If you’re a regular reader of this blog (mum, dad, sis…you still read, don’t you?) you’ll recall that I wrote a couple of posts recently about Karen Strunks’ 4am Project. Well, I received notification yesterday – quite unexpected, I assure you – that my photo has been selected as one of the 24 finalists. Given that over 1,500 photos were submitted to the project after this latest 4am event, I’m pretty chuffed I’m still standing.
There are prizes for all the finalists, which is nice to know. However, the coveted first prize is a Nikon D90 Camera with 18-105mm lens (worth £1029.99).
If we had the freedom to choose how the final would be decided, I’d probably opt for a good old fashioned race down a hill on a sunny afternoon. First past the post soaks their liver in Pimms! However, my rules would state that I’d be travelling downhill in the womb of a Zorb Ball, while my competitors would be forced to caterpillar across hot embers. Sadly, though, I’ve been told that such a contest won’t be possible. Because the winning 4am photograph will be decided by YOU.
It’s no good looking over your shoulder; you know I’m talking to you. Yes – you. Hello!
Originally, I was going to post some suggestions about how I’d like you all to vote, such as:
1) Vote for ME – Photo 16.
2) Even if you prefer another photo and believe it to be artistically and technically superior to mine…vote for ME – Photo 16.
3) Once you’ve voted for me (Photo 16), you should encourage your friends and relatives to vote for me also. Wherever possible, it pays to find people who have no opinion on anything (and even better if they can’t tell the difference between a photograph and the moving picture box in the corner of the room). Just as long as you can successfully manipulate them to vote for me – with the minimum of fuss (and/or threats) – that’s all that matters.
4) Remember, vote for me – Photo 16. (If you’re sculpting the number 16 in some mash right now or carving the number into your arm with a broken bottle, my attempt to ‘Derren Brown’ you all has succeeded.)
Anyway, that’s what I was going to do, but I’ve since had second thoughts. After all, there are some stunningly (read: annoyingly) good photos on display for your delectation, which makes the following outcome a near certainty: I’m not going to win. But that’s not to say I don’t still need your help. Because I urgently need your help to at least secure me a final position that doesn’t feel too much like humiliating failure. Even 23rd will do it (but a teensy bit higher is better, if I’m honest).
The competition is terrifyingly strong. It feels like I’ve brought my pasty, underwhelming, 36-year-old body to a ‘Britain’s Hunkiest Man’ contest, where my fellow competitors all have dancing pecks, granite buttocks and six-packs that could rip the tracks from a Challenger Tank. Remaining in this analogy for a second – standing on stage feeling inadequate – I’d look pleadingly into the audience for a kind soul to throw me a can of ‘spray tan abs’, some hair gel and a kitten to stroke (to divert people’s attention away from the glaringly obvious DIY makeover).
Well this is me, now, looking pleadingly at you all. So please can you do me a favour and visit the 4am Project website to register your vote. You’re obviously free to vote for the photo that you genuinely think is worthy of the top prize. But if you can find it in yourself to vote for my photo, I’d be very grateful indeed. (You have until midnight GMT on Monday 19th April, 2010).