Jim Brandenburg is Chair of the 2013 Wildlife Photographer of the Year judging panel
This year will be my second time at the helm of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition.
As Chair of the 2012 competition, I found it fascinating to watch how the jury carried out their important task of evaluating and selecting submissions.
The stakes are high with such a prestigious competition, so we all knew it was important to get it right and the panel had to make some very difficult decisions. I am proud of the final selection of winning photographs from 2012’s competition and am quite sure that some are future classics.
But now my focus is on the 2013 competition. I call on you all to enter your finest, most compelling, courageous work. Then once again, my fellow judges and I will be transported to other worlds where we will discuss the techniques, artistry and ethics behind the array of compositions.
Wildlife photography is a universal language and an exciting yet powerful communications tool. Photographers carry a responsibility to their subjects, their audience and themselves. This simple mantra holds true – take only photographs, leave nothing but footprints. Every place, plant and animal, above or below water, is unique. Subtle impacts can accumulate over time to devastating effect. So we must encourage those who enjoy photographing nature to do so in a way that best promotes good stewardship of our natural resources.
Despite shifts in technology that enable us to get even closer to our subjects, we must remain true to our roots, focusing on in-camera excellence, skill, ingenuity, patience, dedication, passion and a simple narrative underpinning each and every image.
Now the time is right to edit your collection and submit the images that you believe will wow our loyal audience across the world, fuelling understanding, promoting discussion, provoking reactions that cause change, and ensuring that there is a legacy … a very natural legacy.