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Photography Issue 2013

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Judges' Choice Winner

About the Winner

Jess Williams, the winner of the judges’ prize in the 2013 Nashville Scene Photo Contest, came to his new career as a fashion photographer via an unexpected route: the military. During his deployment to Afghanistan in 2006, the East Nashville resident took up photos while serving with the 10th Mountain Division out of New York. When he returned home, he began work as a military photojournalist, now assigned to the National Guard’s 118th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.

Inspired by native Nashville photographer Bo Streeter, Williams says he started shooting bands and fashion once he returned from overseas. Asked if his military training gives him unusual skills in that regard, Williams chuckles. His fashion work, he says, benefits from being “a little more fast-paced and organized … a lot of attention to detail.” But he sees camera-ready images around him all the time — including the source for this year’s winning photo.

“I’m always mesmerized by East Nashville’s landscapes at night, especially right after it rains,” Williams says. “The fog in the air, the street lights, the dark alleys, the wet pavement, and the all-around grunginess of East Nashville really makes for a strong photo. This alley behind my house always catches my eye and I decided to take the time to capture it.” See more of his work at jesswilliamsphotos.com.

Jess Williams (jesswilliamsphotos.com), “Dark East Nashville Alley”
  • Jess Williams (jesswilliamsphotos.com), “Dark East Nashville Alley”

Readers' Choice Winner

Matt Blair (mattblairpictures.com), “Amélie,” Fabric Care Center
  • Matt Blair (mattblairpictures.com), “Amélie,” Fabric Care Center

Judges' Runner-Up*

Evan Spencer Brace, “Brothers,” Jefferson Street
  • Evan Spencer Brace, “Brothers,” Jefferson Street

Judges' Honorable Mention*

Scott Simontacchi, “Eloise,” Bowling Avenue
  • Scott Simontacchi, “Eloise,” Bowling Avenue

The rest of the finalists

Jon Vaughn, “The Sun behind by Son,” Honeysuckle Hills Farm
  • Jon Vaughn, “The Sun behind by Son,” Honeysuckle Hills Farm

Shannon Stevens, “Outback,” Shelby Bottoms Greenway
  • Shannon Stevens, “Outback,” Shelby Bottoms Greenway

Brandon Greer, “Matthew Paige’s Boots,” Nashville
  • Brandon Greer, “Matthew Paige’s Boots,” Nashville

Chris Wage, “Union Station”
  • Chris Wage, “Union Station”

Andrea Cothern, “Sink or Swim,” East Nashville
  • Andrea Cothern, “Sink or Swim,” East Nashville

Patrick Casey, “Untitled,” Downtown Nashville Subway
  • Patrick Casey, “Untitled,” Downtown Nashville Subway

Madeline Ziecker, “Solo,” Ryman Auditorium
  • Madeline Ziecker, “Solo,” Ryman Auditorium

Kallisto lowery, “Diamond Records,” Nashville
  • Kallisto lowery, “Diamond Records,” Nashville

Shannon Stevens, “From Runway to Greenway,” Cornelia Fort Airport
  • Shannon Stevens, “From Runway to Greenway,” Cornelia Fort Airport

Greg Schidlowski, “Stark Grass,” Nashville
  • Greg Schidlowski, “Stark Grass,” Nashville

Chris Donahue, “Robert’s Bar Bussing,” Nashville
  • Chris Donahue, “Robert’s Bar Bussing,” Nashville

Danielle Holbert, “Through the Viewfinder,” Centennial Park
  • Danielle Holbert, “Through the Viewfinder,” Centennial Park

Holden Head, “Pasiphae,” East Nashville
  • Holden Head, “Pasiphae,” East Nashville

Lindsay Scott, “Junk Yard,” Nashville
  • Lindsay Scott, “Junk Yard,” Nashville

Chris Widick, “Loveless through the haze of Christmas “
  • Chris Widick, “Loveless through the haze of Christmas “

Holden Head, “Ouroboros,” East Nashville
  • Holden Head, “Ouroboros,” East Nashville

Ann Richardson, “NYE Nashville 2012 Champagne Confetti Toast,” Lower Broadway
  • Ann Richardson, “NYE Nashville 2012 Champagne Confetti Toast,” Lower Broadway

