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NZer in 2014 Sony World Photography Awards Student Focus

New Zealand student beats photographers worldwide in 2014 Sony World Photography Awards Student Focus

• Student and tutor will be flown to London to see exhibition of winning work
• Now competing for grand prize of €35,000 of Sony digital imaging equipment
• Images available for publication at

University of Auckland student Chloe Riddell is today announced as a finalist for the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards Student Focus competition.

Student Focus is one of the largest international programmes for photography students. Involving 230 educational institutions worldwide, its aim is to support and inspire the future generation of photographers.

It provides a professional network of contacts and offers a variety of competitions, tutorials and opportunities to help talented emerging photographers to turn professional. Many of the previous finalists of the Student Focus competition are now working regularly in the photography industry.

Chloe Riddell, aged 26, is studying a Masters in Fine Arts at the University of Auckland. She secured her place as one of the ten finalists from around the world with an image titled “The Twins”. The image was shot in response to a brief asking for a single image showing “Tomorrow’s News”.

Click for big version.

Talking about the winning photograph Riddell comments: “The image is taken on a 4x5 large format camera and is from my "Memories Enclosed...Handle with Care" project. I took the picture while visiting my mother and family back in my hometown Hastings, NZ. The twins are my niece and nephew, who I photographed one morning while they were watching TV.“

She continues: “I am very grateful to be a finalist and have the opportunity to go to London. I am looking forward very much to receiving the final brief and seeing what I can do.”

Riddell has been interested in photography since studying darkroom photography in high school. She has always been drawn to images (photographs, movies, magazines) and the way they are able to capture or create moments with great detail and complexity. She hopes to continue making photographic art and potentially teach at a higher education level.

As a finalist Riddell has won the latest full frame camera from Sony – the 7 – which she must now use to fulfil the second brief of the competition: shoot a series of images under the title “Self-portraits”. One winning series will be chosen by the judges from this work.

As the other part of their prize, all ten finalists, including Riddell, will be flown to London with their tutor to attend the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards gala ceremony in London on 30 April.

At the ceremony the finalists will discover the recipient of the 2014 Student Focus Photographer of the Year title and the grand prize of €35,000 worth of Sony photographic equipment for their university.

In addition, each finalist will see their “Self-portraits” series shown as part of the 2014 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House, London from 1-18 May and have their work published in the 2014 edition of the annual Sony World Photography Awards book.

Talking about her student’s success, Lisa Crowley, Senior Lecturer, Elam School of Fine Arts/ University of Auckland comments: University of Auckland comments: “Chloe has always been a student of outstanding talent. I am continually impressed by the insight and sensitivity she brings to her view on the world, which I think is clearly demonstrated in her photo that has been selected for the finals for this competition. I am looking forward to seeing how she approaches this second brief on self-portraiture, and, to also seeing the work of the other finalists from around the world.”

For more information about the Student Focus programme go to

The ten Student Focus finalists are:
• Argentina – Nadia Navarro, Al Aire
• Bangladesh - Rahul Talukder, Pathshala South Asia Media Institute
• China - Li Dandan, Nanjing University of the Arts
• Denmark – Tor Birk Trads, Danish School of Media
• New Zealand - Chloe Riddell, University of Auckland
• Romania - Sebastian Vacariuc, Babes-Bolyai University
• South Africa – Russell Bruns, Rhodes University
• South Africa – Tara Mette, Stellenbosch Academy of Design & Photography
• United Kingdom – Scarlet Evans, Central St Martins
• USA - Jordan VanSise, Marylhurst University

About World Photography Organisation (WPO)
WPO supports professional, amateur and young photographers, lending a global platform for the photographic industry to communicate, converge and showcase current trends across all genres of photography.

Delivering various initiatives to this global community, these programmes involve the photographer in commercial, cultural and educational activities within the many industry sectors, whilst also creating events for the public to participate in.

Currently included within the WPO portfolio are: the Sony World Photography Awards; the World Photography Student Focus Competition and Youth on Assignment. In addition the WPO have recently launched Photo Shanghai, Asia-Pacific’s premiere international Art Fair focused on photography and The Magazine, a monthly online publication where photography is explored, debated and discussed.

WPO also has a thriving online presence via its website, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and engages its online audience via regular PhotoTALK discussions. For more information go to

About Sony
Offering an integrated entertainment experience through its electronics, mobile, music, pictures, game, and networked entertainment business, Sony is uniquely positioned to be one of the world's leading consumer brands. Sony is renowned for its audio-visual products in both the consumer and professional markets, such as the 4K Ultra HD and Full HD LED BRAVIA™ TV, Cyber-shot™ digital camera, Handycam camcorder, “” (pronounced Alpha) digital SLR camera, Sony Tablet, and Walkman MP3 player, as well as its VAIO personal computers and 3D HD professional broadcast equipment.

For more information on Sony Europe, please visit


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