The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) annual Photographic Competition, this year sponsored by The Sunday Times, has announced the winners from each of its nine distinct categories. Photographs will be on display for the first time at the RHS London Plant and Art Fair (10–12 July), and simultaneously at each of the four RHS Gardens (15 August- September). The exhibition will be a celebratory collection of some of the winning images, and shows the visual approach that entrants have undertaken.
The team of six judges, deliberated over more than 10,000 entries, choosing 24 participants to be awarded from the overall prize fund of £10,000. As well as this, a number of entrants have been listed for commendations on their photography.
Chris Young, chair of the Judging Panel for the photographic competition, said: “We have been delighted with the submissions. Whether close up images of flowers to the atmospheric light of a setting sun, or the beauty of a woodland compared to the abstract graphic a leaf can produce, we enjoyed an abundance of images that left us excited, interested and fascinated.”
Securing the highest accolade, the overall adult winner of the competition was presented to Lithuanian born Kristina Zvinakeviciute for her image of a soldier beetle on hair grass.
Andrea Jones, expert garden photographer and judge, said: “Kristina Zvinakeviciute’s image epitomises composition and quality of light, as well as being quick minded to capture the movement of a living subject.
“The gentle light highlights the delicacy and colour of the grasses whilst the composition is well thought out and, whether intentional or not, follows the rules of the golden ratio, which artists for centuries have been successfully guided by. The little soldier beetle is well captured and uncannily compliments the tones of the textured grasses, which are softened with a skilful use of depth of field.”
All 36 awarded photographs will be displayed at the RHS London Plant and Art Fair and will include the Portfolio category, which will be judged for RHS medals at the show.
In addition to this, the show will feature a selection of striking and original botanical art from around the world, offering a unique insight into the world of botanical art and Japanese garden design. Features will also include Ikebana-inspired workshops for Japanese flower arranging techniques, a stunning Bonsai Garden from expert Mark D’Cruz plus an array of exhibitors displaying plant-inspired design, arts and crafts. Meanwhile, 2018 RHS London Shows Floral Artist in Residence Zita Elze will create an inspiring summer floral installation exploring the Japanese art of origami.
A late event will be hosted on July 10 (5–9pm) for a summers evening set to include the very best in botanical art as well as seasonal plants and garden wares from leading UK nurseries and horticultural suppliers. The first 200 tickets booked in advance will receive a complimentary drink on arrival.
The RHS Photographic Competition re-opens for 2019 on Sunday 8 July, closing 1 March 2019 and encourages novice and expert photographers alike to enter their photographs to demonstrate their passion for gardening, plants, outdoor spaces or wildlife. Entering is free and open to anyone simply by visiting the RHS website.