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Image Credit: Sari Fried-Fiori ©

Very Important Deadline News!

New Deadline is now April 18, 2014

PictureCompete is excited to present "Abandoned 2014"

Cash Prizes!
Online Display Opportunities!
Social Network Exposure!

More Info:
http://picturecompete.com/photo-contests

Entry Deadline: April 18, 2014

Submit Your Entry: http://picturecompete.com/entry-form

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Image Credit: Maya Wald ©

Many Thanks to our Voters!

The Poll Results are in.....The New Call for Entry Has Been Chosen!

TeraBella Media is now sponsoring ''The Human Hand''

Our hands reveal so much about us and can expose so much about our lives. Our hands can reveal our race, gender, age, and our occupation. We work with our hands, communicate with our hands and help others with our hands. Hands can create works of beauty, and they can be instruments of destruction. Whether they are the young, unblemished hands of a child or the aged and weathered hands of an elder, we invite you to submit your best representations of the human hand.

First Place: $400 (USD) cash prize
Second Place: $200 (USD) cash prize
Third Place: $100 (USD) cash prize

Three (3) Honorable Mentions & three (3) Merit Winners will also be chosen.

Deadline: May 26,2014 11:59 (CST)

Submit your entry: http://terabellamedia.com/photo-contest

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Image Credit: © 2012 Scott Mitchell

Photography Spotlight News

World Photography Network is very pleased to sponsor the popular segment: "Photographer Spotlight.” In this part of our newsletter we will be interviewing various fellow photographers and learning more about what motivates them, what their goals are and what direction they wish to take with their art. WPN is extremely excited to announce that this week's interview will be exposing the creative sources and forces behind the works of the talented photographer Scott Mitchell.

WPN: What and when was your first introduction to the camera and still photography?

SM: I was introduced to photography when I was a young boy around five years old. One of my earliest gifts was a Kodak Brownie point and shoot camera with a flash mount. My father, an amateur photographer, and my grandfather had some vintage cameras laying around, and I was always fascinated by them. There were Polaroids, 8mm movie cameras and a treasure chest of cool cameras. My parents took the family on a lot of trips, and the cameras were a part of that experience. I got my first serious camera, an Olympus OM-1 35mm SLR, while in high school, and I still have it. That camera played a big part in my adventure as a photographer. Had it not been for the great images that I took as a young photo enthusiast, I might not have continued with my photography. One night, I took my Olympus OM1 to the Troubadour night club to see the band Sergio Mendez and Brazil 66. Two blues legends, Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee were the opening act. While sitting front row center in this small club with really low stage light, I started clicking away. Using Tri-X high speed black and white film and a 50mm f1.4 lens, I felt I had captured magic in a bottle. After I developed the film and made prints, I fell in love with what I saw, and the connection to low light, live music photography took hold. The only talent that I had at that stage in my photography career was my ability to compose an interesting image and capture peak action. The rest was luck, and let me tell you, there is something to be said for luck! The featured percussionist for Sergio Mendez and Brazil 66, Paulinho da Costa, was very animated and always moving. I didn't think that any of his images would turn out well. I expected them all to be blurry. To this day, two of his images from that night are two of the best photos that I ever took!.

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Jason Bonham - Image Credit: © 2011 Scott Mitchell

WPN: You were a producer of "Indie" films in the 1990s. How did you become involved in film making, and what was that experience like?

SM: After producing cable programs featuring live music and being heavily involved in videos in the 1980s, my brother- in- law introduced me to independent, low budget films. I worked as a coordinating producer, set photographer and wore a dozen other hats from craft services to location scout to casting. The experience was exhausting but rewarding. Once I completed my first film as a credited producer, it was nice to know that I had the right stuff. Unfortunately, the money and funds backing these movies “dried up”, and we had to explore other avenues of expression.

WPN: What was your reason for returning to photography?

SM: Actually, I never really left photography. From time to time I would rent a dark room and work at developing my images. This brought me back to my roots, and I found it to be relaxing and cathartic and almost Zen like. It was definitely like riding a bike. Once you have it down, getting back on it is pretty automatic. In 2001 I had a life changing experience which led to a lot of self-reflection and assessing of personal inventory. This experience was set in motion by a health related issue. I realized that life was too short, and that our time on this planet is fleeting. Tomorrow is not guaranteed to anyone, and there was more to life than just the pursuit of money. I wanted to spend more of my time doing things that were personal, significant, and important to me. Integrating photography into my new routine was part of my paradigm shift. I ramped it up with a strong sense of urgency. I enrolled in as many photo classes as I could. I took workshops, invested in professional gear and got really busy. For several years I was “burning the candle at both ends.” I worked during the day and took photos at night and on the weekends. I loved it; photography fed my soul and work paid the bills.