Ray Palumbo, “Alterations,” Moormans Arm Road
  • Ray Palumbo, “Alterations,” Moormans Arm Road

Danielle Holbert, “County Fair,” Williamson County Fair
  • Danielle Holbert, “County Fair,” Williamson County Fair

Patrick Casey, “Untitled,” Pinnacle Tower
  • Patrick Casey, “Untitled,” Pinnacle Tower

Chris Donahue, “Commerce Street”
  • Chris Donahue, “Commerce Street”

Morgan Miller (morgana1019.blogspot.com), “Day on the Cumberland”
  • Morgan Miller (morgana1019.blogspot.com), “Day on the Cumberland”

Mary-Beth Blankenship (marybethb.com), “Shane Tutmarc at Dino’s”
  • Mary-Beth Blankenship (marybethb.com), “Shane Tutmarc at Dino’s”

Kate Loehrer, “Girl with Lampshades,” East Nashville
  • Kate Loehrer, “Girl with Lampshades,” East Nashville

Danielle Holbert, “Man and Woman,” Five Points East Nashville
  • Danielle Holbert, “Man and Woman,” Five Points East Nashville

Matt Blair (mattblairpictures.com), “Cinéma Vérité,” Nashville
  • Matt Blair (mattblairpictures.com), “Cinéma Vérité,” Nashville

Lindsay Scott, “east Nashville”
  • Lindsay Scott, “east Nashville”


Meet the Judges

Heather Lose
  • Heather Lose
Heather Lose
Heather Lose is a dedicated film photographer, a graphic designer and radio host. For nine years, she has been shooting a photodocumentary project exploring the seasonal fireworks stands of Tennessee, and is currently designing a book to showcase the body of work. Heather is a full-time graphic design instructor at the Art Institute of Tennessee-Nashville. She programs and hosts The Honkytonk Jukebox on the Vol State station WVCP-FM, and is a weekend runner and home mixologist. Her work is in private collections in Illinois and Tennessee, and in the permanent collection at the Tennessee State Museum.

Susan E. Sherrick
  • Susan E. Sherrick
Susan E. Sherrick
Over the past 13 years, Susan E. Sherrick has worked for major galleries on both coasts, including David Zwirner, Fraenkel, Marian Goodman and Howard Greenberg. She resides in East Nashville and is currently working on a series of local pop-up galleries with Libby Callaway; the first two events will take place in April and June 2013. She curated a photography exhibition called Scenes From the South that will open on May 9 at New York's Howard Greenberg Gallery. The show includes work by William Eggleston, Lee Friedlander, Walker Evans, Robert Frank and many others, as well as Nashville photographers Caroline Allison, Joshua Black Wilkins, Jo McCaughey and David McClister.

Michael W. Bunch
  • Michael W. Bunch
Michael W. Bunch
A Kentuckian by birth and a photographer by nature, Michael W. Bunch has spent the past 18 years chasing the light, and the occasional storm, all over the U.S. and abroad. He now spends his time shooting for the Nashville Scene and various other SouthComm publications. When not behind the camera, you'll find him seeking out a nice camping spot (preferably near the water) or walking his recently acquired whippet puppy, Ichabod.

Eric England
  • Eric England
Eric England
A lifelong Tennessean, Eric England began taking photographs in the late '70s with a Kodak 110, following in the footsteps of his father who was a photographer in Sparta, Tenn. After graduating from Middle Tennessee State University in 1988 with a degree in mass communication, he moved to Nashville and worked as a photo assistant before heading out on his own as a freelance photographer. He became the Nashville Scene's staff photographer in 2004 while continuing to shoot for a variety of publications and corporate clients. He has won numerous awards, including a first place for photography in the national Alt Weekly Awards in 2011.

Laura Hutson
  • Laura Hutson
Laura Hutson
Laura Hutson is the Arts Editor at the Nashville Scene. She moved to Nashville from New York, where she graduated from NYU with a degree in art and anthropology and worked under award-winning European historian Tony Judt. She's also worked at CABINET magazine and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, and she conducted archival research for the documentary film Looking for Lincoln, which aired on PBS.


* The Judges felt these two photographs deserved special recognition. The top three entries were very close, and the judges had a difficult time deciding between them. The Judges’ runner-up will also receive a prize.

MATT BLAIR
  • Matt Blair

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