World Photo London: The Recap

29th Apr 2013

© Eggleston Artistic Trust. Courtesy of Gagosian Gallery

It was a packed weekend with the opening festivities of World Photo London. Thursday evening kicked things off with the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards Gala Ceremony, celebrating the winning and finalist photographers spanning all continents, genres, and experience levels.

Andrea Gjestvang’s intimate portrait series of the young survivors of the Utøya massacre of 22 July 2011 captured the hearts of this year’s honorary jury to take home the title of L’Iris d’Or – this year’s Photographer of the Year. Gjestvang’s “One Day in History” as well as other winners and finalists from this year’s Awards is now on display alongside rarely seen work by Outstanding Contribution to Photography recipient William Eggleston at the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition. For the full list of winners and finalists, click on this link and visit the exhibition at Somerset House in London, open through 12 May 2013.

The main focus of the 2013 World Photo London programming was a series of PhotoTALK discussions spanning all facets of the photographic industry. With discussion topics ranging from Fashion & Advertising to NGO Work and the Contemporary Photobook, we encourage you to look out for the replays rolling out soon. Read the recap of each talk below.


PT Contemporary Photobook

Hosted by Simon Bainbridge, editor of the British Journal of Photography, this panel explored extending the creative process from simply photography to a tangible photobook representing one's own works. The panel consisted of honorary jury member and photographer Edmund Clark, 2012 Sony World Photography Awards Conceptual finalist Cristina De Middel and curator and publisher Harry Hardie. Each dove into their personal experiences finding success through photobooks, as well as challenged attendees to increase their own works’ visibility by honing in on personal concepts, independently publishing works, and marketing and advertising works to their fullest potential.

As every year, WPO also showcases the work of photographers from the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards in a photobook, available for sale now.


PT Fashion & Advertising

Hosted by the appropriately fashionable Stuart Smith, this panel tackled the Fashion & Advertising space of the photographic industry, touching on topics including a strategic approach to finding and maintaining one's place in the industry, constructing a strong portfolio and distinctive message, the use of agents, and maximising available opportunities. Klaus Thymann, winner of this year’s SWPA Fashion & Beauty category, 2013 Honorary Jury member Tim Paton and Honorary Jury Chair Catherine Chermayeff entered the conversation from various angles, spotlighting the questions and issues addressing both photographers and industry professionals.


PT NGO Carol

Do you pitch ideas to NGOs, or should they approach you? With the financial paradigm shifting, NGO work can provide excellent opportunities to give photographers the platform to develop and refine personal projects and apply their knowledge gained to all future experience. Panellists including photojournalist and WPO founding Academy member Carol Allen Storey, Save the Children's Picture Editor CJ Clarke, and Panos Pictures’ commissioning editor, Josh Lustig emphasised the importance of embracing all available opportunities – particularly in one’s own backyard – and focusing themselves on linking up with organisations whose missions they are passionate about.


PT Photojo

The Guardian Picture Desk receives, on average, over 20,000 images a day. How does a photojournalist make the front page? In what ways must one adapt in order to become and remain a strong contributor to the industry? Panel members included Honorary Jury member and Guardian Picture Editor Fiona Shields, documentary and portrait photographer Abbie Trayler-Smith, and news photographer and Vice President of the British Press Photographers’ Association (BPPA) Eddie Mulholland. Together with both the online and in person audience, the group of experts leant their advice for engaging in the digital age, finding every available opportunity in an over-saturated world of imagery and remaining appropriately sceptical of acknowledging citizen journalism.  

Further delving into the topics surrounding the photojournalism industry, we caught up with Abbie Trayler-Smith for an upcoming session of In the Photographer’s Studio, publishing this month to our audience, 9th May.


PT Technology

Twenty years ago digital photography barely existed. Now it has almost completely replaced film and, for many people, the camera itself has even been replaced by the smart phone. Yet we are taking more photographs that ever before – over 70 billion a year are uploaded to Facebook alone. Hosted by What Digital Camera Magazine Editor Nigel Atherton and joined by Amateur Photographer’s Richard Sibley, dpReview’s Andy Westlake, and DPNow journalist and owner Ian Burley, the discussion engaged all levels of photographic experience. With camera technologies changing at such a rapid pace, is it important to keep up?  Are more megapixels, larger sensors and extended wifi connectivity really as necessary as retailers make them appear? Technology may be changing, but the true art of bearing a photographic eye remains widely the same regardless.

As WPO continues to explore the overlaps of changing technology and photography,  stay tuned as we bring you a future LIVE Q&A with Nigel Atherton to delve further into our community’s thoughts surrounding the transitions.


PT Fine Art

“It’s about knowing what your work is about,” panellist and Honorary Jury Member Brandei Estes says. “It’s about having ownership over your work.” This central discussion point fuelled much of the advice leant by this Fine Art Photography panel, including Photographer and See Saw Magazine editor Aaron Schuman, Edel Assanti Gallery Director Charlie Fellows, and LA Noble Gallery Director Laura Noble. Hosted by photographic consultant and World Photographic Academy member, W.M. Hunt, this panel dissected the age old question, “Is photography art?” With the extension of online opportunities, a fine art photographer is now able to present his or her creative vision in entirely accessible and innovative ways. As such, they touched upon topics and advice for both newcomers as well as professional photographers, sharing fresh thoughts on entering the industry, the perceived value of editioning one’s work and more.

W.M. Hunt's book publication featuring his personal photographic collection, “The Unseen Eye”, is available and published by Thames & Hudson, whose director Thomas Neurath was awarded the Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Award at this years Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards.  


PT Black + White Pod

In this special discussion presented by Black + White Photography Magazine and hosted by Hotshoe's Miranda Gavin, our online and live audiences discussed both changing technologies and the persistence of black and white photography in the industry today. Panellists including Eddie Ephraums, Eleanor Macnair, Lewis Bush, Tim Clinch and Elizabeth Roberts questioned black and white photography’s presence in different genres of the industry today, and how the field has begun shifting given the rise in mobile photography. Taking the panel truly globally, special guests Joanne Carter, Maddy McCoy, JQ Gaines and Nettie Edwards accompanied the discussion via a live Skype discussion from across the United States. A special presentation by the mobile photographers can be found here. Interested in more? Here is a taster of what Black + White Photography Magazine produces.  Subscribe to Black + White Photography Magazine today for more updates on the field.