L to R: “Equal and Opposite,” “In Life There’s Death,” “Breathe Deep,” “United Sadness of America,” “Eye Candy,” “Summer Stroll” & “Midnight Snack.”

I won a total of seven awards:
• The Vermont High Level of Excellence Award – GOLD! (cumulative of 6-piece case)
• Member’s Choice Award: “Breathe Deep”
• Vermont Special Award: In Motion – “Equal & Opposite”
• 2 Court of Honors: “Breathe Deep” & “United Sadness of America”
• 2 Judges Choice Awards: “Breathe Deep” & “Eye Candy”

This past weekend was the Vermont Professional Photographer’s (VPP) 92nd Annual Convention, and Annual Print Competition. The photographic competition features Professional Photographer’s Association (PPA) Certified Judges trained in the art of critiquing images at the highest caliber.

After last year’s Print Competition, I made it my personal goal to finally submit an entire case of images (6 pieces.) Then, a few weeks later we were in quarantine, my 2020 business calendar emptied, and with it my chances for photographing for said competition… or did it? Perhaps a blessing in disguise, I had more down-time last year to be creative, to try new things, practice my 365 project, to hone my skills, and to just play. By December I had three images ready for competition, and a slight discouragement that I felt stuck in a rut and might not have a case to submit. Then my Mother passed away. In my grief I found myself again in the studio and stretching my creative wings, this time much differently. I didn’t care about the outcome, I just wanted to practice my art. I lost myself in it. In that period of “working through things,” I created four more award-winning images, all with a special meaning for me. Boy, life sure is funny.

I tell this story because I hate to be boastful, but good grief I really worked hard for this. And after coming from a year that had so many disappointments, it feels that much better to have that work pay off. This past weekend was my biggest achievement in my professional photography career. Mom would be proud. I met and exceeded my own goal, but it wasn’t without help. Hubby allowed me the time to lock myself in the studio for hours on end, supported my goals, and even came up with a few of the titles. Thanks Babe. My photog friend Kelly was so patient with me when I changed the freaking name of one particular print a dozen times – you’re my people, thanks. Thanks to Jon and Wayne, fellow VPPers that encouraged me last year, as well as other inspirational photographers I’ve learned from over the years. I am humbled, and now onto International Photographic Competition I go with a few of these babies.

To see the other 111 amazing entries, visit the VPP website or view their digital booklet here.

Because these will be entered into PPA’s International Competition, they are not to be shared on social media please. Thanks.