July 15, 2013—Earlier this year, students submitted over 300 original photographs to the second annual Georgetown College Photo Contest. Recently, College staff members selected four compelling and beautiful “favorites” among the entries.
Charlie Long (C’15), a government and English double major, submitted two staff favorites: History and Corner of M and Wisconsin. Both entries were products of Long’s own “picture-a-day project,” for which he explored the Georgetown campus and Washington, DC.
History resulted from a walk Long took around the Hilltop one evening with his good friend, Isayah, who is pictured in the piece.
“Riggs happened to be open and we were fortunate to have the whole room to ourselves,” Long said. “It was Isayah’s first time in the old library and one of my first portraits for my picture-a-day project. The color pop from his hat and the faded colors of the old books came together well for a nice shot.”
In Corner of M and Wisconsin, Long features another friend, Bill, sitting outside on a stoop near the Georgetown campus.
“I had talked with Bill before on the corner of the street. We’d grabbed a sub at Subway one time for dinner,” Long said. “It’s always been difficult for me to ask people if I could take their shot. It was cold out. It was winter. But Bill gave one of the most genuine smiles I’d seen in a while.”
Long has been interested in photography since he was a child, when he would investigate the cameras, old negatives, and finished prints that his father, a fan of photography, had accrued in his 40 years in the advertising business.
“Photography pushes you to meet new people, travel, and try things you never thought would be on your radar,” said Long, who also enjoys filmmaking as a hobby. “I’m most interested in working on representation and distribution rights for smaller, independent films with a socially conscious direction.”
Recent graduate Jorge Chiu (C’13), a psychology major, submitted staff favorite Wandering … Discovering. Taken in 2012 while Chiu visited Thailand, the picture shows him walking near the Burmese border, his back to the camera after he had set it with a timer and “nearly forgot about it.”
“I think photography allows you to capture a visual and immortalize it as an image that can be shared with anyone,” Chiu said. “It also allows you to provide a perspective which might otherwise have gone unnoticed—a perspective that can inspire or stir creativity in others.”
Chiu has no plans to become a professional photographer, but he does see the value in using pictures to communicate ideas and messages to viewers.
“For me, I think observing something interesting and then being able to share a piece of that observation in a unique way is what prompted my initial interest [in photography],” Chiu said.
Eugene Ang (F’16), who was also the grand prize and scholarship winner of the Georgetown College Photo Contest, submitted staff favorite Cherry Blossom Levitation. Ang took the photo in April of this year, at the Tidal Basin near the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial during the National Cherry Blossom Festival.
“I was there early in the morning, as I wanted to take a photo of the sunrise over the Tidal Basin with the cherry blossoms in the foreground,” he said. “Since there were not many people around, especially in the paths behind the waterfront, I decided to try my hand at a self-portrait with myself levitating.”
Ang first encountered the concept of levitation photography a few years ago, when he discovered the blog of Natsumi Hayashi, a Japanese photographer who has become well known for her levitating self-portraits.
“I like levitation photography not only because the effect—seemingly gravity-defying people—is pretty cool, but also because it is technically challenging. Jump shots do not count,” Ang said. “After getting my first DSLR camera two years ago, I wanted to replicate such a unique form of photography.”
Although Ang is studying for a career in policymaking and governance, he sees himself continuing to snap photos as an outlet for his imagination.
“I have always enjoyed the process of creating something I can call my own, be it making a simple craftwork during art class, filling my notes with doodles during lectures in high school, or playing with my father’s film camera,” Ang said.
“I’m interested in photography and the visual arts in general because I enjoy the creative process. I find it extremely satisfying and fulfilling.”
See the winners of the 2013 Georgetown College Photo Contest.