Image of dump site girl bags Vietnamese photographer first prize at int'l contest

By Vi Vu   October 30, 2017 | 03:56 pm GMT+7
Image of dump site girl bags Vietnamese photographer first prize at int'l contest
Nguyen Linh Vinh Quoc's winning photo of a dump site in Vietnam's Central Highlands is published on the website of the CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the Year contest.

'She should have been enjoying her childhood and playing with friends rather than being there.'

A Vietnamese photogapher has won the first prize at an international contest for his picture of a girl smiling as she collects trash on a garbage site.

“The hopeful eyes of a girl making a living from rubbish” by Nguyen Linh Vinh Quoc was selected as the best picture at the annual CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the Year contest, which is organized by the U.K. Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM).

Quoc took the picture at a waste dump in Kon Tum Town in Vietnam’s Central Highlands, capturing the girl and her mother making a living from collecting waste.

“The child was happy, looking at the dark clouds and chatting to her mother. It was so touching," the 20-year-old photographer said in his description.

"She should have been enjoying her childhood and playing with friends rather than being there.”

Vinh, a professional photographer whose portfolio includes suburban life and devastated forests, said winning the competition has given him a chance to voice his concerns about global pollution.

“We can’t ignore the issues, and must figure out how we can save the planet with practical solutions,” he said, as cited in a CIWEM statement.

Ashley Cooper, a 2017 judge who is a distinguished U.K. photographer known for his works featuring global warming, praised the winning image as “very powerful.”

“The spirit of humanity leaps out at you loud from this image, a young girl who should be playing safely, is instead surrounded by filth, danger and pollution, and yet there is hope in her eyes, hope for a better future, hope that one day she will escape a life of toil and drudgery,” he said.

CIWEM was launched in 2007 and has created a platform to showcase impressive environmental images from around the world by both professional and amateur photographers.

Other winners this year include an image of a kingfisher caught mid-flight in the shadow of severe emissions from numerous factories in the background, a small boy struggling through an alleyway flooded with monsoon rain in a West Bengal slum, and another young boy playing on his bicycle in a flood in front of a church in the Philippines.

 
 
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