Today I´ve been attending the first ever NNPC award ceremony at the Norwegian Natural History Museum in Oslo. The event was a great success in all ways - it would be stupid of me to tell otherwise. In total 4500 images was evaluated in 7 different adult categories, and one junior award. I was rather optimistic myself but you never know. Well, I got my awards!
Tom Schandy, representing the organizers Natur&Foto magazine, called me when I was at Schipol airport on my way home from the Pyrenean Lammergeier shoot and was happy to tell me I was the winner of the Birds category, the largest of the 7, with my “Whiteout Grouse” image. This is a favourite of mine and I was very happy to get recognition for this type of photography that I love to do. In a way it is related to my winning Gentoo Penguin image from the International Wildbird Photographers Award back in 2006. In addition, Tom told me, my image “Hunting hawk” was commended in the same category.
I was very happy to get this recognition but it didn’t stop there. I also had the winning image in the People in Nature category with my “Night on the rock”. This image was taken during an overnight stay at the Bolt at Kjerag in Lysefjorden. This rock is sitting 1100 meters above the fjord and most people have second thoughts entering the rock in daytime. My friend Jonathan Björklund didn’t think twice and made a perfect model against the starlit sky. Meanwhile I was sitting crutched in the crevice below only seeing the water from the small stream disappearing below me. Good think my tripod didn’t slip…
I always think of the camera as a tool to create, and further to provoke reactions from my viewers in some way. If I can raise an issue on conservation through my photography I am very satisfied. This is however very hard. Sometimes however, it is rather straightforward. The chairman of the jury Arne Nævra took an iconic image of the Polar Bear hanging on to the last piece if ice floating through the cold Arctic ocean. This image was given a special award in the BBC WPOY some years back. When I got my Polar Bear picture I was actually thinking this was the next image in that sequence; the ice is all gone and the bear is sinking into the deep, giving us a last wave. Being a rather funny picture it also have some impact in that way. The “Last Polar Bear” image was commended in the Threatened Nature category.
Tom now asked me if there was something I was missing, but I was already stoked as they say (I used to be a wave-surfer J). “Well, you see, you also won the Travelling Photographer category” he said. It meant my 6 images from stunning Botswana was the best selection from outside the Nordic countries.
To sum it up I won three categories and had two commended images. This means I have 10 images are on display at the Norwegian Natural History Museum as well as in the NNPC book.“So are you happy with that Roy?” – yes!