Single Photo Competition

IDRF Fellows Pick
Mackenzie Cramblit: Passage to Folach. On the West Coast of Scotland, red deer population estimates are often made on foot due to the difficulty of the terrain and the prohibitive expense of aerial counts. At the end of a day spent counting on the hill, stalkers take the scenic route back to the Land Rover.
Fellowships Office Pick
Meghan Donnelly: Hemeroteca. The hemeroteca (newspaper library or archive) of a local newspaper in Chihuahua, Mexico. The paper has only just begun the process of digitalizing its archives, so reporters regularly visit the hemeroteca on the ground floor of the newspaper offices to request copies of papers from days past. Though the space seems chaotic and disordered, with barely enough room to walk between the stacks and shelves of newspapers, the employee who works here can find anything you need in minutes.

Self Portrait Competition

IDRF Fellows Pick
Edwin Everhart: Sominsai Solidarity. (I’m slightly right-of-center, bearded.)
I was invited to participate in the outdoor, overnight Sominsai festival at Kokuseki-ji temple, where this festival has allegedly continued for over 1200 years. Every February, a couple hundred local men strip down to the fundoshi (cotton loincloth) and participate in a series of physical challenges from 10pm to dawn. These feats serve, in part, to guarantee good fortune and a good harvest for the coming year. Pictured here is part of the first challenge: climb the slope behind the temple, come back down; then wade thigh-deep into a freezing mountain stream, and pour three huge buckets of its churning icy water over your shoulders and head. Repeat the circuit two more times, ice water included, and you’ve finished the first stage of the festival. The other stages start to get more dangerous, because they involve flaming logs.
Fellowships Office Pick
Anoush Suni: Among the Ruins of the Monastery of Surp Grigor. The Armenian monastery of Surp Grigor was built in the thirteenth century on the southern slopes of Erek Mountain east of the city of Van. It contained two conjoined churches and another small chapel at the top of a hill. In this photo I am taking a documentary photo of the ruins of the chapel. Behind me in the distance are the remains of the two churches. Interestingly, a famous Islamic theologian, Said Nursi, spent some years living and teaching in the upper church, and the site has become a pilgrimage destination for his followers. However, this has not deterred local treasure hunters, who continue to dig around the ruins of the church.

Photo Essay Competition

IDRF Fellows Pick: Lucia Carminati

Fellowships Office Pick: Julia Haines