Can you please tell us what the Nikonians Awards Photo Contest is?
“The Nikonians Photography Awards is a very special contest not just for Nikonians members, open to any photographer of any skill level and shooting with any camera.”
I’ve seen comments in the forums mentioning it is unique. What makes it unique?
“Well, aside from being open to any photographer, it has unique features, offering several opportunities:
It is an opportunity to compete with a larger number of photographers both inside and outside of our community.
It also gives the opportunity to receive thoughtful feedback, critique from photo industry professionals, on your image or on as many images you may want, including recommendations on how to further improve your photography in general.
Also, it provides the opportunity for photographers looking for recognition with wide exposure of their work through publications and photo exhibits.
Furthermore, contestants can also receive tips and guidelines to develop their own strategy for such wider exposure and recognition of their work.”
How did the idea of such a contest come to you?
“We believe that it is through continuous feedback in our forums, our photo contests, Nikonians Academy workshops and ANPATs (Annual Photo Adventure Trips), that our members can and do learn how to become better photographers. We are very proud of the prowess of our members. Our own internal photo contest has been very successful for the purpose; however we began to wonder how larger organizations organized their own.
So we looked into National Geographic and World Press for example, and finally discovered LensCulture through our friends of CreativeLife. LensCulture have a rather large staff of industry professionals to give feedback and have gained great reputation. The best part was that they were also thinking about us and called a few days before we had planned to call them. We found affinity in our goals and here we are in this partnership.”
How do you hope that Nikonians will benefit from this contest?
“Through this partnership we have expanded the benefits of Nikonians members with the opportunities above mentioned. We hope that members largely participate and will appreciate it. As a side benefit we are also further expanding the global Nikonians community exposure in the photo world.”
I would like to ask a little about you if you don’t mind. What initially fueled your interest in photography Ramon?
“The photographs by my father and my uncles. All weekend warriors, they will come home once a week for dinner with their photos for my mother’s albums. Images that I still remember from when I was 10 years old. It was not just the pleasure to gaze about their splendid photographs, it was also –maybe primarily- the amazement and joy they brought into our family and me.”
Did the approval of others (family, colleagues, friends, other photographers) encourage your skill and desire to capture beauty?
“I pretend to myself that I don’t need encouragement, but of course I enjoy very much their appreciation of my images.”
What has the photography of others meant to you on Nikonians?
“A lot. First, that as an amateur photographer I am not alone in these endeavours. Second that I have learned much from them, can do better and still have much to learn.”
How have you benefited from photography in your life?
“So many things to say. Let me just state that the joy of photography has made me a happier and hopefully a better person.
Is it important to you to inspire the work of others and to assist them with their goals?
“Yes. It is a way of returning a little of what I have received in life.”
What do you think are the challenges facing photographers?
“First, as a beginner, avoid frustration and giving up. Then, keeping up with the technology. This doesn’t necessarily mean renovating equipment but truly learning how to use your tools by shooting, shooting and shooting more.”
Has this contest been run before?
“This is the first time for Nikonians to open its doors to photographers using any other camera than Nikon. We hope to be successful enough to make it another Nikonians tradition.”
We thank you for taking the time to answer our questions and we are sure the Nikonians Awards Photography Contest will be a success. Thank you.
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