By Carrie Click
Three Colorado Mountain College professional photography students are echoing the success of alumni by making significant impacts in the world of photography.
Since 2011, the international College Photographer of the Year competition has given 15 awards to CMC students. This year’s competition received nearly 10,000 entries from 550 student photographers attending 126 colleges and universities in 17 countries.
CMC’s Stephanie Stocking recently earned a silver award for her image, “Cisco Remains,” in the CPOY’s interpretive eye category. Fellow CMC student Dustin Gregory won an award of excellence in the competition’s photo illustration category for his image, “Layers of Time: Day to Night in Canyonlands.”
And students are breaking through in new areas. A third photography student and Global Imagination Scholarship recipient, Laurel Smith, recently created a short film, “Life in Sanctuary,” that’s bringing public attention to the plight of Araceli Velasquez. An asylum seeker from El Salvador, Velasquez has entered sanctuary in a Denver church, which she has not been able to leave for over a year.
Smith, Stocking and Gregory join two CMC photography alumni, Guadalupe Laiz and Jeremy Joseph, who have also achieved recent success. Originally from Buenos Aires, Laiz studied photography at CMC. This fall, she signed a book deal with teNeues, a global publishing company, for her work photographing the horses of Iceland. She recently opened a gallery in Aspen.
Joseph’s outdoor adventure photography is currently on view at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. With work selected to be included in the highly competitive 2018 “Nature’s Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards” exhibit, Joseph is recognized as a highly honored winner in the outdoor adventure category for an image made during a climb of Mount Rainier.
The college’s professional photography program is under the umbrella of CMC’s Isaacson School of Communication, Arts and Media. “Our students continue to win acclaim on an international level,” said Derek Johnston, director of the college’s photography program.