The winning photos by photographer Guy Butler from the 2017 British Army Photographic Competition that were announced at the Imperial War Museum on the 10th October 2017.
Well, 2017 was an interesting year for me... Super busy and dashing from job to job while also putting together various personal projects that I were involved in.
In the summer of 2017 I was made aware of the Army Photographic competition being opened up to civilian photographers, before hand, the competition had been contested between the photographers of the Royal Logistic Corps who man the fully trained team of photographers both domestically here in the UK and while deployed. Creating photographic and video media for press, PR and documentation.
While working at MOD Lyneham under my contracted role with Babcock International i've had opportunities that very few civilian photographers would have the chance to witness, and getting to spend so much time amongst the Craftsmen, junior and senior NCO's and Officers have allowed me to work around them comfortably and relaxed.
It was during the summer I was told about the army photographic competition and I was suggested that I should enter.... As It stood, the rules stated that there were two overall categories. Professional Entries and Amateur Entries... For the professional category, you had to be either a serving solider in the RLC's photography department or a Civil Servant employed as a photographer, me being neither it was looking like I was having to enter the amateur category.... How about no!!!
After a few emails bouncing around and a couple of great conversations with the Shane at the news desk at AMC Army Headquaters I was given the green light in being allowed to enter against my peers... "The Professionals." Over the next few days scoured over my work portfolio, scrutinising and culling... I narrowed down my selection and inputted a small solid portfolio of work. Getting the work printed off, authorised and release forms secured... they were good to go.
Selection of Chosen Images for the 2017 Army Photographic Competition
The tough part is always the waiting, the deadline for submissions passed..... then the judging day passed..... my eyes constantly looking towards the phone looking for that all important call.... Nothing..... still nothing....... even more nothing.
Then all of a sudden, a call from across the room our administrator of the office calls out "Guy someone from Army Media News Desk for you"........... Gulp.....
I couldn't have expected better news, not only had I won, a category, I'd also come runner up in the same category and runner up in another category..... Three winners!!!!
The two runner up images consisted of a portrait from a Section Attack training exercise on base at MOD Lyneham and a still mid bout from the REME 8 Battalion Boxing Night.
The winning image was from a candid and caught moment between the Commanding Officer of 8 Training Battalion and Cpl Wells who was entering the hall before his bout and whilst passing the VIP's seats of Colonels, Brigadiers and Generals, Cpl Wells made the cheeky move to "Fist Bump" with his CO' who, while the crowd applauded and cheered, returned the notion.... and in the blink of an eye, Cpl Wells was away and into the ring, who I can also say, won his bout.
Winning the awards that I did cemented that what I do is recognised as quality, quality that is enjoyed and looked upon by my peers as work that rises to the top, and I immensely proud and humbled to be noted not just once but three times at these awards.
Taking photographs for the British Army is a privilege... I've often been in the REME Museum here at Lyneham and also around the imperial war museum in London. Photographs are such an important part of documenting the armed forces. From the formal dinner night, with those attending present, to the laughter and candid images of the men and women while on downtime. Maybe just maybe, in the future when I'm long gone, some of my images might be in an archive and be shown to show what took place here in the years of 2017.