Friendship and togetherness celebrated through screenshots during a time of global lockdown
The annual Youmanity Photography Award has announced that Nicola Parker from Surrey, England, has won the Youmanity Screenshot Competition. ‘A kiss from across the miles’ was the title of her winning entry with her screenshot capturing three generations: herself, her daughter Molly and 80 year-old mother Mary blowing a kiss from a nursing home. The caption alongside it simply reads: “We have not been able to hug mum recently”.
Youmanity’s photography competition encouraged society to stay connected with family and friends, to make video calls and capture a treasured moment with a screenshot. Thousands of participants worldwide submitted their screenshots, celebrating family and friends, to fight social isolation and help prevent suicide.
The second place was awarded to Shamil Agaev from Russia for capturing a family birthday celebration. Zura Agaeva’s grandchildren, each in different parts of the country, managed to position a balloon within a portion of their screen to form the number ’60’ - much to the surprise of their grandmother.
Third place went to Lucy Barlow, United Kingdom, for portraying her little niece, Issy, as she enjoyed her aunt’s concert – or in Issy’s words 'Aunty Wu-Wu's Boo-Ka-Lay-Lee' concert. “Issy has been the light of my life in lockdown. Funny, caring, loving - she's the reason to play. Every day,’ said Lucy.
Speaking for the jury, Dr Michael Pritchard, Director for Education and Public Affairs, at the RPS, said: “During lockdown meeting online has been a lifesaver for many people and, for many, the only way to connect distanced families. All the entries hghlighted the importance of that connection to fight isolation. The shortlisted entries brought together different generations, lovers, friends and neighbours in ways that were creative and, most importantly fun – with plenty of smiles.”
Selected Friend-Ship screenshots will be showcased on social media. Competition winner Nicola Parker will be awarded £500 cash prize during an on-line ceremony in April 2021.
The selectors were Anne Williams, Documentary Photography Historian; Aris Kourkoumelis, Assistant Curator of Photographs, The Royal Collection Trust; Lise Hansen, Project Manager, Thrive London; Marie Popon, Project Manager, KeolisAmey Docklands; Michael Pritchard FRPS, Director, Education and Public Affairs, The Royal Photographic Society; Priya Nagda-Swainson, Suicide Prevention Officer, Papyrus; and Angelo Iudice, Chair of Youmanity.
Youmanity is a registered charity promoting awareness of social issues by delivering cultural projects throughout the year. Most notable among these is our annual photography award. Photographers from all over the world tell important human stories by sending us their works. We select the most outstanding photographs to showcase in exhibitions open to the public. This year Youmanity is promoting “Friend-Ship” to reclaim the importance and the value of friendship to prevent suicide and mental health issues associated with loneliness and social isolation.
(top) © Lucy Barlow, "Here's my niece, Issy, enjoying 'Aunty Wu-Wu's Boo-Ka-Lay-Lee' concert! Issy has been the light of my life in lockdown. Funny, caring, loving - she's the reason to play every day"
(centre) © Nicola Parker, "A kiss from across the miles - three generations saying Happy New Year. 80-year old Mary is in a nursing home and we have not been able to hug her recently."
(bottom) © Shamil Agaev, "The children could not visit their grandma to wish her happy birthday. This is how they decided to surprise her!"