The judges of the 2018 Sony World Photography Awards have honored the work of one Kenyan and one Nairobi-based photographer by shortlisting and commending their photographs as the top 50 in the world in the Awards’ Professional and Open competitions.
Produced by the World Photography Organization, the Sony World Photography Awards is the world’s most diverse photography competition.
The 11th edition saw a record breaking 320,000 submissions by photographers from more than 200 countries and territories, presenting some of the world’s finest contemporary photography captured over the past year.
The international range of entries display a huge diversity of imagery in terms of genre, style and subject matter across the Awards’ 4 competitions: Professional, Open, Youth and Student Focus.
The two Austin Odunga and Fredrik Lerneryd will have the privilege of getting their work exhibited at the Sony World Photography Awards 2018 Exhibition in London from April 20 – May 6.
The Open competition winners will be announced March 20, and the overall and Professional category winners revealed April 19, 2018.
Fredrik Lerneryd, is Nairobi-based photographer and was shortlisted in the Awards’ Professional Contemporary Issues category.
Originally, from Sweden, Lerneryd focuses his series on Spurgeons Academy in Kibera, Kenya, where every Wednesday the classroom becomes a studio and pupils learn to dance in colorful clothes.
Lerneryd is a freelance photojournalist who works for international Medias, non-governmental organizations, and on independent projects. On being shortlisted, he says, “I am especially grateful that I was shortlisted with this particular story. I have worked on it for almost two years and I feel a strong connection with the children, and know many of them on a personal level”.
On the other hand Austin Odunga impressed the jury with the image Misty Morning in the Portraiture Category, an early morning portrait of a young guy in a car taken before the mist dried off.
The black and white shot captures the fleeble light in the eye of the subject while a sense of suspense permeates the time, the boy, and even the viewer.
On being commended, Odunga said:
“This is an incredible achievement for me. To be commended in the Portraiture category, out of so many images entered from over 200 countries and territories, is more than a compliment.”