Royal Photography Society Awards: See the work of the amazing 2022 recipients

The winners are announced for the Royal Photography Society awards
The winners are announced for the Royal Photography Society awards Copyright Carly Clarke
By Tim Gallagher
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It's the longest running set of photography awards in the world.


Every year the Royal Photography Society, one of the oldest and most prestigious organisations of its kind in the world, honours high-flyers and newcomers in the world of photography.

The Royal Society Photography Awards see accolades dished out for the most established names in the field alongside rising stars across categories that include fashion, science, and moving images.

2022’s awards - the 144th in the longest running photography awards in the world - seek to honour the power of photography to uplift people and culture across 17 genres and categories.

Here are some of the well deserved winners of this year's awards.

Scientific Imaging Award - Babak Tafreshi

Babak Tafreshi
Death ValleyBabak Tafreshi

Tafreshi is known for his work which merges art and science and crosses the boundary between nature and culture. 

Tafreshi is an Iranian-American based in Boston. Recognised for his fascination with the night sky, the photographer travels the world in his work for National Geographic.

Lumière Award - John Akomfrah

John Akomfrah
Mimesis: African SoldierJohn Akomfrah

Akomfrah is an artist and filmmaker who explores the themes of memory, postcolonialism, temporality and aesthetics often through the lens of migrant diasporas.

Their work has detailed the 1980s riots in Birmingham and London, the life of cultural theorist Stuart Hall, and raised questions on the promises made to migrants in the UK.

Hood Medal - Hoda Afshar

Hoda Afshar
Untitled #4 from the Behold Series, 2016 Image courtesy of the artist and Milani Gallery, BrisbaneHoda Afshar

Afshar is an Iranian photographer who works across still and moving images, her work explores gender, marginality, and displacement.

Afshar began her career as a documentarian in Tehran before moving to Australia where she is now a visual artist.

Vic Odden Award - Carly Clarke

Carly Clarke
Last day of chemotherapy (self portrait)Carly Clarke

A social and documentary photographer, Clarke uses her work to highlight political issues that fly under the radar.

Since she was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma in 2012, Clarke created a self-portrait project documenting her journey through treatment and recovery. She created a second project seven years later when her younger brother was diagnosed with the same type of cancer.

Editorial, Advertising and Fashion Photography Award - Nadine Ijewere

Nadine Ijewere
Vogue UK, September 2020Nadine Ijewere

Ijewere aims to showcase a new standard of beauty by focusing on diversity and identity in her fashion photography.

Born in Southeast London, Ijewere draws on her own Nigerian and Jamaican heritage and looks for ‘non-traditional’ faces.

Honorary Fellowship - Laia Abril

Laia Abril
Ala Kachuu (Bride Kidnapping), Kyrgyzstan, 2019 From The Series ‘on Rape’ © Laia Abril Courtesy Galerie Filles Du CalvaireLaia Abril

Abril is a Spanish photographer who used her tenure at Colors Magazine to focus on women rights, grief and bio-politics.

Her installations have been exhibited in more than 15 countries and are part of collections such as the Centre Pompidou and Musée de l'Elysée.

Honorary Fellowship - Craig Easton

Craig Easton
From the series FisherwomenCraig Easton

Easton is a multi-award winning photographer whose practice is deeply rooted in the documentary tradition.

He focuses on social policy, identity and a sense of place in his work mixes portraiture, landscape and reportage.


Honorary Fellowship - Jo Ractliffe

Jo Ratcliffe
Petrus Jacobus (‘Piet’) Basson reading the book of Luke, Vredesvallei (from the series The Borderlands), 2013Jo Ratcliffe

Ratcliffe has been focusing on the South African landscape since the 1980s, particularly how the country has grappled with the aftermath of apartheid.

The photographer also spent three years documenting the fallout from the war in Angola from 2007 - 2010.

Honorary Fellowship - Ming Smith

Ming Smith
Cornfields Spring PaintedMing Smith

Smith was born in Detroit but now lives in New York. Her career was inspired by her father who, alongside a day job as a pharmacist, was an enthusiastic photographer.

Honorary Fellowship - Dafna Talmor

Dafna Talmor
Untitled (HA-1212-1), 2014 From the Constructed Landscapes (Volume I) seriesDafna Talmor

This artist and lecturer is based in London and can boast work in collections in the Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Trust.

Honorary Fellowship - Ajamu X

Untitled #4 from the Behold Series, 2016 Image courtesy of the artist and Milani Gallery, Brisbane
Ajamu XUntitled #4 from the Behold Series, 2016 Image courtesy of the artist and Milani Gallery, Brisbane

Fine artist, photographer and radical sex activist, Ajamu X incorporates portraits, nudes and studio-based constructed imagery into their work.


X’s projects unapologetically celebrate black queer bodies, the erotic, difference, and pleasure as resistance.

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