A Thomson High Sophomore got down on a child's level and won a state award. Ali Harville placed second in Imaging Technology at the 45th Annual Technology Student Association State Conference in Perry, Ga., April 19-21.
The theme for the competition was "through the eyes of a child," and each contestant had to take and process digital photos into a display illustrating the theme. Ali said most of the other entries were photos of children. Instead, she used five black and white and five color photos of things children think about or see on a regular basis, such as candy or their mother's hand.
"I had to get in the mindset of a child," Ali said. "That wasn't easy, because I am the baby in the family."
Ali's photos were taken during her trips to Savannah, Hawaii, Athens and Jekyll Island. Her favorite photo is a pile of gold coins she saw in a candy store in Savannah. Ali said she likes how she captured the light on the coins that makes it look like what a child would see in their imagination when they open a treasure chest.
"The atmosphere in Savannah was just great for taking photos," she said.
Finalists also had to give an on-site PowerPoint slide presentation of their photos. It was a computer glitch during this presentation that TSA teacher Greg Shouse feels cost Ali the first place award. One of the requirements of the slide presentation is that a timer must be viewable. Ali did not have a timer on the particular laptop that she chose to take to Perry, so 20 points were deducted from her score.
"Even after she was docked 20 points, she was still only two points behind the first place winner," Mr. Shouse said.
She learned from the mistake, though. Ali said as soon as she returned home, she downloaded a timer onto the laptop. Now she is ready for the national competition which takes place June 28 through July 2 in Nashville.
Ali has been in TSA classes since seventh grade, and she has "always just loved taking pictures." She said this is only her second year to compete. Last year, THS Senior Erica Green also won second place at the state competition.
"Ali has always been in Erica's shadow," Mr. Shouse said. "So now she had the chance to take-off. And she's good. Her photos are very good."