Patrick Saggers is Melbourne born and raised, but it took a semester overseas to get him into the photography game.
Studying at the University of Oregon earlier this year gave Patrick the opportunity to hit the asphalt in between classes, driving from coast to coast and capturing some insane images along the way. A stop in at the White Sands of New Mexico gifted Patrick with the incredible image of a lone figure standing amongst a sea of white, and in turn, gave us our Student winner who we were more than chuffed to hang upon our gallery walls. We talked to Patrick about his future travel plans, favourite cameras, and why his winning shot almost didn’t happen.
What are your plans for the $5k?
Well, I should probably pay off some credit card debts but…I’ve desperately needed a new laptop so this is perfect timing.
What do you dig most about your winning photo?
That it almost didn’t happen. We were doing a road trip through America and it was a race against time to get to White Sands before it closed. White Sands is in a missile testing area so if we’d missed it that day we couldn’t have come back because the area was going to closed for testing. I also like the fact that in the middle of this beautiful landscape with no reception there’s a guy looking down checking his phone.
Has taking a photo ever gotten you in trouble?
Not the legal kind but I got into a few tight spots shooting the landscape in the US. The most memorable being driving in a closed national park in Oregon in the middle of winter, completely alone, with snowing falling down and my car got stuck in the snow. I had to dig my way out. Being from Melbourne I’d never experienced driving in the snow before. The next day I went out and bought snow chains.
What’s the one shot that got away?
There hasn’t been that one amazing shot that I wish I’d got…yet… I’m sure there’s one to come.
Who’s a photographer that inspires you and why?
There’s a lot of great photographers who inspire me but I think someone who really inspired me was my photography teacher at the University of Oregon, Stephen Milner.
You’ve got to escape from a burning building and you can only take one of your photos. What is it?
I think the picture I’m most proud of is the one that won.
What’s your favourite gear to shoot with and why?
I’ve always had a Canon camera so would have to say that’s my favourite. Most of my shots have been taken with a Canon 6D with the 24-70mm lens and Canon AE-1 Program.
Your dream location or subject to shoot?
There’s a few but I’m planning a trip to India next year hopefully in time to shoot the Festival of Colour which I’m excited about.
What was the first photo you remember being proud of?
It’s probably a shot from Cougar Dam in Oregon. I think it was around this time that I decided that I was really passionate about photography and wanted to make it my career.