I am not a big social network person at all. I have
maintained a minimal presence on Facebook, just enough to keep in touch with
family and friends. But I have to admit, I completely suck at it. Which is why
when Flickr came along, I initially resisted the urge to join. I knew that I
would not have the time to devote to it, especially to do it well. But then I
finally did join Flickr a few years ago for a very specific reason–to handle
certain operations of a campus photography club that I had started. Then I
became curious one day and started to search for photographers from the part of
the world where I was born and spent my younger years. That opened a whole new
world for me and probably kept me in Flickr ever since. I joined several groups,
one of which was “Bangladeshi Photographers”. The group members are
all from Bangladesh, some still live there and some are abroad, but they all
love the art and craft of photography. Most of the members are photo
enthusiasts who want to learn and practice the craft, which can be pretty
difficult for some in the region. Let’s face it, photography is not the
cheapest of hobbies, and South Asia is not known for the abundance of wealth. A
couple of years ago, I was trying to think of a way to encourage these young,
energetic photographers and I came up with the idea of, what else, a contest!
It’s a twice a year contest, I have a panel of judges made up of some of my
photographer friends and we choose two winners. The prize isn’t much really, a
year of “Pro” membership on Flickr, but that’s not the important part,
at least not for me. The idea is to recognize excellence in these young talents, and it’s all done in good fun.
Anyways, we have just completed one of these contests
and I thought I’d post the winning photos here.
The first of two winners (in no particular order) is
called “Portraits”. The photographer is Muhammad Khalid Rayhan
Shawon. This depicts two kids (who are likely to be homeless street kids) looking
at some portraits of beautiful happy children at a street shop. The image, no
doubt, has a sad undertone to it, but it is also quite a powerful image. The
contrast between the portraits and the main subjects, their placement, the
colors–everything work really well together to make this image. It may be
sad, but it is also strangely beautiful.
The second image is “Food Factory–The Aftermath” by Tahmid Syed Abtahi. This shows three individuals cleaning up after what, by all indications, looks like a feast. The composition is excellent here. Placement of the three individuals, the piled up plates and
leftovers, and the diagonally placed drain that cuts across the image couldn’t
have worked any better. The photo was also a stark reminder of the waste that
humans generate in their daily lives and those that have to deal with them.
I have a feeling that we will see a lot more of these young artists in the future.