We’re pretty excited about the new British Wildlife Photography Awards, and the award scheme is now open for entries.
Between now and 31st July 2009 it’s your chance to get into the inaugural year of what looks like it could become the definitive UK wildlife photo comp. Now there is no shortage of such competitions, so what makes this one different – if anything?
The clue is in the name: it’s focussing on Britain. There are a lot of stunning images of wildlife from around the world but sometimes there is something to be said for keeping it local. I noticed something about the range of photos in the final of the Natural History Museum’s Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year in 2008. None were from the UK. The winner was a marvellous shot of big mammals in Namibia. Great pictures, all of them – but how many young people would get the chance to take them? If I’d been a lad looking at them I might have felt not inspired, but discouraged. However with the British Wildlife Photography Awards it seems that photographic craft and skill will be just as important as access to airline tickets. And that’s timely, with the new emphasis on reducing carbon emissions by cutting travel-miles; not to mention the credit-crunch making Brits look closer to home for their holidays. Above is a delightful image taken by Isle of Wight photographer Nick Bradley in his parents’ garden. It’s not Namibia – but just maybe it’s got something that Namibia hasn’t. Keep an eye on the BWPA to see what our home-grown wildlife photographers can come up with.