I’m not believing this!
Something has happened. (As the apparition said in 2001…”Something. . .wonderful”)
I made the mistake of stopping by my favorite local camera store and laying hands on the Canon 20D digital SLR. We’re talking 8.2 megapixels of 5-frame-per-second happiness here. As soon as I saw how fast it powered up (instantly) and how fast it focused (instantly) I knew I was in trouble. Keep in mind that the camera body + a wide-to-medium zoom lens is gonna set me back 2 large. Out of reach for me at the moment, but somehow that just didn’t register. I knew after spending 5 minutes with this camera in my hand, and giggling like a little girl, that I HAD to have it.
Since I planned to remain happily married, I was smart enough to realize I couldn’t saunter in with several boxes under my arm and a considerably fatter credit card bill. So I began “Operation Wear Margaret Down”. Ok. That was the code-name. The public name for this would be a more cheerful “Operation Margaret said I could just so I would shut up already about how cool this camera is”. (I might need a shorter name)
Margaret later shows me a clipping in the Sunday paper that the San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau wants to make a new city brochure, and to do so they wanted a lot of photos of the city. So….they announce a photo contest. I check into it, and there’s no mention of how many images I can submit, so I ask ‘em. They tell me, “oh, as many as you want”. Hmmmmmm.
Now, I’ve had my trusty Kodak for about a year, and shot a LOT of photos around town. I’m really drawn to skyline/architecture/abstraction imagery and I guess I have 50 or 60 nice shots. Deciding noto to bore them to death…”And here I am standing in Front of the Alamo”…I submit my 30 best shots, with my Riverwalk night-time a certain contender, since it always elicits ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ from viewers.
Well, Operation whatever isn’t going so well. Margaret has decided years ago I’m nuts, and me taking photos of her with my hand cupped in the exact position of the 20D at precisely 5 frames-per-second is nothing bothersome to her. She’s not cracking. NOW, every time I mention my betrothal to my 20D, she smiles sweetly and says, “win the contest!”. Um, ok.
Contest ends…the date for judging and/or announcement of winners passes without a word from Bromley Communications, the ad agency coordinating it. Damn.
I tried not to show it, but it was beginning to eat at me. I just had to get used to the idea that I lost. What I could not reconcile, however, was that not ONE of my photos had been chosen at all. While they had a grand prize of $4,000, they also had to populate a brochure, which means a lot of shots. That there was a better photographer in town was sort of a given. That EVERYONE was better than me was a bit troubling.
I’m at work today, and my cell phone rings with a local, unknown number. I answer. It’s Bromley Communications calling to tell me I WON. The GRAND PRIZE! I WON! About halfway through this conversation, I realize with utter dread what day it is. I interrupt him to ask, “Did Margaret pay you to call me as an April fools joke?” “No,” he assures me, while he does know Margaret this is the real deal. I almost drop the phone I’m jumping up and down so much.
It gets better.
He then tells me that three additional photos of mine have been chosen for $200 third-place prizes, for a total gonna-get-my-camera purse of $4,600. I won, and I won again. Not on chance, but on merit. This kinda cool shit just does NOT happen to me. The icing on the cake is that one of the contest judges was very impressed with my work, and wants to get in touch with me to work on an upcoming project!
Some of my best works are posted on Usefilm: http://www.usefilm.com/artist/toasterboaster