On any given day, as humans we feel a variety of emotions, but one of the most beautiful and heart-warming emotions we can feel, is happiness. This eternal search for happiness has inspired humankind to embark, not only on incredible life journeys, but experience great life moments. It takes a keen photographer’s eye to capture these secret moments of happiness.


A category for the adventurer at heart, wildlife photography captures all creatures great and small roaming free within their natural habitat. Photographers are invited to take us on a journey of discovery into the wild, and intrigue us with a rare insight into life within the animal kingdom.


No bond compares to the bonds we have within our families; and no bond is greater than that which we share with our parents. We invite photographers to celebrate and capture what’s at the heart of the relationship a father holds with his son. A son has a unique relationship with his father, constantly aspiring to grow and be nurtured under his wing, to one day step out into the world and be the man he always saw, when he looked into his father’s eyes; Truly the makings of an awe-inspiring photograph.


A category as broad as ‘General’ can be mistaken for lacking inspiration for a photographer, but for a true artist it’s all the direction they need. A photographer sees great compositions around every corner, whether it be walking down the street, driving a car, enjoying lunch in a restaurant, or just relaxing at home. It’s for this very reason that photographer’s best friend will always be their beloved camera; because you never know when inspiration will strike you next.

Special Awards

Photography Appreciation Award (Personal, Group or Team Award)*

There are many passionate people within the photography industry who are dedicated and relentless in their pursuit for excellence. These people offer their services and expertise without expecting a return on their efforts and therefore form a vital part of the photographic community.

The ‘Photography Appreciation Award’ is a special category for a person or group who has shown long-standing commitment to enhancing the art of photography. By awarding the recipient, HIPA hopes to give back a small amount of the respect and appreciation they deserve.

Photographic Research/Report Award*

Research requires an unprecedented commitment of time and effort towards a particular field of study. It is invaluable in helping mankind create the future and advance knowledge and capabilities.

The Hamdan International Photography Award aims to enhance the ever-developing research field within photography by introducing the ‘Photographic Research/Report Award’.

The Award will celebrate research that reflects excellence in the field of photography. This strengthens the strategic goal of the award, which to develop the art of photography for the entire photographic community.

*Participants may enter these two special awards by invitation only.

Prize Money

Grand Prize $120,000


"Happiness" Category

Position Prize Money
1st $25,000
2nd $20,000
3rd $15,000
 4th $12,000 
 5th $10,000  

"Wildlife" Category

Position Prize Money
1st $15,000
2nd $12,000
3rd $10,000
4th  $8,000 
5th  $6,000 

"Father and Son" Category

Position Prize Money
1st $15,000
2nd $12,000
3rd $10,000
 4th $8,000 
 5th $6,000 

"General" Category

Position Prize Money
1st $15,000
2nd $12,000
3rd $10,000
 4th $8,000 
 5th $6,000 

"Special Awards"

Photography apperciation award (Personal, Group or Team Award) $20,000
Photographic Research/Report Award $25,000
Grand Total $400,000




Recently appointed as Senior Lecturer in Photojournalism at Southampton Solent University, David combines careers as a zoologist, spent at universities in Australia, South Africa and the UK, and a professional nature / science photographer.

David uses Photography to elucidate the intricacies of nature, combining an academic view point with a new sense of enquiry in the pursuit of art and wonder in Nature. He uses his images as a tool to engage, enlighten and lure his audience towards a greater awareness and understanding of the natural world and science.

David is the recipient of numerous international awards – In 2008 he was named the European Wildlife photographer of the Year, and was twice shortlisted in the Sony World Photography Awards. He has twice been awarded best of show at the International Photography Awards, New York, and has received multiple awards from the Wildlife photographer of the Year, London. David is the current Royal Photographic Society gold award winner of the International Images for Science, 2015.