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Divinty Roxx - Image Credit: © 2005 Scott Mitchell

WPN: So many of your images are of the music scene of the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. Why the strong connection?

SM: Well, I always had the connection with music related photography. I was especially drawn to live concerts, and I knew that was the genre in which I wanted to make a name for myself. My aim was to become the best concert photographer out there. The story of the Sunset Strip is a reflection of the history and story Los Angeles. That story is part of my life as well. We grew up together. Back in the 1960s and early1970s there was much civil unrest and a lot going on with the politics of the United States. The Sunset Strip was the place where everything new collided with the older establishment. The music had a message and a meaning that was forever connected to that time and place. Fortunately for me, in 2004 I approached the Whisky A Go-Go on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood and met with Tisa Maglieri, the general manager. I was able to convince her to take me on as their in-house photographer. Next, I went across Hollywood to the Catalina Bar and Grill, which is the premiere jazz club in Los Angeles, and I introduced myself to Catalina (yes, Catalina is a real person.) I showed her samples of my work and now that club has become my second home. One of my many regrets in life is that I didn't take advantage of the photographic opportunities that were there for the taking on the Sunset Strip. At the core, I am a photographer, and I am a music lover. After all, the “Strip” is the epicenter for the music scene in Los Angeles. It is also a constant. The strip continues to survive the test of time.

WPN: You have an incredible archive of over 1million images of musicians and music icons. Of all these photos, which one or ones are the most memorable?

SM: This is a really hard question! There are a lot of images that are important to me for a variety of reasons. One of my favorite photos is a portrait of John Densmore, the drummer for the group The Doors. It was taken during our first photo session together. I used high speed black and white film to give it a super high grain look. That is the best portrait of John that I ever took, and more importantly, we developed a friendship from the experience. The 1974 image of Paulinho da Costa playing his drum and the image of Sonny Terry holding his harmonica in the air at the Troubadour are equally memorable to me. The album art for Bill Henderson's record, "Beautiful Memory" is a very important favorite of mine. That was my first album cover, and I was honored that one of our living treasures, Bill Henderson, trusted me with that responsibility. I am also greatly fond of the image I took of Divinity Roxx, a hip-hop, rock star who plays bass and sings. During her show at the Whisky A Go-Go there were a lot of problems with the stage lighting, and I was getting very frustrated. Divinity is a stunning, high energy performer, and she was playing in the dark. I kept my camera focused on her and was able to capture that single moment when there was light on her face. Other important favorites are my photos of Verdine White, which were published in the November 2013 issue of Bass Player Magazine as their cover and feature story. Verdine White is an original member and bassist for Earth, Wind, and Fire.

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Duff McKagan & Loaded - Image Credit: © 2005 Scott Mitchell

WPN: Much of your work centers around helping to promote other artists, performers and athletes, and much of it has been "pro bono." Your generosity stands out in today's world. Why these strong desires to offer such support?

SM: My parents dropped me on my head when I was a kid! (Laugh!) The expression “Paying it forward” feels good. Developing relationships, friendships, and connecting with people is part of who I am as a person. Photography gives me that opportunity to connect with people, and that is rich! I feel that artists have a responsibility to support other artists. The world is changing fast. The photography world is changing too fast. It is becoming harder and harder for photographers to make a living as visual artists. We all have dreams, and we all can use the help of others at some point and time in our lives. There should be sense of commonality. As artists, we dream, we aspire, and we are passionate about our work. In my world, artists have an obligation to help each other.

WPN: If you had one sentence to summarize your style as an artist what would you write?

SM: My style is that of a dedicated photojournalist with a great eye and a creative edge who shoots like it is his last day on the planet.

WPN: What are your goals for your future?

SM:
1) get discovered
2) share my work with the world
3) have gallery exhibits
4) get published on a regular basis
5) build an archive that people will enjoy long after I am gone

Scott Mitchell Photography
http://scottmitchellphotography.smugmug.com

Wish to be considered for our next Spotlight interview?
Please contact our staff: info@wpnetwork.net

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