Jorgenson in conversation 

Six finalists announced for WSSF Pro Photo Search

What: Fourth Annual Pro Photographer Search

When: March 15 and 16, 8 p.m.

Where: Whistler Conference Centre

Point, click, and… imagine.

Who knows what the visual imaginations of some of the best emerging outdoors photographers on the continent will bring to the fourth annual Pro Photographer Search at this year’s World Ski and Snowboard Festival.

"You can really use things like music, and timing, to create drama," says Whistler’s Blake Jorgenson, who won the Best in Show title at last year’s Pro Photographer Search.

This past week the six finalists for this year’s show were announced: Bo Bridges of Hermosa Beach, California; Ilja Herb of Pemberton; Dave Humphreys of Squamish; Toshi Kawano of Whistler and Japan; George Marsh of Bayfield, Colorado; and Scott Serfas of Vancouver.

This year’s event moves from Merlin’s to the Whistler Conference Centre Atrium, to accommodate a larger viewing audience.

Three photographers will present each night, their order chosen at random. The Best of Show title will be presented the night of March 16.

The presentations can be up to a maximum of 12 minutes. Interested photographers were asked to submit a page of 20 images of their work. The judging panel didn’t known whose work they were viewing.

"The shows are so good because they allow you to choose how, and where, you own photos are used," says Jorgenson.

"It really is a show, and not a photo contest. The first year I entered the competition I was less aware of that approach."

Jorgenson not only won the Pro Photographer Search last year, he also went on to win the Pro Photographer Showdown against internationally recognized professional photographers. The Best in Show receives a wild card entry into the pro event. Jorgenson will be in the Pro Photo Showdown again this year.

"Photography in Whistler is mostly some kind of an adventure." Jorgenson says. "It’s also about being in the right place, at the right time."

There are no boundaries in the photo search, and subject matter may include a variety of outdoor pursuits, such as snowboarding, skiing, surfing, rock climbing, ice climbing and kayaking.

Jorgenson says the opportunity to combine a portfolio of shots with music as a total performance is very rewarding.

"Sometimes as a freelance artist, or photographer, you’re not in charge of where your shots end up, or even which shots are chosen," he says.

Judges on this year’s panel include editor-at-large at Powder magazine, Leslie Anthony, Kurtis Kroy, Leanna Rathkelly, Robin Dutcher, Greg Griffith, Jeanette Nadon, and Bruce Knowles.

Doors open at 8 p.m., the Search begins at 9 p.m. Tickets are $7, available at the door.


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