“Mathilda” © Alexander Vinogradov, Russian Federation, Open Photographer of the Year, Open, Portraits (Open), 2017 Sony World Photography Awards. Says the photographer of creating the image, “My art work is a portrait of a young girl called Nastya, who modeled for me in Moscow studio at summer 2016 after I got inspired by a famous French movie ‘Leon’ with a cast of Natalie Portman and Jean Reno. This is the reason why my portrait is called ‘Mathilda’, which was photographed as a cosplay of Portman’s role in this movie.”
The 2018 edition of the Sony World Photography Awards, in partnership with the World Photography Organisation, is open for entries. Now in its 11th year, the prestigious Awards have made a few exciting changes for photographers among the two of the four competitions: Professional, Open, Youth and Student Focus.
In the Professional Competition, photographers can submit 5 to 10 images to 10 categories, with new categories added this year, Creative and Discovery, to acknowledge the evolving nature of photography and those experimenting with the medium. Photographers are judged on the body of work submitted. The Professional competition categories are: Architecture, Contemporary Issues, Creative, Current Affairs & News, Discovery, Landscape, Natural World & Wildlife, Portraiture, Sport and Still Life.
Additionally, generous grants have been updated in the Professional and Student Focus competitions. From the 2018 Professional category winners, Sony will award multiple grants of $7,000 to selected photographers to pursue their photographic projects. Each shortlisted photographer from the Student Focus competition will be awarded $3,500 to work together on a new photographic commission set by Sony and the World Photography Organisation.
The Open competition awards the best single images across 10 categories—Architecture, Culture, Enhanced, Motion, Landscape & Nature, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, Travel and Wildlife—and the Youth competition is open to photographers aged 12-19, judged on a single image that, this year, represents “My Environment.”
In addition to international exposure, all category winners of the competitions will receive digital imaging equipment from Sony. The Photographer of the Year and the overall Open competition winner will receive $25,000 and $5,000, respectively. Additionally, all category winners and many shortlisted photographers will be showcased at the Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition in London and exhibited internationally. The images will be published in a winners’ book, as well.
According the World Photography Organisation, “Artistic interpretation, integrity and technical ability are the key factors for judges across all categories of the Awards.”