Winning Images: AIB Press Photographer of the Year Awards 2024

by Alison O'Hanlon
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Over 200 guests celebrated the 46th Annual awards of the Press Photographers Association of Ireland with Alan Betson of The Irish Times being named the AIB Press Photographer of the Year 2024.

Awards were presented across 10 distinct categories – News, Daily Life & People, Sports Action, Sports Feature, Portrait, Nature & the Environment, Politics, Arts & Entertainment, Reportage and Multimedia in addition to the AIB Sustainability Award.

All the winning and short-listed images from the ‘AIB Press Photographer of the Year’ 2024 can be viewed at the touring exhibition visiting various venues across the country over the coming year.

Speaking at the awards ceremony, An Tánaiste Micheál Martin said “I want to congratulate all the winners of tonight’s awards. The skills and experience necessary to be able to capture and tell the truthful story of an event, a moment, an emotion in a single image, are truly invaluable. They are especially so in an increasingly unpredictable world with emerging AI capability, social media manipulation and aggressive misinformation and disinformation campaigns. Our society benefits enormously from this vital work.”

NEWS

1st News Category Title: Burning City Description: A burning bus on Dublin’s O’Connell Bridge during riots in Dublin City Centre in the aftermath of a knife attack on school children on Parnell Square. Photographer: Alan Betson / The Irish Times
2nd News Category Title: Relieved Description: On a back lane, a child is carried to safety from her school, Scoil Mhuire, as Gardaí and emergency services attend Parnell Square in Dublin in the aftermath of a knife attack on school children and their carer.
Photographer: Alan Betson / The Irish Times
3rd News Category. Title: Pulled from the Rubble Description: Kateryna Zelenska is pulled from the rubble of a Dnipro apartment block destroyed by a Russian air strike. Trapped for 18 hours, she was unable to signal for help, as her sister revealed she is deaf. Her husband and 1-year-old child perished in the attack. Photographer: Clodagh Kilcoyne / Reuters

DAILY LIFE & PEOPLE

1st Daily Life and People Category. Title: Community Support Description: Sarah Cullen, is at ease and supported by local shopkeeper, Noel Fleming, along with Mary Byrne and dog Victor, after experiencing an attempted robbery at her home the previous week. Photographer: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times
2nd Daily Life and People, Category. Title: Give it Welly Description: Youth farming organisation Macra succeed in an attempt to break a world record attempt for the most people simultaneously throwing wellington boots which previously stood at 792. Photographer:Philip Doyle / Irish Farmers Journal
3rd Daily Life and People Category. Title: Salthill Somersault Description: People cool off by jumping into the sea at Salthill, Galway, during the warm weather.
Photographer:Niall Carson / PA Media

SPORTS ACTION

1st Sports Action Category. Title: Amphibious Description: Ireland’s Maria Godden in action during the Women’s 50m backstroke heats at the European Under-23 Swimming Championships, National Aquatic Centre, Dublin.
Photographer: Bryan Keane / Inpho Photography
2nd Sports Action Category. Title: Focus Description: Kilkenny’s Martin Keoghan battles for the ball with Dan Morrissey of Limerick during the GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final. Photographer:James Crombie / Inpho Photography
3rd Sports Action Category. Title: Pullng on Purple Description: Terenure’s Matthew Somerville gets a tight grip on Clongowes’ Tom Murtagh’s jersey as he tries to get away from the ruck during the Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Senior Cup First Round Replay at Energia Park in Donnybrook, Dublin. Photographer:Ben Brady / Inpho Photography

SPORTS FEATURE

1st Sports Features Category. Title: Golden Drops Description: South Africa’s Captain Siya Kolisi celebrates with the William Webb Ellis trophy after winning the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Photographer: Dan Sheridan / Inpho Photography
2nd Sports Feature Category. Title: Cup Celebration Description: Shane Lowry of Europe celebrates alongside team-mate Rory McIlroy as he lifts the Ryder Cup upon victory on the final day of the 2023 Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf and Country Club in Rome, Italy. Photographer: Brendan Moran / Sportsfile
3rd Sports Feature Category. Title: Taking a Breather Description: Sunday’s Well Rebels players take a breather ahead of the IRFU Mixed Ability Rugby Tournament, which took place at Buccaneers RFC, Co. Westmeath. Photographer: Tom Maher / The Irish Times

PORTRAIT

1st Portrait Category. Title: Taking a Break Description: 97-year-old sculptor Imogen Stuart falls asleep while getting her portrait taken at her studio in Dublin. Photographer: Mark Condren / Mediahuis Ireland/Irish Independent/Sunday Independent
2nd Portrait Category. Title: Druid Description: Eimear Burke, druid and chief of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids, pictured at dawn at her home in Co. Kilkenny. Photographer:Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times
3rd Portrait Category. Title: A Star is Born … Description: One of the stars of this year’s The Late Late Toy Show 7-year-old, Sheamie Garrihy, gets back to his routine work, helping his dad Jamie with blocklaying at home in Knockroe, Kilfenora, Co. Clare.
Photographer: John Kelly / The Clare Champion

