Friday, June 17, 2016

Advertiser's Dean Martin is Nation's best Rural Photographer (March 2016)

In a sea of green fruit-laden vines, a single red tomato hanging in the air commands attention. The tomato tossing image captured by Adelaide Advertiser photographer Dean Martin has been judged Australia’s best rural photo for 2016.

Dean led Adelaide Advertiser photographers who completed a clean sweep of the three Australian awards this year. The overall winning photo was taken at the Sundrop Farms giant new greenhouse facility at Port Augusta with head grower Adrian Simkins obliging for the camera.

Judges said the winning entry exhibited fabulous technical skills both in terms of lighting and the use of colour to emphasise the message in the image. Dean, who has been taking great photos for the Advertiser for more than 20 years, said he still gets excited when given an assignment “in the bush.”

The national title carries a cash prize of $1000, provided by the Australian Council of Agricultural Journalists (ACAJ), which organizes the prestigious competition. Dean Martin's winning entry was selected from a strong field of finalists submitted by Australia’s five state-based rural press clubs.

The judging panel this year comprised previous award winners, Peter Scott, Outback Pics, Longreach, Fiona Harding, Townsville Bulletin and Peter Ristevski, Geelong Advertiser.

The top photos in each of three categories – people, production and nature/landscape – go on to represent Australia in the World Star Prize Photo Contest at the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists 2016 Congress in Germany in July.

Dean Martin’s photo took out the production category before being judged overall winner. The winning nature/landscape entry from Mark Brake was an emotional image of wildlife carer Jo Morris hugging a kangaroo which survived the disastrous bushfire which swept through the Humbug Scrub sanctuary in the Adelaide Hills in January last year. Matt Turner took the winning people photo of jackeroo Matt Turner with his horse to illustrate a SA Weekend feature on the sale of the Sir Sidney Kidman cattle empire.

RMSA Vice President, Dale Manson presents winning Advertiser photographer, Dean Martin with his National Star Prize Award certificate, with the winning photograph on the screen behind.