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Blake Jorgenson — Winner Pro Photographer Search, Pro Photographer Showdown, 2001

It’s been three years since Blake Jorgenson won both the Pro Photographer Search and Showdown...

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It’s been three years since Blake Jorgenson won both the Pro Photographer Search and Showdown with a commanding presentation set to a horror movie soundtrack, but bring up the event and that’s the one people still talk about.

Maybe it’s because he was the dark horse, the uninvited who crashed the party with his wildcard ace.

Maybe it was the moonlight or the moonshine. Maybe this maybe that.

Enough maybe’s. We’ll let the oft-misquoted man tell it in his own words.

BJ: I had entered the Search the year before and I came out with this really wacky show, which I don’t think was very well received.

I think in my own stubborn way I tried to come up with something even more insane. It was almost like it backfired because people really, really liked it.

But it was still pretty off the wall, I thought. So I had no expectations of even winning the Search. Definitely not the Showdown.

It was like a catapulting experience. It was a huge night.

The Showdown was at the conference centre in front of like 2,000 people.

I think people remember it because it was a big night for Whistler, not just for me. It’s a pretty international field that comes every year and it was a big night for Whistler to have somebody local win and I was definitely kind of the underdog.

So it’s the same thing as rooting for your own team. It’s not necessarily you that’s playing, but it’s your team that wins.

Because I’ve never seen the crowd erupt like that. It was unlike any event I’ve ever seen since I’ve been in Whistler. Everybody was wasted.

At the time I didn’t even really have much of a career started. That was sort of the one thing that made me make a major decision as to whether I wanted it to be my career or not. It made it harder in a way because it jumped me up to this level where I don’t think I was at yet. So it made it harder for a while but it forced me to catch up faster.

It forced me to get my shit together real quick.

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