First Place:
L.A. Photo Curator: Global Photography Awards - 'Where Photography & Philanthropy Meet' First Place: (click here for larger view)
(click here for larger view)

Curator Emma Powell: " For first place I have chosen Nicole Campanello’s The Fisherman's Daughter. This image stood out as both strong in its sense of narrative as well as its feeling of power and energy. When I think about the visual relationship of the figure and the landscape, this image almost seems to be challenging the laws of physics or the natural world. In this photograph the figure is more than just placed into the landscape; it is bursting into it and engaging with it. I almost expect to see the character take flight into the clouds. By facing the figure away from the viewer, the image becomes less about the individual and more about the action that is taking place. As I look more closely at this image, I notice the delicacy of the water dripping off the arms and the richness of color in the reflections on the water. This photograph makes me excited for summer."

Question from curator Emma Powell to Campanello. "The use of gesture in this work is very dynamic. What is your approach to gesture and how does it relate to the meaning or concept behind your images?"

Nicole Campanello: "My approach to using gesture in my work comes from a storytelling point of view. Figuring out how it will best contribute to expressing the meaning of the image; using gesture to communicate the emotion of the story. I use it to convey feelings of strength or vulnerability, joy or sadness, wonder or calmness, and show varying degrees of energy, setting the tone for the story."

Curator Jane Szabo: "The Fisherman's Daughter, the winning image for the Figure in Landscape competition, is a powerful image in which the subject boldly confronts both the sea and the sky with wings of water. The figures rises forcibly out of the water, as though to challenge the mere presence of the sky.  By showing only the back of the subject, the artist removes the individuality of the person, and allows the viewer space to create a story and a dialog with the subject. Congratulations to photographer Nicole Campanello for this challenging interpretation of a figure in the landscape!"

Curator Steve Zmak: "A beautiful mix of symmetry and asymmetry makes for a strong composition. The soft diffused light on the model provides good color contrast with the light and shadow clouds in the background as well as the dappled reflections off the water. The cascading water evenly falling off the subjects arms creates the illusion of angelic wings and introduces a lot of energy into the image. I’m not sure if the photographer had the model pop out of the water 100 times to get this perfect shot, or if this is a composite of several photos, but in any case it’s a definite award-winner. This photograph would also be spectacular in B&W."
More from Nicole Campanello: "I've always been fascinated with discovering what is behind our outward appearances - beyond what we show to the world. To explore the hidden complexities and experiences of the inner life; our emotional dynamics, struggles of impulse and motivation, and spiritual growth. I am curious about how they influence each other as well as how they are affected by the outside world. It is a process of personal discovery, as well as of those around me. Translation is a series of landmarks in my journey through these realities. The staged theatricalities, symbols, metaphors, and surrealist imagery parallel this invisible existence in which we are each immersed."
Campanello was raised in England, where as a child she discovered her passion for artistic expression. At the age of 16 she moved back to Texas, her birthplace, where she went on to earn her Bachelor of Arts degree in Photography.
Nicole creates meticulously composed, staged imagery exploring themes of identity and the inner life. Her images are the visual expression of her search to discover what makes us who we are as individuals, and of her desire to cultivate and inspire a greater understanding of others.

Campanello received a B.A. summa cum laude in Photography, minor in Studio Art, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, TX. She has exhibited in many exhibitions including the following:
2016- Water, SE Center for Photography, Greenville, LA (Forthcoming)
-Red, A Smith Gallery, Johnson City, TX
-Dreams, SE Center for Photography, Greenville, SC

2015-Magdalena, International House Hotel, New Orleans, LA
-Open, A Smith Gallery, Johnson City, TX
-Narrative Portraits, SE Center for Photography, Greenville, SC
-Abstractions, A Smith Gallery, Johnson City, TX
-Center Forward, The Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO
-H20, The Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO
-National Art Encounter, The von Liebig Art Center, Naples, FL
A percentage of artist fees goes to the first place winner's charity. Note from Campanello: "The charity I've chosen is an orphanage in Haiti called Danita's Children. This year Danita's Children celebrates 16 years of rescuing, loving, and caring for orphans and impoverished children in Haiti. I have followed them for a while, and know they are doing wonderful things for the children there.