17th Annual Palo Alto Weekly Photo Contest
Honorable Mention, Manipulated Images
By Julia Benton
About Julia Benton
Click on photo for larger image.
"Crowded Kiosk" is a complex image. Made up of many small photos, the collage depicts a poster-plastered kiosk on Stanford campus. Since color is one thing photographer Julia Benton always tries to incorporate, the bright colors of the fliers caught her eye.
The images were taken last summer at the Cantor Arts Center on Stanford campus where Benton served as an assistant, introducing fourth through sixth graders to photography. It was through an exercise on David Hockney that Benton was inspired by the colorful kiosk.
Benton has participated in the Weekly's Photo Contest before, but this is the first time she has won first place. "I've become a lot more focused on photography this year, and it was nice receiving recognition for my work," Benton said.
Her interest in photography began the summer before starting high school while on a class trip to Spain. "It was the first time I had traveled out of the country without my family, and I wanted to capture every aspect of Spain so that I could share my trip with them," Benton said.
A few years and photography classes later, Benton is now a Junior at Palo Alto High School where she serves as the editor of photography and graphics for her school newspaper, The Campanile, and the photographer for the school's art and literary magazine, The Calliope.
Artist whom inspire Benton include photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Benton's mother, Lynn, who has worked as a graphic designer. "I've been inspired by some of [my mom's] old work, but she is also extremely supportive and encouraging with my own photography," said Benton. What Benton loves about Cartier-Bresson is how he is able to take an insignificant moment and make it seem amazing through composition techniques.
In 2006 Benton won third place in the youth category for her photo "De Young in the Rain," which she took waiting in line at the De Young Museum in San Francisco. "It was a rainy day so everyone had umbrellas which were mostly brightly colored".
Benton submitted four photos in 2007, one receiving honorable mention and another was exhibited at the Palo Alto Art Center.
Eventually, Benton would like to pursue a career in photography and photojournalism, but for now she's looking forward to a summer program she will be attending at the Corcoran College of Art and Design in Washington, D.C.