David’s specialist macro and microscopy skills and attention to detail are well suited for bespoke advertising campaigns (e.g. Aberlour Whisky, Sharp Electronics), and have led to collaborations with the BBC on their 2013 television series “Wonders of Life” and “Human Universe” in 2014.

David is a regular presenter at international conferences and has juried leading international photo competitions.


Frans Lanting is hailed as one of the great nature photographers of our time. His influential work appears in books, magazines, and exhibitions around the world. He earned a master’s degree in economics then moved to the United States to study environmental planning. Soon after, he began photographing the natural world--and never turned back.

For three decades he has documented wildlife from the Amazon to Antarctica to promote understanding about the Earth and its natural history through images that convey a passion for nature and a sense of wonder about our living planet.

Lanting's work is commissioned frequently by National Geographic, where he served as a Photographer-in-Residence. His assignments have ranged from a first look at the fabled bonobos of the Congo to a unique circumnavigation by sailboat of South Georgia Island in the sub-Antarctic.

Lanting has received many honors for his work. In 2001 H.R.H. Prince Bernhard inducted him as a Knight in the Royal Order of the Golden Ark, the Netherlands' highest conservation honor. He has received top honors from World Press Photo, the title of BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year, and the Sierra Club’s Ansel Adams Award. He has been honored as a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society in London and is a recipient of Sweden’s Lennart Nilsson Award.

Lanting’s fine art prints are represented in many public and private collections, and he has had more than one hundred solo exhibitions at museums and galleries around the world.


Maggie Steber has worked as a documentary photographer on humanistic and cultural-historical projects in 66 countries. Her longtime photographic work in Haiti received the prestigious Alicia Patterson Foundation Grant and Ernst Haas Grant. A collection of the Haiti photographs was published by Aperture in “Dancing on Fire: Photographs from Haiti” in 1991.

In 2013, Steber was named as one of eleven Women of Vision by National Geographic Magazine. Earlier in her career she served as a contract photographer for Newsweek Magazine for four years at Associated Press in New York as a photo editor. She also worked extensively in Cuba and photographed a day in the life of Fidel Castro for Newsweek. She has produced many stories for National Geographic Magazine since 1988.

She has exhibited twice at Visa Pour L’Image in Perpignan, France and at the Jardins du Luxembourg in Paris as part of the 20th anniversary exhibition of Reporters Sans Frontieres, and throughout the US and the internationally

Maggie is also a much sought after educator and speaker whose photographs are widely exhibited and are included in the Library of Congress and other public and private collections. She has served as a judge for World Press Photo Foundation and the Alicia Patterson Foundation on four occasions, and on POYi and numerous other judging panels for both grants and photographic competitions. Steber serves on the advisory board and as a teacher of FotoKonbit, a Haitian non-profit that teaches photo workshops for Haitians 15 to 35 years old.


Inspired by his father’s love for photography, Lohmann got his first own camera when he was ten and it was then that his love affair with photography started. Michael loved to travel, and between 1970 and 2000 he specialized in travel photography worldwide.

Around the turn of the millennium Michael changed to nature photography. He became a member of the “Society of German Wildlife Photographers” (GDT), a registered non-profit organization since 1971 and one of the world’s largest nature photography associations. In 2010 he was elected as a member of the board and he has been the society's president since 2013.

For many years, his work included the task of managing the portfolio review process for full membership applications, for which applicants have to submit 20 of their best photographs to be assessed by the board of management. He is also a lecturer, workshop facilitator and photography travel guide, in recent years e.g. to Iceland, Greenland, Svalbard, Falklands Islands, South Georgia, Tanzania and Botswana.

Throughout his career, Michael has aimed to explore the complexity and beauty of nature and the environment – and to capture and portray “the moment” in a picture. He has been a jury member for several national and international nature photography competitions, such as the ‘GDT European Wildlife Photographer of the Year’.


Dr Michael Pritchard FRPS is Director-General of The Royal Photographic Society. For twenty years he was a Director and photography specialist at Christie’s, London, before leaving to complete his PhD which examined aspects of British photographic history. He has taught and acted as a consultant to a number of photography organisations.

