The book Landscape Photographer of the Year contains full colour photos of the winning and commended entries for the 2020 competition. Mark Bibby Jackson takes a browse.

“Has there ever been a time when we have more appreciated our open spaces?” ponders author and TV Presenter Ray Mears in his foreword to the Landscape Photographer of the Year, released by AA Publishing.

2020 is a year when for a large part, many of us have been first confined to our homes and then celebrated the wonderful countryside all around us as if there were no tomorrow. It has reminded us how fragile is our relationship with nature.

As such, the 13th edition of Landscape Photographer of the Year is a timely celebration of the majestic world that lies outside our front door. Never has it been more pertinent.

Charlie White, the founder of the awards speaks of “a photographer’s deep reverence for the subject and the process of photographing it will not be merely ‘taking’, but will amount to a form of honouring what they have found as a very profound meaning for them.”

Landscape Photographer of the Year Young and Old

Counting Sheep by Joshua Elphick
Counting Sheep by Joshua Elphick

As I peruse the pages, I am struck by the devotion of the photographers to their subject. The winning entry for Landscape Photographer of the Year is taken by Chris Frost of Woolland Woods in Dorset (main image). There is a mystical quality to the photograph with a narrow path leading through fields of wild garlic.

A sheep staring at a fence, entitled Counting Sheep scooped the Young Landscape Photographer of the Year prize for Joshua Elphick. Few images depict the year 2020 more appositely. As Elphick writes, “I hope that the image reminds everyone to appreciate the landscape around us and not take everything we have for granted.

A Rich Landscape

Majestic Winter by Chris Gorman
Majestic Winter by Chris Gorman

The following pages reveal the beauty of the UK, as well as its urban and industrial landscape, through the seasons from the Orkneys to Cornwall. Some create images that typify the British landscape while others challenge our preconceptions. All are beautifully crafted.

Waite hopes that the images will inspire readers to engage with landscape photographry. They surely will also inspire you to travel around the British Isles, once the current pandemic is no more.


Herringfleet Feisty Sunrise by David Andrews
Herringfleet Feisty Sunrise by David Andrews
Categories

There are five categories for both adults and juniors – classic view, your view, urban life, black and white, and living Britain.

Special prizes are awarded for: the MBP Award for Changing Landscapes; The Sunday Times Magazine award for Historic Britain, which also commemorates the 100th anniversary of the Sunday Times, and Network Rail Award for Lines in Landscapes.

The key prizes are Landscape Photographer of the Year, and Young Landscape Photographer of the Year.

Origins of the Competition

The competition was founded by leading landscape photographer Charlie Waite more than 13 years ago to capture images that “will stand as a record of our country”. Waite has produced 28 photography books.

Exhibition

An exhibition of some of the best landscape photographs is currently on display at London Bridge Station, before touring the UK.


Landscape Photographer of the Year

Landscape Photographer of the Year 2020

Editor: David Popey

Published by AA Publishing

Price: Hardback £26. Can be purchased at Amazon.

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