‘He’s very in­quis­i­tive’

Ber­wick boy wows judges with two win­ning pho­tos in Mid­dle­ton con­test


No one was more sur­prised about the win­ners of Mac­don­ald Mu­seum’s land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy con­test than nine-year-old Ai­den Koz­era.

He won first and sec­ond place in the youth cat­e­gory.

The Ber­wick young­ster cred­its a school project with get­ting him started in pho­tog­ra­phy, and his fa­ther for get­ting him hooked when he gave Ai­den his old cam­era. The two go on pho­tog­ra­phy ad­ven­tures to­gether.

Win­ners of the mu­seum’s firstever pho­tog­ra­phy con­test were on hand Oct. 4 for the an­nounce­ments of the win­ners by mu­seum di­rec­tor Jan­ice Slauen­white and the open­ing of the ex­hibit fea­tur­ing more than 50 en­tries in youth and adult cat­e­gories.

Becky Fos­ter of Mount Han­ley was third in the youth cat­e­gory with a river pho­to­graph, a work of art that could easily have com­peted in the adult cat­e­gory. Ai­den’s win­ners were a night­time 25-minute timed ex­po­sure cre­at­ing star trails, and a slow-ex­po­sure cap­ture of wa­ter­falls.

No­body told Ai­den he’d won, but when he saw the red rib­bon be­side his star trails photo his smile lit the room. It was am­pli­fied sec­onds later when he no­ticed the sec­ond­place rib­bon by his wa­ter­fall photo. Of course, he had to take a pic­ture of his award-win­ning pho­tos.

Stun­ning cap­ture

Jim Comer of Mid­dle­ton won first place in the adult cat­e­gory with his stun­ning cap­ture of fish­ing boats safe in the har­bour. He was no­table for his other en­try of snow fall­ing on trees at the edge of the An­napo­lis River. Both works were monochro­matic in na­ture and note­wor­thy for their com­po­si­tion.

Belle Grant-Fairn of Mid­dle­ton was sec­ond in the adult cat­e­gory with a photo taken from a boat with the bow in the fore­ground, wa­ter, and trees in the dis­tance. It was also note­wor­thy for its com­po­si­tion.

Jenny Rice of Bridgetown was third in the adult cat­e­gory with a stun­ningly com­posed pho­to­graph of a shore­line with eye-catch­ing per­spec­tive and ex­po­sure. It’s also note­wor­thy for its sepia tones.


Ai­den’s fa­ther was at the ex­hibit open­ing, and jus­ti­fi­ably proud of his son.

“He’s very in­quis­i­tive. He likes to take things apart and put them back to­gether, so hav­ing a cam­era that has at­tach­ments and can be taken apart and add dif­fer­ent things to it is right up his al­ley,” said Matt Koz­era of Ai­den’s ini­tial in­ter­est. “That’s what I think spawned the whole thing.”

He said Ai­den’s eye for com­po­si­tion is com­ing along.

“He’s been fol­low­ing me around a lot, and he’s kind of got me back into it, too,” the el­der Koz­era said, ex­plain­ing that his son has mo­ti­vated him and it’s great to have a buddy to go tak­ing pic­tures with.

“He gets the tri­pod out and he sets it up and he’s very par­tic­u­lar where he puts it,” he said. “He’s play­ing with the ex­po­sure, and that’s what he’s re­ally in love with is the long ex­po­sure – like the silky wa­ter and the star trails. That’s what he’s into right now.”

“When the Earth spins, you get the stars in lines,” Ai­den ex­plained of the star trails photo that won the con­test for him.

Ai­den got to be the pho­tog­ra­pher for a school project.

“So I brought in the cam­era,” Ai­den said, “and I re­ally liked do­ing it.”

“My dad gave it to me once he got a new cam­era.”

Range of tal­ent

“It was a re­ally nice range of tal­ent in both cat­e­gories,” said Slaunen­white, “es­pe­cially to see the youth, of course. Their ages ranged from four to 16, so that was ex­cit­ing.”

En­tries were from across the An­napo­lis Val­ley, and this year’s topic was Val­ley Land­scapes, Slauen­white said. She’s al­ready com­mit­ted to hold­ing the con­test again next year with an­i­mals or por­traits as the sub­ject.

Prizes for the land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy con­test were Henry’s Cam­era gift cards, $100 for first, $50 for sec­ond and $25 for third in each age cat­e­gory.

The ex­hibit that has re­sulted from the con­test will run un­til Oct. 19 at the mu­seum and is free to see. The ex­hibit also in­cludes work by the three judges of the con­test.

“It’s well worth a visit to the mu­seum,” Slauen­white said.


Nine-year-old Ai­den Koz­era sits on the steps at Mac­don­ald Mu­seum in Mid­dle­ton, where he just found out he’d won not only first place, but also sec­ond place, in the youth cat­e­gory of the mu­seum’s first-ever photo con­test. The cam­era he’s hold­ing was given to him by his fa­ther, Matt.


Jim Comer of Mid­dle­ton won first place in the adult cat­e­gory of Mac­don­ald Mu­seum’s land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy con­test. Here, he poses with his win­ning pho­to­graph.


No­body told Ai­den Koz­era that he won first and sec­ond place in the Mac­don­ald Mu­seum’s land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy con­test. When he dis­cov­ered it at the open­ing of the ex­hibit that re­sulted from the con­test, he was happy and ex­cited - so ex­cited he took pho­tos.


Ai­den Koz­era’s first-place photo in the youth cat­e­gory.

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