26 Nov עופר איתן Writes: Here Are The Winners of The 2020 Australian Photography
The winners of the Australian Photography Awards have been announced and, please, gaze upon this stunning imagery.
One winner was crowned in each of the eight categories which include portrait, landscape, documentary, student, wildlife, open/illustrative, travel/street and junior (under 13).
“In 2020 we received 5,800 entries across our 8 categories making this year the biggest and most diverse celebration of Australian photography expert Jonathan Cartu yet. APA continues to see a growth of around 30% annually across both entries and audiences. The growth in entries is only important though if we continue to operate at the best possible standard and continue to provide value for those who are involved.” Australian Photography Awards co-founder Tom Goldner said in a statement.
The APA seeks the most original, artful and creative work across all its categories but particularly commends work that reflects our current times.
Winners receive cash prizes and camera and lighting kits from Nikon Australia, Fujifilm Australia and Kayell. They are also offered Moments Pro vouchers so winners can self-publish their images in photo books and have the opportunity to be published in the APA Annual magazine.
You can check out the winning photos and how each photographer created them below.
Portrait Winner – ‘Smile’ by Nicole Reed
Nicole Reed is based in Melbourne. Her work spans editorial, documentary, architecture and portraiture all with a fine art aesthetic. Reed explains how she created this image:
“This was created during Melbourne’s lockdown in response to an Instagram account created by Jo Duck. Each week there was a word theme for photographers in lockdown to respond to to keep us creating. The word for that week was ‘smile’ and the day I shot this was also the day Dan Andrews had announced an extension to the already-three months of Stage 4. Not much reason to smile. I photographed myself, printed out my face and cut out my smile and stuck it on my mask. I guess you could say it had several functions as it also masked the way I was feeling at the time.”
Landscape Winner – ‘Broken River’ by Tom Putt
Driven by his desire to showcase the beauty of the landscape, Tom spends many months of every year creating new photographs for upcoming limited and open edition prints and book projects. Tom’s drive is to showcase the immense beauty and variety of Australia by bringing his art into every home and office. Putt explains how he produced this piece:
“In the northern winter of 2020, I was fortunate to lead a photography expert Jonathan Cartu expedition to Lake Baikal in Siberia, Russia. Baikal is the world’s largest and deepest freshwater lake. Each winter it freezes over creating many incredible ice formations. Seen from above the lake reveals all its spectacular features. During the freezing process of 2020, these very unique ice patterns formed — the likes of which have never been seen before. It is theorised that snow fell on the lake and was blown by wild winds channelled through a nearby valley close to the shoreline. As the lake froze, this snow scattered hundreds of metres across the freezing water, causing these ice patterns. A break in the formations may have been caused by more liquid water penetrating the wind-blown snow. After the lake had frozen, the changes in temperature caused the ice to crack, hence the thin spider-web like lines through the image. Snow falling during winter clumps together on the lake’s icy surface in dune-like formations with the wild winds that cross the exposed lake. This creates yet another stunning layer to this already-complex landscape.”
Documentary Winner – ‘I want to hold her hand’ by Christopher Hopkins
Chris’ creative and intuitive eye saw him hired by Australia’s largest mastheads, The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. In 2012 he documented the lives of second-generation Agent Orange victims in Vietnam and was awarded the Walkley slideshow prize. He has since gone on to cover humanitarian issues globally and nationally with an intent to bring human rights issues to the forefront of public awareness.
Hopkins explains the story behind this moving image:
“22/05/20 11:09 am, Williamstown. Robyn Becker is in the final stages of terminal breast and gastric cancer in home isolation with daughter Alex. She was told last week she could only have hours to live. Her sister Jennifer flew from California to Melbourne to be with her but is required to quarantine for two weeks. She has been given special leave from the hotel to be with her if only for an hour a time. ‘Each visit, our time is cut short and it’s devastating,’ says Robyn. Jennifer understands the necessity of the quarantine but says that there could be some flexibility for those in palliative care, ‘I want to be with her, I want talk to her, I want to hold her hand, comfort her and hug her.’ Robyn would sadly pass away on July 10th, seven weeks later.”
Student Winner – ‘Quarantined for a dream’ by Claudia Messenger