July 2002Some months ago the editors of the Catskill Mountain Region Guide announced a photographic contest in which readers were invited to submit photographs in the following categories: landscape, nature, action, people and architecture. There was no way of knowing how many photographs would be received, but to our delight over 1300 prints were submitted. The judges were Peter Finn, chairman of the Catskill Mountain Foundation; Michael Schubert, creative director of Ruder Finn, Inc.; and myself.
Several members of the Catskill Mountain Foundation (CMF) staff reviewed the photographs that were submitted and made a preliminary selection of those they thought most deserving. But when we laid out the entire collection in the large meeting room of the Foundation headquarters in Hunter, N.Y., we decided that, as judges, we had a responsibility to look at all of them. We spent almost a whole day doing just that.
It proved to be an exhausting and in many ways a bewildering process. The problem was that there were too many excellent photographs to choose from. And there is, after all, no objective way of deciding that photograph a is better than photograph b or c. We had to rely on our subjective judgment, knowing that a different group of judges might make different choices. Thus, we want both to congratulate the winners and compliment the many other photographers whose outstanding works made it very difficult for us to select the winners.
The grand prize winning photograph is the magnificent sunset view featured on the cover of this month's issue of the Catskill Mountain Region Guide. The other photographs featured here were submitted for the landscape category of the contest.