Third-year photography student named a SNAP!Star
March 30, 2011

Student Alanna Staunton’s photo of a scale given to her by the Halifax Eating Disorder Clinic earned her one of 10 of the SNAP! Star prizes for university student photographers from across Canada.

Along with receiving a cash prize from TD Canada Trust, Alanna displayed her winning photograph at SNAP!, the AIDS Committee of Toronto’s annual photographic fundraiser on March 27, 2011.

Here's an excerpt from Elissa Barnard's article in the March 24, 2011Chronicle Herald, entitled "Old scales yield winning photo":

"Used bathroom scales inspired photography student Alanna Staunton for her SNAP! contest-winning image.

Staunton, finishing up her third year at NSCAD University, is going back to her hometown of Toronto this weekend as one of 10 university student photographers who are SNAP! Stars. She receives a $1,500 cash prize from TD Canada Trust and displays her winning photograph at the live auction for SNAP!, the AIDS Committee of Toronto’s annual photographic fundraiser, on Sunday.

'It’s a real honour to be chosen and it’s a really exciting opportunity, especially for someone like me who’s just finishing the third year of university,' said Staunton. 'It’s a great cause. I’m really excited to help support them.'

She entered after an instructor encouraged her, and she chose to submit work from one of her current series.

'I photographed a series of bathroom scales given to me by the outpatient Eating Disorder Clinic in Halifax," says Staunton, who has been a patient at the clinic.

'They had a bunch of scales people had given them, their personal scales. They were cleaning them out. They knew I was an artist and they asked me if I wanted them.'

Staunton grabbed the scales.

'I took them into the studio. I wanted to look at them as objects themselves, as loaded objects.'

She didn’t alter the scales or her images to get at symbolism in the nine she photographed.

'They’re just as they were. I wanted the objects to speak for themselves and photographs can do that because they’re so descriptive.'

The winning image is a Slim Trim scale that is broken and stuck at close to 190 pounds. There are imprints of feet worn into the shiny, pale gold metal.

'That one was particularly wonderful because there’s the ghosting of the feet. That spoke to me about how much time we spend with these objects. You can see the wear built up over the years.'"
You can read the full Chronicle Herald article here.