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|| SportsShooter.com: News Item: Posted 2004-11-16

Miralle, Boulian win Luau 'Best Sports Portfolio' Honors
By Robert Hanashiro, Sports Shooter

Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Germany's 8-man Team takes to the lake on practice on August 14, 2004 during the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games at the Schinias Olympic Rowing and Canoeing Centre in Athens, Greece.
"Your portfolio is only as strong as your weakest picture."
-- Socrates

Okay, maybe Socrates wasn't the first to say it, but any working photographer has heard this tried-and-true axiom at some point in his or her career.

Tracy Boulian, a senior at New York University, obeyed that piece of wisdom, and together with a portfolio that featured five different sports among her eight images, captured the student competition of the Sports Shooter Sports Portfolio Competition held in conjunction with the recent Luau and Workshop at Redondo Beach, California.

She wins a Nikon CoolPix 5200 digital camera in the contest sponsored by Nikon, Mamiya America, and Sports Shooter.

Current SportsShooter.com Clip Contest leader Donald Miralle of Getty Images won the pro division. He receives a set of MutliMax transceivers from Mamiya America.

During open judging in front of a crowd comprised mostly of students, the portfolios were neatly presented by contest coordinator Barry Wong of the Seattle Times. Off-the-cuff comments and plenty of humor flew around the main ballroom as the judging panel, featuring five judges representing a full spectrum of photography, chose the winners.

The judges included Trent Nelson of the Salt Lake Tribune, Robert Beck of Sports Illustrated, Robert Seale of the Sporting News, Dave Black, freelance, and Rod Mar of the Seattle Times.

Beck, in particular, would ask if a particular entrant was in the audience so he could more directly address his comments, which was appreciated by those in attendance.

Regarding Boulian's work, Beck had these comments, "Variation was key --- in addition to good images of course -- and I'm not just talking about subject matter. I liked to see someone who could shoot with long glass as well as the short stuff."

Nelson echoed Beck's appreciation of the variety of images. "The winner student portfolio stood out for its variety. Every photo seems to be a different approach from the one before it. That way, the photographs build on each other and there isn't one of the group that is dragging it down" he said.

Photo by Tracy Boulian

Photo by Tracy Boulian

American Terin Humphrey competes on the uneven parallel bars at the 2004 Visa American Cup February 28 at Madison Square Garden in New York, N.Y. Humphrey is an American contender for the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece.
Added Mar, "The winner's portfolio definitely separated itself once we got down to a group of finalists because there was no image weaker than the others, which was a problem with the other finalists. It was too easy to eliminate otherwise strong portfolios because the shooter added "one too many" images, either in attempt to show versatility or to reach a certain "number" of images in the entry."

Of Miralle's winning entry, the judges were equally impressed.

"Again, variety is the spice of life. This portfolio had so many different angles and approaches that it was a stunning group to look through," said Nelson. "This photographer showed a real eye for the different angle, and for use of color and light. It stood out among its competitors immediately. Wonderful work."

Mar appreciated the strong sense of lines and angles in Miralle's work. "So many of his images set themselves apart for their strong design elements and use of light" he said.

Added Robert Beck, staff photographer for Sports Illustrated, "Color, dramatic lighting ... Well cropped and not over sharpened!"

One interesting question that arose near the end of the pro judging was whether or not the judges were influenced by the number of pro sports and Olympic events in the winner's portfolio, but they dismissed the idea.

Said Mar, "Great images are great images, whether taken in Athens, Greece, or Athens, Georgia -- we would have actually loved to have seen such strong images from smaller events and venues."

Lastly, the judges were more impressed by the quality of the student work this year, a sentiment best expressed by Beck. "To be honest ...the student portfolios were better on the whole than the pro ones!"

Both Miralle and Boulian are SportsShooter.com members. Their member pages can be found here:

http://www.sportsshooter.com/members.html?id=341
http://www.sportsshooter.com/members.html?id=2295

More images from both Boulian's and Miralle's winning portfolios can be seen below.




First Place Student Sports Portfolio
Jockey Pat Day
Tracy Boulian
Photo by Tracy Boulian

Photo by Tracy Boulian

Jockey Pat Day, 51, looks straight ahead as he walks toward the locker room to change after a race on May 1, 2004, the day of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.





First Place Student Sports Portfolio
Muddy Soccer
Tracy Boulian / The Plain Dealer
Photo by Tracy Boulian / The Plain Dealer

Photo by Tracy Boulian / The Plain Dealer

Krosno, Poland's goalie Filar Maciej, 15, slides during a soccer game against Team Cleveland at John Carroll University in Cleveland, Ohio during the International Children's Games. Team Krosno won 4-3.





First Place Student Sports Portfolio
Loose Ball
Tracy Boulian / St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Photo by Tracy Boulian / St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Photo by Tracy Boulian / St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Ravens Todd Heap has the ball knocked loose by Rams defenders Fred Weary (left) and Travis Risher in the second quarter during a game between the St. Louis Rams and the Baltimore Ravens at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis Sunday Nov. 9, 2003.







First Place Professional Sports Portfolio
Liquid Dreams
Donald Miralle / Getty Images
Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Milorad Cavic of Serbia and Montenegro breaks the surface of the water at the start of the men's swimming 100 metre freestyle heat on August 17, 2004 during the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.





First Place Professional Sports Portfolio
Direct Hit
Donald Miralle / Getty Images
Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Keith Smart (L) of the USA competes Alexey Yakimenko of Russia in the men's fencing team sabre bronze medal match on August 19, 2004 during the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.





First Place Professional Sports Portfolio
Tip-Toed
Donald Miralle / Getty Images
Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Photo by Donald Miralle / Getty Images

Chad Johnson #85 of the Cincinnatti Bengals gets his toes in the end zone to score a touchdown against the San Diego Chargers in the 1st half during their NFL game on November 23, 2003 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California.






Related Links:
Donald Miralle's member page
Tracy Boulian's member page

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