CIT students take up the challenge to photograph global issues affecting family farming

IMG_4433a_miniUNIC Canberra joined the Canberra Institute of Technology to launch their 2014 Photography Competition, themed the “International Year of Family Farming” on the 18th of June.

The event at the CSIRO Discovery Centre marked the 5th year of the annual competition that is also run in conjunction with the CSIRO, National Gallery of Australia and the News Corporation.

UNIC Canberra Director, Mr Christopher Woodthorpe introduced the photography students to the theme and it’s international relevance.

“While a farm in Australia, might look different from one in Cambodia, the issues that the family farmers face around the world have many similarities.”

CIT Photographer Coordinator, Julian Stevenson outlined the three categories of the competition, including farming families, food security and sustainability, and the future of farming.

Speaking over an internet hook-up, Australian Photographer, Martine Perret described her work as a UN Photographer in East Timor, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the CIT students.

“My work followed the mission’s mandate, and sometimes there were dangerous moments and it was tough… but if you ever have the chance to go… take it!”

She also spoke about working with Pamela Martin, the first winner of the competition, who was sent to East Timor to work alongside her as her prize.

“All of my work was done in the field, with the people, and that is what I could teach Pamela, as she mainly had studio experience. She saw me working with the people and speaking the local language – which is especially important if you want to get close to your subjects”.

The 2014 competition category winners will be awarded internships at the participating institutions, and the overall winner will gain an internship with UNIC Canberra, which may be completed overseas.

Last year’s winner of the News Corporation Press Gallery internship, Subas Shrestha spoke about how much he valued his experience.

“It is a really good opportunity to learn from people with so much experience, so make the competition tough and really hard to judge!”