Battle breaks out at The Ship

Karla Hayward
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Photo competition

"There was a moment when I was almost worried more people would come; because we were running out of room."

Now that's something you don't often hear the organizer say on the night of his inaugural event.

This photo was among the many entries in the "Battle SNAP" competition Monday night. The "Butterfly Exhibit" by Sandra-Lee Elford. Submitted photo

"There was a moment when I was almost worried more people would come; because we were running out of room."

Now that's something you don't often hear the organizer say on the night of his inaugural event.

But say it he did - he being Chris Smith, and the event being "Battle SNAP," a photography exhibit-slash-competition which wowed the 100-plus crowd at The Ship Pub Monday night.

Here's how it went all down: local photographers registered their very best photos for "Battle SNAP," and paid a paltry entry fee of $5 per image. Next, they showed up to The Ship with a hard-copy of said image(s) in hand. Then, Chris Smith displayed the 71 images for all present to see, and finally everyone in the joint voted on their fave.

The result? Three very deserving winners were declared.

Third place went to Ruth Skinner with her sneakily caught closeup of military men conversing in Venice, Italy. Second went to Chris Crockwell for his portrait of an ex-girlfriend lightly caught between sea and sky on the pack ice in Conception Bay. And the first prize winner was Keegan Schopfer with his carefully balanced play of light and shadow on Molly, his male pet fish.

Newfoundland Camera Imaging acted as the event's prize sponsor, offering $100, $50, and $25 in printing to the first, second, and third-place winners, respectively. The Ship also jumped in, giving gift certificates to 2nd and 1st place.

Smith says that the concept for "Battle SNAP" came from observing the musical "battles" hip-hop DJs and MCs engage in: a live venue, a live set and a live audience whose reaction determines the winner.

"Most of the guys who are really big in hip-hop grew up in that scene," he explains. "(They are) constantly cutting their teeth, trying to get better and better to beat the other guy."

And, while healthy competition is a huge part of battling, the bonding that goes on is an even bigger factor. "The battle is an excuse to put them all in the same room so that they can build friendships."

Smith goes on to say that, likewise, his goal with launching "Battle SNAP" went far beyond declaring a winner, "It's about helping to build a photography community. I think the more photographers get together, see each other's work and discuss ideas, the better it will work out for all of us."

Listening to what Smith thinks is probably a smart move for any photographer, as his industry success cannot be ignored. Smith runs Halifax-based Funkfactor Photos and Design, whose motto seems to be "Making dirty, hairy musicians look good." He specializes in entertainment photography, and has shot promo and live for local favourites like The Novaks, Matt Mayes and Hey Rosetta!, as well as legends like NOFX, Motley Crue and Coldplay. He's also been named Photographer of the Year for 2008 ECMAs and Visual Artist of the Year by Music Nova Scotia, was The Coast's Music Photographer of the Year twice and a whole lot more.

Judging from the turnout, Smith's belief that "Battle SNAP" was a much needed event was certainly bang-on. Everywhere you turned, lively dialogue on all things camera was being had, introductions were being made, work was being recognized, praised and dissected, and perhaps most importantly, relationships were being forged.

Smith was ecstatic with the success of the night, and said, "I would love to hear a couple of months down the road that there's a group show of people who met at this. That would be to me the ultimate thing: to be a ripple in the pond."

A second "Battle SNAP" will take place at Halifax's Seahorse on April 22. Will there be another in St. John's? That's not nailed down just yet, but Smith says, "I'd definitely like to be doing these on a semi-regular basis. I certainly don't plan on these being the last.

WWW

Weblinks

www.battlesnap.com

Organizations: The Ship Pub, Newfoundland Camera Imaging, Funkfactor Photos Motley Crue Halifax

Geographic location: Venice, Italy, Conception Bay St. John's

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Comments

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Recent comments

  • Colin
    July 02, 2010 - 13:32

    I really had a blast last night. There was some incredible photography and a friendly atmosphere.

    I hope it happens again soon.

  • Deanna
    July 02, 2010 - 13:25

    Congrats to Chris on the birth of BattleSnap. May this baby just get bigger.

  • Colin
    July 01, 2010 - 20:20

    I really had a blast last night. There was some incredible photography and a friendly atmosphere.

    I hope it happens again soon.

  • Deanna
    July 01, 2010 - 20:11

    Congrats to Chris on the birth of BattleSnap. May this baby just get bigger.