In 1989, a photojournalist named Ian Parry was on assignment for London’s Sunday Times covering the downfall of Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu. Parry was 24 at the time, and this was one of his first major assignments. Unfortunately, it would be his last. The airplane carrying him home was shot down after taking off from Bucharest, Romania, killing everyone aboard.
Born in Wales and the youngest of four children, Parry started his career in photojournalism at age 16, working for a local paper. His determination led him to London, where he became a staff photographer at the Sunday Times and worked with Aidan Sullivan, then the paper’s picture editor.
Of Parry, Sullivan has said, “He was one of the finest young emerging photographers in recent years. He had a great deal of personal discipline, which he combined with flair, imagination and tremendous compassion.” To honor his memory, Sullivan, along with Parry’s family and friends, founded the Ian Parry Scholarship to encourage and support young talent.
The Ian Parry Scholarship is now in its 30th year of highlighting that young talent and is one of the most prestigious awards of its kind. Many recipients have gone on to distinguished careers.
Every year, a scholarship competition is held for young photographers around the world, open to those under 24 or those attending a full-time photography course. This year’s scholarship is divided into two categories: the Sunday Times Award and the Canon Award for Potential. More information about the awards can be found here. Applications will be taken until July 5. The scholarship is supported by donations from the Sunday Times, Canon Europe, the Incite Project and Verbatim.
This year’s guest judge is Fiona Rogers, the director of photography and operations at Webber Represents and a former chief operating officer of Magnum Photos. In addition, Rogers is the founder of Firecracker, a platform supporting female photographers and is the author of “Firecrackers: Female Photographers Now.” Rogers has been a judge for many competitions, including the MACK First Book Award and the Getty Images Grant for Editorial Photography.
The photos presented here are just a few from the outstanding work that has been chosen over the past 30 years. They are from the 2019 winner of the Sunday Times Award for Achievement, Nanna Heitmann; the 2019 winner of the Canon Award for Potential, Jedrzej Nowicki; and Hkun Lat, whose work was highly commended in 2019.
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