Michael Pritchard has lectured and broadcast internationally and is a regular writer on photography. He has written a number of books most recently Photographers (2012) and was an advisor and contributor on the Encyclopedia of Nineteenth Century Photography (2008), a contributor to Photography. The Whole Story (2012), Phaidon’s Design Classics (2006) and to The Oxford Companion to the Photograph (2005), Photographers (2012), A History of Photography in 50 Cameras (2014) amongst others.

As part of his role at The RPS he is actively involved in working with photographers and in looking at photographs across a wide variety of genres. He has sat on a number of other photography juries.


Michael Yamashita has been shooting for the National Geographic magazine for over 30 years, combining his dual passions of photography and travel. After graduating from Wesleyan University with a degree in Asian studies, he spent seven years in Asia, which became his photographic area of specialty. Upon returning to the US, Yamashita began shooting for the National Geographic as well as other American and international magazines and clients.

In addition to Yamashita’s focus on Asia, his work has taken him to six continents. Yamashita’s particular specialty is in retracing the paths of famous travelers and historical routes resulting in stories on Marco Polo, the Chinese explorer Zheng He, Chamagudao - the Tea Horse Road, the Great Wall of China, the Mekong River from source to mouth.

His feature documentary, The Ghost Fleet, inspired by his National Geographic story about the 15th-century Admiral, won the Best Historical Documentary prize at the New York International Independent Film Festival and his National Geographic Channel documentary, Marco Polo: The China Mystery Revealed, based on his three-part magazine story, received two Asian Television and Film Awards. It was also included in the top twenty most popular NG Channel documentaries of the decade.

A frequent keynote speaker for corporations and foundations, as well as a lecturer and teacher at universities and workshops around the world, Yamashita has received numerous industry awards, including those from the Pictures of the Year, Photo District News, the New York Art Directors Club, and the Asian-American Journalists Association. He has also published a total of eleven books throughout his illustrious career

Major exhibits of his work have opened throughout Asia, and his work has been exhibited in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and at the National Gallery in Washington, DC


Monica Allende is a photo editor and cultural producer with screenprojects.org. She is the co-founder of Offspring Photo Meet in London. Previously she was the Photo Editor at the Sunday Times Magazine, where she launched the award-winning photography section spectrum.

She is a visiting lecturer at the London College of Communications and has conducted photography workshops around the world at the Festival di Internazionale a Ferrara, Getxo Photo, and Visa pour L’Image. Allende has also served on many photography competition juries worldwide including the World Press Photo, Visa Pour L’image, the National Portrait Gallery’s Taylor Wessing photographic Portrait Prize, The Royal Photographic Society Awards, Getty Grant , Renaissance Photography Prize and the Sony World Photography Awards.

She has been nominated for several photography awards including the Prix Pictet and Deutsche Borse Photography Prizes. She produced and curated ‘Darfur: Images against Impunity’, an exhibition and book by Stanley Greene, Lynsey Addario and Alvaro Ybarra Zavala.

Her work at the Sunday Times Magazine was recipient of the Amnesty International Media Photojournalism Award, the Picture Editor’s Award, the Online Press Award and Magazine Design Award for Best Use of Photography.


Block was the founder and Director of Light Work from 1972-1982. During this period he developed artist sponsorship models, developed an exhibitions and publications program, and designed a residency for artists that has become the model for statewide sponsorship. From 1975-1979 he served as Adjunct Curator of Photography at the Everson Museum of Art, where he organized numerous exhibitions with catalogues, including On the Offset Press, Three from the Thirties: Brandt, Brassai, and Bravo; and Alternative Imaging systems.

