As the saying goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words”, we turned to photography to portray the time during quarantine we all endured recently. Last May, iRead launched a photography contest, labeled “Behind Masks”.
The competition revolved around capturing two pictures, the first picture was to present an introspective meaning of the Coronavirus and the quarantine, and the second picture was to reflect the extrospective meaning of this time.
The jury panel consisted of photographer Ahmed Hayman, novelist and scriptwriter Ahmed Mourad, image-maker Karim El Hayawan, art advisor Saida El Harakany, and film director Marwan Hamed.
On November 12th, the iRead team celebrated the first three winners in a ceremony with the presence of all the jurists, as well as CEO Sherine Rashed, and iRead board members Ahmed Mourad and Engy El Saban.
The first three winners were Rasha El Maghraby in 1st place, Karim Magdy and Hamada El Rasam in 2nd place, and once again Rasha El Maghraby in 3rd place.
“I was so impressed by the number of pictures that were submitted for the competition and the artistic sense of those who participated. I believe that art always prevails, even in times of hardship.” said Sherine Rashed, iRead CEO.
Image-maker and architect, head of the jury panel Karim EL Hayawan discussed with us the challenges that participants were faced with, “The winners were challenged because the subject wasn’t an easy one, they were asked to reflect the lockdown internally and externally, and that’s not an easy matter, a big part of it is emotional. Also, the fact that they couldn’t go out to capture the pictures in a regular way was very challenging.”
When asked about the process of filtering the pictures, photographer, Karim Hayman said, “It was very hard to start selecting the winning pictures due to the large number of great ones, and the more we started to narrow them down, the tougher it got, but at the end we picked the winners, and I congratulate all of them for the great job.”
“It’s a great initiative by iRead because they made people make use of this period, in my opinion, it was a very creative competition. I personally enjoyed working with the jury panel, because they are all very unique artists. The competition was a proof of the number of talents we have” said director, Marwan Hamed.
Art advisor, Saida El Harakany shared her thoughts regarding the fact that the 1st place winner was also the 3rd place winner, “It was very interesting, although the images were so different, you couldn’t tell that it was the same photographer. At the end of the competition I believe it was a very fair selection, and we managed to select a combination of good photos technically, composition wise, artistically, and with regards subject matters.”
Big thanks to the jury panel and the winners for such a great event, and for readers and fans, stay tuned for more competitions.