First Shot Photo Contest in Honor of Andrew Youssef

R.I.P., Andrew Youssef
R.I.P., Andrew Youssef

It's hard to believe a full year has passed the loss of friend, photographer and fellow Weekling Andrew Youssef. The veteran 38-year-old journalist lost his three-year battle with colon cancer on November 30, 2013. For those that haven't, please read about his amazing life in the cover story we wrote about him. The thing Youssef will always be remembered for is living out the last few years of his life in incredible fashion. He worked tirelessly, producing stunning images for the Weekly, as well as Stereogum, the Register and his own website, Amateur Chemist in the face of so much physical and mental pain. He always said that even in his darkest days, it was his love of music and photography that helped keep him alive. Near the end of his life, he penned a harrowing, award-winning column, Last Shot, which detailed his journey as a music photographer and cancer patient. Reading through it again a year later, the way he describes his struggle should inspire any young photographer or journalist to take stock of their own commitment to their craft.

In honor of Youssef, the Weekly is launching it's First Shot Photo Competition for amateur OC-based photographers. From now until Dec. 31, one aspiring local photographer will receive some well-earned recognition in honor of our fallen brother. The winner will have a select number of images posted as a permanent slideshow on our main website and will receive a featured article on them in our paper the following week. Submissions will be taken through the end of the month and the winner will be announced on January 5. The full rules and details of the competition can be found after jump.

First Shot Photo Contest Rules

1. This competition is for amateur Orange County/ Long Beach photographers only. In order to be eligible, applicants must have no previous images published by professional media outlets, either online or in print (personal blogs, social media pages, college and high school newspapers are okay).

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2. Please submit 3-5 (maximum) of your work shooting a local concert in the OC/Long Beach area. Photos should be no more than three years-old. Photos can be of a local band or a national act as long as they are taken somewhere within the borders of OC or Long Beach.

3. Along with the photos, applicants must write a 300-500 (maximum) word essay about how Andrew Youssef's story resonates with you as an aspiring photographer. Please read some of our coverage of Andrew's struggle by clicking here.

4. Attach the essay and the images in a zip file and send to Music Editor Nate Jackson by Dec 31. The entries can be sent to The applicants will be judged by Nate Jackson, photo/web editor Taylor Hamby and the Youssef family. One winner will be announced on January 5. Please submit a link to your most used social media page (Facebook, Twitter or Instagram) when you email your application.

5. The winner will get a slide show of a select number of their original images to be posted on OC Weekly's main website as the "First Shot Photography Contest Winner" and will receive a Locals Only column feature written by Nate Jackson.

Good Luck!

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