The finalists in the Nikon-Walkley Photographic Awards have been announced.
The awards are the foremost competition for press photographers in Australia and are judged by a panel of senior photographers and picture editors who are representative of the whole industry.
And the winners are…
Brian Cassey – Winner, Nikon-Walkley Portrait Prize
Brian Cassey won the 2011 Nikon-Walkley Best Portrait Prize for his photograph ‘Carol – Burns Survivor’ and will receive a Nikon D700 and an AF-S 85mm F1.4 lens.
Brian Cassey – Winner of the Nikon-Walkley Portrait Prize
Brian Cassey’s portrait of burns victim Carol Mayer was an instant choice by all the judges. “It’s got to be that one. It’s just mesmerising. The eyes draw you in. It’s just amazing. It stands out amongst everyone else. The vivid blue eyes get you in, but then you just can’t stop looking. I found myself following the lines of her face to see where they went… This is a really beautiful woman looking at you, then you see the skin and you think, ‘Oh my God…’ But she’s very comfortable in her skin.
The judges noted that this photo was not the only one of Carol Mayer, “but this one caught her best [even though it was] the simplest portrait. It’s something to do with the way he came right in on her face, even the shade of lipstick. He’s kept it simple: he’s said all you need are the eyes, the mouth and the face: it tells its own story.”
Dean Lewins – Commended
Dean Lewins was commended for his photograph ‘Lady Gaga in Sydney’, captured outside the Four Seasons Hotel.
The judges said: “There would have been a wall of photographers there, but he’s got her. She’s centred over the car… He’s caught that very brief second when she’s staring straight at him, even with a swing of the hair: it’s like he’s called to her. He’s caught the tranquillity in the centre of all that chaos. It looks almost like an ad. To get that out of that fleeting moment is a triumph. This photographer has made a punt about where to be in the swarm of press – and he’s just caught her in that celebrity environment which she lives in.
Neville Madsen – Winner, Nikon-Walkley Community/Regional Prize
Neville Madsen is the winner of the 2011 Nikon-Walkley Community/Regional Prize for Toowoomba flood-rescue images and will receive with a Nikon D700 and an AF-S 85mm F1.4 lens.
The judges said, “Dramatic life-and-death images captured on January 10 as Hannah Reardon-Smith and her mother Kathryn found themselves caught in rising floodwaters in Toowoomba.”
Simon Chillingworth – Commended
Simon Chillingworth, of the Manly Daily was commended the 2011 Nikon-Walkley Community/Regional Prize.
As the judges said, “He entered a great folio for a regional shooter. It would stand up there next to the metropolitan shooters. He’s just got a great eye. He can do the ocean swim, and the set-up portrait. They are all very clean images. He’s got sport, catching-the-moment, news, portraiture – and technically they are all very, very nice.
Winners of the Nikon-Walkley Portrait and Community/Regional Prize will be part of the Nikon-Walkley Finalist exhibition, as will the Commended entries.
Visit the exhibition
The nominated works will be on show in Sydney at the Australian Centre for Photography (257 Oxford Street, Paddington) from Friday 14th October – Saturday 19th November. After the 27th of November they will go on a roadshow traveling around the country, with the first stop being the Brisbane Powerhouse from 23 January to 26 February 2012, then Newcastle Region Library, NSW in from June to July 2012, then Fotofreo, WA, from 17 March to 15 April 2012.
Finalists were also announced for the following categories; News Photography, Daily Life & Feature Photography, Sport Photography, Photographic Essay and Press Photographer of the Year.
Winners of the remaining categories News Photography, Daily Life, Sport, Photographic Essay and the Press Photographer of the Year will be announced on Sunday 27th November at the State Library of Queensland as part of The Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism. Highlights of The Walkley Awards will be broadcast nationally on SBS TV.