The 2019 Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award of £2000, facilitated by FotoDocument and supported by Nikon for the first time this year, will be granted to a professional woman photographer towards the completion of a compelling and cohesive documentary photo essay which addresses an important social, environmental, economic or cultural issue, whether local or global.
The work should, in part, showcase positive solutions to any issues it raises in order to contribute to constructive photojournalism, in line with the wishes of Marilyn Stafford and the aims of FotoDocument. The Award is reserved solely for documentary photographers working on projects which are intended to make the world a better place and which may be unreported/under-reported.
Women from any stage of their careers are welcome to apply, whether emerging, mid-career or established. They must already have started the photo essay for which they are seeking funding and be able to show work in progress. In addition, they must have already completed at least one other documentary photo essay to demonstrate track record prior to applying for funding. Entrants must be over 18, they may be any nationality and based anywhere in the world. It is free to submit.
Submissions will be reviewed by panel including: Rebecca Conway – 2017 FotoAward winner, Donna De Cesare – award-winning Photojournalist & Educator, Nina Emett – Documentary Photographer & Director of FotoDocument, Melanie Friend – Documentary Photographer & Educator, Rebecca Newton – PR & Social Media Manager Nikon, Marilyn Stafford herself and her daughter, honorary judge, Lina Clerke.
L: Marilyn Stafford at work, 1960. R: First portrait, Albert Einstein, 1948 © Marilyn Stafford
One overall winner will receive The Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award of £2000 towards the completion of their project.
The final work will feature on the FotoDocument and Nikon websites and will be publicised via social media.
Partners will collectively endeavour to gain coverage for the final work in the international media, without any guarantee of this outcome.
Short-listed applicants will have at least one of their images profiled on the FotoDocument and Nikon websites and publicised via social media.
There will be a screening of the 2019 FotoAward winner’s work at the launch of the Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award 2020 to celebrate International Women’s Day on 10 March 2020 at the Nikon School in central London.
© Ozge Sebzeci 2018 winner
© Rebecca Conway 2017 winner
Born in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, Marilyn Stafford’s early dreams were for a theatrical career. Her photographic career was accidently launched in New York in 1948 when she was asked to photograph Albert Einstein by friends making a film about him. In the car on the way to Einstein’s home in Princetown, New Jersey, she was given a camera and a quick lesson in how to use it. From there on, her photographic career took her across the world, starting in Paris in the 1950s. There her friendship and guidance by Magnum founders Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson were instrumental in shaping her work. While completing commissions for a number of Paris fashion houses she also photographed children living in one of the city’s worst slums – Cite Lesage-Boullourde – which was later bulldozed to make way for the Paris Opera Bastille, 1984.
These photographs are featured in her Monograph: “Stories in Pictures – A Photographic Memoir – 1950”. In the early 1960s she travelled widely in Lebanon where she produced the photo book: “Silent Stories – A Photographic Journey Through Lebanon in the Sixties” (Saqi Books, London) and in India where she spent many weeks documenting the country’s first woman Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi.
She settled in England in the mid-sixties, where she was one of a handful of women photographers working on Fleet Street.
Stafford’s work spans from 1948 – 1980 and covers a variety of subjects including refugees, tribal peoples, international fashion and prominent historical figures. Her portraits include Edith Piaf, Alberto Moravia, Italo Calvino, Lee Marvin, Joanna Lumley, Sir Richard Attenborough among others.
Her work has been exhibited all over the world and is syndicated through Sipa press, Paris and Camera Press, London.
Working as a reportage photographer in a largely male industry, Stafford personally experienced how difficult it was for women to balance career and family, especially when each opportunity was hard won. She recognises that this difficulty still exists for women in the industry today and with the launch of this Award she hopes to help redress the balance.
Marilyn Stafford © Nina Emett