WHISTLER, BC, January 8, 2007 — The Deep Winter Photo Challenge, presented by ARC'TERYX stormed through Whistler Saturday, January 5, with a sold-out show, leaving in its wake a new "King of Storms. Jordan Manley's winning slideshow featured jaw-dropping images and unique perspectives of the deep winter theme.
The Photo Challenge presented slideshows from six of skiing and snowboarding's top photographers taken over three days at Whistler Blackcomb. Over the shoot days, January 2 to 4, 106 centimetres/42 inches of snow fell, creating a truly deep, winter landscape for each competitor to work with.
"Deep Winter was a lot of fun and a big challenge. The sun never came out and it snowed heavily almost the entire time. Cold wet gloves, and soaked camera gear was a factor that made it a struggle to keep shooting and be as creative as possible, especially towards the end of each day when we were running on empty stomachs, says Manley, who worked with athletes Jonny Law and Les Manley. "Our success came from collective collaboration. I was really honored to be amongst such great talent and vision of the photographers involved, especially Paul Morrison, who has been a big inspiration to me.
At 23 years-old, Manley is a relative newcomer to the world of ski photography but he has already made a significant impact on the landscape of ski photography with SKIER Magazine's first self-portrait cover ever and a very distinctive cover for Powder Magazine this season alone. It was a unanimous decision to name Manley "King of Storms but event judges were blown away by the calibre of each photographer's submission.
"Deep Winter is one of the most difficult assignments a photographer could take on. They dealt with three days of non-stop shooting in the most extreme weather the West Coast can throw at them, says Colin Adair, Deep Winter Photo Challenge judge and photo editor of Snowboard Canada Magazine. "The level of photography this year was really high with each participant putting together a great selection of images. Jordan's show had very strong imagery and it had a certain uniqueness in the images and overall feel, and that's what put him on top.
Paul Morrison, last season's winner, took home second with a collection of gorgeous images overlaid with poignant voiceover from Gordon Leidal, a 69 year-old ex-patrol member and Devon Douglas, Mike's four year-old son on what deep winter and skiing in Whistler means to them.
Third place was awarded to another new-comer, Bryan Ralph of Nelson, BC. Ralph was a last minute entry after another photographer cancelled their participation. His show featured engaging time-lapse sequences and was a huge hit with the judges and close to 700 spectators. The other contenders included Dano Pendygrasse, Ian Coble and Phil Tifo.
"Last year I was thoroughly impressed with the high level of creative talent shown. This year, the bar was elevated even higher, says Tom Duguid, director of brand marketing for ARC'TERYX. "All six of the presentations this year were incredibly entertaining. The calibre of talent made it difficult to choose decisive first, second and third positions, as evidenced by how long it took the judges to come to a consensus on the winners. Coming away from the evening, I was left astounded that these guys could assemble an amazing collection of world-class images, choreographed to music no less, and show them to a packed house—all in only three days. Stuff like that leaves me humbled.
"I agree with Tom, and think each submission this season could have won it last year, says Michelle Leroux, Whistler Blackcomb's Public Relations & Communications Manager. "The calibre of the photography and the attention to the theme 'deep winter' was outstanding thanks in part, I am sure, to the inspiration each participant got from watching Paul's winning show from last year. We are so excited and inspired by this event and can't wait to bring it back to the Fairmont Chateau Whistler next year.
Judges for the event include well-known professional Whistler snowsports photographer Eric Berger, Snowboard Canada's photo editor and snowboard photographer Colin Adair, Skiing Magazine's Photo Editor Sandra Gnandt, and ARC'TERYX's Director of Brand Marketing Tom Duguid. The Deep Winter Photo Challenge is a GORE-TEX Deep Winter Experience presented in partnership by ARC'TERYX and Whistler Blackcomb, along with sponsors Fairmont Chateau Whistler, and SKYY Vodka.
Information about the Deep Winter Photo Challenge can be found at deepwinterphoto.com . For more information on the GORE-TEX Deep Winter Experience line-up of events please visit whistlerblackcomb.com/deepwinter .