Pine and Mist, Sunrise by James Shull
© 2011 James Shull
Honorable Mention 3.
      Juror's Comment

      From Robert Nishihira:
      "The long vertical format immediately caught my eye because landscapes are usually horizontal. (That’s why the horizontal setting on many cameras is called 'landscape'.) Mr. Shull’s choice of the 'portrait' orientation is effective here because he exploits the principle of vertical placement, a design technique that shows depth.

      "The center of interest, the lone pine, is positioned in the center, which for rule-followers is not the best place for it. However, it works here because it ensures exclusive attention to the tree. It’s conspicuous and strong.

      "The lighting through the mist creates a marvelously ethereal mood which I believe is enhanced by the black and white process. Mr. Shull’s dreamy landscape could have been shot a hundred years ago or a hundred days ago. It is timeless."

    • Title: Pine and Mist, Sunrise
    • Artist: James Shull
    • From: Half Moon Bay, CA USA

    • e-mail:
    • Phone: + 1 (650) 560-9491
    • Website:
    • Address: 381 St. Andrews Ln.
      Half Moon Bay, CA 94019, USA

    Artist Statement

    "Throughout my journey, photography-as-exploration has always been the thread of continuity that keeps life interesting and new. Outside of having a great family, 25 years of wandering with a camera has been the best part of living. To stop now would be akin to death. That’s about as much as I can rationalize the 'why' of image making, the rest can hopefully be explained visually.

    "Born and raised in California, my formative years were the 80’s. Photography, for me, began with working in a printing press while attending a boarding school on the pacific coast near Monterey. The west-coast influence of straight black and white photography, I confess, lingers still in my mind.

    "Between conventional printing and complete immersion in school publications during my youth, I was permanently transfixed. In the early 90’s, college found me working toward a commercial photography degree at Brooks Institute of Photography, which followed into working as an assistant. In attempting to find the 'recipe' for making a living as a fine-art photographer I’ve explored many awkward venues that resulted in a very fluid lifestyle. Part of this searching led me to learn from several great photographers in southern California and elsewhere, an experience I’m so glad I had as it catalyzed my direction with photography. Somehow through it all the images kept on coming. I’ve kept them quite personal, as I’ve not attached my livelihood to my photographs.

    "It’s been over 13 years since I last lived in California and I’d all but forgotten how much I missed the geography of the west. With my home state back in my viewfinder, I’m still surprised with all I’m visually rediscovering that I never knew existed. I get to rediscover this placed I’ve always loved."