Winning Awards

On being an award-winning photographer

One of the most rewarding aspects of being a freelance photographer is seeing my clients’ faces when they first set eyes on the photos I’ve taken for them – be that a stunning wedding album, a fun-filled family portrait, a business headshot, a treasured picture of a much-loved pet or – in the case of my restaurant clients – glorious images that do justice to the mouth-watering dishes they serve. My clients’ appreciation of my work is paramount, and I feel privileged to work in a profession that can bring so much pleasure to so many people. However, the icing on the cake is when my images also catch the eye of the judges in photography competitions, resulting in awards and commendations.

You can imagine, therefore, my delight over the past few months at receiving several awards recognising my work as a professional photographer in different specialist areas – not to mention having three images short-listed in the very prestigious Pink Lady Food Photography Awards.


At a ‘virtual’ awards ceremony on Zoom last month, attended by 20 other photographers, I was thrilled to learn that I’d won eight awards in the MPA  –  Master Photographer Association’s annual competition. These included five merits, one ‘excellence’ and – most pleasingly of all – first place in both the Family Portrait category and the Open category.


A couple from the wedding category


Family Portraiture

Commercial  Merit


 Open Category Merit


One advantage of the announcement of the awards being online was that Christopher and I could sit in the comfort of our own home and toast my success without worrying about either of us being relegated to lemonade for the evening!

I must confess that there are few things I enjoy more than heading for wild places (even further afield than Fife!) for the opportunity to capture the beauty of Scotland’s flora and fauna. My shot of the seagull in full flight, which won the Open class, was taken on just such a sortie across the Firth of Forth, to the historic island of Inchcolm.

       Winner of the Open Award Category

While my main reason for being there was to do a recce for a wedding, it was also a great opportunity to admire the local wildlife.

The photo that took the winning place in the family portrait category was a lovely family shot – taken on West Sands in St Andrews – of new mum and dad Jessica and Darren Spink (proprietors of the town’s Tail End fish and chip shop and restaurant) with their baby Arno  

     Winner of the Family Portrait Category

It was particularly satisfying to win these two awards given that there were over 1000 entries in the competition from a total of 90 photographers, with 180 entries making it through to the final.