TARPON SPRINGS — The Tarpon Springs Art Association held the awards ceremony for its 2021 Paint and Photo contest winners at the Tarpon Springs Cultural Center on Friday, Oct. 15. The plein air, or outdoor, event ran from Oct. 11 through Oct. 15, with artists and photographers from around the state and the country working on location capturing the scenic beauty of Tarpon Springs.

In addition to recognizing winners in categories including photography, quick draw, paint, and people’s choice, the TSAA honored three artists with special memorial awards: Petera Semple, an acrylic artist who painted fauna and culture of Florida and co-founded the TSAA; Lee Albion, an internationally renowned watercolor artist who was a longtime TSAA member; and Sue Thomas, a former president of the Tarpon Chamber and Rotary and noted nature photographer who passed away unexpectedly over the summer.

During the leadup to the event, TSAA past president Trish Gregory, who assumed the mantle of getting the word out about the event in the wake of Thomas’ death, said of her longtime friend, “Sue was our publicity chair, and I was the co-chair, but she was the expert in the PR. She did so much. Her death was such a big loss.”

Gregory, an accomplished photographer, also took home an award, winning first place in the photography category for her colorful portrait of the Sponge Docks at dusk.

Complete list of awards and winners:

Quick Draw:

First: Kim Shield; HM: Angel Mercado, Ed Barker, Kathy Detrano, Shari Gaines

Memorial Awards:

Petera Semple: Jana Withers

Lee Albion: Lionel Sanchez

Sue Thomas: Peggy McCardel

Friends of Brooker Creek (Sponsored by Eddie and Barbara Hoffman)

Paint: Sue McCubbin

Photo: Sally Fuller

Heather Risley People’s Choice Award (Voted on by guests and artists)

Downtown Tarpon Springs, Frank Hipp. Sponsored by the Tarpon Springs Art Guild


First: Trish Gregory; Second: Stephen Levin; Third: Amy Fitzgerald; HM: Peggy McCardle, Amy Regenstein, Donovan Regenstein,


First: Kathy Detrano; Second: Tammy Dickerson; Third: Kathy Cappadona Jenkins; HM: Kim Shields, Jana Withers, M’rissa Rosenthal, Angel Mercado, Shari Gaines, Steve Benevides

People’s Choice: Heather Risley Award

Steve Benevides