On July 24, the Bubbas: Key West People’s Choice Awards winners will be named at the Key West Theater. But much like Christmas, it is often the anticipation leading up to the event that provides the most fun.

 With 85 categories and winners, there is no shortage of friendly competition and intense measures as nominees lobby for votes. But each year, there are just some categories that seemingly pair up three unique nominees who soak up the moment. To promote this year’s 2021 Bubbas, and the event’s support of Wesley House Family Services, we highlight three community favorites (with a unique eye) in the Best Photographer category, which promises to be a close vote no matter who claims the “Bubba” this year. 

Congrats to all of the nominees and the winners, who will be announced in the paper following the July 24 Red Carpet event at Key West Theater.

We asked our three finalists in Best Photographer — 2021 Bubbas: Key West People’s Choice Awards the following:

1. Where are you from and how long have you been in the Keys?  

2. What was your first professional shoot or paying job in the Keys? 

3. Your biggest pet peeve while working? 

4. Best photography advice you’ve received?

5. Most memorable shoot of your life? 

6. Finish this sentence: “When I’m behind the camera, I feel….

Iris Moore | Iris Moore Photography 

1. Vero Beach, Florida | Six years in Key West. My grandmother and father were both born here, so I grew up coming down here as a kid.

2. June 2015. 

3. Guests taking selfies during wedding ceremonies.

4. It’s not about how much or how good your gear is…

5. Conjoined twins in a bridal party. No joke. 

6. When I’m behind the camera I feel … “Extremely happy that I’m not the one on the other side. I hate pictures of myself.”

Larry Blackburn | Larry Blackburn Photography 

1.  Originally from Jacksonville, Florida. Twelve years in Key West.

2.  First professional gig in Key West: Week-long coverage of Fantasy Fest for EDGE, an International LGBT publication.

3. Cell phone photographers and other inconsiderate people who ignore the fact that there is a shoot going on.

4.  Don’t get discouraged. You’re going to take a great number of bad photographs.

5.  Having a symphony/ballet shoot published in the New York Times. It was the first time my images were picked up by the wire services.

6.  When I’m behind the camera I feel … “like I am taking a split second in time and saving that moment for an eternity.”

Nick Doll | Nick Doll Photography 

1. Originally from Kentucky, but I’ve been in South Florida since high school. Moved to Key West from St. Pete 11 years ago on a whim. 

2. It might have been shooting pre-show portraits for Key West Burlesque, but that was probably just trade for tickets, lol not sure. It also might have just been a wedding. I connected with a wedding planner right away and got into that relatively quickly for back then. Who can remember these things?

3. Talking to people. At all. 

4. Squint your eyes to get a better idea of basic composition. I learned it in college back when it was all film, and someone told me to squint to get a better visualization of how shooting in black & white works. But I’ve learned it works for several things.

5. Most memorable shoot is probably some of the TDC shoots Mike Marrero and I did back in the day …15- to 20-person crew, multi-day shoots. They were intense. Especially one particular shot in front of The Artist House with 10 other people as on-camera “talent.” My most memorable shot may be a lightning strike shot at a wedding on Sunset Key after cocktails, but a second before rushing off to a presidential seating reception. 

6. When I’m behind a camera I feel … “Whew, I dunno. Buffered? Or maybe just lots of anxiety. It depends.”

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Britt Myers traded in a life of monetary success, a chiseled body and intellectual enlightenment for a piece of the pie of the Keys Weekly newspapers. He is also the proud parent of an incredible six-year-old and a sucker for Michael Mann movies and convenience store hot dogs.