Kevin Hawkins’ Award-winning Photo

How one photographer’s self-imposed “homework” won him a spot among Plymouth’s picture-taking elite.

Homework is something high schoolers and college kids are more than familiar with. In fact, when Kevin Hawkins was that student, he was quite involved in the art of photography. But after life got busy and the hobby languished, it took the advent of the digital camera to bring him back to his artistic pursuit. So it’s interesting that homework is what ultimately won him first place in the nature category of 2012’s Picture Plymouth. “Sometimes I like to give myself photo assignments so I can get out of my comfort zone,” Hawkins says. “On the day I shot this image, I was attempting to capture some good evening images. I was stunned by the beauty of Millennium Garden and couldn’t believe it had flown beneath my radar for so long.The owner of Hawkins Insurance and Financial Services, Inc. has lived with his wife, Beverly, near Medicine Lake since 1980, raising two daughters (Emily and Katrina) and now enjoys their growing family, including grandsons Liam and Giles.“I’ve found photography helps me be more observant of the world around me,” he says. “I now notice things that had eluded me earlier. For example, I’m more conscious of things like the color of the clouds, the way the light casts certain shadows, the different colors of the leaves on the trees. Being aware of my surroundings and living in the now ends up inspiring both my photography and my outlook on life.”  &Shutterbugs, grab your cameras! The 2013 Picture Plymouth photo contest is live at August 1–31. Log on to enter your favorite images for your chance to win, then log on again in September to vote for your readers’ choice.