You blew us away with your entries! Congrats to all of you who submitted spectacular photos into our first ever Art of Photography contest sponsored by YPOC. Every day for a full month, we received amazing entries in all three categories: People, Places and Nature.
Week 1 brought some of the most creative photos throughout the whole contest. We saw everything from storytelling street art to spectacular landscapes. In Week 2, we fell in love with a hilarious grandmother who stole our hearts with her mischievous smile. On the other side of the spectrum, we were brought to tears with a sick child laying in a hospital bed, surrounded by bubbles and clowns, no doubt a brave attempt to find a modicum of happiness in a sea of sorrow. Then there was Week 3. A beautiful canal lined with red boats as far as the eye could see. Green shoes shockingly suspended above a roaring waterfall. And finally there was Week 4. A sultry siren surrounded by mysteriously beautiful smoke. Horizon and hills gorgeously painted in pastels.
It was no doubt a tough decision but we finally narrowed it down. Out of about 1,500 entries, only one was chosen in each category based on a variety of criteria. Ultimately, the photos that won not only told us a story, they left us with an emotion.
Though we could have just shown you the winners, we wanted to give some well deserved love to our 1st and 2nd runners up, as well. Please enjoy all of those photos, below.
First Place Winner: Tobias Nguyen
First Runner Up: Gina Radovcich
Second Runner Up: Greg Schmigel
First Place Winner and Grand Prize Winner: Evan Demianczyk
First Runner Up: Diego Tabango
Second Runner Up: Brittany Irvine
First Place Winner: Nuno Serrão
First Runner Up: Jim McMahon
Second Runner Up: Ryan Dayrit
Though each of these winning photos could stand on its own, we reached out to our grand prize winner Evan Demianczyk to ask him what the story was behind his photo.
"This is my feet over a waterfall created by the canal that runs along the Delaware River," he says. "This photo is special to me because it was taken in the company of one of my best friends, and this night means a lot to me. During the ride home, Mike (my friend) and I began to talk about our families, and how much they mean to us. I remember driving in his car down the windy road, down the darkness of the humid summer night, we just opened up about our families. It was agreed that most people do not discover how important family is until their later years. Hearing this come from someone who was distant from their family growing up is special to me, it is like one of those 'coming of age' things.
"I have always known Mike for his irreplaceable personality, but this car ride reminded me of how beautiful some of my friends are. I could not have been more happy to hear him say that he finally realizes the importance of family. When I look at this picture, I think of this conversation, and I think of the comfort of warm early June nights. Summer, family, and friendship are beautiful things; I am blessed enough to have times in my life when all three are present."
So how did Evan find us? What series of events transpired to lead him to ultimately win both a $300 gift certificate from YPOC.com and $1,000?
" I found out about this contest through my friend Adam Hribar. Adam Hribar is actually a graduate of the Hallmark Institute of Photography, and graduated top of his class. He does very amazing work. Actually, one of his photos were picked for weeks 2 and 3. I honestly thought he was going to win this contest," he tells us.
"Winning this contest is a total surprise to me; I'm just some kid. Haha, I just got back from hanging out with my friends on campus, and I came home to an email saying I am the grand prize winner. It's weird, man. I am just so excited. I guess I was at the right place at the right time, lurking on Facebook and seeing you post something about this contest. I just want to say thank you to my family, friends, and skateboarding, because they keep my life interesting, and the interest they create in life makes me want to continue pursuing photography."
A big congrats to all our winners and especially Evan! Also, thanks again to YPOC for being our partners and sponsoring this contest. Each category winner takes home a $300 gift certificate to YPOC.com and Evan, our grand prize winner, gets the $1,000 cash prize.
Also, thank you to all of the photographers who entered this contest. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.