Keisha Hill, Gleaner Writer
Odain Donegan, buoyed by support from his co-workers and with his intense passion for his hobby, decided to enter The Gleaner's 'Capturing Kingston' 24-hour competition.
After snapping many pictures with his point-and-shoot camera, on the final leg, the car he was travelling in was blocked in at the Coronation Market. He decided to explore his surroundings and his curiosity led him into the old railway station complex. Here, he placed his camera on the ground and had no idea that he had snapped the winning entry.
Donegan won the Best Overall Photograph titled 'A Time Past' which also won in the Best Historical Category. His entry was chosen by the judges from more than 4,000 entries taken by more than 43 photographers. "It is my hobby, so getting a prize is a bonus. It is not just to win but having the memory to share with others," Donegan said.
Donegan was among several category winners who were presented with their prizes at a luncheon held at The Gleaner's North Street offices last Friday. According to Ricardo Makyn, staff photographer at The Gleaner and one of the judges for the competition, the panel was impressed with the quality of the entries.
"We were happy with what we saw, however, we were just disappointed that there were fewer entries in the news category. Some of the pictures were also repetitive and, in the future, we'd like the photographers to refrain from duplicating," Makyn said.
Equally pleased were sponsors LIME and Unicomer Jamaica Limited (Courts). According to Elon Parkinson, corporate communications manager at LIME, the company also celebrates 141 years in Jamaica, and it was only fitting that they partnered with such a venture. "Capturing the sights of Kingston will show persons who have never been to Kingston the spectacular experience," Parkinson said.
On the heels of this competition, Parkinson said enough recognition isn't given to photojournalists, and LIME will be seeking to partner with the Press Association of Jamaica (PAJ) to launch a photojournalist award at its next awards ceremony. The winner of that award will compete against other photojournalists in the region where LIME operates.
Meanwhile, Michelle-Ann Letman, public relations officer at Unicomer Jamaica, said they were happy to have rewarded the talented photographers. Courts gave prizes to Donegan and Milton Brooks, the Best Commercial Business photograph and Best Human Interest awardee. Donegan received a 46" TCL LED television while Brooks received a laptop.
Best Overall Photograph - Odain Donegan
Best Commercial Business - Milton Brooks
Best Human Interest - Milton Brooks
Best News - Roman Corvera
Most Historical - Odain Donegan
Best Residential - Alfred Maragh
Best Environment - Tara Carnegie
Best Youth Photographer - Mikhail Henry
Best Nature - Nathaniel Stewart
Best Nightlife - Joel Finnigen