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James Simmons, Wins 2011 AIPP Australian Illustrative Photographer of the year

Thursday, 4 August 2011

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Sydney, 27th of June 2011 – Fremantle local photographer , James Simmons, is riding high after being named the 2011 AIPP Australian Illustrative Photographer of the year. James also took out the Highest Scoring Print Award and the Highest Scoring Monochrome Print Award. His award-winning portfolio was among 3149 images entered by 853 professional photographers in the 2011 awards.

James is a relatively new face within the photography industry, bursting onto the scene in 2010 with the Highest Scoring Print at the Western Australian Professional Photography Awards. James has gained extensive experience photographing portraits and weddings at Viva Life Photography and is currently their head of photography.Two of James’ winning images were shot during a photojournalistic tour of Bangladesh last year. His photographs tell the story of the streets of Bangladesh; the life, the feelings and the thoughts of the Bangladesh people.

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“I have an urge to tell people’s stories through photography which often finds me in unique places and lead to my assignment in Bangladesh. I was fascinated by the culture of the developing nation. People were so accommodating and warm and have a huge amount of heart. I was particularly intrigued by the Khasi tribe who despite their cycle of poverty, were so resilient and have such a strong community so that no one goes hungry.”

One of the images was taken during the Hindu Kite Festival which takes place every year on the 14th of January in Old Dhaka, a Hindu dominated area of Dhaka city. The city is so crowded and built up that the only space people have to fly kites is from the roof tops. As far as the eye could see people filled the roof tops and kites filled the sky. While trying to capture the enormity of the event in the landscape, I realised that it was all about the human interaction and influence on the landscape that was of interest, so I tried to capture individuals actions with enough timing and detail that they could tell stories themselves and the viewer would be absorbed into the picture investigating them.”

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The other two winning images were shot in Germany. “I was influenced by the harrowing history of the country and the stories of hardship and devastation. The images display a reflective story of tragedy in the solemn scenes. The image that won the highest scoring print was shot in Göttingen during very average weather but has a beautifully haunting feel. The mix of the bleak, cold weather and stark landscape exemplified the feeling and story I wanted to tell and was almost identical to the image I had in my head.” Said James “Chris MacLeod. Product Manager, Consumer Imaging Products group, Canon Australia, said James’ work demonstrates his ability to create expressive and inspirational photographs.”The success earned by the 2011 winners represents the pinnacle achievement in professional photography in Australia. Canon is proud to be the major sponsor of the awards and partner with the Australian institute of professional photography to promote excellence, innovation and creative experimentation – all values Canon shares with our partners in professional photography,” said Mr MacLeodNow in their 35th year, the awards are a celebration of photographic excellence and represent the best of the best in Australian professional photography. Images are critiques through an extensive peer-review process which drives ever-increasing standards of quality, innovation and artistic expression among Australia’s professional photographers.

The Canon Australian Professional Photography Awards are open to all

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professional photographers in Australia. In addition to the 2011 Canon AIPP Professional Photographer of the year Awards, entries are judged  in categories covering specialized forms of professional photography including: Advertising, Fashion, Architectural, Documentary, Illustrative, Landscape, Portrait, Family, Wedding, Science, Environment & Nature, Sport, Creative, Travel and a Fine Art.

James’ images will feature as part of the 2011 Canon AIPP APPA travelling exhibition, which will tour Australia commencing in Sydney.

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