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Brooks Institute Student Wins in Major International Photography Competition

(PRWEB) April 1, 2006 -- Ever since high school
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, Ramsay de Give has believed that photography provides a special way of relaying the truth. Never was that more apparent to him than on Nov. 18, 2005, when he raced out of his front door into the orange smoke and thick ash of the devastating Ventura fires in the hills around his home. A second-year student at Brooks Institute of Photography, de Give grabbed his camera and canvassed his neighborhood, capturing in almost sensory detail the brutality of the fire. One of the resulting photographs depicting a panic-stricken woman framed by violent flames has earned a third-place award in the Picture of the Year International (POYi) competition sponsored by the University of Missouri School
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 of Journalism in Columbia, MO.

What makes de Give’s win even more special is the fact that this prestigious competition, which began in 1944, was established to honor newspapers and press photographers – professionals in the photography field. It is highly unusual for a student to be recognized, let alone achieve third-place honors. Among other winners were professional photographers from major national newspapers including The Advocate, the Houston Chronicle and awards of excellence for The Dallas Morning News, The Orange Country Register and The Los Angeles Times.

According to de Give, who had received a College Photographer of the Year award earlier in 2005, “I am very grateful to have won this award. “And I am honored to be considered among the outstanding professionals who also received awards. For me, this is all about using photography as an accurate expression of truth.”
The aspiring photojournalist noted, “My schooling has been a stroke of luck, to this point. In high school, I was fortunate to have a photography teacher that opened my eyes to the potential of photography, and at Brooks I have a multitude of teachers, advisers and peers who have helped me to advance much further.”

De Give described watching the fire swiftly approach homes as people hysterically rushed in and out, trying to save valuables and keepsakes.

“It was a scary scene. And for the people who live in Ventura, it was an intense day that won’t be forgotten…hopefully, this image will convey that feeling to people who were not there. “

As he snapped shot, he said, “I began seeing images left and right. There was a family rushing to pack up their belongings and the fire was less than 100 yards from their back yard. With each burst of wind, the air would suddenly cease all sound, then suddenly an enormous crackling would erupt, as if dry leaves were crumpling an inch away from your ear.”

It was, he recalled, after one of these sound bursts, the family realized they had to get out, fast. One member of the family seemed to remember something in the house and turned to run back. At that moment, the woman in the photograph “lost it” and let out a desperate cry.

Said de Give, “Click. The frame was made. That is how it happened and how I will always remember that day.”

About Brooks Institute of Photography
With campuses in Santa Barbara and Ventura, CA, Brooks Institute of Photography has a 60-year legacy of providing world-class visual arts education
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. Brooks Institute offers Master of Science, Bachelor of Arts, Associate of Arts degrees and diploma programs in the following fields of study – Professional Photography, Visual Journalism, Film and Video Production and Visual Communication. Brooks graduates are visible nationally and internationally, working for distinguished organizations including National Geographic, Smithsonian, Los Angeles Times and other national media outlets, including Hallmark Publishing, Cousteau Society, HBO, Kodak and other industry leaders in visual media fields. For more information about Brooks Institute of Photography, visit www.brooks.edu.


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