September Photo of the Month winners announced

Even with all the challenges from the start of this school year, we had lots of submissions for our first Photo of the Month Contest. It was a tough choice to narrow it down, but below are the winners for September. Congrats to all photographers who submitted!


First Place: Christina Nguyen, Oak Park High School

Sophomore Haley Brown catches the ball on Wednesday, Sept. 9. This was Brown’s 11 year playing softball. “My favorite thing about softball is getting to meet new people and play with my friends,” said Brown. (Christina Nguyen)

Judge’s Comments: The exposure on this is fantastic. Not only was the photographer able to capture the dirt flying, but it looks like the opponent is still moving. You can try cropping this as a horizontal image to bring more focus onto that action, too. Try to incorporate more information into your caption, like the opposing team’s name and what level team it is (varsity, JV, etc., if it applies to your school). It would be nice to add more unique information to the second line and a quote that relates more to the moment as well.

Second Place: Jaiden Key, Willard High School

Ethan Bliss (10) sparks his creative side as he works on his 7th hour Welding project during class Sept. 24. Bliss initially took Intro to Ag as a second elective but soon realized he had a passion for welding. “I love the simplicity of it,” he said. “It does take a lot of skill, but at the end of the day it’s just you and the electrode and it’s such an amazing stress reliever.” (Jaiden Key)

Judge’s Comments: The photographer did an excellent job of clearly framing their subject and positioning themselves so that they could capture the action of the moment. The caption is extremely well-written, giving a unique voice to the subject and providing all information to clearly explain the image.

Third Place: Eli Dean, Nixa High School

Nixa High School football center prepares to snap the foobtall to his quaterback out in the shotgun. (Eli Dean)

Judge’s Comments: The angle at which this photographer approached this moment creates a sense of anticipation and action, even though most of the faces are not clearly visible. The repetition of players on both sides adds to the overall composition as well. The caption, however, has a few typos and could use more information to clearly describe the action and subjects’ views.

Honorable Mention: Grace Kut, Nixa High School

Steven Ward II looks out onto the field while standing on the sideline during the first Friday night football game in the brand new Eagle Stadium. (Grace Kut)

Judge’s Comments: Though there isn’t much action in this photograph, it is clear that this is at a football game and the image is still able to offer some emotional response. Overall, the framing and exposure are excellent, and it is a very well-composed portrait.

Honorable Mention: Katie Glasford, Liberty High School

Junior Lauren Slocum throws her fast ball against Lee’s Summit West at home on Sept 8. This was the first home game, and because of COVID, Sr night. All sports held their Sr night festivities on the first home game to make sure all seniors were recognized in the case school was canceled early. “It is a lot of pressure being a pitcher and hitter, but it is super fun. I enjoy playing every single game. It makes me happy to be a part of such an amazing team,” said Slocum. (Katie Glasford)

Judge’s Comments: The photographer did a great job of stopping all action and capturing the pitcher’s movement while still clearly being able to see the subject’s face. They also did an excellent job writing their caption.