That time I tried to compete with the pros; The Big Picture 2019

One day, in a bold attempt to ‘pull it together’ , I found myself venturing into the online world of Photography contests. I allowed myself to somewhat naively abandon all self-judgement that might have prevented me from putting it out there, y’know, in front of the real pros. I submitted at little cost to the Big Picture Contest, hosted by the California Acadamy of Sciences. And sooooo yeah….I didn’t win… wow obviously!! But I am so glad that I participated. I think I made some really cool photos in order to come up with the content. Check out the winners! They’re incredible.


The Big Picture Photo Contest Finalists 2019

Here is what I sent in… I guess I have to up my game for next year!! BTW; I definitely felt like I was doing a last minute, due today, didn’t do it before, school project when I was writing these captions and it seems to me that they read that was so just skim read them. K? thanx


Drift – The Scarborough Bluffs, formed by the shoreline of Glacial lake Iroquois, are a valuable geological record of the last stages of the Great Ice Age. This conservation area is home to sand and clay cliffs that span 15 kms and reach up to 90 meters high. This photo was taken the morning after a snow and wind storm at the Scarborough Bluffs Marina. This shot is a juxtaposition of the seasons, with summers decoration buried beneath the layers of snow. 

Gary at Beach with Ball – This is my dog Gary and we live in a houseboat on Lake Ontario. This photo captures the raw enthusiasm of playing catch in the spectacular setting of the deserted Bluffers Park beach in a winter storm.  The Scarborough Bluffs, formed by the shoreline of Glacial lake Iroquois, are a valuable geological record of the last stages of the Great Ice Age. This conservation area is home to sand and clay cliffs that span 15 kms and reach up to 90 meters high.

Brave Sauce – This surfer at the Steamer Lane Break in Santa Cruz, is a part of a close knit surfing community who regularly brave the cold water and sharp reefs in the quest for a a good ride.  The sheer determination of surfing has always romanced me.  I named this photo after the legendary break “Salsa Brava” in Costa Rica where i learned that the dedicated surfer who prefers to dine on a banquet of suffering seasons his meal with a brave sauce.

Far Away Eyes – With common birds we often overlook their beauty.  I cherish a moment that captures their sentience and stillness.  This is a one off, with the shallowest depth of field, I feel lucky that I was able to witness this moment of pause while technically achieving my photographic goal.

Black Sheep – I have always felt somewhat like a black sheep.  A life of unconventionality has gifted me with candor and imagination that I respect and can reflect in the eyes of other creatures who are too the black sheep.  This shot was taken the first day I owned my Canon 5D Mark iii.  I went for stroll to the park and stumbled across these pigeons who were eager to have their photo taken.   It is the photo that I carry with me to remind me of the value of ones uniqueness.

Farewell – The Great White Egret (White Heron), a member of the heron family, is a common and thriving tropical weather bird.  While common birds are easier to come by it doesn’t diminish their beauty.  The Great White Egret was adopted as the symbol for the Audubon Society, one of the oldest non-profit environmental conservationist organizations, in an effort to thwart the hunting of birds for the use of their feathers.   John J. Audubon wrote extensively on his first encounter with the bird in Florida, 1835, as they made an indelible mark on him due to their spectacular size and pure white plumage.   They are shy and are known to fly out of sight when approached and the use of a zoom lens allowed me to capture the quiet moments between fishing expeditions on the beach in Punta Mita, Mexico. 
Bluffs – The Scarborough Bluffs, formed by the shoreline of Glacial lake Iroquois, are a valuable geological record of the last stages of the Great Ice Age. This conservation area is home to sand and clay cliffs that span 15 kms and reach up to 90 meters high. Pictured here is the shoreline of an outer peninsula which is currently undergoing conservation efforts to prevent erosion and as a result 20000 tonnes of rock were deposited here in summer of 2018. 
Life and Death – I love to photograph stumps.  There is a flourish of life that springs from the death of a tree and the stump is a podium for this very event.  Wood was the staple of Canadian trade for much of the 19th century and by the mid-1800’s much of Ontario’s old growth forest has been exploited.  The Muskoka region is a popular destination for nature seekers as the replenished ecology provides an escape from city life.  From death, springs life.
Winter Wings 2019 Bluffers Park Marina Scarborough Ontario Canada
Canon 5D Miii 24-105mm
Look to the Sea – The Great White Egret (White Heron), a member of the heron family, is a common and thriving tropical weather bird.  While common birds are easier to come by it doesn’t diminish their beauty.  The Great White Egret was adopted as the symbol for the Audubon Society, one of the oldest non-profit environmental conservationist organizations, in an effort to thwart the hunting of birds for the use of their feathers.   John J. Audubon wrote extensively on his first encounter with the bird in Florida, 1835, as they made an indelible mark on him due to their spectacular size and pure white plumage.   They are shy and are known to fly out of sight when approached and the use of a zoom lens allowed me to capture the quiet moments between fishing expeditions on the beach in Punta Mita, Mexico. 
Swan Guard – The largest swan in the world, the Trumpeter Swan, is native only to North America. Once hundreds of thousands nested in Northern Canada and the U.S. and migrated to warm southern U.S. marshes for the winter. But with the arrival of Europeans, the swans became widely hunted and began to die out. In Ontario, the last Trumpeter was shot by a hunter in Long Point in 1886. Once thought to be extinct the birds were given a second chance when a previously undiscovered flock was found in Alaska and the Yukon. Eggs were obtained in 1982 and efforts to repopulate them were successful and are now considered endangered.  Luckily, the Scarborough Bluffs is where some of them winter and they are a fixture in the marina neighborhood.  They are tough, they are resilient, and they are always on guard. 

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