AjPHA members with a passion for Paints and photography put their skills to the test with the 2016 AjPHA Youth Photo Contest. Adisyn Kuxhaus of Pierre, South Dakota, took home first place in the 13 & Under division with a portrait of her 2006 sorrel tobiano mare, Dunnits Silent Babe. Raegan Watson of Cleveland, Texas, won the 14–18 division with a candid shot of Kiddins Image, a 2011 sorrel overo gelding. Both winners received a digital camera to continue pursuing their talents; second and third place in each division received $75 and $50 cash, respectively.
For Adisyn, her win came as a bit of a surprise, as the 13-year-old has just recently started exploring techniques from behind the lens.
“I’ve always loved taking pictures of my horses, but I never really set them up to get good pictures. This was my first actual photo shoot,” Adisyn said. “I fell in love with that kind of black-out picture and really wanted to try it. I put “Indiana” in the barn with her head facing out so the light was on her and then focused on her face so the background would go black.”
Adisyn plans to move from portraits to her next project: capturing full-body and action shots of “Indiana” in her pasture. The young photographer is also looking forward to the freedom of owning her own camera.
“Winning is really special to me. The new camera will help me to have better-quality photos, and I’ll have a camera that’s mine and isn’t being used for other things,” Adisyn said.
Veteran photographer Raegan Watson captured the 14–18 division win with her candid shot of Kiddins Image. Raegan entered a couple photos in the contest and had high hopes for the image of her first halter horse.
“That was the one I was hoping would win,” Raegan said. “I was just out watching the horses one day, and he was trotting around and I happened to get a good shot.”
Raegan has been photographing for several years, and the craft piqued her interest from showing horses. The 18-year-old is beginning to explore photo-editing techniques and will begin expanding her photography repertoire with her new digital camera.
“I just entered for fun and wasn’t expecting anything, but this is really cool,” Raegan said. “I can’t wait to start playing around.”
Congratulations to the following winners:
13 & Under:
1st – Adisyn Kuxhaus of Pierre, South Dakota
2nd –Jordyn Maloy of Lisbon Falls, Maine
3rd – Mannetta McAvaddy of Vineland, New Jersey
1st – Raegan Watson of Cleveland, Texas
2nd – Raegan Watson of Cleveland, Texas
3rd – Hadassah Bennetsen of Argyle, Texas
[Reprinting all or part of this news release is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provided back to apha.com.]
The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA creates and maintains programs that increase the value of American Paint Horses and enriches members’ experiences with their horses.