NATURE & THE ENVIRONMENT

1st Nature and the Environment Category. Title: Preening Cormorant Description: A Cormorant whilst preening at Dublin’s Grand Canal Basin.
Photographer: Nick Bradshaw, Freelance / The Irish Times
2nd Nature and the Environment Category. Title: Dog Day Afternoon Description: Pavel Ciechomovicz rescues his Labrador Nanij from flooding on Main St., Midleton, Co. Cork. Photographer: Michael Mac Sweeney / Provision
3rd Nature and the Environment Category. Title: Tree of Life Description: A murmuration at Dysart on Lough Ennell, Co. Westmeath. Photographer: James Crombie / Inpho Photography

POLITICS

1st Politics Category Title: Improving Foreign Affiars
Minister for Justice, Simon Harris; Minister for Environment, Climate, Communications and Transport, Eamon Ryan; Tánaiste, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Defence, Micheál Martin; Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Rt Hon Chris Heaton-Harris; Minister of State for Northern Ireland, Steve Baker, MP; and Minister of State for Media, Data, and Digital Infrastructure, Julia Lopez, MP speaking to media after a meeting of the British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference in Farmleigh House.
Photographer: Alan Betson / The Irish Times
2nd Politics Category. Title: Mayo for Joe! Description: US President Joe Biden who made his final address outside St. Muredach’s Cathedral in Ballina, Co. Mayo.
Photographer: Mark Condren / Mediahuis Ireland/Irish Independent/Sunday Independent
3rd Politics Category. Title: Mary Lou McDonald Description: Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald kisses the hand of Dr. Jilan Abdalmajid, Palestinian Ambassador to Ireland, after her address to the Sinn Féin Ard Fheis in Athlone.
Photographer: Frank McGrath / Mediahuis Ireland/ Irish Independent/ Sunday Independent

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

1st Arts and Entertainment Category. Title: Tears of Joy – Niall Horan Fans
Description: Niall Horan fans go wild as he performs at Electric Picnic, Stradbally, Co. Laois.
Photographer: Alan Betson / The Irish Times
2nd Arts and Entertainment Category. Title: Hozier in Dublin Description: Hozier during his performance in the 3Arena, Dublin.
Photographer: Nick Bradshaw, Freelance / The Irish Times
3rd Arts and Entertainment Category. Title: Johnny Rotten Mood Description: John Lydon of Public Image Ltd (PiL) showcases his discontent during the press conference preceding The Late Late Show Eurosong where the winner would go on to represent Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest. Photographer: Andres Poveda / Andres Poveda Photography

REPORTAGE

1st Reportage Category. Title: Dublin’s Burning Description: Unexpected rioting in Dublin City Centre following a stabbing incident outside a school on Parnell Square. Photographer:Sam Boal / rollingnews.ie
2nd Reportage Category. Title: Road Bowling Description: David Murphy took his fifth Munster senior road bowling championship title with a victory over Martin Coppinger at the Ballincurrig Road, Cork. Photographer: Dan Linehan / Irish Examiner
3rd Reportage Category. Title: Lough Neagh Eels Description: Processing eels from Lough Neagh in Toomebridge, Co. Antrim. Photographer: Philip Doyle / Irish Farmers Journal

The AIB Sustainability Award was presented to Dan Linehan of Irish Examiner for his image, ‘Hair-Raising Devastation’ which showed the utter devastation of a hair salon in Midleton, Co. Cork, which was destroyed by flood water following Storm Babet last October. The torrential flooding was the worst Midleton had seen in 70 years. The striking award, “True Inspiration”, carved by the artist Éibhlin Ní Chonaile of Celtic Roots Studio, was created from ancient bogwood over 5,000 years old.

Winner – Sustainability Award. Title:Hair-Raising Devastation Description: Rosaleen O’Donnell, proprietor of the HS2 Salon in Midleton, Co. Cork, standing in her hair salon which was destroyed by flood water brought by Storm Babet in October. The torrential flooding in Midleton was the worst in 70 years and the town’s flood relief scheme is not due to start till 2025. Storm Babet was the second named storm of the year to hit western Europe. The storm left 100 homes flooded and dozens of businesses in Midleton destroyed. Photographer:Dan Linehan / Irish Examiner

The winner of the Multimedia award was Mark Condren, Mediahuis Ireland Irish Independent/Sunday Independent photographer for his short film ‘Mooving’. The film, described by the judges as “beautifully filmed” shows a Galway farmer moving his dry stock herd across a 100 metre wide stretch of the River Shannon. 

Winner – Multimedia, Title: Mooving Description: ” shows a Galway farmer moving his dry stock herd across a 100 metre wide stretch of the River Shannon.
Photographer Mark Condren Irish Independent/Sunday Independent

In thanking AIB and the event sponsors, David Branigan, President of the Press Photographers Association of Ireland, said “This year’s winning and highly commended images truthfully highlight many of the very difficult moments of 2023, both in Ireland and internationally through the medium of powerful press photography”. 

The first visit on the exhibition tour will be the Library at the RDS, Dublin, where the full exhibition will be on display until 15th February 2024 before visiting dlr LexIcon in Dun Laoghaire, in March. 

For further details on the exhibition and to view the winning images, please visit www.pressphotographers.ie 

Main image: Title: Moon Swim Description: Swimmers took to the chilly seven degree water in a full moon Nollaig na mBan swim at Clontarf Baths, as part of a fundraiser for Women’s Aid. Photographer Alan Betson / The Irish Times

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