Hogan Wins 2015 Zoom Contest

The votes are in and the overall winner of this year’s Zoom Contests which featured six monthly themes and winners has been determined.

Congratulations to Michelle Hogan of Millar Lake, Ontario, our 2015 Zoom Champion! Michelle’s shot of Conrad Seelster enjoying a spring mud bath in his paddock on a rainy Bruce Peninsula day was also the winner in May’s Zoom contest which featured the theme, Spring Fever.

We checked in with Michelle to see how Conrad is doing. “He is doing GREAT! You would never know he's 23 turning 24 (He certainly doesn't know it)!” Michelle was recently married and Conrad posed in some of the wedding photos!

Beyond photography, Michelle is a very talented artist. Michelle’s pen and ink artwork has been featured in the Equine Jubilee Art Show in Delaware, Ohio, as well as the American Academy of Equine Art Fall Open exhibit in Georgetown, Kentucky. 2015 has turned out to be her most successful year to date for art as her work was accepted into four different juried shows - 10 different pieces in total.

At "An Equine Jubilee" in Delaware, Ohio, Michelle’s drawing "Catch Drive" featuring Luc Ouellette was awarded the Best Entry Depicting a Pacer or Trotter.

Michelle’s portrait of Sebastian K is currently hanging at the AAEA Fall Open Exhibit in Georgetown, Kentucky. That show closes October 31st. At "Art at the Classic" (Draft Horse Classic) in Grass Valley, California, one of Michelle’s drawings was awarded Third place.

Several of Michelle’s pieces have also been purchased by well respected harness racing individuals/families this year and she hopes to keep the momentum going into 2016!

Michelle grew up in Lynden, just down the road from Flamboro Downs. With no family ties to the industry, she had an early love for horses and found her first job as a groom for Sandra Houghton. While working for Jeff Houghton, she was introduced to Conrad Seelster. Hogan was Conrad’s groom and traveled all over Ontario with him and the Houghton family to race at different small tracks. When Conrad finally retired from racing and was finished his time with the OHHA Youth Camps, he was given to OSAS. Michelle adopted him and brought him home to retire. For the most part he just hangs out and keeps her paint horse company, but she does ride him a bit on the trails. “He also gives rides to local kids and just soaks up the attention. You could not find a kinder horse,” says Michelle.

Michelle has won a $50 gift card to the racetrack of her choice and a framed enlargement of her winning photo!

The I Love Canadian Harness Racing Fan Club would like to thank everyone who submitted photos to all of this year’s Zoom Challenges.

To see many of the photos submitted, check out the monthly Zoom galleries.

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