Allen & Overy and RPS announce photographic winners…and the show is well worth a shot

Walking around the glass and steel towers of the City of London The Insurance Blogger (and yes TIB does get out occasionally) was wooed into an exhibition of winning prints from a competition overseen by The Royal Photographic Society and the law firm Allen & Overy.

If you happen to be in Liverpool Street it’s well worth half an hour. And if you aren’t you can find some more  about the show, and see the winning prints, here:

This exhibition showcases a wide variety of established, emerging and amateur photography taken by some of the world’s most talented photographers.

The selectors viewed nearly 3,000 prints from almost 700 photographers worldwide. Entrants competed for a share of the £6,500 total prize fund, and Gold, Silver, Bronze medals as well as the special Allen & Overy award, which this year has the theme of Challenging the Norm.

RPS President, Rosemary Wilman Hon FRPS says: “The International Print Exhibition has always been a highlight of the Society’s year. I hope that the 154th Exhibition will follow tradition and provoke comment and discussion, combining as it does contemporary cutting edge and more traditional work. Thank you to everyone who entered and congratulations go to all the successful photographers”.

Nick Scott, Chairman of Selectors says: “I, like all those before me, felt very honoured to be asked to Chair this year’s selection panel. It was a privilege to lead such an exalted panel of selectors who have indeed provided a stimulating exhibition that is reflective of photography today.”

The exhibition will run from 14 July to 26 August at the Allen & Overy offices in Bishops Square, London after which it will tour the UK. Opening hours are from Monday – Friday 9.30am-5.30pm; Weekends 10am-5pm.


Gold Award (£2000) “Nell” by Justyna Neryng

This portrait of Nell, my daughter, is a result of my questioning if there are more unusual ways of photographing children. As a mother, I have spent a great deal of time watching children’s movies, such as Peter Pan, where adults yearn for a nostalgic idea of childhood. Although this image is of a child it is perhaps more about a fantasised childhood of adults. The portrait is the beginning of what is intended to be an on-going series.Justyna is a self-taught photographer who is always looking to expand her experience.

Gold – Under 25 (Olympus PEN camera) “Untitled #3. From the series ‘Angelus Novus'” – Alex Skrzyński

This photograph is made up of four multiple exposures taken at Piccadilly Circus in London. My aim was to create a representation which illustrates memory as a broken up form. This is best described by a quote from Roland Barthes’ Camera Lucida, ‘Sometimes I recognised a region of her face, a certain relation of nose and forehead, the movement of her arms, her hands. I never recognised her except in fragments.’

Alex is 21 and is in his second year of studying Photography at Swansea Metropolitan University.

Silver (£1000) “Brown Lake, Queensland. 5.59am” – Frederick Hunt FRPS (Australia)
Brown Lake is situated on an island just off the coast of South East Queensland, Australia. Despite its proximity to some three million people, it is largely unspoiled, with little evidence of present or past human activity. This photograph was taken from the lake’s bank in the cool predawn light of a misty winter morning. A photograph taken one hour later is included in this exhibition and shows clearing mist and sun-washed trees.

Frederick has been a dedicated amateur photographer for the past twenty years and has exhibited in group exhibitions as well as having a solo exhibition. His main photographic interests currently are Australian landscapes and constructed environments, and our interaction with and influence on them.

Silver (£1000) “Industrial Artifact 3” by Bill Jackson
This image is from an on-going series called ‘Relics’ which looks at found and gathered objects, currently falling into two categories: Industrial and Domestic. They are relics to be discovered by archaeologists of the future. The objects are unknown and therefore only titled by category and a number. They are suspended by invisible fishing line in my studio, against a grid to symbolise documentation.

Bill is a fine art photographer who has won many international awards for his work. This is the third year running he has won an award in the RPS International Print Exhibition.

Bronze (£500) “Melissa. 10 yrs” – Charley Murrell
‘Melissa, 10yrs’ is from a series of photographs that explores the impact of images that surround children’s everyday life. These images allow children to construct ideas of the ‘ideal’ body appearance, house, car, and life that they desire. They create aspirations for material possessions and success and generate unattainable ideals. They also help to shape boys’ and girls’ perceptions about their future roles as adults.

Charley graduated from Newport University in 2010, where she studied documentary photography. For the last year she has been working as a freelance photographer as well as assisting a number of different commercial photographers. Charley recently moved to London and has started working with local charities producing photofilms for their campaigns.

Bronze (£500) “Isolation #3” – Luke Smith
For this image I wanted to address the issue of isolation for the elderly, with a symbolic representation. The elderly person faces away from the viewer, revealing the subject’s absorption, thus denying the presence of the viewer. With the lack of identification, the viewer becomes detached from the image and isolated from the activity being observed.

I wanted to summon a confrontational experience from the viewer based on fragments and contradictions in the images systematic order. By violating spatial logic I have attempted to load the image with the symbolic representation of isolation.

Luke is currently a second year student at the London College of Communication on a BA (Hons) Photography course. He won the AOP Student of the Year in 2010 and was runner up in 2011. He recently won the Gold award in the London Photographic Association Still Life 5 competition. His work is developed from research; the work is constructed by means of images with a suggestive narrative in response to a variety of issues shaped by our social, domestic, cultural and political environment.

Bronze (£500) ‘Jade’s Graduation Day’ – Chrissie Woodgate FRPS
“Photography is not like painting,” Henri Cartier-Bresson told the Washington Post in 1957. “There is a creative fraction of a second ….your eye must see a composition or an expression that life itself offers you”.

This was definitely one of those moments! I had been asked to take some official photos for a group of young people who were leaving school and attending the prom. This ‘posed’ yet, from my perspective ‘candid’ image reveals so much about family life.

Chrissie joined The Royal Photographic Society 12 years ago and ‘took control’ of her camera and learnt to be more creative. She then progressed through The Society’s Licentiateship and Associateship levels with black and white photographs of landscapes and in 2010 she achieved the highest accolade and became a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society (FRPS).

A&O award (£1000) Challenging the Norm – ‘A Brasileira’ – José Ramòn Moreno (Spain)

The Café A Brasileira in Braga, Portugal opened its doors at the beginning of the 20th Century and has since become one of the city’s most important landmarks. A magical place in which tourists mix with the regulars, the traditional meets the modern, and young and old both feel at home… A place in which the past, present and future live comfortably side by side. The coffee is great too!

For me photography is a means of telling stories, sharing ideas, sensations and feelings. It is therefore a half intellectual/half sentimental process that serves to portray both the subject and the photographer.

To view all the winning photographs visit Allen & Overy News & Media

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