The world's largest and most prestigious photo contest for wildlife photographers "The Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year" has announced the winners for 2009 at an annual ceremony at the Natural History Museum in London. The competition has more than 43,000 participating photographs from 94 countries competing in 11 different categories. The competition has since 1964 been responsible for the ultimate in nature photography, and is considered among photographers as the highest honors.
Winner in the category "Wild Places" was Greenland photographer Carsten Egevang, with its picture "Big fjord, little auks" photographed by Scoresby in Northeast Greenland. The motif of the winning photo is a bunch of flying auks (one starlings-large, arctic auk), with massive icebergs that are embraced by a rolling fog in the background. Carsten Egevang is researching Arctic bird biology, and employed by the Greenland Institute of Natural Resources in Greenland. He has recently returned to Denmark after living in Greenland for 6 years. In addition to his job as a biologist, he is the initiator and administrator of ARC-PIC.COM, a photo agency specializing in photo from Greenland.
"As a biologist I perform field work in some of the globe's most pristine scenery in which to live and live amidst nature for long periods. This gives me a unique opportunity to capture moments in nature, just where the light is just right, or where an interesting situation arises." continues Carsten Egevang.
"There has been a great development in photography in recent years, with the introduction of digital cameras at both professional and amateur photographers, and today you shoot in a completely different way compared to just 7-8 years ago. Thus you come home with a huge picture material after a month in the field, and the winning photo was actually untouched on my hard drive for 8 months before I discovered its qualities "says Carsten.
It has only happened six times earlier in the competition's history that a Danish photographer has gone on to the final round and been ranked as "Highly Commended" or "Runner Up", which corresponds to a 2-5. space. However, it is the first time that a Dane is placed at the top of the podium as the winner of a category.
"My photo will be published in a book, and will be included in an exhibition with the rest of the winning images from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year. The exhibition is going to go around the world, and so millions of people will be presented with Greenland's unique natural assets. Greenland is a great place to be a photographer and it is my hope that this type of exposure will help to promote Greenland as a tourist destination." concludes Carsten Egevang.