The idea occurred to me when I saw a sampling of the winners of the first-annual World's Rarest Birds international photo competition. The photo below, of New Zealand's kakapoo (not to be confused with this non-endangered animal), won first place in the "Critically Endangered or Extinct in the Wild" category. The kakapoo is a large, flightless bird with obvious star quality, and I hope this picture, and the award it won, help bring attention to its precarious hold on existence.
|The New Zealand kakapoo rocks this winning photo by Shane McInnes|
Excitement, and clairty, are the points here. There's not enough of either with all the contests nowadays. For instance: The same news pictures are entered into all the big photojournalism contests, and in one contest a certain picture may win a first prize, while in another it may come in third. We are left to determine for ourselves whether the shot is the best or not. Kind of like college football used to be before the Bowl Championship Series.
Seriously, wouldn't you want to see the winner of the POYI spot news award face off with the winner of the World Press Photo spot news category in a single tournament?
|Peter Lakatos, MIT took first place for spot news in the World Press Photo contest with this shot of a suicide jump in Budapest, Hungary on May 22, 2010|
|Athit Perawongmetha won the Picture of the Year International spot news (general division) award with this photo of an anti-government protester in Bangkok.|
|Palani Mohan (Reportage Getty) won POYI's first place, portrait series (general division) with this shot.|
|Flood victims in Pakistan were the subject of this photo, part of a series by Daniel Berehulak (Getty Images) that won first prize in World Press Photo's People in the News category.|