Maryville College students Erika Collins and Emily Julian recently submitted photographs to
the “Photographer’s Forum 33rd Annual College and High School Photography” contest. Their
submissions were accepted into this year’s publication. The photographs will be published in the
2013 edition of the book “Best of High School and College Photography.” In order to receive
this honor, the pictures were among the 200 honorable mentions for the contest.
Although Julian entered her work into the 2012 competition, both students said that they
heard about the contest through their courses in photography at MC. Students in the class were
highly encouraged to enter their works in various competitions throughout the semester. While
Collins only entered one piece, Julian said that she entered several in the hopes that at least
one picture would be selected.
Julian, who is majoring in art with a concentration in photography, said that she has had
truly remarkable experiences. In conjunction with the Bonner program, she was able to travel
to Africa and Chile, and she said that she had the opportunity to document life there through
photography. According to Julian, the picture that was selected for the 2013 “Photographer’s
Forum” competition is one of her favorites from her trip to Chile.
The particular photograph is from an education riot in Santiago. The students there were
allotted a weekly time to march for their beliefs; however, Julian said that it almost always
turned into a riotous affair during her stay. The students in the portraits are wearing gas masks
because of the fumes issued by military forces in attempt to break up the march.
Although Julian said that she has more experience with portraiture, after the trips she has
taken she said that she is leaning more towards documentary style photography as her focus.
Both Julian and Collins said that they were surprised that their work was chosen for the
publication, because the work that is selected is always both high quality and unique.
“I was surprised because my picture didn’t look anything else I saw on the contest page.”
Collins, who is pursuing a degree in design, said that although her degree technically will not
concentrate on photography, she said that she has always enjoyed taking pictures.
“I’ve taken pictures since I was a little kid,” Collins said. “My dad was always taking pictures
when I was growing up. I took after him.”
Collins’ picture is a headshot that she took for a friend who entered a competition for the
professional make-up company, Make Up For Ever. Collins said that she was happy to help
her friend, because it gave her the sense that her pictures could be worth something to people
outside of just her family.
While photography is a passion for both of them, they both said that they see it as a form of
creative expression, rather than a way to make money.
“I shoot portraits and weddings on the side for some extra cash,” Julian said. “However, I
mainly do it because I love taking pictures.”
Collins and Julian agreed that a large part of their photography experiences was learning to
refine their viewpoint. Neither of them took pictures specifically for the contest. Instead, they
each let what they had already done speak for itself.
Although Julian and Collins had success in the “Photographer’s Forum” competition, both
were hesitant about wanting to become professionals in the field. However, the two girls said
that they were adamant about keeping photography in their lives.