Emerging Talent Award

© Mieke Douglas

Emerging Talent Award | Open Project

AOP Announces Winners & Finalists for 2021-22 Emerging Talent Award

The Association of Photographers (AOP) announces the Winners and Finalists of the 2021-22 Emerging Talent Award praising the range of styles and creativity of all entries submitted.

Isabelle Doran, CEO The Association of Photographers said; “The AOP’s guiding principle behind our open entry for ‘Emerging Talent’ is to provide an opportunity for a new wave of photographers and image-makers, of any age or background whose work truly shines and resonates, to be discovered above and beyond the crowded marketplace. This year’s entries, selected by two leading ad industry curators – Julie Cook, Production, Head of Art and Kate Congreve, Producer, of Mother London – really do just that, with our finalists and winners coming from a wide spectrum and sharing with us their stunning images for this past year’s entries.”

See News item in full here

View Winners and Finalists Gallery in full here

 

GOLD Winner, Sue Oakford Series: My Still Lifr 

Congratulations to – Gold Winner: Sue Oakford

Based in South West London, Sue is a self-taught, late starter to the world of photography, a mother of two grown up children and with careers in both Environmental Law and Education behind her.

Sue uses natural light to emulate and create atmosphere and depth in her images which hanker back to the days of dark and shadow, conjuring allegorical themes within our times.  Of her winning entry – My Still Life – A series of Still Life images, Oakford says; ‘Over the last 18 months I have developed a Still Life series reflecting moments of my ‘Still Life’. These 5 images are part of a larger collection. My images are meant as symbolic representations of my time, events, feelings and thoughts during these recent extraordinary times.’

GOLD Winner, © Sue Oakford. Gin & Tonic from Series My Still Life

SILVER Winner, © Jola Kunst 

Congratulations to – Silver Winner: Jolane Schaffner

“I’m excited to be nominated as Silver Winner for the 2021 AOP Emerging Talent Award. This is a fantastic opportunity to expand the conversation about Northern Ireland‘s international representation at a time of internal dialogue about redefining the island’s identity and sense of belonging. Beyond the binaries, we need nuanced narratives, and my work contributes a fresh perspective to how people on this island can both view themselves and how they are viewed by others. Thank you AOP for selecting my portrait of Aine.”

SILVER Winner, © Jolane Schaffner. Aine / Homebird

Highly Commended, Andy J Mather

Congratulations to – Highly Commended: Andy J Mather for Workforce Portraits – From The Ground Up.

“For my first commission, as a recently graduated photographer, to be recognised by the AOP has given me a huge confidence boost and lends my work an authority that can only help nurture my early career in photography.”

Highly Commended, © Andy J Mather

Congratulations  also to our outstanding Finalists:

  • Andy J Mather – Series, Incidental Moments
  • Anna Laura Festa – Moving Entry: Dido’s Daughters
  • Frankie Turner – Single, Cheese Tower
  • Sam Rose – Series, ‘What if you just leave it? Rewilding reconsidered.’
  • Nam He – Series, Identity in archive
  • Francesca Menghini – Single, Sven, from ongoing series ‘’Unbounded – Being Gender Diverse”

Here at the AOP we want to celebrate the very best in the new wave of photographers and image makers, who have been practising their craft for less than 3 years. 

For this special Open Project there were no restrictions on what emerging photographers could enter. We simply called for their most amazing work. 

Entries were accepted as Stills, Moving image and Innovation.

This Open Project opened on the 9 November 2021 and closed on 24 January 2022.  Winners will be revealed in February 2022. Gold and Silver winners along with selected finalists will also be exhibited at the AOP Showcase event in Spring 2022 and appear in the official AOP Awards 2021 Book.

The AOP Emerging Talent Award is a chance to be seen by leading commissioners and names within the photographic industry. 

Stills
A single image or series of images (2-5) can be entered.

Moving image
A piece of moving imagery up to 7 minutes in length, content is up to you but must demonstrate your understanding and skills within the medium. All entries in this category must reference whether the work is collaboration with another artist be it a director, editor, colour-grader, musician etc., or whether it’s the independent work of the photographer. You may wish to illustrate the creative use of technologies for example AR, VR, CGI or any other technique. 

Innovation
An example of creative excellence that illustrates the clever use of technologies and innovation in the production of still images. This can be AR, VR, CGI or any other technique.

See below for last year’s Gold and Silver winners

2020 GOLD winner
Citizens of Nowhere by Zula Rabikowska

‘I wanted to imprint the journey of migration into the physicality of the image, and so I soaked my film rolls in English Channel salt water to mark the geographical identity of the British Isles,’ says Rabikowska. ‘This results in different degrees of distortion, which visually mimics the required process of “naturalisation” and the degree of erosion of immigrant identity’.

2020 SILVER winner 
Nomads by Joshua J Sneade

‘In tents and caves among the rocky landscape of the Moroccan High Atlas live a relatively small population of nomads. Their traditional way of life revolves around herding animals to provide food and to sell in nearby towns. In recent times, however, contact with these towns is offering enticing opportunities for the younger generations in the form of work and education. This means that, as more young people embrace static lifestyles, the number of nomads is dwindling.’

Prizes: AOP Associate Membership

Celebrating the very best in the new wave of photographers and image makers who have been practicing their craft for less than 3 years this special Open Project is open to members and non-members alike. We want to see your most amazing work. Interested in joining the AOP?  Click here to become an AOP member.

The AOP is a not-for-profit organisation run by photographers for photographers. All profits go towards providing support for photographers including lobbying, promotion of best practice and the worth of photography and photographers everywhere. AOP members enjoy discounted entry to the AOP Awards and Open Projects programme.

See below for a sample of 2020 Finalists or view the full Winners and Finalists Gallery here.

The AOP is a not-for-profit organisation run by photographers for photographers. All profits go towards providing support for photographers including lobbying, promotion of best practice and the worth of photography and photographers everywhere.

Entry information

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