In 1982 he was appointed Associate Director of Education at the International Center of Photography. In 1986, Director of Education, in 1998 Deputy Director for Programs and in 2014 Deputy Director

Mr. Block has served on the Board of Directors of Photographers and Friends United Against AIDS, The Guild of Book Workers, The Kodak Education Advisory Council, The W. Eugene Smith Foundation and The Society of Photographic Education. He has served as an advisor to many organizations including The Gallery Association of New York State, The Center for Book Arts and the New York State Council for the Arts. In addition to participating on many panels, Mr. Block has acted as a juror for numerous grants and awards, jurying the Manhattan Borough President's Art Awards, The Scholastic Art and Writing Award JGS Prize, Arles Discovery Award, The Aperture Book prize, the Overseas Press Club Awards among others.


Stephen Mayes has managed the work and careers of top-level photographers and artists for over twenty-five years in areas as diverse as art, fashion, photojournalism and commercial photography. As creative director, CEO and ambassador for the medium of photography, he has written successful business plans and reshaped operations for American, Asian and European imaging companies.

Stephen was Creative Director of eyestorm.com, working with artists such as Damien Hirst, Ed Ruscha, Richard Misrach. As Director of the Image Archive with Art + Commerce, he represented the archives of Robert Mapplethorpe, Steven Meisel, David LaChapelle and others. Stephen was part of the founding management team of Getty Images and his work as SVP and Group Creative Director helped to launch the company as the world’s commercially most successful image supplier.

He has deep experience in world-shaping photojournalism as Director of Network Photographers in London and, most recently, as CEO of VII in New York, both high-profile co-operatives of leading photojournalists. From 2004 to 2012 he took an annual assignment as Secretary to the World Press Photo competition in Amsterdam. He is currently Executive Director of the Tim Hetherington Trust. Often described as a “futurist”, Stephen has broadcast, taught and written extensively about the ethics and practice of photography.


"Happiness" Category

In an impoverished village in the West African state of Togo, a group of children play and run behind old motorcycle tyres in the red dusty dirt outside of an NGO clinic. Even though these children were mostly the sons, nephews and children of the patients in the clinic, their smiling faces and noisy joy are the embodiment of pure Happiness...

The touching embrace of two old friends in Manama reveals that through the long years of a lifetime, even age cannot diminish the simple feeling of happiness.

A late-afternoon family outing in Papua New Guinea sees boys jumping from trees into Lake Murray. Time for one more turn before the sun sets.

Relief and joy for a refugee family that survive a perilous journey by sea, that for many others has unfortunately ended in tragedy.

A child lies in the lap of his mother in the Jammu and Kashmir province, India. Happiness is clearly reflected in the face of the child, who knows that love lives in his mother’s arms.

On the Dahab Island near Cairo, a scene of simple happiness for Sarah and Rania, who play together on a sunny day.

"General" Category

Fire and Lightning create a terrifying spectacle of fury during the eruption of Calbuco Volcano in Chile, awake after 40 years of inactivity.

Safety Jackets strewn along the Coast of Lesbos Island in Greece are symbols of a journey of survival and death for more than 500,000 refugees

The picture shows an ordinary summer evening in a Russian village, in the centre, young boys wrestling, under the watchful eye of referee and grandmother.

In the spirit of the Olympic rings, cyclists rehearsing a sequence for an opening ceremony at the Olympic Sports Centre in Fuzhou, China

A Celebration of the festival of St. George in Ethiopia, the priests pray and sing for the Saint and for the worshippers that gather at the entrance of the Church.

"Father and Son" Category

In Gaza city, Omar and Khaled are laid to rest, having died after a fire broke out while they were studying by the light of a candle.

In the rubble after a devastating earthquake in Turkey, a father who was helping to clear the debris makes a fire to warm his children.

Trees isolated on a foggy plain, a stunning self portrait of the

Comforting his sick and disabled son, the eyes of the father reveal a story of daily struggle, strength, and a love that is challenged but not diminished.

