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Scottish photographer is finalist in ‘Oscars’ of photography.

Written by Fiona

June 30 2023

A Scottish photographer, Ed Smith has been named as a finalist in the Sport category of the Association of Photographers’ Photography Awards this week.

His image “Alpine Start” captures an extreme winter scene as mountaineers ascend high snow slopes before first light on a route among the dramatic mountains of Glen Coe.

Ed, of Kingussie, Highlands, says: “At the time of the photograph, I wan’t thinking about entries into an awards. We had, had a 4am start to make the most of sub-zero conditions and to keep ahead of an incoming storm.

“The shoot was commissioned by Rab Equipment for a new mountaineering jacket, so I was very much in work mode. I was being creative, while remaining aware and alert to my surroundings.

“It was later, when I thought about entering the AOP Awards, that I considered the storytelling quality of the image.”

Ed Smith.

Ed describes the photo setting. He says: “You’re very much a team on the mountain together, but Alex and Matt, the mountaineers, are visibly isolated in the beam of their own head torches, each focused on keeping a steady footing.

“It conveys a very real element of solitude amid such a huge mountain scene. It’s an honest perspective of how it feels in the mountains before first light, particularly in winter.”

The AOP awards are acclaimed as highly prestigious. Ed is thrilled to have been named as a finalist.

He says: “I’ve viewed these awards in awe for over a decade and never entered, so it feels like a huge honour to have been selected as a finalist at my first attempt.

“To win the category would obviously be the icing on the cake. But I’m in highly esteemed company alongside the other finalists, so I’m thrilled and thankful to feel this step forward in my work. It’s exciting to connect with new colleagues and clients through what’s been achieved so far..”

Award winners will be announced live at the AOP Annual Showcase event in September 2023.

Ed is an adventure, lifestyle and landscape photographer. See Ed Smith Photography.

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