‘Through My Eyes’ contest in progress

Published 12:18 am Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Skilled and beginning photographers soon will have the opportunity to test their skills and capture their vision of their area in ArtsRevive’s “Through My Eyes” photography contest.

“We want the everyday photographer and the professional to take out their cameras and find something that catches their eye,” said ArtsRevive member Tracey Cothran. “Small towns have such character and we want people to realize what wonderful things we have here in Selma and the surrounding cities.”

The contest focuses on the small towns and downtowns of Selma and Dallas County. Contest rules stipulate that photos must focus on some part of a small town or downtown in Selma or Dallas County.

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This area includes Beloit, Browns, Cahaba, Carlowville, Crumptonia, Elm Bluff, Marion Junction, Minter, Plantersville, Pleasant Hill, Richmond, Safford, Sardis, Summerfield, Tyler, Selma, Valley Grande, Orrville and Selmont.

“What we were hoping to do is get people to look at their surroundings in a different light, to get them to see the beauty and the interesting things that surround us,” said Anne Thomas, contest chairwoman. “What we have in our community, we just take for granted.”

Other rules stipulate limited digital enhancement is accepted and all entries must be 8×10, matted and clear-wrapped. Unusual shots are encouraged.

The entries will be split into adult and student divisions. First prize in each is $100; second place takes $50; and the third place winner receives an ArtsRevive T-shirt or apron.

All entries must be submitted to The Frame Shoppe, 127 Broad St., by Oct. 1. The Frame Shoppe is open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.

The theme is a tie-in with the Alabama Department of Tourism’s theme for next year — downtowns and small towns in Alabama.

“We’re hoping that by doing this, we’ll have a head start and be able to use some of the photographs we receive from this to highlight Selma’s aspect of this tourism,” said Thomas.

This is ArtsRevive’s third photo contest. The first two focused on the riverfront and Selma’s historical architecture.

Thomas said participation has been consistent, but has not seen a significant spike. Organizers with ArtsRevive hope for a bigger turnout this year.

Numbers aside, Thomas said the contest produces shots that make people see things from another view.

“We were thinking that by saying ‘through my eyes,’ we would get people just to say, ‘I think this is of interest, this is important to me, and I want to show it to other people.’”