Rafah in the Gaza Strip, both Father and Son overcome the tragedy of losing lower limbs in an Israeli bombing, during the 51 day war in 2014.

"WildLife" Category

A creative combination of Wildlife and Astro

Flying with flamingos over Lake Turkana in Africa's Great Rift Valley. A study in light, colour and contrast that evokes the feeling of a painting.

Water flows steadily from a reservoir, collecting all but the most determined in its dream-like stream.

A mesmerising black and white image, the face of a lion emerges from a thicket, catching our eye, ready to pounce.

A herd of Zebras make haste and flee as they learn quickly what all in Africa know… there is no match for the fury of an Elephant.



Oscar Mitri was born in Cairo, Egypt. He completed his secondary education at the ‘Collège Patriarchal’in Cairo. At a young age he learned to love nature. He was hired by publishing houses in Cairo and Lebanon, in the department of

His career took off and he embarked in Documentary

His career took him to Asia and Africa. He travelled the Atlas desert in the Maghreb. He visited 42 countries, including the UAE, the Gulf countries and four islands in Africa and Asia.

His masterpieces are appreciated by a whole generation in the Middle East. He shared, with much

Oscar now lives in Montreal with his wife Jackie. He has two sons and four grandchildren.


  • 1964: He won two medals, one silver and one bronze in a competition at the International Fair of New York "The World and Its People".
  • 1970: He was awarded a trophy at Expo Osaka in Japan, for his excellent color slides show.
  • 1970 and 1975: He published two volumes of
  • 1983 and 1985: He had two exhibitions at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Kuwait about life in the Third Word
  • April 2010: “Le tiers-monde-Réalité d’un peuple méconnu" Exhibition at Galerie Monet, Montreal, Canada.
  • September 2010: ”Table Ronde sur l’Art à Mont-Royal” Exhibition at Bistro Dupond & Dupont, Montreal, Canada.
  • September 2012: “Coutumes et Traditions” Exhibition at Galerie Lozeau Montreal, Canada.
  • March 2014: He published in Montreal an anthology of some of his most beautiful


Don McCullin is one of our greatest living

Following an impoverished north London childhood blighted by Hitler’s bombs and the early death of his father, McCullin was called up for National Service with the RAF. After postings to Egypt, Kenya and Cyprus he returned to London armed with a twin reflex Rolleicord camera and began

In 1961 he won the British Press Award for his essay on the construction of the Berlin Wall. His first taste of war came in Cyprus, 1964, where he covered the armed eruption of ethnic and nationalistic tension, winning a World Press Award for his efforts. In 1993 he was the first

For the next two decades war became a mainstay of Don’s journalism, initially for the Observer and, from 1966, for The Sunday Times. In the Congo, Biafra, Uganda, Chad, Vietnam, Cambodia, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, Northern Ireland and more, he time and again combined a mastery of light and composition with an unerring sense of where a story was headed, and a bravery that pushed luck to its outermost limits.

He has been shot and badly wounded in Cambodia, imprisoned in Uganda, expelled from Vietnam and had a bounty on his head in Lebanon. What’s more, he has braved bullets and bombs not only to get the perfect shot but to help dying soldiers and wounded civilians. Compassion is at the heart of all his

Away from war Don’s work has often focused on the suffering of the poor and underprivileged and he has produced moving essays on the homeless of London’s East End and the working classes of Britain’s industrialised cities.

From the early 1980s increasingly he focused his foreign adventures on more peaceful matters. He travelled extensively through Indonesia, India and Africa returning with powerful essays on places and people that, in some cases, had few if any previous encounters with the Western world. In 2010 he published Southern Frontiers, a dark and at-times menacing record of the Roman Empire’s legacy in North Africa and the Middle East.

At home he has spent three decades chronicling the English countryside – in particular the landscapes of Somerset – and creating meticulously constructed still lives all to great acclaim. Yet he still feels the lure of war. As recently as October 2015 Don travelled to Kurdistan in northern Iraq to