STYLE‘s 1st Inaugural “Lookin’ at Lake & Sumter” Photo Contest Winners!

Serene Water"Serene Water" by Frank Skvarek, 1st place in "PLACES" and Grand Prize Winner

“Serene Water” by Frank Skvarek, 1st place in “PLACES” and Grand Prize Winner

Shutterbugs throughout Lake and Sumter counties submitted their best work in our first photography contest, but three super shooters really made our judges’ flashbulbs pop.

Tavares resident Byron Faudie and two residents of The Villages — Frank Skvarek and Betty Eich — accounted for the first-, second- and third-place photos in both the Places and Events categories.

There were no entries in the People category.

Faudie took first and third place in the Events division. His winning entry focused on a man saluting the flag before the start of a 5k race in the Central Florida Triathlon series.

"Salute" by Byron Faudie, 1st place winner in "EVENTS"

“Salute” by Byron Faudie, 1st place winner in “EVENTS”

“Although this photo isn’t the ideal poster child for photography aesthetic, focus, lighting, etc., it’s full of narrative,” said contest judge Anthony Casto, Akers Media Group senior designer. “In the midst of a crowd of people and their wandering eyes, sprinkled with lukewarm salutes during a salute to the flag, a soldier stands stout like a single Roman column, grounded and strong, towering over debris below after a storm. Unshaken and focused, the honor on his face is striking. I see in him true America — strength, grit, valor and pride.”

Eich’s photo of beautiful blonde stiltwalkers took second place in Events. Eich also had the second-place entry in the Places category with a photo of a boy roping a steer during a rodeo at the Windy Acres Rodeo Arena.

"Belles" by Betty Eich, 2nd place winner in "EVENTS"

“Belles” by Betty Eich, 2nd place winner in “EVENTS”

"Calf Roping" by Betty Eich, 2nd place winner in "PLACES"

“Calf Roping” by Betty Eich, 2nd place winner in “PLACES”

"Fireworks" by Frank Skvarek, 3rd place winner in "PLACES"

“Fireworks” by Frank Skvarek, 3rd place winner in “PLACES”

"Victory" by Byron Faudie, 3rd place winner in "EVENTS"

“Victory” by Byron Faudie, 3rd place winner in “EVENTS”

Skvarek used a Konica Minolta SLR digital camera with a Tamron 18-200mm zoom lens to earn third place in the Places division with a photo of fireworks at the July 4 celebration in Tavares and first place in that category with a photo of ducks and boats on Lake Sumter in The Villages.

Frank Skvarek, the grand prize winner in STYLE's 1st Inaugural "Lookin' at Lake & Sumter" Photo Contest

Frank Skvarek

“Photography has been one of my hobbies for over 30 years. I have enjoyed trying to capture moments in time for my own joy and showing others my successes,” Skvarek says.

“I suppose I could be considered a ‘purist’ as I attempt to record what my eyes and mind see rather than relying on post processing, which today’s photographers seem to be utilizing these days to get a successful image. My photos come out of a camera rather than a computer program.”

Skvarek’s serene lake scene was awarded grand prize by our panel of judges and wins him a $50 prize.

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