San Francisco Student Wins Photo Contest with Powerful Iran Portrait

Now in its third year, the student photo contest sponsored by Hot Shot Media Group has chosen as Grand Prize winner a picture that symbolizes the green movement in Iran. Titled “I’m More Than a Number”, the photo (at left) was shot by an Academy of Art student and Tehran native who has chosen, for personal security reasons, to go by the pseudonym of Fate.

She will be awarded $1,000 and an engraved iPod Touch on April 11th at her school’s Photography Gallery. The December-February contest was narrowed down to 30 finalists by online community vote, after which a panel of five judges selected Fate’s snap by the narrowest of 3-2 margins. Here’s how the 33-year-old describes her winning entry:

To me, this image represents the Iranian people now. In my country, Iran, you are not allowed to talk about many subjects; people become strangers in their own homeland. Everything has became taboo in the government’s eyes…

This image is symbolic of one Iranian girl with the quotidian outfit in the streets. I wanted to give the impression that she was kind of immigrating with the background and the green tone is representative of the green movement in Iran.

Second prize went to Sablina Miklowitz, a student a San Luis Obispo’s California Polytechnic State University, for a black and white shot of a woman blowing on fall ground residue, while UCLA’s Seth Rader took home third place for framing a pal playing drums in the San Diego great outdoors.