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MailTribune.com
  • Picture-perfect

    Oregon Outdoors Photo Contest kicks off today with new Wildflowers category
  • Dustin Peters had already photographed a Crater Lake panorama and taken some landscape shots at Union Creek during a photo safari in May. On his way home to Eagle Point, he decided to make one more stop to finish off a trifecta.
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  • Dustin Peters had already photographed a Crater Lake panorama and taken some landscape shots at Union Creek during a photo safari in May. On his way home to Eagle Point, he decided to make one more stop to finish off a trifecta.
    He pulled off Highway 62 at Casey State Park with a critical eye on the anglers casting into the Rogue River for spring chinook salmon.
    "I'm like, 'Hey, guys, mind if I hang out and take some pictures?' " recalls Peters, 22.
    After several shots with his Canon EOS 5D, Peters captured a silhouette of an angler and his arcing rod framed against the dark mountains and highlighted by the evening's auburn sky.
    "I had that photo in my mind, and it came out exactly how I wanted it to," Peters says. "It has a definite feel to it. It got a lot of positive feedback from people."
    Peters is hoping the judges in the second annual Oregon Outdoors Photo Contest agree. The contest kicks off today, and Peters already has an idea of what it takes to impress people. His photo last year of National Creek Falls near Union Creek earned the People's Choice award in online voting.
    "It's definitely contest-worthy," Peters says of his angler photo. "It's a perfect silhouette of a guy casting."
    Peters has long been a photography bum, toting his camera even during short jaunts while out and about.
    "It doesn't leave my side," he says. "You never know when that photo and that moment is going to happen."
    The National Creek Falls shot was "fully composed," he says, adding that he blended about a dozen images taken with his 50-mm lens to create the entry.
    "It's the first picture like that I actually showed people, something that I was proud of," says Peters, who was a 21-year-old Rogue Community College student at the time.
    Peters — who now shoots news video for a local television station by day — posted the picture on his Facebook photography page. A friend told him about the Oregon Outdoors contest and coaxed him into entering.
    Now, Peters considers himself a regular player in this contest.
    "Heck yeah, I'll put my stuff in again," he says. "This year, I plan to do at least two or three pictures, hoping for just as good of luck as last year."
    This year's contest includes four categories: Wildlife, Landscapes, Wildflowers and People in Nature.
    The Wildflowers category is new this year and was added because so many photographs of wildflowers were among the 342 photographs entered last year.
    In addition to Peters, last year's winners were Bart Elder of Grants Pass in the Wildlife category, Steve Whipple of Central Point in the Landscapes category and Bill Anders of Ashland in the People in Nature category.
    Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470 or mfreeman@mailtribune.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/MTwriterFreeman.
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