By Kristyn Bridges
“The beauty I see in that picture is totally opposite than what the world seems to be now,” says TMC student Joyce Edward, remembering the day she took it.
Edward’s picture won best of show at The Master’s College Go Photo Contest. Though it can stand alone in its beauty, the story behind it makes it even better.
In the midst of a national revolution, Edward, who is from Cairo, Egypt, staged a photo shoot that would demonstrate the opposite of what was taking place outside. Her winning picture, aptly named “Eve,” is a close-up of her cousin. Her head is adorned with flowers, and her facial features are sharp and clean, portraying the peace, purity and beauty Edward was striving for. And yet, one step out of the door, people packed the streets, waiting for the military to show up and take action.
Edward took pictures of the revolution as well. She said that she had to go—it was history in the making; it was a once in a lifetime opportunity that she would never forget. She went to the heart of the revolution, the Presidential Palace at Tahrir Square to capture the people and the feel of the revolution. She even climbed up a telephone pole, with her brother holding her feet and her dad ready to catch her to get a wider shot of the immense crowd. The resulting photo, named “The Rise of a Nation,” was also entered into the Go Photo Contest.
“It’s a picture that I’m going to have for the rest of my life, and I’m going to remember the moment—I was there when we changed something in our country through peaceful revolution—even if it was dangerous,” Edward says.
Between her two pictures entered, Edward knew “Eve” would win.
“It was showing an inner state of peacefulness more than the outer state of revolution and everything else that is in the other picture,” she says.
One reason for the Go Photo Contest was to help students share with their colleagues where they come from and where they have travelled.
“We were looking for ways to have students interact more on these topics, so by putting photos up or by having students submit photos, [other] students could see some places that their colleagues had been and would be able to interact with them more,” says International Ministries Director Dr. Lisa LaGeorge.
If the purpose is to spur conversation about travelling and missions among students, it’s working. The photo display, containing all pictures submitted, was placed at the entrance to the cafeteria to give students a chance to look at and vote for their colleagues’ photos.
The pictures were also placed on The Master’s College Facebook page. Edward’s Best in Show had 274 likes, 14 shares and 180 comments.
Other pictures also stimulated a lot of conversation among students, including Zach Stoever’s “Lightning over Aijalon,” which took first in the Best Place category. His picture especially piqued the interest of those who had gone to IBEX (the school’s semester abroad program in Jerusalem) and could reminisce together.
“The storm looks really powerful. It’s just this huge force and when you are able to capture it and freeze it, it makes it that much more powerful,” Stoever says.
The ability to capture a picture of lightning is not easy, especially for someone who had never done it. It took more than an hour of taking long exposure pictures to finally catch a good one.
“I just hoped I could time it so there was a lightening flash in the middle of the exposure,” Stoever says. “I was surprised that it actually worked, and it just looks really cool because it’s this massive storm and in the picture you can see the whole storm and you can see the lightening going down and you can see the valley.”
The picture meant more to him than getting his first lightening shot or capturing a massive storm with his camera. This picture is part of the amazing opportunity he had in Israel as a photographer.
“For me it’s just a cool experience,” he says. “That’s what I loved about getting to take pictures in Israel. All of the pictures remind me of just how unique of an experience it was.”
The picture resonates with many other students at Master’s because they know the place. When they see a beautiful picture of Israel, it’s more than a picture—it’s a shared memory of an experience that they will never forget. It reminds them of a place that had a huge impact on their lives.
The Go Photo Contest not only displays amazing pictures, but it displays the diversity of students at The Master’s College. Everyone has an experience and a story to tell.
Some just prefer to tell it through pictures.
Kristyn Bridges is a TMC communications major.