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Local photographer to have a picture featured on Jones Soda bottles

Published: Dec. 9, 2020 at 10:18 AM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - If you’ve ever had or even seen a bottle of Jones Soda you know that they feature different pictures on the front of every bubble-filled beverage.

Generally, photographers submit their work to the company, oftentimes for various campaigns, and now a photo taken by a retired line officer for the Anchorage airport police and crash rescue firefighting department, John Gomes has made the cut for the Jones Soda “Unsung Heros” series.

Speaking with Gomes this week, he had a gregarious smile on his face as he held his hand above his head and said, “I’m about that high up off the ground.”

Along with the excitement came a bit of surprise.

“Yeah, I didn’t realize the ramification,” said Gomes.

What ramifications, you ask? Well, the picture featured here in this article is now going to be plastered on the front of some 40,000 bottles of Jones Soda. It’s all part of the Unsung Heros campaign, honoring essential and frontline workers of the pandemic.

As a former line officer, that’s a cause close to Gomes’ heart but it’s his post-retirement love of photography that made him well suited to snap the bottle worthy picture. Gomes is the volunteer photographer for the Alaska Zoo, a post that has helped him get his work published numerous times, but he says this experience feels a little different.

“It’s jazzy, I mean I’ve had my pictures pretty much all over the world in relation to the zoo with the animals that we’ve had and the elephant that we flew out. Something like this though, it never crossed my mind. I’m just a guy taking pictures, trying to show people what Anchorage looks like year-round, day to day, that’s my only intent,” said Gomes.

The bottles that will feature Gomes’s work are slated to come out in the early part of 2021 for those hoping to snag one.

You can also find his work in our weather pictures segment on Alaska’s News Source where Gomes has been submitting work for years.

Correction: This story has been updated with information about Gomes’ former profession. He is a retired line officer, not firefighter chief.

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