More than 400 of the country’s best professional photographers gathered in Melbourne Tuesday night for the Australian Institutes Professional Photography Awards – known as APPA – presented at a gala dinner at The Plaza Ballroom on Collins Street.
Melbourne photographer Belinda Richards was awarded the prestigious title of Australian Emerging Photographer of the year for her humorous and quirky images of dogs.
Ms. Richards, a full time pet photographer spends her time extracting human like expressions from our canine companions.
Ms. Richards image ‘Catastrophe’ was a favourite among the judges and was awarded a gold medal.
Master photographer and judge Gee Greenslade said she saw more than just a dog reading a newspaper.
“Notice the gender of the felines, notice the gender of the dogs, we are talking about modern day feminism and we are doing it with the analogy of dogs and cats”, Ms Greenslade said.
Ms Richards said she was relieved when Ms Greenslade made the comments because it meant the judges would see the narrative in the image.
‘“I love to use humour in my work and always talk about important issues that matter to me with a healthy dose of laughter”, Ms Richards said.
“Using cats and dogs to highlight our current political climate with issues such as the #metoo movement at the forefront just seems natural to me”.
Ms Richards said it was an incredible honour to be recognised as one of Australia’s leading emerging photographers.
“I returned to study photography a bit later in life and I was so daunted my first day at college surrounded by teenagers with so much confidence.”
“To win this award judged by photographers I have admired for years just feels too surreal.”
“To be recognised on this level is something I never expected. Next time someone asks me for a discount I am going to point at my award!”
More info: frogdogstudios.com.au