May 11, 2021

‘Australia’s Professional Photography Competition’ Sheds a Light Into Its People’s Creativity

Due to COVID-19 a lot of engagements were canceled this year, and those who weren’t, they try to do their best to keep their activity going online. Among those is the Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP).

Each year they run several print-based photography competitions to engage its members, and even though online, they still managed to announce the AIPP Silver Lining Awards for 2020. The whole idea was to implement several initiatives to make an educational, motivational, and inspirational experience for everyone who was involved.

Participants were first invited to submit pre-entry images that were evaluated by an expert panel of judges. And then, the feedback was used to continue their entries. AIPP organized the competition in two broad categories, creative and classic, and lastly, they created a Student and Newcomer category to promote entries from all levels of expertise.

“The idea was, quite literally, to create a ‘silver lining’ out of the current situation,” explains Tony Hewitt, who is Chair of the AIPP Awards Committee. “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 3,000 entries, from which we selected 300 semi-finalists and then 120 finalists, 10 in each of the six categories.”

As much fun as the competition is, the participation is rewarded from a $45,000 prize pool, and given innovative prizes like workshops and mentoring sessions. AIPP was a great motivation for these photographers to stay involved, and those prizes will definitely come in handy especially during this pandemic time when a lot of them will be out of their jobs.

Forough Yavari, Winner, Portrait

Kate Randall, 3rd Place, Life

Diana Fernie, 2nd Place, Journeys

Leon O’Neil, Winner, Celebration

Forough Yavari, Winner, Photo Illustration

Scott Portelli, Winner, Wild

Joshua Holko, 2nd Place, Wild

Victoria McNeill, 3rd Place, Newcomer

David Dahlenburg, 3rd Place, Abstract

Ruth Woodrow, Winner, Newcomer

Steve Scalone, 2nd Place, Goods & Services

Kris Anderson, Winner, Places

Anna Luscombe, Winner, Student

Fedrico Rekowski, 3rd Place, Places

Ben Kopilow, 2nd Place, Isolated

Eunie Kim, 3rd Place, Student

Karen Waller, 2nd Place, Portrait

Brian Hodges, Winner, Journey

William Carroll, 2nd Place, Photo Illustration

Karen Waller, Winner, Isolated

Jackie Ranken, Winner, Abstract

Karen Waller, Winner, Life

Ari Rex, 2nd Place, Celebration

AIPP: Website | Facebook | Instagram