Archive for May, 2017

29.05.17

BE WELL!

Our dear friend Julie from Wellness Centre for Dogs and their Humans has launched her 4 Paws & Friends Aromatherapy balms for horses, canines and humans. Huge congrats! Julie has helped our pooches Pip the Black Beetle and Pixel with their mobility and general full body well being for the past 3 years. Her aromatherapy products have been an essential part of their regular treatment and come highly recommended by us. Orders can be placed at http://www.wellnesscentrefordogs.com/shop/

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17.05.17

2017 AIPP WA PET / ANIMAL PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR & ORANGUTAN GOES GOLD!

Earlier in the week, the 2017 W.A. Epson Professional Photography Awards (WAEPPA) were held in Perth. The awards run in each state throughout the year and lead up to the national awards in August – effectively the Golden Globes of the Australian professional photography industry, building up to the Oscars.

I entered two categories, ‘Portrait’ and ‘Pet / Animal’, and my hope was to win a silver award or two. My beloved image ‘Orangutan’, soon to be retired from Australian photography competitions, was the highest scoring print in the ‘Pet / Animal’ category and picked up my first ever WAEPPA gold award. I was humbled to also receive another gold award, two silver distinction awards and two silver awards, based on scores out of 100 for my other images (which are embargoed now until the national competition.) These results well exceeded my expectations, especially the gold awards, and I would’ve been more than satisfied if my good fortune had ended there … but the best was yet to come.

Yesterday at the presentation night ‘Orangutan’ was selected by the competition print handlers as their favourite image from 453 entries spread across all categories, and it received the 2017 AIPP WA Print Handler Award. I heard the news while I was thousands of kilometres away in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and I found it hard to comprehend. Could’ve been jet lag, but I knew immediately that this special recognition was something that might not come around again. Thanks so much to the hardworking print handlers!!!

Next I received word that I was a finalist in the ‘Portrait’ category, along with my good mate Steve Wise of 27Creative I Steve Wise. The category was won by the lovely Sarah Adams of Sarah Adams Photography with a meticulous set of beautiful images. Congrats Sarah!

And then the icing on the cake … I was named as the ‘Pet / Animal’ category winner – the 2017 AIPP WA Pet/Animal Professional Photographer of the Year. This is one of the highest accolades of my career and I’m still reeling from the result.

I’d like to extend a thank you to the AIPP, the AIPP WA committee of Steve, Kirsten, Amber, Shaireen, Des and Russell, the volunteers, the print handlers, the category sponsors, and the experienced local, state and international judges, for the time and effort they each invested in the awards. Thanks also to everyone who messaged me with kind congratulations, including several other pet photographers within WA and nationally. Your support means a lot.

The WAEPPA’s are as much about the print quality as the image execution, and a huge thank you goes out to Paul Maietta, Paul Jays and the crew at Fitzgerald Photo Imaging for their meticulous printing of my award images. PJ was instrumental in helping to get my entries across the line and we spent hours discussing each photo. Other staff provided invaluable input on what worked and what didn’t. This was a team effort and I’m so lucky to have the best pro lab in WA on my team.

I’d like to thank Sarah Adams for sitting in on the ‘Pet / Animal’ judging and relaying me my scores, and also for updating me during the awards night. And to Erica Serena from Erica Serena Photographer for advising me to darken up ‘Orangutan’ when she first saw it 8 months ago. It was well heeded advice from an esteemed industry professional.

Thanks also to Shaireen VanTuil, who was deservedly recognised last night for her contribution to the WA photography community. Two years ago I was lamenting to her that I didn’t have anything suitable for the awards, and not having a bar of it, she convinced me that I did. Turns out she was right, and I was just making excuses. Sometimes we are too close to our own work to see it for what it could be.

All of my images were photographed using #Tamron lenses and I’m very appreciative for the ongoing support of Tamron Australia and Tamron Lenses USA. Their super performance series range enables me to capture those millisecond moments and from them, develop the concepts I see in my mind’s eye. I know their lenses inside out and they are an interwoven, integral part of my photography.

And last but not least, I must give thanks to my two biggest supporters – my partner Deb, and my office manager Colleen. They go through every trial and tribulation with me, supporting me 110% and always having my back. Photography might seem like a solo occupation but it’s actually a joint effort on all levels – from business support, to home support, to printing, to trusted advisors, to equipment. None of us is an island. Or something!

Congratulations to Aaron Dowling of Aaron Dowling Photography for being crowned the Professional Photographer Of The Year for the second year running with his ethereal landscape images, and to all of the category winners and finalists. I’m honoured to be in your company and to call many of you my friends. http://stateawards.aipp.com.au/WA/2017-wa-awards

With gratitude,
Alexxx

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17.05.17

CAMERAS HELPING TURTLES!

As our Sri Lanka tour drew to a close, we visited Victor Hasselblad Turtle Conservation Research Center. Supported by camera company Hassleblad (a nice tie in to our photography trip), the centre aims to protect sea turtle eggs and increase hatching rates. Their staff patrol the beach all night looking for mother sea turtles who come out of the ocean to lay their eggs. They protect her during the nesting process, and once she has returned to the sea, they relocate the eggs to the safety of their hatchery.

Since it opened, the centre has released over 3 million baby turtles into the ocean, giving them a greater survival rate than if they were left to fend for themselves. The turtles are released at 3 days old and we saw hundreds of them swimming in their tank, about to embark on the biggest journey of their short lives.

Watching these vulnerable, adorable babies touched our hearts. We worried for them, almost died from the cute of them and wished them safe passage. They made me think of the many creatures who fight hard to survive, either in the harsh domain of nature or from the cruel hand of man. From the smallest to the largest, they all deserve our protection and care … as does our planet as a whole.

These powerful words by Carl Edward Sagan seemed apt.

Farewell Sri Lanka. xx

“Consider again that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every “superstar”, every “supreme leader”, every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.” Carl Edward Sagan

Image taken with #Tamron 24-70mm f2.8 VC lens. Tamron AustraliaTamron Lenses USA Tamron New Zealand World Expeditions Stemish Travels – the elite way to discover Sri Lanka #SpiderHolster #Lacie#OnTourInSriLanka

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