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Photographer's Note

Standing in complete balance you find Australia's Steve Elkington, finishing his shot during a practice round, into the number 11 green of Augusta National at The Masters Tournament. Arguably considered on of the greatest of the four 'majors' golf tournaments, it is the beauty of tradition and its trappings as a national symbol that announce spring in America.

There are a few factors that make this photo special to me:

First, its simplicity. Mr. Elkington has one of the most beautiful swings in all of golf. Couple his balance and poise here with the traditional caddie-white Augusta jumpsuit, the verdant boundary of the course, the player's black threads and the beauty of spring blooming in the dogwood and I believe that I have captured a timeless piece.

Second, this photo will likely never be taken again, for no longer do you have only rough (the deeper, more punishing grass outside of the fairway) between the lens and the player. As if this lengthy par 4 (the hardest hole by rating on the course) was not enough for the players, the Augusta National planted thirty-six pine trees, measuring 25 - 35 feet in height, in the rough around the landing area of player's tee shots. The toughest hole just got tougher.

Finally, this shot is apropos. Each of the 18 holes at Augusta National has inherited the nomenclature of flora and fauna found in the fertile Augusta soils here (e.g. Tea Olive, Pampas and Cherry). This hole's name - Dogwood.

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