Inaugral Head On Environmental Photography Awards

Rebecca Varidel
8th Jul 2023

Australian Geographic partners with Head On Photo Festival to launch the Head On Environmental Awards by Australian Geographic

Photo by William Debois, Head On Photo Awards Finalist 2022

Australian Geographic has partnered with the prestigious Head On Photo Festival to create a new award, designed to encourage environmental activism through photography. The inaugural Head On Photo Festival’s Environmental Awards by Australian Geographic will support visual storytellers worldwide to create work that raises awareness of the planet’s critical issues.

With entries open until 16 July, an esteemed judging panel will select 20 finalists to be included in a major exhibition along Bondi Beach in the prestigious Head On Photo Festival (11 November – 3 December). The overall winner will be awarded $10,000 AUD donated by the Australian Geographic Society - a dedicated fund that supports conservation projects around the country. The winner will also receive benefits from Photobook Australia, Australian Geographic, Better Photography and PhotoReview Magazines, rounding out a suite of prizes across the Head On Portrait, Landscape Student and Environmental Awards categories worth over $70,000.

Editor in Chief of Australian Geographic, Chrissie Goldrick said it was a valuable opportunity to highlight and encourage urgent environmental action through a powerful medium. 

“Australian Geographic understands the power of photography to tell compelling stories and change hearts and minds. Our partnership with Head On Photo Festival’s Environmental Awards will harness photography to tell an urgent story of the plight of our planet and the specific issues that beset the natural world.

“We hope that photographers will respond to the challenge and help draw attention to pressing issues including human-induced climate change, biodiversity loss, habitat destruction, unsustainable development, pollution, ocean acidification and climate-change-induced extreme weather events.”

Creative Director of Head On Photo Festival, Moshe Rosenzveig OAM said: “The Head On Environmental Awards by Australian Geographic will drive diverse photographers to push the power of photography, offering an amazing opportunity for their work to be seen by many thousands at Head On Photo Festival and spread their environmental messages far and wide.”

The competition is open to photographers worldwide. As guidance for entrants, Judge and Australian Geographic’s Group Picture Editor, Nicky Catley said: “We call for work that surprises us, is thought provoking and offers new ways of motivating audiences beyond a passive appreciation of our natural world. Above all, we call for work that advocates for positive change.”《 to enter and learn more about the criteria, rules, key dates and other information.