29 August 2013
A West Australian wildlife photographer has been crowned overall winner in the 2013 Australian Geographic ANZANG Nature Photographer of the Year competition, run by the South Australian Museum.
David Rennie’s Near Miss, which shows a narrowly-avoided collision between an osprey and a spoonbill in Western Australia’s Mandurah Wetlands, stood out among the 104 finalists in the competition. The judges said: “The photographer has captured a highly dramatic and very rare moment. There’s an almost surreal quality to the image, both in the encounter that has been photographed and the strong contrast between the birds and moody sky. The photographer has brilliantly documented this encounter, using the black and white format to its best advantage.”
David Rennie is an experienced wildlife photographer who is also a previous winner of the ANZANG People’s Choice Award. Mr Rennie has overcome many physical and mental challenges to produce work of the highest calibre. He says winning this prize is his greatest honour in his career to date: “Since its inception, I have considered ANZANG the pinnacle of what I do. To win it is like winning an Olympic Gold medal, or being named the Nobel Peace Prize winner – for me it means that much,” he says.
The Australian Geographic ANZANG (Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica and New Guinea) Nature Photographer of the Year competition challenges photographers around the world to capture the best images in the categories: Animal Behaviour, Animal Portrait, Black and White, Botanical, Interpretive, Junior, Our Impact, Portfolio, Threatened Species, Underwater, Wilderness and a special Portfolio category for practitioners who submit six photographs or more. This year, 1828 photographs were submitted by 457 photographers, from 12 different countries.
South Australian Museum Acting Director and Scientist Professor Andrew Lowe says the talent in the 2013 ANZANG finalists’ pool is particularly impressive: “This competition is about showcasing the best, most inspiring images of nature in the ANZANG bioregion and bringing global conservation issues to the fore. In 2013, entrants went to great lengths to capture the character, beauty and intriguing aspects of nature to create a stunning exhibition,” he said.
The Australian Geographic ANZANG Nature Photographer of the Year (Overall Winner) receives $10,000 cash, a certificate and a holiday for two people to New Zealand and the sub-Antarctic island including flights from Australia’s state capitals to New Zealand. Each of the first nine category winners receives $1,000 plus a certificate each, and the runner-up of each section receives $500 plus a certificate. There is a $1,000 prize plus a certificate for the best portfolio of six or more entries. The junior section winner receives $300 plus a certificate, while the runner up receives $100 plus a certificate. The people’s choice winner receives $500.
The finalists’ photographs will be shown in a special exhibition at the South Australian Museum from 4 October to 24 November 2013, before it tours to Western Australia and Tasmania.
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