Congratulations to Keren Dobia, the winner of the Australian Institute of Professional Photography’s prestigious 2017 Photographer of the Year in the Australian Professional Photographer Awards (APPA).
Ms Dobia won the award from a field of more than 500 entrants with her dramatic and emotive imagery. She currently works as a casual teacher in our well-respected Photoimaging program, and is also an alumnus of our former Advanced Diploma of Photoimaging.
“It’s pretty amazing,” she says, still coming to grips with her win. “I never thought it would ever happen.”
MsDobia’s success has been many years in the making, with its roots in a childhood love of painting and drawing that is clearly reflected in the painterly style of her remarkable photographs.
“I was very lucky that my parents supported and fostered that passion,” she says.
After trying out fashion design but feeling it was not what she wanted, she took some time off to consider her options and found herself drawn to photography.
“I have been able to combine all my passions. As well as the photography, I do all the styling and the props, and I also do the post-production myself,” Ms Dobia says.
Her gorgeous photographs have a distinctly ‘Old Masters’ style about them, and they reflect the richness and complexity of the very best of classic painting.
The images she entered into the awards this year are a part of a cinematic style portrait series of Australian creatives.
“The Filmmaker” a portrait of Australian John Richardson, in his garage in Melbourne.
“The Artist” a portrait of Australian Artist Valerie Richardson at home in Melbourne.
“The Permaculturalist” a portrait of Australian Permaculture Designer Taj Scicluna in Silvan, Victoria, Australia.
“The Leather Tanner” a portrait of Australian Tanner Josh McClean in his studio on Christmas Hills, Victoria, Australia.
“I am hoping to create a body of work that not only depicts creative in the ‘traditional’ sense but also creative that audiences may never think of or have come into contact with. This could range from filmmakers, artists, permaculture designers, to taxidermists, street artists, composers, poets and so on,” says Ms Dobia.
“The intention for this series is an exhibition and then hopefully a small book publication. I am hoping that this series will lead to an ongoing and much larger body of work that would become a portrait of Australia’’.
About the Australian Institute of Professional Photography's Australian Professional Photography Awards (APPA)
The Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) – the country’s largest photographic membership body – has been running the awards annually for the past 41 years.
The national president of the AIPP, Vittorio Natoli, says the awards represent the best of the best of professional photography in Australia.
“APPA is the only awards in the country that celebrates photography in its original form by valuing the photograph, which in its printed finish displays authenticity and permanency.
“APPA awarded images display visual literacy with exemplary creativity, vision and craft.
“The awards process and the institute continue to deliver the highest professional recognition offered in Australia today and recipients of these awards and honours have become industry ambassadors around the world championing the cause of professional photography”, he says.
To be eligible for the title of Australia’s Professional Photographer of the Year, photographers must first win a category. Ms Dobia won the portrait category.
You can see all the winners at the AIPP APPA website.
Main photo: “The Permaculturalist” by Keren Dobia. Article photo: Keren Dobia
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Melbourne Polytechnic operates across seven campuses and five specialist training centres throughout Melbourne. The institute delivers high quality vocational and higher education in industry-standard facilities.
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