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First Place- Harry Longstreet
L.A. Photo Curator: International Photography Awards - 'Where Photography & Philanthropy Meet' First Place- Harry Longstreet (Click on image for larger view)
GUARDIAN ANGEL by Harry Longstreet
FIRST PLACE WINNER
(Click on image for larger view)

Curator Peter Bennett: "So many great photos were submitted, visually diverse in subject and style. But this was a submission about feelings and senses and as I went through the different photos I was struck immediately by the image titled Guardian Angel.
 
I don’t usually like to make comparisons, but my first impression was that it looked like an Edward Hopper painting, the light and particularly the warmth and quality of the light was something that I often feel with some Hopper paintings. I know that feeling, we probably all do, of sitting behind a glass window with the sun hitting us, warming us and reassuring some primeval spirit in us. 
 
That kind of warmth and light often connects me to something greater, and the expression of the woman in the photo tells me she is in need of connecting, of an uplifting, and I as the viewer find myself wishing she has found it. But is it the light or the comforting embrace of the man in shadows who gives it to her? Or both? Is he the guardian angel or some greater spirit beaming down ? Ah, questions like that make for a great photograph."
 
Question from Bennett to Longstreet:
"It appears you have been shooting a lot on trains, the images also have a quiet pensive quality to them. Is this part of a larger
work you are doing and if so can you talk about it? Also were you able to learn more about the couple in the photo, or do you know just what we the viewers know?"

Harrry Longstreet:
"No one just takes up space. The human condition is an entire canvas of thoughts, emotions and reactions to circumstances. In my photography I try to capture the truth about diverse people and how they live and reflect their respective spaces.
 
My subjects never know they’ve been photographed. I don’t set-up or pose any shot and never employ anything but available light.

Consequently I can tell you nothing concrete about the two people in "Guardian Angel" except my impression is just that... a younger family member caring for and comforting a woman in what appears to be declining health and expectations. His absence in the window reflection is just an oddity of refraction but made for an obvious image title.

I do seem to shoot a great deal on and toward modes of transportation. "Guardian Angel"... the Seattle/Bainbridge Island ferry."
 
Longstreet retired after twenty-five years as a writer, producer and director of filmed entertainment, primarily for television.

He says, "When I’m not busy with my wife, children and grandchildren, I keep the creative juices flowing with still photography.
 
I’m always looking for images that speak to the human condition and the world around me. I favor ambient light and unposed, unaware subjects."

Additional review by curator Jeff Alu:
"This is an intriguing image on many levels. I find the setting to be both very subtle and very powerful. Through my eyes, the first thing that strikes me are the abstract patterns created by the sun shining on the various objects in the scene. Fascinating to me also is how the artist has decided to create what seems to be a border on the right, only to have the scene extend beyond it. The perspective of the image, shot just above the level of the table, is reminiscent of a Yasujiro Ozu film. Then, my eyes move deeper into the main subject, where The Guardian is shown in reality and NOT in the reflection, the complete opposite of what I would expect. Emotionally the image is enigmatic, leaving me to decide for myself how we arrived here based on my own life experience, and beckoning me to revisit."

Additional curator review by Steve Grody: "It is ill-advised to be overly interpretive to a brief moment’s image, but I do get a feeling from “Senses Working Overtime” of someone in need being given the gift of simply being there for them, a strong but subtle moment."

Additional curator review by Steve Zmak: "Without reading any of the artist’s notes or what was the contest theme, I immediately felt the weight of the Guardian’s responsibility and commitment to his charge. Then in contrast to that feeling comes the comfort felt by the woman as a result. The photographer uses several compositional elements to achieve this: the Guardian in the shadow, the woman in the warm light, the imposing surrounding shadows closing in around them. Then I notice after several seconds, the absence of the Guardian in the reflection—masterful storytelling!"
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Harry Longstreet Exhibitions-2017
 
June-September-2017 Juried Art Show-Howard Arts Center- Rocky Mount, NC
 
June-VMRC Juried Art Exhibition-Park Gables Gallery-Harrisionburg, VA
 
April-Allegany National Photography Competition & Exhibition-Cumberland, MD
 
March-July-Masur Museum-54th Annual Juried Exhibition-Monroe, LA
 
March-Blank Wall Gallery-“Cityscapes”-juried exhibition-Athens, GREECE
 
March-April-PhotoSpiva National Exhibition-Joplin, MO
 
February-“Family”-Umbrella Arts-juror Harvey Stein-New York City. NY
 
January-February-CVG Show 2017-Annual Washington State Juried Competition-Bremerton, WA
 
January-April-West Coast Biennial Juried Art Exhibition-Redding, CA
 
January-Galleri Norrsken-Stockholm Diary-“Capture the Moment”-Stockholm, SWEDEN
 
www.harrylongstreet.com
10% of artist fees will go to Longstreets charity of choice The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. (Orphan-elephant rescue and rehabilitation program for wildlife and habitat protection in East Africa.)

https://www.sheldrickwildlifetrust.org/

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