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Westport photographer scoops four national awards


FOUR-MIDABLE A delighted Michael McLaughlin is pictured with his four awards alongside Johanna King IPPVA, President, IPPVA and Brian Whelan, Birmingham Cameras. Pic: Orla Murray/ Coalesce

McLaughlin ‘blown-away’ after scooping four photography awards

Anton McNulty

A WESTPORT-based photographer says he was ‘blown away’ when it was announced that he was the winner in four categories at a prestigious Irish photography awards ceremony.
Well-known award-winning photographer Michael McLaughlin was presented with the awards at the Irish Professional Photographers and Videographers Association (IPPVA) annual Gala on Sunday evening in Dublin’s Clontarf Castle Hotel.
The titles of Commercial Photographer of the Year, Press Photographer of the Year, Landscape Photographer of the Year and Open Creative Photographer of the Year were all scooped by McLaughlin, who will now represent Ireland as a finalist in the upcoming Federation of European Photographers awards.
Speaking to The Mayo News after the event, McLaughlin said he was confident of coming home with some award but was bowled over to have won four.
“I knew I had some good work up for awards in different categories and was confident of picking up some award but to pick up four on the night was something I did not expect. I was blown away to be honest, and I’m thrilled,” he explained.

The awards, sponsored by Bermingham Cameras, and Canon, were presented in person after a year of virtual activity, with the judging panel consisting of professional photographers and videographers from all sectors of the industry from wedding to commercial, fine art to landscape, portraiture to press.
Eighteen awards were presented on the night. An IPPVA award is a mark of excellence for any individual piece of work or body of work, which means that all of the IPPVA award winners have produced imagery that meets the highest standards within the industry.
McLaughlin had previous won IPPVA awards for Press Photographer of the Year, Landscape Photographer of the Year and Open Creative Photographer of the Year but had never won the Commercial Photographer of the Year.
He explained that winning in this category was unexpected but very pleasing, as it shows the range of diversity in his portfolio.
“Some people are specialised in one or two areas so as a photographer picking up the four awards it shows I am very diverse in the type of photos I can shoot. It is great to be recognised in that by your own industry and that is what is good about it. The standard is always really high in these competitions, and to be there receiving these awards and being judge by your peers is great. I am thrilled to be recognised for the work.”

‘Raised the bar’
All the entries were judged over three heats, with judges looking at over 900 images and over 50 videos in online judging sessions that were recorded for IPPVA members, before shortlisted finalists were assessed by an international panel of professional image makers to determine the category and overall winners.
Speaking about the event, Johanna King, President of the Association, said:
“Once again, and across all categories, IPPVA photographers and videographers have raised the bar to a really high level. Tonight’s winners – and indeed all finalists – should be proud and celebrate the hard work and expertise that went into every single one of these photographs and videos.”