News Column

Artists display creativity

September 1, 2014

By Brandon Roberts, The Ironton Tribune, Ohio

Sept. 01--The 2014 Photoshop World Conference and Expo takes place in Las Vegas this week and Ohio University Southern will be represented among tens of thousands of photography and graphic design professionals and enthusiasts attending the annual event.

OUS senior applied management major Benjamin Dean submitted three photography entries for the 2014 Photoshop World photography contest and was named one of 20 finalists among the nearly 10,000 entries submitted worldwide.

Contest submissions were judged on creativity and originality by a jury, including many of the most recognized and respected Photoshop and digital photography instructors in the country.

Dean's winning entry, "Prom Night II," was taken in an abandoned tank-cleaning facility near the OUS campus in Ironton. It features a young lady in a glamorous gown, juxtaposed against a seemingly rundown and rubbish-filled space. The photograph subject, Rikki Fraley, is an OUS graduate in early childhood education.

"I love the texture of the walls with old buildings," Dean said. "When I first discovered the abandoned building, I took pictures of it in its original condition. Later, I wanted to create a more surreal narration."

The concept for the photograph originated as an assignment for his Introduction to Digital Photography class with senior lecturer of art, Tom Suter.

"I learned to accept and learn from constructive criticism in order to improve the overall quality and feel of digital photography," Dean said. "It's really neat."

For Suter, Dean's achievement as a student has far-reaching implications. While the top-three finishers have been announced ahead of the annual conference in Las Vegas, and does not include Dean, it is an honor to have one of his students named the world's best contestants.

"He has amazing talent with an eye for detail" Suter said. "He lives for learning. What a real testament of his skill and ability to receive this incredible nomination. He is truly a 24-hour a day, seven-days-a-week student."

Dean earned his associate degree in electronic media in December of 2013. As a student worker, he is also the lead photographer for the marketing department at OUS. More of his work can be seen by visiting


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Source: Ironton Tribune, The (Ohio)

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