Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

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Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Jetness » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:23 am

The winner of Wildlife Photographer of the Year has been stripped of first place after judges decided the animal featured in the picture was likely to be a "model".

The image capturing a wolf leaping over a gate received praise for its "fairytale quality" when it beat competition from thousands of entries in October last year.

Winning photographer Jose Luis Rodriguez strongly denies the wolf is a model, according to competition organisers.

Louise Emerson, from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition office, said: "The judging panel was reconvened and concluded that it was likely that the wolf featured in the image was an animal model that can be hired for photographic purposes and, as a result, that the image had been entered in breach of Rule 10 of the Competition."

Rule 10 says photographs of animal models may not be entered and that offending images will be disqualified.

The panel also consulted experts in their decision, according to Ms Emerson.

"The judging panel looked at a range of evidence and took specialist advice from panel judges who have extensive experience of photographing wildlife including wolves," she said.

"Any transgression of the competition rules is taken very seriously and if entries are suspected of breaching the rules they are disqualified."

Rodriguez's image will now be removed from the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, currently being held at the Natural History Museum.

Organisers confirmed first place will not be re-awarded as judging is always done "blind" so an objective choice can be made about the winner.
Source: http://uk.news.yahoo.com/5/20100121/tod ... 0a197.html
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by paperpaws » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:33 am

That would be pretty harsh if it actually is a real photo =D
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Jetness » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:35 am

My father just told me about an article in the paper; apparently he had paid someone to make the wolf jump over the gate.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by paperpaws » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:39 am

But it was a real one?

Ack, still, what would made that wolf jump? Not trying to start speculations, but can't help wonder.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Jetness » Thu Jan 21, 2010 10:49 am

I can't help either Silv. Its intriguing really...
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Songdog » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:49 am

sSilvers wrote:But it was a real one?

Ack, still, what would made that wolf jump? Not trying to start speculations, but can't help wonder.
A trained wolf? There are people who train animals, such as bears and wolves, to perform in movies, commercials, photography, etc. They may have contacted some one with trained wolves to have one of their animals jump over the fence.

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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by paperpaws » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:51 am

-headdesk- why do I never come with stuff like that? Thanks for explaining. And indeed, in that way, it isn't Wildlife photography.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Jetness » Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:04 pm

Indeed it isn't, But I can't argue its an amazing picture. Trained or not.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by pawnee » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:12 am

I understand the disapointed in the image not being 'authentic'...like a wild wolf. But considering most of the prize winning images come from places such as safaris, game farms or reserves where animals are habituated to people...does the photo really need to be disqualified? The reason animals let you get close is because their used to human presence...you could easily argue some of the animals in the photos were beyond an acceptable level of human habituation, yet they still retain a prize.

my question is; so what? photographers use captive animals all the time in images and photos. most documentaries on 'wildlife' are made in controlled enviornments.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Songdog » Fri Jan 22, 2010 5:47 pm

pawnee wrote:I understand the disapointed in the image not being 'authentic'...like a wild wolf. But considering most of the prize winning images come from places such as safaris, game farms or reserves where animals are habituated to people...does the photo really need to be disqualified? The reason animals let you get close is because their used to human presence...you could easily argue some of the animals in the photos were beyond an acceptable level of human habituation, yet they still retain a prize.

my question is; so what? photographers use captive animals all the time in images and photos. most documentaries on 'wildlife' are made in controlled enviornments.
I agree with Pawnee.

It seems kinda weird that the judges sort of encourage these photographers to go take close shots of wild wolves; I know it's what they do normally but, it's setting the wrong image. It's saying "Hey kids, it's alright to go up to these wild animals." Plus, it's habituating the wolves to human contact.

I don't know, I guess if the guy knew the rules said no wolf models, then it is their fault. But what constitutes a "wolf model" and a wolf from a refugee or wildlife reserve that are used to human contact?

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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by pawnee » Sat Jan 23, 2010 9:58 am

exactly. If you look the the winning images their are some of songbirds and cats...you could easily argue how both those animals should not even be in the running due to the habituation of human presence. It kind of seems like the judges are just cherry picking for this...atleast to me. Most photographs are taken off pretty tame animals as is, the shots of truley wild animals usually indicate a skiddish, rough individual from a distance.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by SolitaryHowl » Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:07 am

Songdog wrote:
pawnee wrote:I understand the disapointed in the image not being 'authentic'...like a wild wolf. But considering most of the prize winning images come from places such as safaris, game farms or reserves where animals are habituated to people...does the photo really need to be disqualified? The reason animals let you get close is because their used to human presence...you could easily argue some of the animals in the photos were beyond an acceptable level of human habituation, yet they still retain a prize.

my question is; so what? photographers use captive animals all the time in images and photos. most documentaries on 'wildlife' are made in controlled enviornments.
I agree with Pawnee.

It seems kinda weird that the judges sort of encourage these photographers to go take close shots of wild wolves; I know it's what they do normally but, it's setting the wrong image. It's saying "Hey kids, it's alright to go up to these wild animals." Plus, it's habituating the wolves to human contact.

I don't know, I guess if the guy knew the rules said no wolf models, then it is their fault. But what constitutes a "wolf model" and a wolf from a refugee or wildlife reserve that are used to human contact?

I agree with those two.

I find it incredibly stupid he was disqualified. So what if the wolf was trained to jump over the fence, it's still a wild animal.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Jetness » Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:24 am

..And its still a great wildlife photo. Its such a fantastic picture, they took it down from the exhibition in London too. I was going to go see it..
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by Snowmuzzle » Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:35 am

I heard about this too: I have a copy of the portfolio of winners from BBC Wildlife mag. But it raises the issue that if they allowed this one to stay even though it may have been set up, it would open the door to lots of other photos like it. I don't think that would be in the best interests of quality to have a load of staged images. As for more habituated animals, it still requires some degree of skill and patience to capture some of the behaviour: it's not an everyday occurence to see a lion making a kill or a pair of sparrows mating even, and to have a camera set up to capture the image in good lighting and quality at the precise moment is definitely skill. Now, this wolf image could have been rehearsed as many times as the photographer liked until he got the perfect image. It's still a beautiful photo and should be appreciated for its quality, but for him to intentionally deceive (if this is the case and it's not all a mistake) can't be accepted as fair play.
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Re: Snapper Stripped Of Prize Over 'Fake' Wolf Pic

Post by pawnee » Sun Jan 24, 2010 2:49 pm

I see what you mean snowmuzzle, and you make a valid point.

The thing is, lots of photos of captive animals do make it into the running. Many are from zoos or wildlife reserves where animals are fenced in. My question is, where do you draw the line between wht is 'captive' and what is 'wild'? If you said 'no captive animals' then that would include zoos, organizations, wildlife reserves, game farms, and even some safaris.
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