Ten years ago, I entered my first pictures in the New York State Fair’s photography competition – and one of my pictures, a basketball shot called Action Under the Basket, took an Honorable Mention ribbon.
Since then, I’ve claimed three second place ribbons and a first place silk, as well as several honorable mentions for my other photos. But my last ribboned photo was in 2015. And since 2015, only one picture in three years has gotten through to the wall.
It’s like I was cruising on the highway, and somebody hit my rear bumper and nosed me into a ditch.
This year, however, the New York State Fair has added a twist to their exhibition.
I am still permitted six entries for the Fair … but the image sizes are now 11×14, as opposed to the 16×20 sizes of the past. I’m good with this. It reduces printing costs, and it’s in line with several of the other fairs in which I compete (Iowa, the Big E).
So … let’s check through the archives, shall we? I need six of my best images for the New York State Fair, and I’m hoping that I selected the six best ones. I need to get back on those walls and I need some silk adornments. It’s been way too long.
After much searching and inventory … here’s the six that I selected.
SENSES WORKING OVERTIME
So here’s what happens when I ask my friends to stand in front of a distressed building in downtown Albany and then use distressed film to capture the image. Another splitfilm fun pic.
FARRELL IN AEROCHROME
So here’s the deal. You may remember a black-and-white picture I entered in competition a few years ago, named Farrell (named for one of the tombstones in the picture). Now I couldn’t enter that old picture in this competition, because the New York State Fair has a two-year-exposure limit on images. However … this infrared picture with Kodak EIR “Aerochrome” film was taken in 2018 … so it fits within the time period.
ROMANCE ON GONDOLA 23
Hold on … Chuck’s entering THAT?
There is a category that encompasses pictures taken AT the Fair. And since I snagged this one last year … let’s give it a shot THIS year.
MITTSU NO YUKI (三つの雪)
I’m hoping that these simple snowflakes might make the cut. This was one of my two entries this year by using macro photography.
AFTER THE RAIN
When June 2019 started, I had no idea I would ever get a photo like this. By the end of June 2019, I wanted this photo in my mix for Syracuse. So much so, in fact, that I tossed out a color infrared photo that I originally wanted for this show. I hope I made the right choice.
88 MINUTES IN CHINATOWN
After much thought and contemplation, I figured I’d give this dual image photo a chance.
So here’s the breakdown of my pictures.
There are three digital pictures (Romance on Gondola 23, Mittsu No Yuki, After the Rain) and three film pictures (88 Minutes in Chinatown, Farrell in Aerochrome, Senses Working Overtime).
The three digital pictures were snapped with my Nikon Df camera, the lenses used were a HELIOS 81-H 50mm f/2 lens with extension tubes (After the Rain), a Nikkor 55mm f 1:3.5 with extension tubes (Mittsu No Yuki) and a 50mm f/1.8 Nikkor with NO extension tubes (Romance on Gondola 23).
The film pictures were captured with a Rolleiflex Automat MX (Farrell in Aerochrome) and an AGFA Clipper Special F/6.3 (88 Minutes in Chinatown, Senses Working Overtime). The film used in these pictures were Kodak EIR Aerochrome film (Farrell in Aerochrome), Kodak Verichrome Pan and Kodak Kodacolor 200 Instamatic film (88 Minutes in Chinatown), and (inhaling) Revolog Telsa 2, Revolog Kolor and Revolog Volvox (Senses Working Overtime) (whew!).
All six pictures were taken in New York, with four in Albany County, one in Onondaga County (Romance on Gondola 23) and one in Manhattan (88 Minutes in Chinatown).
As for the other part of the Harriet May Mills Art Center, also known as the Martha Baker Eddy Arts and Crafts Gallery, I’ve had much more fertile success in that location. I’ve submitted a dollhouse constructed from a cathedral radio (2016’s The Cathedral of St. Philco, 3rd place), a wooden chest made from soda crates (Soda Crate Hope Chest, 2nd place in 2017) and my electronic light-up sculpture (Saratoga Vichy Crate Art Project, 3rd place in 2018). Plus a few honorable mentions as well. But no first place silks … yet. Yeah, I did get a blue by accident three years ago, but we’ll just not talk about that.
So this year, I decided it was time to branch out. And with that, I’ve entered…
CHEW MAIL POUCH TOBACCO
Yep, Chew Mail Pouch Tobacco. This is being entered in the Rug Category, Division K, Section 5 – Latch Hook – a rug or mat. Which technically this falls under.
And since I’m entering THIS piece in that category, I may as well add…
BOB & RON’S FISH FRY
Because there’s also a division – Rug Category, Division K, Section 6 – a wall hanging (ready for hanging). And if there’s the chance to enter TWO of my latch hook artworks here, then so be it.
Hey, guess what? You remember that burlap sack thing I did last year with the GLF Quality burlap product?
Well, how about I enter another burlap stitching project into the New York State Fair? And I have one from last year called …
EASTERN STATES FARMER’S EXCHANGE
It’s called recycling. Or repurposing. Or re-something. Again, another entry in the Sewing Category, Division J, Section 3 – Needlework on Fabric, Original.
So there’s a few things going on here. In the past three years, I’ve earned a silk from every entry in the “arts and crafts” section of the New York State Fair, and I’m hoping that that trend continues.
On August 3, I make the drive to Syracuse – nine entries to drop off and then head home.
On August 12, I make the “drive of shame” to Syracuse and pick up whatever didn’t get accepted.
Let us hope that the “drive of shame” is a light drive and that I’m not hauling everything back from Syracuse on that very day.
So let’s do a little survey, my wonderful blog readers.
You are a judge. Not knowing the backstory of any of these pictures or their creations, and if you had the opportunity to pick a photo or two or three maximum, which ones would you think have the best chance to appear on the walls of the Harriet May Mills Art Center?
Okay, second poll.
Of the three entries I’m submitting in the arts and crafts section of the Fair, which one do you think has the best chance of acceptance?
And … now I take a deep breath and hope for the best.
Let’s make this happen.