It has been quite the year, so how would photographers interpret these turbulent times? Prepare to pore over 200 shortlisted and 100 winning images for this year's Portrait of Britain, announced today.
In the wake of Brexit and the midst of the coronavirus crisis, 2020 marks the fifth anniversary of the national photography award, which celebrates the many faces of modern Britain at a momentous time in our history. From ballerinas and Black Lives Matter protestors to carers and karate teams – lovers and lifeboat crew to bell-ringers and brides – this year's winning and shortlisted images sew a rich tapestry of our nation's people in all their vigour and diversity.
The winning portraits were selected by industry-leading judges including Simon Bainbridge, Editorial Director of British Journal of Photography, Martin Usbourne, co-founder of Hoxton Mini Press and Parveen Narowalia, Digital Picture Editor at British Vogue.
One winner is Andrew Testa for his portrait of Captain Tom Moore, whom he photographed in May after he had completed 100 laps of the patio area by his house and celebrated his 100th birthday. "It was at the height of the pandemic, so I was fully kitted out in a mask and gloves and under strict instructions to keep a good distance," Andrew says. "He posed by the house, walked a lap of the patio, and finally, as we neared the end of the shoot, he stood and saluted."
Another winner is Sophie Harris-Taylor for 'Chaneen, Jasmine & Ocean', part of her series on breastfeeding, Milk. "There was something so beautiful about seeing the interaction between Chaneen and her two children – the purity of their relationship was captivating," she says.
The Portrait of Britain exhibition will launch on 1 September, displaying the 100 winning images throughout the month in rail stations and shopping centres, on high streets and bus shelter screens across the UK. The 200 shortlisted images will also be published in the Portrait of Britain book, Vol. 3, published by Hoxton Mini Press and distributed worldwide from October. See the full list of winners at portraitofbritain.uk.