International Kontinent Photography Awards, the prestigious photography competition. Awards aim to honor best photographers in the world of photography and provide them global recognition and new opportunities. International Kontinent Photography Awards is open to professional and amateur photographers from any country in the World. [Mithatpasa Cad. No: 1175/11 | Uckuyular / Izmir / Turkey] [Kontinent Awards ]
Can you please introduce yourself for those who don’t know?
I started my career as a contract photographer of a German photo agency. My works published globally in news, travel, art magazines and exhibited in important venues around the world. I made interviews with famous photographers and artists including Steve McCurry, Stuart Franklin for several magazines. I organized Randy Olson and Ron Haviv exhibitions in Istanbul. I was the curator of “Without Borders” section of “Our Life is Photography Festival” with participation of 13 international artists.
In 2011, I founded Artlica Art Agency. In Artlica, we represent more than 30 contemporary art photographers around the world. Artlica promotes and sells contemporary art projects as well as creating exhibition and publication opportunities for its artists. So far our artists participated many photography exhibitions and festivals around the world.
Then I started Globalica, which is the editorial branch of Artlica. Globalica is an editorial image syndication service. Currently we are the distributor of Camera Press (UK), Agentur Focus (Germany), Anzenberger Agency (Austria) and Agence VU (France). Globalica is providing news contents for magazines and newspapers.
Finally in 2013, as Artlica Agency we organized the first edition of International Kontinent Photography Awards. With the support of our partners and sponsors we reached 71 countries around the world. In 2014, we expanded our borders to 90 countries with the participation of thousands of photographers.
Could you tell me a little bit about the Kontinent Awards?
Kontinent Awards is an annual international photography competition. It became one of the most important events in the world of photography. Awards aim to honor best photographers in the world of photography and provide them global recognition and new opportunities. Every year our internationally renowned committee selects the winners in these following categories;
1- Advertising – Single Image
2- Fine Art – Single Image
3- Fine Art – Projects
4- Editorial/Documentary – Single Image
5- Editorial/Documentary – Projects
6- Nature – Single Image
Kontinent Awards is open to all photographers from any country in the world.
In general, what is the goal of Kontinent Awards?
As a result of the improvement in digital photography, number of professional and amateur photographers increased rapidly in last 10 years. There are many new talents in the industry who are waiting to get discovered. Also mid-career photographers are looking for new directions and opportunities. Beside our monetary and product prizes, Kontinent Awards is creating different opportunities for the photographers to show their works to magazine/newspaper editors, art gallery owners and more. Winners’ works are publishing in many important publications around the world, some of them are signing contracts with famous art galleries. Kontinent Awards brings their winners’ careers few steps up.
What is the secret of making a contest successful?
You have to have knowledge and experience about every aspect of photography world. You have to know what you are doing and you should be able to predict the upcoming stages and difficulties.
How many photographers participated in the last award?
We received thousands of entries from 90 countries around the world.
What makes Kontinent Awards different from other contests?
Some of the photography competitions are only offering monetary or product prizes to their winners. Of course this is very charming for the participants. Beside these kind of prizes Kontinent Awards is also trying to help career improvement of its winners. As I mentioned before winners are having chance to show their works in important publications, art galleries, festivals and so on. In long term, our winners get more benefits from these new opportunities. We are making the connection between the talent and opportunity.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced running Kontinent Awards?
Time and technical issues are the biggest challenges when you are organizing a photography award. There is not enough time for anything. Thousands of images to check and organize in a very limited time period. You don’t have a chance to make a mistake. Also your submission and payment systems have to work perfectly. During the submission period you are facing many different cases to solve. That’s why all team needs to be fast and careful in these sleepless days.
If you had to do it all over again, what is the one thing you would change if you could?
Nothing. Hope it stays like this.
What advice would you like to offer other artists that might help them learn to better promote their work?
I recommend them to spend some time to make connections with the industry professionals. I know many photographers who are very talented but don’t spend any time to show their works to the right people. They are shooting amazing photographs, then uploading them to their personal website or some photo sharing websites and that is it. It stays there and don’t go any further. There is really a very tiny chance for an editor or gallery owner to come across these works on internet where thousands of photographs are uploading every second.
If they are not working with an agency or gallery, I can recommend them to follow submission calls of publications, festivals, agencies or portfolio reviews of gallery owners. And of course good photography competitions will help them a lot to show their works to the industry professionals and large audiences.
Finally, what plans do you have for Kontinent Awards in the near and long-term future?
Every year we want to reach larger amount of photographers and present them more important opportunities and prizes.
Grand Winner 2014 | David Oliete Casanova – Spain | Project Title: The Human Towers
Grand Winner 2013 | Andreas Franke – Austria | Project Title: Stravronikita
Nature – Single Image Category | 1st Place 2014 | Florian Schulz – Germany