The Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) has announced the 10 category winners for its inaugural Silver Lining Awards, the organisation’s first online photo contest format.
Silver Lining Awards are an initiative to keep its members engaged through the Coronavirus restrictions, and it proved to be a huge success for the AIPP.
When it became clear the AIPP’s regular print-based competitions – a key component of its members’ annual activities – wouldn’t be possible at the state or national level, the Awards Committee began on devising an alternative.
Open only to members, they were invited to enter online. The AIPP also incorporated additional elements to the contest to make the event ‘educational and motivational’. Members were offered the opportunity to submit images for a pre-entry critique by judges, to provide feedback for photographers. This enabled entrants to fine-tune their images prior to submission.
The contest consisted of ten categories, with half each falling into two groups – Classic and Creative. Creative allowed for the full scope of digital editing techniques to be employed; while Classic was restricted to traditional approaches, with limited post-processing allowed to keep images true to their in-camera form. The categories were devised to compliment the differing creative and technical possibilities. Additionally, two categories were created for Newcomers and Students, these finalists drawn from the main ten categories.
‘The idea was, quite literally, to create a ‘silver lining’ out of the current situation,’ explains Tony Hewitt, chair of the AIPP Awards Committee, in a press release. ‘We wanted not only to give members a creative outlet at a time when many wouldn’t have much work, but also make the whole experience much more beneficial professionally for everybody who entered. At the same time, we wanted everybody to have a bit of fun. And it worked brilliantly; the response has been massive with 3000 entries, from which we selected 300 semi-finalists and then 120 finalists, ten in each of the six categories.’
Through the support of sponsors and trade partners, the AIPP raised a prize pool valued at $45,000. This also included prizes donated by photographers, such as workshops and mentoring sessions.
Tony Hewitt emphasises it was a deliberate decision to not award an overall grand prize – as happens in the AIPP’s regular Australian Professional Photography Awards – and instead the accolades were even distributed, including awarding the first five places in each categories.
The AIPP Silver Lining Awards winners were announced on Thursday 30 July in a special online telecast hosted by Tony Hewitt and award-winning speaker, Rachael Callander.
Here are the category winners.
Portrait – Forough Yavari
Places – Kris Anderson
Celebration – Leon O’Neil
Photo Illustration – Forough Yavari
Life – Karen Waller
Wild – Scott Portelli
Journeys – Brian Hodges
Isolated – Karen Waller
Abstract – Jackie Ranken
Student – Anna Luscombe
Newcomer – Ruth Woodrow