I write because I enjoy it, I’m not paid to craft these pages it’s a labor of love. A few months ago local bookseller McNally Robinson issued a call in local newspapers for photo submissions for a book that would be about Winnipeg by locals. Thus the Winnipeg by Winnipeg project was launched.
Over the course of almost five years of blogging I’ve amassed hundreds of photographs of my adoptive city, any number of which would be great for such a publication. I spent hours digging through my archives looking for just the right shots for submission. Lighting, composition, and content I knew were going to be judged to be worthy of inclusion in the book. Last night was the book release event and I had made the cut with one of my photos gloriously reproduced and put into print for the world to see.
Over one thousand photographers submitted photography and less than 100 were chosen to be included in the book, I was in rare company indeed. Last night we all gathered together eager with anticipation to see the finished product in a swanky affair hosted at McNally Robinson’s flagship store in Grant Park Shopping Center. Photographers were professional and amateur, young and old, from every strata of society, giving a true cross-section of life in Winnipeg.
Photographs from the book were shown on a large screen as each artist was called to the front to receive congratulations and copies of the book. Some of the shots were simply amazing, creative and revealing. Showing not only the highlights of Winnipeg but also its darker and arguably more interesting sides. Darkness and light, beauty and despair all coming together to make this city we call home.
My shot shows Winnipeg relaxing on Canada Day, a single kayak paddles down the Red River in sight of the St. Boniface Cathedral. One of many photographs taken at the Forks Market. I am proud of my accomplishment in making the final product. But my personal pride is secondary to the feeling I got last night when I saw so many Winnipeggers come together to celebrate our city with warts and all.
Do yourself a favor explore Winnipeg; check out the back alleys and the boulevards. Get to know its friendly citizens if not in person then in the pages of Winnipeg by Winnipeg. You’ll be glad you did!