Techie wins BBC wildlife photography award

Winning laurels

Techie wins BBC wildlife photography award
Two photographs taken in the backyard of his hometown at Sringeri in Chikkamagaluru district have fetched two international awards for this City-based techie, S S Raviprakash.

Raviprakash has won the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year (WPY) award for 2014, instituted by Natural History Museum, London and BBC Worldwide. He is the third indian to bag the award. An employee with Tata Consultancy Services, Prakash has won the award under the ‘amphibians and reptiles category’ for ‘Divine Snake’ -  a photograph of a green vine snake. The award carries a medal, certificate and a purse of GBP 1250.

‘Pure Magic,’ another photograph of a  spider web, taken in the backdrop of sun set, was shortlisted for finals in People’s Choice category. The award ceremony was attended by naturalist David Attenborough and princess Kate Middleton, where Attenborough personally congratulated Raviprakash.

Renowned South African wildlife photographer Lou Coetzer, who met Raviprakash at the award ceremony, was stunned to know that the photos were taken in the backyard.

“Lou praised me for my perfect clicks and said that he had never seen such photography” said Raviprakash.  

His photo was among the 32,000 photographs by 96 lensmen across the globe. The winning 100 photographs will be displayed on LED screen at the London's Natural History Museum for a year and also at 80 countries.  However, Raviprakash said these photographs had never been displayed in India for lack of infrastructure.

“Tickets for entry into exhibition of award-winning photographs sell in Western countries. But, its not the case in India” he said.

His competitors at WPY had used cameras meant for professionals, while Raviprakash had used a simple Nikon D5000 and had just edited the brightness and colour - which are allowed.

The jury members of the WPY are thorough professionals who scrutinise the photographs for authenticity.

“Perfect pictures are taken by the person behind the camera and not the camera itself. It is important to understand photography which cannot be taught in any course,” Raviprakash said.

He added that wildlife photography was not only about capturing the big wild animals, but also the lesser known ones.

The photographs will be on display at the Venkatappa Art Gallery till February 1.  The sale proceeds of the photographs will be used to fund surgeries conducted by the People Tree Hospital for the poor and needy.

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