Will the wonders never cease?
I received an email this afternoon telling me that one or more of my 40 photos that I submitted to the Shoot & Share 2019 Photo Contest was favorite-ed in Round 11. That means that I still have a chance to be a winner if I can make it all the way through Round 12 tomorrow!
The way this contest works is that it is “Completely Free and Fair”.
A lot of times photographers with a HUGE number of social media followers will tell their followers to go and vote for their photos in whatever contest they’ve entered. That gives people with HUGE influence a HUGE chance to sweep the contest. But, this photo contest is completely different. It is totally free, nobody has to pay to enter, and you don’t have to sell tickets to get more votes. Photographers can enter up to 50 photos into 25 different categories. My name is never displayed during voting so only people who closely follow my Instagram even recognize my photos. And even then, since I like to attend group shoot-outs, up to 12 photographers may have taken the same or similar photo. That means that “each photo is judged on its own merit and every photo is given equal opportunity to be voted on. It is displayed the same number of times to the voters as any other, so every photo is in the running.”
That means “It’s All About the Photos”
This is a super unique contest. As they say “It’s not about one photographers popularity vs. anothers or the ability to rally social media for votes. It’s not about your financial ability to pay for more entries to flood the photo pool.” Seeing my friends photos in the contest has been incredibly exciting, because I know how hard they work and they deserve the recognition.
I have terrible Imposter Syndrome, which means that I never feel like I’m measuring up. Can you imagine my surprise when I found out that I’m still in the running? I’m super excited because even if I don’t win one of the prizes, just to know that my work was in the top 4.5% of the remaining 26,458 photos is such a big deal for me.
Someone loves me!
I’ve enjoyed seeing all of the beautiful work from other photographers. From People Portraits, to Weddings, to Landscapes and even a category for Phone Photos and 21 other categories, there has been so much talent and so much inspiration. This was my first year entering the contest and to know that my photos were getting voted on from a starting pool of 583,150 photos was so overwhelming. But every couple of days I would get an email that someone had favorite-ed one of my pics and it made my heart soar! To date my photos have been chosen as someones favorite 71 times. OMG, I’m just going to take a moment to let that sink in. I mean, most days I kind of like my photos a little but to know that other people cared enough to click on that little heart MEANS SO MUCH!!!
Learning to use my Nikon camera, Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop has given me some serious challenges and sleepless nights. But, I’m so thankful for my group of photography friends who have been there for me when I get into a tight spot and need their sage advice. And I couldn’t have done it without my biggest cheerleaders by my side; my husband Phil and my kids, Savannah and Trevor. No matter what happens or what doesn’t happen for me in the contest, I’m so happy to have been a part of it and to be among such a tremendous group of talented photographers.