Canon BP WPOY 2016-17: Judging Nears Completion

Photograph/Lokesh Mali

Lokesh Mali’s entry in the Family and Friends category of the Wedding Photographer of the Year awards 2016-17. Photograph/Lokesh Mali

Are you ready to feast your eyes on India’s best wedding photographs? Would you want to know who the best wedding photographers are? As we move into the midst of India’s biggest wedding photography awards, here’s a look at the story so far.

This year, the Canon Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year 2016-17 awards received a staggering 24,785 entries from across 281 cities and towns in India. The contest, which was open for entries from 30 June-14 October, had photographers from across India submit their images to the following six categories—Bride and Groom Portraiture, Family and Friends, Emotions, Behind the Scenes or Offbeat, Finer Wedding Details or Still Life and Photoseries on a Single Wedding. The submissions were made online, via the Better Photography Wedding Photographer of the Year Awards website.

With the judging process nearing completion, here’s how things unfolded…

Our Diverse Judging Panel… with a Surprise! 
Our esteemed panel of 71 judges, some of whom are from across the globe, comprise senior photographers, national photo editors… as well as particularly exceptional judges… without whom weddings and wedding photography would not be possible in the first place!

Better Photography’s Chief Editor, K Madhavan Pillai, shares his thoughts on our choice of keeping the judging panel diverse. “Over the past five editions, more than the giving away of the awards and the final ceremonies, the awards bestowed have the power to immediately impact a photographer’s career and growth. This, for us, singularly, is the most gratifying aspect of these awards, and it sees us select our judging panel with care. For this reason, we ensured that the judges comprised of stalwarts from the wedding industry and those who have made a mark in the field, both artistically and commercially.”

No other wedding photography awards across the world makes this distinction, or has a panel this broad in both background of judges, or in the number of judges we have selected to make their choice—K Madhavan Pillai, Chief Editor, Better Photography

“While wedding photography is now a genre in its own right, it is composed of skills taken from a variety of other genres of photography as well. Portraiture. Photojournalism. Street. Still Life. We have on board panelists across these genres as well. Yet, if we ask the questions… Who sees these photographs first, and decides whether the most relevant moments have been captured or not? Moreover, who are the photographs most relevant to, especially over the years and across generations? The answers are plain. Of our 71 panelists on the jury, 30 judges are very special to us. They are avid photographers, but with an important distinction. They are the mothers of grooms and fathers of brides. They are to-be-married or newly married couples, judging as a single unit,” he said.

A Look into the First Level of the Judging Process
At the moment, the first round of judging is being carried out via a specially developed online module, based on a three-staged system that progressively narrows down selected images first to the top 50 in each category and then to the nominees. Moreover, the system necessitates the panelists to be absolutely certain of their selections, before proceeding to every successive stage. To enable this, judges can see thumbnails, full-screen views and full-sized views of every image for fine details. This also ensured that judges took extra care, and put in thought while selecting the top scoring images of each category.

We’re Almost There… But Not Yet!
Once the judging process comes to an end, verifications will be made by the Better Photography team, to ensure the authenticity and validity of the entries.

So while we wait for the judging to conclude and reveal the final nominees, in the next few days, the Better Photography team will be disclosing the top entries from each of the six categories on our website, Facebook and Twitter page, along with short galleries of some of the finest wedding photography images in India! Stay tuned…




Tags: Canon, better photography, Wedding Photography, BenQ, adobe, photoquip, manfrotto, Contest, December 2016, Wedding Photographer of the Year 2016-17, Judging, Canon BP WPOY 2016