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Published May 9, 2017 | Multidisciplinary

Finalists of the World of Images Intercollegiate Photo Contest Share their Insights on Photography

The CCDMD (Collegial Centre for Educational Materials Development) hosts the annual World of Images Intercollegiate Photo Contestfor students. This year marked the 6th edition of the contest, which is open to all students in the CEGEP network. The finalists of the contest had their photographs put on display at Collège de Maisonneuve from May 1 to May 5, 2017, and on May 3rd, the award ceremony and official opening of the exhibition took place.

The photos submitted to the contest become part of the ever-growing The World of Images website. This collection of photographs can be used in the development of educational material and all images are copyright free, as stated on the website in the Creative Commons license. This site is evolving constantly and now allows users to share video content as well as photos.

Students had from August 22, 2016, to March 15, 2017, to submit their photos and this year 1292 photo submissions were made by students. Photographers could submit a maximum of 5 photos each, from which 29 photographs were selected as finalists. There were 5 prizes available to win:

  • First Prize - $1000
  • Second Prize - $750
  • Third Prize - $500
  • Environment and Sustainable Development Prize - $500
  • People’s Choice Prize - $250

The first, second, third and Environment and Sustainable Development prizes were awarded by a jury. The people’s choice prize was for the photo that received the most votes via the World of Images website.

Congratulations to this year’s winners!

Caption: From left to right: Morgane Clément-Gagnon, 3rd prize (Aspirations); Samir Gouin, Environment and Sustainable Development prize (Clarity); Victor Bui Trong, People’s Choice prize (Le sang rouge); Aisha Sayed, 2nd prize (Smog); Andrew Nowacki, special mention (L'incontournable). Photo credit Alexandre Claude (Source)

1st Prize: Akoho, by Léo Konnerth

Picture of a woman holding a chicken in one arm, sitting in an armchair

Portrait of a villager in the region of Fianarantsoa, Madagascar. (Source)

2nd Prize: Smog, by Aisha Sayed

View through a window of the city clouded in smog, a man is standing inside with a mask over his nose and mouth

This photo was taken in Japan. (Source)

3rd prize: Aspirations, by Morgane Clément-Gagnon

A blured person jumping backwards in a hallway near an emergency exit and a fire extinguisher

Photo taken in Montreal, symbolizing facing our aspirations and the fire inside of us, as there is no quick exit even if there are ghosts that haunt us. (Source)

Environment and Sustainable Development prize: Clarity, by Samir Gouin

A turtle in crystal clear waters, viewed from the top

In the warm and crystalline waters of the Pacific: the majestic queen of the ocean. Moorea, French Polynesia. (Source)

People’s Choice: Le sang rouge, Victor Bui Trong

A raised fist inside a red smoke cloud

This hand represents the revolution of our time. Mont Royal Park, Montreal. (Source)

Four other photos received special mention from the jury. You can view all of the winning photos by visiting the page Award Winners on the World in Images website.

Getting to Know the Photographers

Curious about the students who entered the contest I sent a short survey to all of the finalists to get an understanding of what drew them to this art and how they use photography.

I have always been visually sensitive to my environment, and through photography I have finally discovered how to express what I am feeling. Tristan Lajarrige, Collégial international Sainte-Anne
Photography allows me to create order in what appears to me as chaotic. I love the game to be played between the lines and the perspective of the focal point. Morgane Clément-Gagnon, Collège Marsan
I think photography really has unlimited expressions for creativity. There are always photos to be taken that haven't before. As well, it is a great way to document trips and special events. Samir Gouin, Marianopolis College

Many of the students entered the contest as a means of testing their talent against other students and to gain a bit of recognition at the same time. For some, being one of the finalists is great motivation to continue developing their talent, as they are fairly new to this pastime.

I am fascinated by what I can capture. Stopping movement, shadows and a sun set, freezing time in the present moment. Marilyne Jacob, Cégep Lionel-Groulx
There are many genres of photography to try and many scenes to capture. There is no time to be bored with photography, as everything that is photographed is unique and fleeting. Jeremy Audet, Heritage College

All of the students who replied to my questionnaire use some form of social media or web platform to expose their work. Instagram seems to be the most popular, along with Facebook and a website especially designed for photographers to store or upload and share their work, called 500px. One student mentions that they prefer printed copies of photos to web platforms, while others mention that they have their own website and are working on having their first real exhibition very soon. These photographers are always prepared with a camera on hand, as you just never know when a photo opportunity will present itself.

To be able to capture the moment and keep an eternal memory. I love playing with the depth of field, and especially the composition but also the camera angles. Kolya Hubacek-Guilbault, Cégep de Jonquière
Blockquote “Going outside and capturing the world! The more pictures I am able to take, the happier I am!” Félix Serre, École nationale d'aérotechnique
With a digital camera, we can take a bunch of pictures and just look over them when we are editing. With film, you really get involved with quality of the photo instead of the quantity. Aisha Sayed, Marianopolis College

Advice from the Finalists

When asked to provide some advice to teachers on how to use photos in their courses, a variety of suggestions were provided.

  • Add photos to PowerPoint presentations to liven them up and help keep the attention of students.
  • Be sure to give photo credit and reference the author of the photo.
  • Allow and encourage students to include pictures and photos in their assignments, incorporating creativity and personal expression in their work.
  • Analyzing photographs can be done easily and could be useful in a variety of disciplines.
  • Permit students to submit a creative piece along with traditional assignments, where pictures could be used to help explain certain elements of the original assignment.

Almost all of the students mentioned that they use software to enhance their photos. Most of them use the software Lightroom by Adobe. They state that it is a good tool for enhancing pictures without completely changing them. The software does require some training, and most of the students would recommend using YouTube tutorial videos to get started. For making major adjustments to photos they would recommend Photoshop. It is a more complete tool for modifying pictures and resulting in a more professional look, yet more complex to use.

I wish to express my congratulations to all of the students who participated in the photo contest. The photos submitted are beautiful, thought-provoking and impressive. I encourage you all to visit the siteand view the remarkable talent of the students.

Thank you to the finalists who replied to my questionnaire and helped me with this article. I hope their stories will inspire others to pick up a camera and start clicking!

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