Release Date: Thursday, January 27th 2011
Jackson senior wins Akron's First Night contest
By Alissa O'Neill
David Oliger entered his first photo contest last month and walked away a winner.
The 18-year-old Jackson High School senior has been taking pictures as a hobby for years and is enrolled in a photography course at Jackson High School. This year, though, he also decided to enter First Night Akron's Photo Contest. This year's contest theme was “15” in honor of First Night's 15th Year so participants were asked to “get creative with the number '15',” according to the contest description.
Oliger did just that. Spotting a tree by the dock pullouts off Christman Road that was perfectly shaped like a 'V,' Oliger had an idea.
“'I need a 10, I'm going into the woods,' he told me,” said his grandmother, Dianne Oliger.
He found the branches he needed and brought them back to the parking lot to set up his “15” shot.
“He ended up lying on his back with a branch in each hand to form an 'X,'” Dianne said. “His arms were shaking because those branches were so heavy.”
The hard work paid off when Oliger received a phone call letting him know that he had been selected the winner. Oliger was in the car with Dianne on his way to work when his phone rang, and Dianne was “tickled” to learn the news.
“I got his initial reaction, which was really special,” Dianne said.
All the entries were displayed during the Dec. 4 Artwalk at Summit Artspace where visitors voted to determine the winner. Oliger's photo was then displayed at the Akron Art Museum as the winning photograph during First Night. He was also called on to the Main Stage on Main Street on New Year's Eve and announced as the winner.
For placing first, Oliger received a $100 gift card to the downtown restaurant of his choice and chose The Spaghetti Warehouse. Dianne said he is taking her there for dinner since she helped him with his shot.
“I think he's wonderful, but I'm grandma so I may be a little prejudiced,” Dianne said with a laugh.
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