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Archive for the Exhibition Category
I’m proud and excited to announce that my badger vaccination story the alternative is a winner of the 2013 British Wildlife Photography Awards. The six-image portfolio picked up the top award in the Documentary category – my second win in as many years of entering the category (my last win was in 2011 as I served as a judge of the competition in 2012).
The set of photographs documents the process of trapping and vaccinating badgers against bovine TB. Many of the UK’s most influential scientists, NGOs and landowners – such as The Wildlife Trusts and The National Trust – believe vaccination is a viable alternative to culling. Yet, the government has chosen to press ahead with a cull in England, claiming that culling badgers is the best method for controlling bovine TB in Britain’s cattle. Find out more on the Badger Trust website.
This six image edit is taken from my autumn 2011 BBC Wildlife magazine cover feature Kill or Cure, which also featured as an online gallery on their website discoverwildlife.com. You can also see a more complete set of images on my website conservationphotojournalism.com
Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the awards in London as I am currently working in Africa but I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to all winners in the 2013 British Wildlife Photography Awards. Please support the awards by attending the exhibition as it travels around the UK and by buying the book on the BWPA website.
The exhibition of the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards is currently on at London’s Somerset House and, while I don’t usually use my blog to review exhibitions or publications, I just felt there was a little too much to say for one tweet…
As expected, the breadth of the concepts on show at the exhibition is considerable and should inspire any photographer to develop a new way of looking at the world…until you get to the ‘Nature and Wildlife’ category, that is. With so many important issues affecting our natural world to communicate through a powerful medium like photography with the backing of a global brand like Sony, I couldn’t help leaving the exhibition feeling let down. Not to take anything away from those photographers that brought us beautiful, amusing and striking studio portraits of chickens and flowers, the organisers simply need to think very carefully about what it is they want to achieve through this category. Quite simply, the ‘Nature and Wildlife’ selection fails to deliver insight into any real issues in the way that other categories do. The competition’s website does actually feature a shortlisted story on gorillas, proclaiming that the “series is about the gorillas, these apes losing their natural habitat”. Yet, rather disappointingly, the photo set turns out to be a bunch of close-ups of captive gorillas, expressed in black and white to presumably add some element of eloquence and poignancy. If this category is not meant to convey any serious message (or place any real importance on showing wild animals or places), the best move the organisers could make is to rename it something less assuming, like the ‘Animals and Plants’ category.
For all of these reasons, the greatest example of application in photographing wildlife and nature in its true form is in fact evident in the open competition, instead of amongst the professionals. Above and beyond creating a beautiful image, in taking his winning photograph Krasimir Matarov has actually bothered to take us out of the studio or zoo and into the wild, alien world of the spider.
But these are just my thoughts. The 2013 Sony World Photography Awards exhibition is at Somerset House until 12 May 2013. Why not see for yourself?
Join me on the Canon stand at the British Birdfair for seminars on telling wildlife stories with your camera. Every day from Friday the 17th to Sunday the 19th of August I will be talking through the shots I have to get and the decisions I have to make to tell award-winning stories and keep my editors happy. Download the seminar schedule here
As a Canon photographer, I will be showing just why my equipment choice allows me to work on books and magazine features while thinking about my online audience at the same time. During the seminars I will be trying to convince you to photograph more than just pretty wildlife portraits.
Having just returned from promoting my new African wild dog book Underdogs and picking up an award in the International Conservation Photography Awards in the United States, I will be revealing the importance of being able to photograph wildlife, landscapes and people to pulling together a project that matters. You will also have the chance to ask me your questions on equipment, the industry and how I captured the work that I will be showing you.
This year’s Birdfair will also see me delivering a lecture on the Limpopo Valley on Sunday the 19th in marquee 2 and spending time on the Estonia Nature Tours stand to talk about my upcoming 2013 photo tour in partnership with leading Estonian photographer Remo Savisaar. See the tour itinerary here.
Remember that a signed copy of Underdogs is also available in the Birdfair auction. See you there…
In total, seven of my images feature in the winning portfolio currently exhibited at Seattle’s Burke Museum. You can also see the images on the competition’s website icpawards.com. The six African wild dog photographs feature in the Documenting a Conservation Project category. My image of the colourful Viru bog in Estonia features as highly commended in the Landscape category (join me in Estonia in 2013).
The awards were held at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture on Friday the 29th of June. I also presented a talk to visitors and fellow photographers on my work with fellow ICPA winner and conservation photographer Sam Owen at the public opening of the exhibition on Saturday 30 June.
The Underdogs project has enjoyed great success internationally. This prestigious award is the project’s latest achievement in a list that includes the 2010 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and an ILCP exhibition in the United States.
Building on the buzz created around the badger vaccination story published in BBC Wildlife Magazine earlier this month, I’m really pleased to announce that another of my conservation portfolios has won the documentary category in the British Wildlife Photography Awards. Six shots entitled It’s Only a Game from my country shoot portfolio will be exhibited at the WildlifeXpo event at Alexandra Palace in London from the 14th of October. They will then tour the country as part of the BWPA exhibition over the coming year – find out where you can catch the exhibition by going to the exhibitions page of the BWPA website.
Winning this category is made all the more rewarding when thinking how I photographed the story. I challenged myself to photograph for the day’s shoot in reportage/documentary style with only one camera body and a fixed 50mm lens set on fully manual settings. This was a challenge I set myself as a break from typical long-lens wildlife photography and to fine-tune my skills as a photojournalist. The skills used to get these shots have helped me shoot subsequent stories, such as my African wild dog book Underdogs.
The category win builds on my commended white-tailed eagle image in the 2010 competition. You can view a more comprehensive edit of the country shoot portfolio in the ‘stories‘ section of my main website. Or you could support the competition by finding the portfolio in the latest BWPA book ‘Collection 2‘.
My image ‘Survivor‘ has been announced as part of the winning portfolio of the coveted international Wildlife Photographer of the Year award. This image of an alert and vulnerable alpha female African wild dog was chosen as one of the top shots in the Gerald Durrell Award for Endangered Wildlife. You can see the photograph and the stunning exhibition of all the winning photographs at the traveling exhibition in more than 70 cities worldwide, as well as the 20th portfolio book of winning images.
Being a part of the launch and celebration at London’s Natural History Museum during the international year of biodiversity has been something special and the messages from this portfolio have been perhaps more poignant than ever, not just from within this category highlighting the plight of endangered species, but with the advent of the new Wildlife Photojournalist of the Year category as well.
I will be giving a talk about this photograph and elements of my Underdogs project at the Natural History Museum at 14.30pm on Saturday 23 October in the Attenborough Centre as part of the Nature Live series of events.