
The National Sunset Print Award judging panel – from left to right, Carmen Schettino, Julie Hughes, Jessica Vogel, Tom Carabasi and Rich Newell – with their choice for First Place, Permanent Bond by Tammy Bevins. Congratulations, Tammy!

Bevins’ accomplishment at the National Sunset Print Awards is made all the more remarkable by the quality and variety of the images entered in the competition, from fine art photography to portraits and landscapes.

Julia Kelleher of Jewel Images in Bend, Ore., won second place for He Has Arrived. Click here to read the story behind Kelleher’s award-winning print that scored a 100 at the PPA Western District print competition.

Pete Wright won third for his retro image, Temptress, which won a Sunset Print Award at the PPA Southeast District competition. Click here to read the story behind this stunning image.

Congratulations to all the 2014 Sunset Print Award winners who made it to the National competition! Go to http://www.sunsetprint.com/previous-winners/ to see all the winners from 2014 and earlier years, and the stories behind the photography. While you’re there, look around to find out more about the 2015 competition and which competitions you can enter for a shot at a Sunset Print Award.

And, special thanks to our judges this year, who not only did a thorough and fair job, but gave everyone at LexJet a valuable education in what makes a print stand out at competition. This year’s judges were: Tom Carabasi of Ringling College of Art + Design; Julie Hughes, Abbey of London, Jensen Beach, Fla.; Rich Newell, Professional Photographers of America; Carmen Schettino, Carmen Schettino Photography, Sarasota; Jessica Vogel, Jessica Vogel Photography, Shelbyville, Ky.

Video: Large Format Stills from Motion at Ori Media

Ori Media, based in Salt Lake City, tells multi-media stories, capturing motion and producing high-quality stills on a Canon iPF8400 large format inkjet printer.

Ori Media utilizes a Canon workflow that integrates a Canon EOS-1D to record 4K video and print beautiful printed stills.

Ori Media Canon iPF8400“Shooting hybrid is the only way to go. If you can shoot a video and generate stills from that at the same time, you’re going to save time and generate more revenue by upselling the client on the stills you’re pulling from the video,” says Ori Media’s founder Michael Ori. “They’ll have a cohesive campaign with photos that match their video, a 4K video that’s broadcast-ready, all within an hour.”

The video above demonstrates Ori Media’s workflow, and how quickly the company can shoot a scene and take stills from that scene to generate magazine proofs, for instance, or saleable wide format inkjet prints.

“While he’s still shooting I can already be generating deliverables. I can start editing a short video, pulling the TIFs straight from Premiere Pro into Photoshop and do some retouching,” says Joey Jonaitis, 1st AC/AD for Ori Media. “It’s great you can be sitting there with a client, checking each single frame – you have 24 frames every second – and get the perfect exposure and the perfect look the client wants, export straight to the printer with the imagePROGRAF plug-in… and you can have large-format prints right away.”

Video: Stableford Studios Captures and Prints The Farmers of Western Colorado

The Farmers by Stableford Studios

“I feel like I’m capturing the last of a dying breed of farmers and ranchers here in western Colorado,” says Tyler Stableford, co-director of Stableford Studios, Carbondale, Colo.

Stableford, who is one of Canon’s Explorers of Light, recently captured the heart and soul of the people who work the expansive valleys in western Colorado, juxtaposed against grand mountainous vistas in a series entitled The Farmers.

Stableford used a Canon EOS-1D C, a Canon 5D Mark III, and a Canon 1D X, to photograph the project, but the ultimate expression of the work, says Stableford, comes through the prints produced on the studio’s Canon iPF8400 wide format inkjet printer.

“I see images on the back of the camera, I see them on the computer, and then they come out on a large-format print and they’ve gained a life. And to me, that is where the real soul of an art of an image of a person is. It’s not through an electronic LCD screen,” says Stableford.

In the video embedded below, Stableford explains how Canon’s input to output workflow helped create his latest portraiture series, in which the American frontier is brought into a whole new light.

“Making a large format print transcends the fleeting moment that we try to capture, and makes it more iconic,” adds Stableford Studios co-director Kate Rolston.

Setting a Canvas Printing Standard at FinerWorks

FinerWorks Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas
Close-up of a fine-art reproduction by FinerWorks on the company’s new standard canvas: Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas.

As the name implies, FinerWorks, based in San Antonio, is dedicated to reproducing finer works of art on a variety of printable materials. FinerWorks serves mainly artists and photographers, with a focus on high-quality output.

Fine Art Canvas Reproductions
A combination of canvas gallery wraps and canvas mounted to PVC board printed by FinerWorks on Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas.

Toward that end, FinerWorks recently set Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas as the standard for its canvas reproduction printing. Moreover, founder and COO James M. Theopistos has leveraged the Sunset and Fredrix brand names in marketing to his customer base.

“We’ve been excited about it, and the feedback from our customers has been very positive as well. I attribute a lot of the success with the new canvas to the Fredrix name. Since most of our customers are artists they’re familiar with the Fredrix name, especially if they do oil or acrylic paintings. They’re used to buying Fredrix canvas for their work,” says Theopistos. Given that, it was a no-brainer from a marketing standpoint. The cost of the canvas is the same, we can push the name brand, and customers appreciate the history and quality behind the Fredrix name.”

FinerWorks Canvas Printing
Close-up of Sunset by Fredrix mounted to PVC board using LexJet RubberMount Adhesive.

Moreover, says Theopistos, though Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas is OBA-free, it retains a very high bright point and faithfully reproduces the artwork of a given client on the company’s Canon iPF8300 and iPF8400 inkjet printers.

Perhaps most importantly, Theopistos reports that the canvas provides consistency through a print run and from project to project.

As Theopistos put it at a recent blog post at finerworks.com: “Sunset by Fredrix Matte Canvas brings the expertise of LexJet and Fredrix together for a breakthrough in canvas, featuring one of the highest white levels available for an OBA-free canvas. It’s easy to work with for stretching, mounting and framing, and is ideal for fine art and photographic reproductions on canvas. The acid-free, pH neutral, poly-cotton base provides consistency throughout the print run.”

Click here to read the rest of the story at the FinerWorks blog.

New Canon Inkjet Printer Mail-in Rebates of up to $1,400 at LexJet

Canon Mail-in RebatesCanon announced today new mail-in rebates of up to $1,400 on four of its imagePROGRAF (iPF) wide format inkjet printers, available at LexJet through Dec. 31. The new mail-in rebates include:

Click here for a video overview of how and why Canon printers pay off almost immediately. And, for a series of Canon printer how-to and production workflow videos, click here. For more information and to take advantage of these mail-in rebates, call a LexJet printer specialist at 800-453-9538.

Prop Making and Printing on the Set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier

While any given film may include the proverbial cast of thousands, it often takes thousands behind the scenes to pull off a big-budget film, such as Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Printing Props for Captain AmericaA key behind-the-scenes player is the property master. The property master is basically in charge of props, and comic-book action movies are prop-heavy with gadgets galore for both the heroes and villains.

The video shown here details some of the work of veteran property master Russell Bobbitt on the set of Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, including his use of wide-format inkjet printing with the Canon iPF8400.

Check out the video to see how the printer is integrated into the prop manufacturing process, and how output from the Canon iPF8400 was used to enhance the sets and backdrops of the movie.