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Poignant photographs that tell a story triumph in Portrait of Humanity award

© Florence Babin-Beaudry, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Series Winner.
(Image credit: © Florence Babin-Beaudry, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Series Winner.)

Now in its fourth year, 1854 Media’s Portrait of Humanity recognizes remarkable photographers that capture moments that make us who we are. The worldwide competition is among the most viewed photographic exhibitions in the world, and each year thousands enter hoping to appear in the top 200. 

Like with Portrait of Britain, the winning images tell a myriad of stories of joy, hardship, hope, triumphs and bravery. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the award has offered a poignant insight into the lives of people who have loved, lost and learned how to live in this “new normal”.

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This year’s three winning photographic series were shot by Florence Babin-Beaudry, who addressed the topic of spontaneous abortions in Products of Conception, Claudia Gschwent, for her portraits of the Sencirk circus troupe taken in Senegal, and Jonathan Liechti, for his project examining what happens when we die.

(Image credit: © Claudia Gschwend, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Series Winner.)

A further 30 single image winners were selected, depicting everything and anything from a lady who spent her life in the countryside raising bees, to a Ugandan nurse committed to fighting for those with mental health issues, to an activist advocating for LGBT+ elders in the US.

The 30 winning images and three bodies of work will be exhibited at Photo 2022 in Melbourne between 29 April - 22 May. The 200 shortlisted images, which will be announced mid-April, will be printed in Portrait of Humanity Vol. 4 – a Hoxton Mini Press publication.

Portraits are chosen for the stories they tell, the way they are shot and the techniques used to create the image. Portrait of Humanity is about the connection between the photographer and their subject and this year's selection is as striking and varied as ever before. 

To see the three winning series and 30 selected single images, head to the Portrait of Humanity website (opens in new tab)

(Image credit: Paz Olivares-Droguett, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Single Image Winner.)

(Image credit: © Jonathan Liechti, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Series Winner.)

(Image credit: © Matt MacPake, Portrait of Humanity 2022 Single Image Winner.)

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Hannah Rooke
Staff Writer

Having studied Journalism and Public Relations at the University of the West of England Hannah developed a love for photography through a module on photojournalism. She specializes in Portrait, Fashion and lifestyle photography but has more recently branched out in the world of stylized product photography. For the last 3 years Hannah has worked at Wex Photo Video as a Senior Sales Assistant using her experience and knowledge of cameras to help people buy the equipment that is right for them. With 5 years experience working with studio lighting, Hannah has run many successful workshops teaching people how to use different lighting setups.