By Tom Westcott
London, 14 November:
Six Libyan photographers have been chosen from 74 North African applicants to take part in photojournalism workshops, run jointly by World Press Photo and Human Rights Watch.
The ‘Reporting Change’ project aims to record the democratic transition taking place in the Middle East and North Africa, in the aftermath of the Arab Spring.
Akram Adem, Ibrahim Alaguri, Mohamed Alalem, Abdalla Dawma, Nader Elgadi and Abdurrauf Madi have been selected to join 30 other photographers from Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia in workshops to be held between December and February. Libyan participants will be attending the courses held in Tunisia and Morocco.
All applicants were required to have a minimum of six months experience working as a photojournalist and had to submit a portfolio of their work. Barbara Chalghaf, from the World Press Photo academy, told Libya Herald: “It is amazing that we have six Libyans in the first two workshops. The quality is very high.”
The five-day workshops will be tailor-made to the needs and experience of the participants, Chalghaf said. Course content will include improving technical skills and practical photography exercises. Participants will have all their travel, accommodation and food paid for and will receive a small allowance.
“There are two main goals of the ‘Reporting Change’ training programme,” Barbara Bufkens, media coordinator at World Press Photo, told Libya Herald. “First, to train strong, professional, and self-reliant visual journalism communities in the Middle East and North Africa. And second, to document and exhibit local perspectives of the regional changes.”
World Press Photo is providing photojournalism training, while Human Rights Watch is offering support on research and advocacy skills. The whole project will run until 2014 and there will be opportunities for photo and multimedia journalists to apply to participate in future workshops.
World Press Photo organises an annual global photojournalism competition. This year, 13 images from the Libyan revolution won prizes. A photograph Russian Yuri Kozyrev, titled ‘On Revolution Road’, showing fighters scattering as government forces retook Ras Lanouf, won first prize in the Spot News Singles category.
First prize, for General News Stories was awarded to Rémi Ochlik, for a series of photographs documenting the revolution, entitled ‘Battle for Libya.’ The twelve powerful images include one of an alleged mercenary being escorted by rebel fighters with a gun held to his head. Another showed Qaddafi’s corpse lying on a stained mattress in a Misrata cold storage. French photographer Ochlik was killed in February this year while covering the Syrian civil war.
The winning entries were chosen from 101,254 photos from 5, 247 photographers from 124 countries.
All the winning entries can be seen here: http://www.worldpressphoto.org/gallery/2012-world-press-photo