Grand Prize winner "Anticipation" by Steve Shogren.
Carroll County Fresh, a local organization that advocates for small farms, small farmers, and local businesses, has announced the winners of its 2012 Carroll County Fresh Photography contest. Entries had to be taken within 75 miles of Eureka Springs--CCF's definition of local--between January 1st and October 15th.
Photographers submitted photographs in three categories. These categories were still life photographs of growing edible plants and or raw and prepared food; portraits (candid or staged) of farmers and or farm families who live and work in the Ozarks, and; landscapes of farmland, buildings, livestock, machinery, market gardens, farmers' markets.
The First Place winner in the Still Life category was Ann Craig for her picture "Anticipation", a photo of blackberries ripening on the cane. Steve Shogren took 1st place in the portrait category for "All Business", a picture of a Eureka Springs Farmers Market vendor. Rose Olson took top honors in the landscape category for "Perma-culture" which illustrated a gardening technique that combines wild and cultivated plants in a natural garden setting.
Steve Shogren, of Holiday Island, was also awarded Best of Show for his portrait "Anticipation", shown above. David Bell, one of the judges for the contest said that the choice of "Anticipation" was an easy one because "it has a Vermeer like quality that made all of us [judges] see farmers markets as beautiful and timeless places. We really liked this picture because it eloquently captured the character of the market."
Shogren, who exhibits at Eureka Thyme in Eureka Springs and other local venues, expressed pleasure at winning both Best of Show and in the portrait category. "I focused on the Eureka Springs Farmers' Market because it is rich environment for photographers, and just because it was fun being there. Customers and vendors were all great and I loved taking their pictures."
Local photographer Mariellen Griffith was specifically mentioned by the judges for having captured the story of small farming in Carroll County and the Ozarks. "We were especially taken with the diversity of Mariellen's pictures," said Jane Pille, President of CCF and a contest judge. "Mariellen's pictures included livestock, pastures, our old and colorful barns, and some really beautiful still life pictures from our farmers' markets. She received an Honorable Mention in every category, which is quite an accomplishment."
Judges in the Carroll County Fresh Photo Contest were Pille, her husband and co-host of The Ozark Harvest Radio Hour Richard Pille, environmental consultant Jerry Landrum, and Stuart Drisner, marketing manager for the Eureka Springs Farmers' Market. Photography teacher and photo-journalist David Bell chaired the group.
In addition to awarding cash prizes to contest winners, CCF plans to use their submissions to publicize and promote our farmers markets, and sustainable agriculture in general. Pille, a life long gardener, environmentalist, and the principal organizer of the photo contest says "pictures are powerful tool for communicating how and why small farms and sustainable food production are vital to the survivability of rural America.
"We are grateful to the photographers who entered our contest," Pille continued, "because they've provided us with a deep well of images we'll use to promote our farms, farmers, and farmers markets. It is really exciting."
Contest winners will be honored at a reception hosted by Carroll County Fresh at a date to be announced.