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Here we are with another Head On Festival descending rapidly to envelope us all (again) in the machinations of photography, with the usual suspects, lovers of the medium, up-and coming and established practitioners, proud Mums and Dads et al, bent on revelling in this iconic Festival for the 5th year.

This year Head On Photo Festival has a new category to contend with  – the Multimedia Awards.

What the hell is Multimedia you may well ask? And to find out the answer I think of William Yang’s loop video of dancing seaweed being choreographed by tidal ebb and flow. (Damien Minton Gallery). A departure for William whose oeuvre so relentlessly (up till now) has relied on the still image.

Even Magnum photographers are dabbling in this new dark art.  I think of the video portraits by Magnum photographers in the exhibition Access to Life‘  (Powerhouse Museum) whereupon a closely cropped face looks down the lens (searchingly?).  Only occasionally, the moving twitches of the subject reveal the ‘still’ .

Finally, I think of Adam Magyar‘s hauntingly unforgettable work.  Magyar can be seen as a grand master of Multi Media as he has not only combined sound and images but has also developed a scanning technique to flawlessly combine thousands of pixel-wide slices into a single image.

Excerpt from 'Stainless, 42 Street' Copyright Adam Magyar

Excerpt from ‘Stainless, 42 Street’ Copyright Adam Magyar

Where did multimedia develop from? A part of me suspects photojournalists embraced the concept of ‘moving’ stories  to compete with the relentless flickering image that is television.

Some of this Multimedia we see in the fine art genre, and I’m thinking of the image of the relentlessly twirling skateboarder, however, how do we create something that is not film narrative, nor pop video, or in worst case, fine art conceptual banality?

Judging Head On’s Multimedia awards will be fascinating. The judges (including ABC Multimedia Producer John Donegan, Sydney Film Festival Director Nashen Moodley and Gallery Director Brenda May) want to see everything – from simple slideshows to experimental tiptoes.

Whatever the outcome it will be enriching for all photographers to embrace a new chapter in the seemingly relentless opportunities that the new technologies bring.

Light/Digital Camera/Action!



Head On Multimedia Prize – NEW FOR 2014

open internationally

Head On is expecting the unexpected – short pieces composed of combinations of visual art, sound art, moving images or other media. This can be anything which incorporates photography and sits ‘outside the boxes’ of stills photography and short films.

First prize valued at over $6,000 and includes $2,500 cash, a great Olympus Camera Kit worth $2,498 (Olympus OM-D E-M1 body with 12-50mm Electronic Zoom weatherproof lens and 17mm f1.8 lens), 1 Year subscription to Adobe Creative Suite worth $600 and more!

Second prize valued at over $2,300 and includes a great Olympus Camera Kit worth $1,298 (Olympus OM-D E-M5 body with 12-50mm Electronic Zoom weatherproof lens ), 1 Year subscription to Adobe Creative Suite worth $600 and more!

Third prize valued at over $1,800 and includes a great Olympus Camera Kit worth $799  (Olympus STYLUS 1 f2.8 Super Zoom Camera), 1 Year subscription to Adobe Creative Suite worth $600 and more!

Finalists will be exhibited at Brenda May Gallery and prizes will be awarded for the three best Fine Art and Documentary Multimedia pieces.

Judges this year are Sydney Film Festival Director Nashen Moodley, Producer, Multimedia ABC John Donegan, Gallery Director Brenda May and Head On Photo Festival Director Moshe Rosenzveig.

View Multimedia Prize Terms and Conditions

Entry fee:
$25 per entry – members 
$30 per entry – non-members

In order to receive the member price, you must first purchase the membership package.




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AddOn submissions open

AddOn is an ideal entry point for photographers to become involved in this year’s Head On Photo Festival.

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