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$40,000 Disability-Focused Bursary for Photographers

Getty Images and Verizon Media announce $40,000 Disability-Focused Creative Bursary to support and encourage talent as they convey the stories, lives and realities of the disability community

SYDNEY, Australia —September 20, 2019 Getty Images, a world leader in visual communications, in collaboration with Verizon Media, has announced its latest global Creative Bursary grant program centring around life with disabilities. Aimed at elevating photographers as they work to capture and share much-needed visual stories of those living with a variety of disabilities, the Bursary comes on the heels of The Disability Collection, a joint effort launched in 2018 by both companies in conjunction with the National Disability Leadership Alliance to more authentically represent people with disabilities in the media.

“This latest endeavour is a natural fit, allowing us to expand not only the reach of this Bursary, but double the award dollars as well,” said Guy Merrill, Creative Bursary Judge and Global Head of Art for Getty Images. “Given that our primary mission is to move the world with imagery, we’re thrilled to continue our relationship with Verizon Media—a forerunner when it comes to accessibility.”

As one of the largest media companies, Verizon Media seeks to provide equal access by making its own products and brands accessible and encouraging others to do the same. With real-time captioning for Yahoo Finance’s eight hours of live streaming, screen reader-optimized apps like Yahoo Mail and Yahoo Fantasy, helping advertisers reach a more diverse audience with captioned ad products and more, Verizon Media is transforming how people of all abilities stay informed and entertained, communicate and connect.
“At Verizon Media, we are committed to creating premium experiences for all,” said Larry Goldberg, Head of Accessibility at Verizon Media. “Through this grant program, we are empowering photographers to join our mission with Getty Images to more authentically represent disability in the media.”

Recognising the challenges faced by photographers worldwide as they look to break into the commercial industry, the Getty Images’ Creative Bursary consistently seeks to discover and nurture creative talent while also alleviating some of the financial hurdles. The additional monetary and promotional support from Verizon Media also ensures a greater reach to potentially interested photographers.

Open to photographers globally, and supported by a matching grant by Verizon, Disability Stories is a one-time Bursary, awarding one recipient $15,000, one recipient $10,000 and three recipients $5,000 each, as determined by an esteemed panel of creative industry judges and disability activists. The bursary seeks diverse perspectives and photographers with disabilities are specifically encouraged to apply. Shortlisted photography projects will be judged by a panel that will include:

Kohei Hara Getty Images photographer.
Erin Lefevre – Previous Getty Images Creative Bursary recipient.
Guy Merrill – Global Head of Art for Getty Images.
Sulaiman Kahn – Founder and Chief Purpose Officer for ThisAbility UK.
Lawrence Carter-Long – Communications Director for the Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund for the National Disability Leadership Alliance.

Photographers are encouraged to apply before November 1, 2019, at which point the application period will close. Recipients of the Creative Bursary will be announced on December 3, 2019, coinciding with the United Nations’ International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

To apply, photographers must submit the following:

Links to existing portfolio of work online
The submission must include: a 200-500-word summary of the project proposal and an inspirational mood board
A short essay that outlines the approach
Proposals must be in English
Submissions must be digital

Bursary recipients are invited to license their award-winning content through, at a 100% royalty rate for imagery created within their proposed project. Entrants will also receive guidance and mentorship from one of Getty Images’ award-winning Art Directors, as well as a feature on Getty Images’ Creative Insights website, in addition to promotion across relevant social channels. Please note, this additional support is not a requirement of the Creative Bursary and is at the discretion of each recipient.

Note that the Getty Images Creative Bursary Grants are a core piece of the wider Getty Images Grants program, collectively aimed at supporting the world’s photographic and photojournalism community. Since the inception of the program 15 years ago, the company has awarded in excess of US $1.4 million, furthering our commitment to the craft of photography and bringing attention to important stories that would otherwise remain unseen. Further details on the Getty Images grants program available here:
To apply:

About Getty Images
Getty Images is one of the most trusted and esteemed sources of visual content in the world, with over 300 million assets including photos, videos, and music, available through its industry-leading sites and The Getty Images website serves creative, business and media customers in nearly every country in the world and is the first-place people turn to discover, purchase and share powerful visual content from the world’s best photographers and videographers. Getty Images works with over 250,000 contributors and hundreds of image partners to provide comprehensive coverage of more than 160,000 news, sport and entertainment events each year, impactful creative imagery to communicate any commercial concept and the world’s deepest digital archive of historic photography. Visit Getty Images at to learn more about how the company is advancing the unique role of still and moving imagery in communication and business, enabling creative ideas to come to life. For company news and announcements, visit our Press Room, and for the stories and inspiration behind our content, visit Find Getty Images on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or download the Getty Images app where you can explore, save and share the world’s best imagery.

About Verizon
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) is headquartered in New York City. The company operates America’s most reliable wireless network and the nation’s premier all-fibre network, and delivers integrated solutions to businesses worldwide. With brands like Yahoo, TechCrunch and HuffPost, the company's media group helps consumers stay informed and entertained, communicate and transact, while creating new ways for advertisers and partners to connect. Verizon's corporate responsibility prioritizes the environmental, social and governance issues most relevant to its business and impact to society.

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