WHISTLER, BC, March 20, 2001 ¿ The 3rd annual Pro Photographer Search has announced the six finalists who will compete on April 16 & 17 in Whistler during the TELUS World Ski & Snowboard Festival.

The finalists include two veterans from last year’s Pro Photographer Search, Blake Jorgenson (Whistler) and Therese Lundgren (Sweden). They will be joined this year by Ilya Herb (Pemberton), Jeff Corbett (Whistler), Dean Cote (Whistler) and Ruben Sanchez (Kings Beach, CA).

“The Review Committee had their work cut out for them as they judged this year’s entries,” says Catherine Yates, Multimedia Events Producer, Resort Communications Group. “The committee chose finalists based on images alone, as each photographer’s identity was concealed.”

The Review Committee was made up of professional photographers Greg Griffith, Bonny Makarewicz and 1999 Search winner Bruce Rowles. Representing the design and marketing sector were Kerri Stewart and Robin Dutcher of Whistler/Blackcomb’s Marketing Department, and RCG’s Creative Director, Duane Hepditch.

“Entries were judged based on technical proficiency and on the subjective feelings that the images invoked, providing a desire to see more,” relates Yates. “Although a difficult task to choose only six, the review committee is confident in its choices. This year’s Search promises to weave exciting and inspirational stories, offering celebration and validation to all those who pursue sport as a lifestyle.

Search entries were received from Japan, Brazil, Jackson WY, Chicago, California, Montreal, Ontario, Vancouver and Whistler. A wide variety of action sports were represented including skiing, snowboarding, skate, surf, rock & ice climbing, kayaking, mountain biking.

The Pro Photographer Search will take place over two evenings, April 16 & 17, at Merlin’s Bar & Grill. Doors open at 9:00 pm and the show will begin at 9:45 pm sharp. Tickets are $5.00 and will be available at the door with all proceeds going to the Zero Ceiling, a non-profit organization offering snow sports alternatives to street youth.

Each photographer will have 12 minutes to show their best work set to their choice of music. An expert panel of judges will chose one “Best of Show” who will advance to take the wildcard seat at the Pro Photographer Showdown on April 19, where they will present their work along side industry legends J. Grant Brittain, Jeff Divine, Mark Gallup and Joe McBride.

The Pro Photographer events are presented by Resort Communications Group as a cornerstone of the TELUS World Ski & Snowboard Festival taking place in Whistler April 13-22, 2001. Highlights of the Festival include the internationally televised World Skiing Invitational and World Snowboarding Championship, the Yahoo! Live Concert Series, Super Demo Days, film premieres, industry symposiums and the Pro Photographer Search and Showdown. Check out the action at www.wssf.com