The very first edition of the Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year Awards (BP WPOY) was initiated in 2009 as national level awards, inviting participation from every state in India. With the aim of both recognising extraordinary talent in wedding photography, and lauding the finest imagemakers in the field, the response to these awards surprised us. Beyond the bestowing of the title of "Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year" and the presentation of prizes at glittering felicitation events, the awards served a higher purpose. The winners and nominees were catapulted to new levels of success in their professional careers. In a field where the job was intensely tough, and recognition, if any, was fleeting and momentary, BP WPOY provided a stamp of legitimate, genuine recognition. More than this, Better Photography is proud to state that this was the very first national level wedding photography awards. In fact, for the very first time in India, wedding photography was recognised as a specific genre, providing its practitioners with a sense of identity and value.
With every subsequent contest, the awards grew in size and following, making it one of the biggest competitions of its kind in the world. Now in its sixth edition, the Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year Awards 2016, promises to be bigger than ever.
K Madhavan Pillai, Chief Editor of Better Photography explains, "After the rings are exchanged, the pheras completed, the food is eaten... after mother and father have danced, close friends and cousins have toasted and laughed, and the elders bestowed their blessings... after the wedding is done... the only things that can be taken away and preserved are certain symbols of love, articles of faith, and the memories of the day."
"Decades later, when the kids have grown up, and mother and father have the passage of time etched on them, wouldn't it be just wonderful to see everything as though time stood still, as though it had only happened yesterday? Amongst all the photographs ever made in the world, including the legendary images that moved the masses, the ones that are most cherished... the ones that we hold close to our hearts... lie in family and wedding albums. This is the enormous responsibility that a wedding photographer needs to shoulder," he adds.
Wedding photography is an extremely challenging genre. A good wedding photographer needs to be technically adept within a number of shooting environments. Be it with portraiture, group or candids, or hugely varying lighting conditions, or in speed, timing, composition or in simply being at the right place at the right time, or even in terms of communication, business acumen, or process and workflow management... a wedding photographer needs to be good with all these areas to be successful. Be it a large or small wedding, all of this show through in the work.
The title of Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year is not easily earned. There are many rounds of anonymous judging before coming to the nominees—initial eliminations, elimination validation, three rounds of category selections—before the nominees in each category are decided. Beyond this, there is an authentication process, and deciding the final category winners. Category winners will be involved in a face-off. The final recipient of the grand title is then selected on the basis of final jury evaluations. In all, there will be over a 100 eminent judges involved in this process, from all over the country.
Better Photography is India’s most widely read magazine on the art and practice of photography. It is also the leading technical authority, with its own test bench, buyer’s guides, annual product awards, and how-to resource for beginners, avid enthusiasts and professionals. Apart from gear and accessory reviews, the magazine also contains tutorials and techniques, assignment and subject related stories, a special cellphone photography segment, a history segment, interviews with legendary photographers, a section entitled 'Great Masters', special features, a showcase of the best images from the mainstream media and readers’ galleries.
Better Photography also conducts one of India's largest annual photography contests — the Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year Awards, where wedding photographers, professionals and novices alike are invited to participate. The magazine also conducts numerous public and corporate workshops on photography, and free-to-attend slideshows and talks with eminent photographers, all year round.
1. Register yourself on our contest page www.betterphotography.in/wpoy and sign in. Alternatively, you can also login with your previous year’s credentials.
2. There are six categories to upload your photographs to.
3. The entries will be judged by a panel of 100 judges. Six category winners will be selected, who will battle it out for the grand prize in the final face-off round.
All entries must be uploaded latest by October 9, 2016.
Feel free to write to us on email@example.com