Incredible Photography Competition Captures Childbirth
A powerful gallery showcases the winners of this year's best birth photographs from around the world.
These stunning birth images have been crowned the best in the world in this year's inaugural Birth Photographer International Image Competition [BPIIC].
Lacey Barratt, an award winning birth photographer from Melbourne, Australia, founded the contest as a way to further legitimise the stunning and intricate art of birth photography.
Lacey has been a passionate birth photographer for 10 years and was one of fourteen judges who picked the winners of the competition.
First place was awarded to Renate Van Lith, from Amsterdam, Netherlands, second place was presented to Jenna Nord from Montana, USA, and third place was granted to Diane Hinek, from California, USA.
But with 216 entries snapped by birth photographers from around the world - including Brazil, Portugal, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand - Lacey felt it was important to showcase the top images of the competition.
"So we often get lumped in with documentary, photojournalism, and wedding documentary categories," explained Lacey. "Judging and comparing a birth image with a wedding photo are just two completely different ends of the spectrum."
"So to have a panel of judges trained specifically in birth photography was paramount to the legitimacy of such a prestigious award.
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"I personally love how birth heals a bad birth and prolongs the joy of a good birth.
"Our work is so paramount to birthing people, because it allows them to take charge of their emotional autonomy even though our physical autonomy may have been taken from us.
"When we view our images, we get to choose how we feel about them. And that is powerful in itself."
While this was the first year of the prestigious competition, Lacey added she was excited to keep it going for years to come.
She said: "We are looking for images that exceed the standard of what would be given to a birth client.
"The images we are looking for exceed visual communication, are above the standard of storytelling that we would expect any professional to deliver.
"The energy surrounding the competition was so electric. I was honoured to host such an incredible event that this niche so desperately desired."
To see all the winning photographs, go to www.competitions.birthphotographer.com.au/award-galleries
Featured Image Credit: Renate Van Lith/Caters
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