Oregonian Travel Photo Contest: One of 15 finalists

Portland, Oregon at Blue Hour

Two days ago I received a phone call while meeting with a friend. I never answer the phone. Like… ever. Especially when it’s a number I don’t recognize. It’s nothing personal that I don’t answer the phone. I just hate talking on it. So I let it ring.

I figured it was the print shop I use bugging me to finally come in and pick up some prints that I had ordered. A voice mail was left and I pretty much ignored it. ‘YES.. I KNOW.. my prints are READY.’

I finally got around to listening to the message at midnight and to my surprise.. it was the head of the Oregonian Special Events department letting me know that I am one of the finalists in their Travel Photo contest that I entered at the very last minute! I know it’s small time and all.. but I was pretty pumped to hear that I was being considered.

There had been thousands of submissions and the above photo is the one of mine that they chose. I submitted three photos to the competition in the category of ‘Celebrating Oregon’. The other two were “Resurrection” and “Deschutes Forest Sunset“.

There will be some hoops I have to jump through before I finally find out if I’m a cash prize winner (Trip to Toronto is Grand Prize and then a $600, $300, and $200 spending money to a local camera shop for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, respectively) or just an honorable mention.I’m awaiting a call from a reporter from the Travel Section

Any way it falls is fine with me. It’s nice to be recognized for something you enjoy doing.

The Shot

This shot was taken on the East Bank just south of the Hawthorne Bridge. I worked earlier in the day and had some time to kill before picking Belle up from work. The clouds had been killer all day so when I got out of work I ran home to grab my equipment and then dashed over to the East Bank and set up in this spot that’s been a pretty popular spot for photographers. The pilings create a nice foreground element, though in this shot the water was extremely low.

On my way to the river the clouds started to roll in thicker and I started to get discouraged. But I decided to stick it out through the blue hour because I was already there and had that time to kill. It was cold and rained a little off and on while the clouds came and went. About 30 minutes or so after sunset I got a little break and that’s when this shot was taken.The river was a little choppy so I used a lower ISO (400 I think) and a longer exposure to glass it over a little. I wasn’t getting enough light on the pilings so for the 15 second exposure I ‘painted’ them as well as the rocks with light from my headlamp which I just happened to have in my bag. It’s the first time I had ever tried that and it came out great aside from the fact that I couldn’t get light on the pilings towards the rear. But the more and more I look at it that almost helps draw you into the skyline.

It  I was pretty happy with the result right off the LCD and I only had to do minimal color corrections and such to the photo.

So my fingers are crossed for the results. I can really use some more photo equipment!!

PS: That’s not a spot on the sensor. That’s a duck. Can you find it? 🙂


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