Gunnery Student Awarded 2nd Place in AAPT Photo Award Competition

The Gunnery is pleased to announce that Kenyon Kay ’18 received 2nd place overall in the Natural Gallery for the 2016 American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) High School Physics Photo Contest with his photo Bullseye Polaris.” Jingqiong “Miranda” Yang ’17 was selected as one of the 100 photos for the final gallery for her photo, Reflections on Religion.”
There are over 1000 photos submitted nationally each year to the AAPT photo contest and only 100 are selected. Students must submit an essay to go along with the photo that explains the physics behind the image.

“Both of these students were assigned to take pictures in the Advanced Digital Photography class where they produced excellent work that Mr. Richards displayed in the lobby of the dining hall,” said Mr. Steve Bailey, Science Department Chair. “ They had established themselves already as excellent science students and were a joy to engage in conversation about the physics of their pictures. They were instantly enthusiastic about the relationship between art and physics which ultimately resulted in their prize-worthy submissions. It was a testament to the dedication and time-consuming efforts needed to get just the right picture coupled with the appropriate scientific essay. Well done to them both!”

In order to create the photo Bullseye Polaris, Kenyon camped out and took ninety-four long exposures for two hours and,then, layered the images over one another. This allows one to see the exaggeration of the path the stars take. To read Kenyon’s full essay, please click here.

“The first time I did this photo process I was instantly hooked,” said Kenyon. “Surprisingly, it was not that complicated but it took a lot of time to complete. Before I came to The Gunnery I had an interest in photography but after taking photography courses my freshman and sophomore year my interest grew. I’m hoping to teach a photography course my senior year.”

Kenyon is working to expand his portfolio on a website that he created and designed himself, at www.kenyonkay.com.

Over the past ten years Kevin Shaughnessy ’09 (honorable mention), Boya Zhao ’13, and Zikun “Rammy” Xu ’16, were selected for the final 100 photo gallery that is displayed and judged at the AAPT National Meeting. Since 2008 The Gunnery has had 2-4 submissions per year to the contest.

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Founded in 1850 by abolitionist, educator, and outdoorsman Frederick Gunn, The Gunnery is a coeducational college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9 through 12/post-graduate. Dedicated teacher-mentor-coaches challenge students to reach their full potential in a home-like setting where character and citizenship are valued as much as intellect and achievement. Individualized attention and high expectations help young learners develop not only the skills and confidence they will need in college, but also the moral compass and love of learning that will serve them well in life. The school attracts ambitious, academically curious students who will both shine as unique individuals and thrive as contributing members of a deeply connected community. By the time they graduate, Gunnery students have become well rounded, grounded young adults with a sharpened sense of who they are and who they want to become.