It was great to see such a wonderful response to this year’s Wandoan Challenge. With the standard of entries lifting significantly, the task of judging was far from easy. The broad range of subjects and photographer (young and old) perspectives gives a varying and colourful picture of the Wandoan district. From rural landscapes, livestock and pets to machinery, sport and humans at play the variety of imagery was impressive. The collection of vibrant, poignant, humorous and spectacular landscape images, reflect the region’s recent good season. There are joyous images that pull on the heart strings, make you smile and essentially, beckon you to the bush.
Open – Small Town, Big Country
First: Tracee Hay
This image captures rodeo at its best. The action is captured with good timing and perfect focus. The clean, sharp image is not only a great moment frozen in time, but is technically spot on with great contrast, tones, white balance, composition and angle. With rodeo a popular and well organised bush sport in Wandoan, the subject fits well for small town, big country.
Second: Tania Baker
The clever composition and subject of this image successfully draw the viewer’s attention. It’s a lovely capture of a small boy watching the tractor in the distance – imitating the action with his toy. Good lighting, tones and focus add to its effectiveness. Perfect for the category. Great work.
Third: Diane Griffin
Black and White image, portrait of a grazier. This image speaks of small town, big country. The grazier in a battered Akubra tells the story. The image has all the ingredients for a successful portrait. It’s sharp, nicely angled, uses great black and white tones, and importantly catches the light in the subject’s eyes. A powerful image. Well done.
Open – Adults at Play
First: Tracee Hay
A well taken rodeo image. Great sharp focus, capturing the action and telling a story. Again, all the ingredients for a winning image – great composition, light, angle and action.
Second: Donna Reading
Human horses. Can’t get much more ‘at play’ than this. I love the fun this image captures – it makes you laugh out loud. And it’s not every day you see human horses flying down the track. Well captured.
Third: David Wilson
Rodeo. Great capture of the rider heading for the dirt after being thrown. Good story telling. Sharp, clean image, well composed, good light and a great action shot.
Open: Kids at Play
First: David Wilson
One the sharpest, most well composed shots of the competition. It’s a wonderful capture of boys and girls playing football. The viewer is treated to the whole picture from the action, the bright team colours and priceless expressions of the faces of little players. A fantastic image.
Second. Carmen Keeffe
A lovely capture of bush kids playing with trucks in the dirt – a familiar, heart-warming sight. Nicely composed, good light and great focus. Fits the category, kids at play, perfectly.
Third: Jaycinta Booth
A great capture with the young boy telling the story of recent rain and time for some obligatory slipping, sliding and playing in the mud. It’s a simple image, skilfully taken, with great impact.
Young Photographers – Small Town, Big Country
It’s always great to see the entries of young photographers. They bring new perspective and ideas for creative images.
First. Georgina Dahl
This is a well taken landscape image of a feedlot. Taken from a height, it allows the viewer to take in the overall rural scene. Nicely focussed, good light and well composed.
Second: Matthew Newton
A nicely taken sunset shot capturing the soft, golden light with cattle walking in the distance. It’s the quintessential bush image and one the viewer loves to see and admire. Well done.
Third: Tessa Blackley
This image tells a lovely story of childhood – cubby house play. The image is unposed, natural and quite quirky. It speaks a thousand words.
Open: Wandoan local
A lovely, well composed image with gorgeous soft lighting. A great story telling image of recent rain and the excitement that comes with it. A simple, yet powerful image. In this case, having the man (maybe her dad) in the background adds to the image’s impact.
Wandoan Local – Young photographer
This image speaks volumes of the Wandoan district. A nicely captured scene of green country and grain silos – set against the stormy sky for dramatic effect.
Best Photographer award
This body of work stands out with skilfully taken images with great attention to detail. The photographer clearly has an all-round knowledge of SLR photography using both technical skills and storytelling to capture impactful, successful images. The images are well focussed, good lighting, good use of depth of field, vibrant, well composed and have the ‘wow’ factor. With the majority taken at sports’ events, the photographer has captured Wandoan and district locals at play in big country. An overall excellent collection of images. Congratulations to the winner.