World-renowned photographer Steve McCurry and industry Pioneer Ren Ng to be honoured by HIPA

Dated: 11 Mar 2014

 Both men to respectively receive HIPA’s Photography Appreciation Award and Photographic Research/Report Award at its 3rd annual awards ceremony.

11 March 2014
The Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Award (HIPA) has announced the winners of its special categories for the 3rd season of the competition (Creating the Future). American photojournalist Steve McCurry has been presented with the ‘Photography Appreciation Award’ for his services and long-standing commitment to enhancing the art of photography. The ‘photographic research-report award’ is set to be presented to Australian entrepreneur, Dr. Ren Ng, founder of Lytro, a company currently developing “light field technology”.
Commenting on the announcement of the winners of the special categories, the Secretary General of HIPA, His Excellency Ali bin Thalith said “We are honoured to be announcing our special awards winners prior to the grand ceremony on the 17th of March”. “The two special categories are chosen by invitation only and our two winners this season are two of the most pioneering in the history of the photographic industry”. 
Sahar Al Zarei, the Assistant Secretary General of HIPA added “In the run up to our 3rd annual awards ceremony we wanted to give more exposure to the unsung winners at HIPA which are the Photography Appreciation Award and Photographic Research/Report Award winners”. “Steve McCurry is one of the most well-known names in the photographic world and his iconic career has paved the way for all aspiring photographers, including our winners this season whom we will announce at the awards ceremony in a on the 17th of March”. “Dr Ren Ng’s research on light field photography is a pioneering initiative which will take photographic technology to the next level in the coming years”.
HIPA is set to host its 3rd annual awards ceremony under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai on the 17th of March 2014 at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). Winners will be announced for all categories of the current season of competition, which are; General, Black and White, Street Life and the main category and theme ‘Creating the Future’
More info on Special Award Winners:
Steve McCurry (USA) – Photography Appreciation Award Winner: 
Steve McCurry has been one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than thirty years, with scores of magazine and book covers, over a dozen books, and countless exhibitions around the world to his name.
It was after several months of travel that he found himself crossing the border into Pakistan. There, he met a group of refugees from Afghanistan, who smuggled him across the border into their country, just as the Russian Invasion was closing the country to all western journalists. Emerging in traditional dress, with full beard and weather-worn features after weeks embedded with the ' Afghan Mujahideen', McCurry brought the world the first images of the conflict in Afghanistan, putting a human face to the issue on every masthead.
Since then, McCurry has gone on to create stunning images over six continents and countless countries. His work spans conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions and contemporary culture alike - yet always retains the human element that made his celebrated image of the Afghan Girl such a powerful image.
Dr. Ren Ng (Australia) - Photographic Research/Report Award winner: 
Dr. Ren Ng is the Founder and Executive Chairman at Lytro, a start-up in Mountain View that has introduced the first light field camera for consumers. Light field cameras provide many new capabilities, including the ability to refocus pictures after the shot is taken and obtain 3D pictures from a single exposure. 
Lytro's technology is based on Ren's Ph.D. dissertation on light field photography, which won the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award and Stanford University’s Arthur Samuel Award. 
Light field photography:
Light field cameras capture the full 4D light field in every shot, recording fundamentally richer data than the 2D plane of light captured by conventional cameras. The light field is a 4D function representing the light along every ray traveling in every direction at every point inside the camera body.  
By processing this rich data, light field photography enables photographic capabilities that have previously been impossible.  These include the ability to change the focus in a picture after taking the shot, compute a 3D image or even a hologram from a single exposure, calculate the depth of objects in the scene from a photograph, and design new lenses that have performance and price that are superior to what has been possible with conventional imaging.  
These new capabilities enable a new kind of photography, where images transform from static 2D shots to interactive 3D pictures.
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