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Diving into Competition

Life has been in an absolute tizzy. I lost count of the number of times I thought “I really need to post about this”, but every time the notion was buried under the flurry of other to-dos piling up. Over the last few weeks I’ve been commissioned to create a chain maille watch band, entered four photographs in a local photography exhibit, worked on getting the JGA social media and store websites redone, spent the whole of last week bloodying my fingers from madly needle felting samples for my Fleece to Fantastic class on the 14th, fabricated 6 multi-needle felting tools for that class, entered two online competitions, and have been learning the hard way about just how hard it is to clean the smell of cigarettes out of a newly purchased used camera! I hope to remedy the lack of posts about each of these things, starting today!

Entering competitions isn’t something that comes naturally to me, it feels like a foreign language or way too much trouble than it’s worth, and more often than not I end up thinking my work just isn’t good enough to enter. However, along with learning the truth about that destructive mindset, I’m realizing that entering is more about getting out there than it is about the actual competition, so I’m closing my eyes and diving in!

In March I submitted four photographs to the Jenkins Arboretum, a local arboretum and garden center, for their 2012 Members Photography Exhibit in which one of my photographs was awarded an Honorable Mention and the print sold! The exhibit was small, with less than 50 entries, but it was still very nice and there were a number of wonderful photographs that I really admired. Here are my entries.

Pink Ballet Flower Blossom

“Flower Ballet”

Orange Flower Blossom

“Orange Blossom”

Purple Iris Flower

“Purple Iris”

Female Redwing Blackbird on Cattail

“Redwing On Reed”
Honorable Mention

I’ve also entered two online competitions including A Long Pour’s Hipstamatic Photo Contest. A Long Pour is a wine blog, with a strong sense of community, striving to bring you “the stories behind the bottle” of California wines. In addition to wine, ALP loves the Hipstamatic Camera App and is running their first contest ever; The ALP Hipstamatic Photo Contest. This competition has been lots of fun to participate in! There are over 100 entries and counting and they’re wonderful! I love seeing the lovely variety of wine related photos, especially the ones of vineyards. I entered a number of photographs, including Kaleidoscope & The Ritual, from my latest Art-A-Day Challenge.

Kaleidoscope made from a glass of wine


Woman drinking glowing red wine from a glass

“The Ritual”

Peering into a wine bottle

“The Tunnel”

Red wine dripping from the bottle

“Last Drops One”

Red wine dripping from the bottle

“Last Drops Two”

Red wine pouring from the bottle

“Shadow Pour”

Photograph of red wine in a bottle through the neck

“Dragon’s Eye”

Yes, that last one is wine in a bottle. There are still a couple of days left to enter this contest, so head on over to A Long Pour to enter or view all the other loverlie entries.

The other online competition I entered is a Talenthouse Creative Invite. Talenthouse is a website I recently discovered that hosts a number of competitions for artists of all types. They provide opportunities for artists to work with leading brands, artists, musicians, etc. and gain recognition for their work. I’m not entirely sure what I think about them, especially since I have yet to received a reply to the email I sent them weeks ago inquiring for more information about their terms. I don’t know if I will continue to use the website, but I felt it was worth checking out when I came across the competition to “Design for Ladyhawke and Sarah Larnach”. I’ve never heard of either of them before, but the description of what they were looking for brought my portrait “Masquerade” to mind, so I decided to submit it.

Triple exposure portrait of smiling, screaming, and neutral faces


Ladyhawke, a New Zealand singer-songwriter, and her album cover art director, Sarah Larnach, are asking artists of all types to submit portraits that tell the story of their inner feelings. As far as all the self portraits I’ve taken go, I think this is the one that best fits that idea. Here is the description I submitted with my entry.

Do you ever look in the mirror and feel disconnected from the person staring back at you? Have you ever presented yourself as one person to the world while feeling like another person entirely when you’re alone? Do you ever smile when you’d rather scream? We often live our lives hiding behind our own faces, contorted into an appropriate mask for the occasion. I created this piece around that concept, to reveal the trapped emotions within.

In addition to the 19 portraits selected by Ladyhawke & Sarah, there will be a “People’s Choice” winner. I’m not a fan of community voting deciding the winners because invariably there are those who know about 1000 people and convince them to vote for them everyday and spam their Twitter and Facebook pages with pleas for votes. I really despise begging for votes and tweeting the same thing over and over, so I generally never get many votes if I bother entering into a voting contest. However, if you are inclined to vote, I would really love to have your support in this competition. You can mosey on over to this page, click on “Support Julia” (it works through Facebook), and you’ll receive a reminder to vote for me when voting opens in the next couple days. Share and tweet at your own discretion, but anyone who does gets my undying, eternal gratitude!

I’m searching for more competitions to enter while trying to keep my head above water with everything going on. Often I feel like I’ve been transformed into a tiny boat tossed about on the waves of a vast, dark ocean. One moment I’m on the peak of highest swell, only to be flung down into gigantic whirlpool with a kraken waiting at the bottom! Here’s hoping the next sea monster will be friendly!

– Jüls

Holly from 300 Pounds Down - Thursday: May 10th, 2012 - 10:04 pm

I think it’s awesome you are entering the competitions. Do what you gotta do!! You have to secure votes and people need to know about it first so don’t feel bad. I hope you win!

The Fashion Operation - Tuesday: June 12th, 2012 - 10:20 pm

What beautiful pictures taken!
you should do this professionally! (hah!)

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