Hunter Valley photographer Sharron Leppien and Sydney’s Gaanesh Prasad have shared the honours in The Mono Awards 2019, the inaugural Australian and New Zealand photography competition that sought to find the best black and white imagery in the region. 

Run by Australian Photography and Capture, a panel of nine leading photographers judged the competition, which gave entrants a simple brief: the best single black and white image across one of two categories, People and Places. 

Sharron Leppien, Places category winner, Boy with Tyre

Leppien’s winning People-category image, captured in Madagascar, shows a fleeting moment as a boy plays with a tyre in the shadow of the island’s iconic Baobab trees. For judge John Crawford, the image was a standout in a hugely competitive field.
 
“It’s striking and unique, with all the elements perfectly placed. A beautiful image,” he said. 

Gaanesh Prasad, Fly High
Gaanesh Prasad, People category winner, Fly High

Gaanesh Prasad’s image, Fly High, was the result of more than two hours patiently waiting at the Wings over Illawarra airshow for the perfect moment to unfold. “I always wanted to capture an image connecting the spectators to the airshow above,” he explains.  

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“I happened to see a veteran holding his hand and covering his eyes blocking the sunlight as he was watching the warbirds coming down, and so waited for the moment to happen.” 

Entrants competed for a prize pool of $10,000 in cash and prizes in the competition, thanks to major sponsors, Momento Pro, Momento Photo books, and supporting sponsor Kudos Cameras, with the winners each taking home $2,000 cash, a $1,000 Momento Photo book prize, and a $500 Kudos Cameras voucher. 

The competition was judged by nine of Australia and New Zealand’s top photographers: John Crawford, Douwe Dijkstra, Paul Hoelen, William Long, Anthony McKee, Matt Palmer, Jackie Ranken, Juliet Taylor, and Alex Vaughan.

In September, the public will have the opportunity to vote for their favourite images in the People’s Choice vote, with the winner for each category taking home the People’s choice crown and a $250 Momento Photo books voucher. Keep an eye on the Australian Photography Facebook page to get involved.

Below you can see the top 10 lists for each category. The top 20 lists and top 10 images, as well as judges’ comments are published in the September issue of Australian Photography magazine and the September/October issue of Capture. They’re in store now.

People

Todd Henry, Runner up, People category, An Amish boy faces his future.
Todd Henry, Runner up, People category, An Amish boy faces his future.
Tony Law, Third Place, People Category, Break Away.
Tony Law, Third Place, People Category, Break Away.

TOP 10: PEOPLE 

1 Gaanesh Prasad, Fly High
2 Todd Henry, An Amish boy faces his future
3 Tony Law, Break away
4 Julie Kerbel, Indignant
5 Tracy Botica, A rest between laps
6 Reza Bagheri, Reindeer Shepherd
7 Kristyn Taylor, Pigeon Fancier
8 Katy Bindels, Backyard Portrait
9 Kimberley Wallis, Separation
9 David Lindesay, The Contemporary Adonis

Places

Jannick Clausen, Runner up, Places category, X Power.
Jannick Clausen, Runner up, Places category, X Power.
Andrew Walsh, Third place, Places category, Milky Way.
Andrew Walsh, Third place, Places category, Milky Way.

TOP 10: PLACES

1 Sharron Leppien, Running with tyre
2 Jannick Clausen, X Power
3 Andrew Walsh, Milky Way
4 Graeme Gordon, Etihad museum
5 Beth Baker, Sanctuary?
6 Mark Daffey, House on the Hill
7 Karen Waller, Point Turton
8 Peter Hill, Latesfossen III
9 Pamela Inverarity, Stillness
9 Yan Kurniawan, Avalon Rock Pool
9 Graham Earnshaw, Jurassic times



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