By Nicole Fitzgerald
Whistler photographer Blake Jorgenson wins Best of Show for the Out of Bounds: Tales From the Backcountry photography competition for the second year running.
His photo framing big mountain skier Hugo Harrison in a red sunset won by a landslide.
“It was a last second shot waiting for a heli pick up,” Jorgenson said of the photo shot in Mica, B.C. two years ago. “We did one last quick shot as fast as we could before (Mica Heli Guides) showed up.”
A split second was never used more wisely.
More than 900 people voted at the Out of Bounds exhibit and competition, which showcased more than a dozen photographers, amateur and professional alike, who displayed their backcountry-themed photos for the month of February at MY Millennium Place art gallery as part of Celebration 2010 festivities.
Jorgenson and Paula Welling of Idaho each won a heli trip with competition co-sponsor Coast Range Heliskiing. Welling’s name was drawn from the group of people who voted in the competition.
Runners up received bragging rights, including second-place winner Bonny Makarewicz for her Just a Spec image and third-place winner Alex Wigley for his A Walk in the Park photo.
Jorgenson will continue to compete in the annual event, hoping to encourage the creation of more photography and arts events in Whistler.
“I am there to try to get more interest and hype and hopefully encourage more established photographers to participate,” he said. “Events like this give photographers something to work towards too. Everyone’s stuff just gets better year after year because of that. We need more places for people to showcase their art and photography. Not everyone has the option to get their photos into a magazine or ad. For people to be able to show their work on the wall and have people come by for a month to look at it is a big thing.”
There is no shortage of big things on Jorgenson’s resume. Pick up this month’s edition of Powder, Skier, Snowboard Canada and Bike magazines and you’ll find his photo credit. The senior photographer for Powder, Skier and Freeskier magazines never stops. The Pro Photographer Showdown winner managed to squeeze in a quick interview with Pique Newsmagazine between coming off a heli ski trip in Bralorne, B.C. before heading to Haines, Alaska for two weeks and then off to Nepal for two weeks — he needs to come back in time to shoot for Rossignol at the Telus World Ski and Snowboard Festival in April.
Makarewicz is also a photography legend around Whistler. The photojournalist, who recently had one of her images published in the New York Times, has captured everything from a royal visit by Prince Charles to World Cup skiing and snowboarding.
Wigley is an up and comer with backcountry trips inspiring him to capture memories of his adventures.
Whistler Arts Council organizers were pleased with how the show, only in its second year, continues to grow and exceed expectations.
“With some of the most beautiful backcountry landscapes, top athletes and photographers B.C. has to offer, the Out of Bounds Exhibition is a perfect reflection of Whistler’s culture,” said Doti Neidermayer, executive director of the Whistler Arts Council. “With over 900 votes…(it) illustrates the popularity of this type of programming.”