Wednesday night the Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists held their 2016 Page One Awards banquet where I was informed I nabbed a first place in the Best Portrait Photography. It is quite an honor to place in any category in the SPJ contest but portrait is one I wouldn't have expected. I never think portraits are my strength but I guess sometimes it all comes together.
As for the portrait, Century gymnast Natalia Jacobson was great to work with to get the final shot. She was a good sport in creating the chalk dust cloud over and over again until we got it right. A big thanks to her and her patience!
Congrats to Mike Ekern of St. Thomas Magazine and Star Tribune photographers Jeff Wheeler and Aaron Lavinsky for also placing in the category.
Here's what the judges said about my photo:
"The photographer's use of light is striking in this image. Using off camera flash with the use of chalk creates a dramatic and dynamic portrait. The portrait is unique, bold and creative with a balanced composition."
Andrew Link's Favorite Photos of 2015Century gymnast Natalia Jacobson is back for her senior year and looking to return to the state tournament after placing 11th in the uneven bars last year. (Andrew Link/Post-Bulletin)