It is with huge delight that I can announce that I am the Guild of Photographers multi genre photographer of the year for 2013!
To be awarded a photographer of the year title once in a life time is a major achievement – so I’m still trying to come down out of the clouds after being awarded the prestigious Guild of Photographers multi genre photographer of the year title two years running in 2012 and 2013!
The Guild of Photographers awards are not based on one image alone, but calculated from the scores achieved over a whole year, from submissions into the Image of the month competition. Which makes them an even great success as consistency and ability to turn out good results month after month is key.
In 2013 I entered three categories – open, people and weddings and I have just counted up 79 bronze awards and 12 silver from the year, which I am amazed by! Many of you will have followed my monthly results and seen the many images awarded these prestigious bars.
Two years ago, I specialised in children’s and family photography. With a move to The Netherlands in May 2012 I made a decision to embrace my surroundings and deal with my inability to speak the local lingo! Since then, my development into landscape photography and all things Dutch as well as continuing with my children’s and wedding photography has been a huge success! In 2013, I completed a project to create images that encompassed what Holland means to a non Dutch person – many of these images were my highest scoring of the year.
It was with much excitement and butterflies on Friday evening that myself and my hubby made our way to Crewe Hall in the UK for the very grand awards ceremony all the way from The Netherlands. I hoped to retain my 2012 title, but I didn’t really know whether I really stood a chance!
Firstly the International wedding category was announced – I was delighted with a 4th place. Those taking the placings above me specialise in photographing weddings full-time, which made my achievement even greater.
Next the open category. I’ve really enjoyed taking photos of so many diverse subjects to enter this category during the last year. I’d been watching my scores in this section pretty closely during the year and had placed myself about 3rd or 4th So imagine my total surprise when this year I was awarded the runner-up award in this category. I was amazed and just a little shaky as I received my award for this.
During 2013 I worked hard on submitting images over three categories to try to retain my title of multi genre photographer of the year. Having been awarded a top 10 certificate for that category I knew i was in the running for the title. When the runners-up award was given out to someone else i had my fingers and toes so crossed so hard it hurt in the hope my name might be at the top! As my name was called out as the winner my table erupted and i made my way to collect my award in a bit of a daze! All i could think was how much I had hoped for this and not dared believe it till that moment!
To crown the evening off perfectly I was also awarded a lifetime membership of the Photographer’s Bar. This new and unique distinction is only awarded to those photographers who have successfully had images assessed by the Guild over the course of a year, and attained a score equating to an award for each entry made, thereby evidencing an exceptional level of professional skill and consistency – a distinction that is very difficult to achieve!!
By the end of the evening the pile of awards sat in front of me was more than i could have ever hoped for! I had trouble holding onto them all for photographs!
Being part of The Guild of Photographers is more than being just a member of an association for me. When I left the UK to live in the Netherlands they were my lifeline to my continued photographic development. I have the opportunity to share my highs and lows, achievements and questions with a huge group of super friendly members who I consider my extended family whenever I want or need to.
In 2013 I worked closely with my photographic mentor from the guild – Lesley Chalmers. With her support and encouragement I’ve tried many new techniques with my photography this year, and look at my images in a very different way, which all helps towards the attainment of awards and perfection! I consider her my fairy godmother when it comes to photography!
I am absolutely delighted with my success from the 2013 awards, and look forward to the 2014 competition, with my first images for the year already entered I’m playing the waiting game again!