I have to say this has been a journey for me. I’ve come a long way with my photographic career in the last 5 years, let alone the 20 some years of when I first picked up a camera and began my journey with the photographic arts. To challenge myself, learn more, better myself and grow, I had joined PPA (Professional Photographers of America) a few years ago. Recently I learned about a local chapter called PPSCF (Professional Photographers Society of Central Florida) which is like a smaller division of PPA. Very much like PPA, they run an annual Photographic Competition, judged on 12 elements to earn a merit image, as well as awards for 1st through 3rd place, which is a big deal for me. If I can pass and earn merits with the judges, than I know I’m closer to mastering & honing my skills. Earning Merits with PPA is also a way for me to earn my degree in Master of Photography and a degree as a Master Artist. I know this probably doesn’t mean much to most clients, they just want to know that I can take their photos… but it means a lot to me. It’s validation that I truly have what it takes to create beautiful photographic works of art. And as an artist, I honestly have to admit, I am always seeking validation. Who isn’t? It’s also what helps set me apart from the majority of photographers in my area. Lets face it, this market is extremely saturated with photographers, but how many of them truly have the experience, the skills the formal education & knowledge in this industry? How many of them are award winning photographic artists? This is my way of setting myself apart from the crowd and making a name for myself in this over saturated industry.
Now I haven’t entered with PPA in a while, mostly because I knew I wasn’t able to attend the Imaging USA conference & Awards, and well, I want to enter when I know I can go in person to see my submission! But since I did recently join the local group, the PPSCF, and just in the nick of time for their annual competition, I entered a couple of my images with them.
And… Wait for it… drum roll please…. One of my images got merited and I won 3rd place in the Portrait Category! WOW! I am beyond thrilled, thankful, excited and happy! This means the world to me! I’ve finally accomplished one of my goals. Now I just want to perfect it to earn a higher merited score through the annual International Photographic Competition held by PPA. This feeling of accomplishment is amazing. I just can not express how I feel right now. I’ve won many awards before for my photographic arts, both from contests that were “voter” based, and some that were judged professionally at Art Fairs, Exhibits and professional competitions. But this one truly sets all those others apart as the judging is so much more critical with PPSCF and PPA’s Imaging Competition. I truly feel blessed and Thankful, especially considering today is ThanksGiving!
So today I want to say Happy Thanksgiving to YOU and your family! May you all be blessed, may you strive to achieve a goal like I have achieved mine. I promise, the feeling of achievement is an amazing feeling of pure joy and happiness and most of all a sense of pride. Even if that goal is something small. It feels amazing to achieve it. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.