Brevard resident Bianca Wilkes won the Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s ImageMakers National Photography Contest. The 16-year-old won for her black-and-white photograph of fellow club member Madison Baldridge.
The photo is a subdued mood portrayal of Baldridge, 8, modeling as a lone little girl standing against a wall. It was taken last year outside the Transylvania Boy & Girls Club’s building on Gallimore Road. The contest was part of a comprehensive initiative encouraging artistic skills, cultural enrichment and creativity in photography.
“I was like jumping all over the place,” exclaimed Wilkes at the news of winning the national competition. “I was really stoked!”
Bianca had been helping supervise younger children at the Club and Baldridge was one of her charges. “Maddie was one of my favorite little girls,” she explained. “She had been sad because her father was going to Iraq, and I wanted to use that sadness a little bit.”
The photo was taken in color, but Wilkes thought its moodiness would be more effective as a black and white. “I really felt black and white was more appropriate,” she said.
Wilkes, a sophomore at Brevard High School, hopes to pursue visual and verbal arts at the college level. “Photography is something I like to do whenever I get the chance,” she said. “I also like writing, and designing. I really have high expectations.”
Bianca’s photo and others will now be on display across the country at the traveling ImageMakers National Photography exhibit.
“We’re so proud of Bianca’s achievement,” said the local Club’s education director, Solange Morgan.