2019 International Photography Awards

I’m a happy bunny! I’ve just received an honorable mention in the International Photography Awards 2019 for my set of images on ‘The Great Strahov Stadium – architectural remnants of Prague’s Communist past’ (Categories: Architecture, Historic).


13th Annual Black & White Spider Awards

A great way to start 2019 with the news that two of my images from Bosnia/Croatia have won awards! The images were taken yonks ago…way back in 1998, two years after the war had ended.

In this year’s Black & White Spider Awards there were 6,404 entries from 77 countries so very honoured to have been selected!

Blood pressure

Honorable Mention in the Photojournalism category. “The Aftermath of War” Medic’s (MSF) helping the elderly & vulnerable, Croatia. Two years after the War had ended, 1998.


Bird woman

Nominee in the People category. “Bird woman” Feeding the pigeons, Bascarsija square in the old town, Sarajevo. 1998.

To view other images from the series CLICK here

The live online gala was attended by over 17,000 photography fans around the globe who logged on to watch the climax of the industry’s most important event for black and white photography.

“Once again, another stunning collection of high quality entries both professional and amateur. It’s always inspiring to see this classic medium being stretched into new and interesting directions.” Said juror Marcel Wijnen, Creative Director at Anthem Worldwide/Marque Branding in Sydney. Cultural Heritage Consultant Andrea de Polo from Fratelli Alinari Photography Museum in Florence added “The quality of work is incredible and for the jury selecting the best images is very hard work.”

“It’s an incredible achievement to be selected among the best from the 6,404 entries we received this year” said Basil O’Brien, the awards Creative Director. “Jacky Chapman’s images entered in the Photojournalism and People categories, represents black and white photography at its finest.”

BLACK AND WHITE SPIDER AWARDS is the leading international award honouring excellence in black and white photography. This celebrated event shines a spotlight on the best professional and amateur photographers worldwide and honours the finest images with the highest achievements in black and white photography.

Rebuilding life in war-torn Bosnia and Croatia 1998.

Bird woman

Bird woman, Bascarsija square in the old town, Sarajevo. 1998.

In January 1998, I was fortunate to accompany a small group of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) – Doctors without Borders, as they carried out their work in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Croatia. Despite the fact that this was two years after the war had ended, the images still depicted a country ripped apart by war.


Throughout the war in the former Yugoslavia, MSF ran surgery programs, distributed medical supplies and drugs to hospitals and clinics, operated mobile clinics and worked in refugee camps.


Blood pressure

The Médecins Sans Frontières mobile team at a make shift doctors surgery in Ostrovo, Croatia.

MSF provided health care to elderly and vulnerable populations in approximately 12 remote villages in the region until March 1998. The patients were mainly elderly Serbs.


A Catholic Croat, praying outside his bombed out home, Ostrovo, Croatia. He describes his place as “not fit for a dog to live in” 1998.



The Balkan conflict left its mark on the town of Vukovar — nicknamed ‘Croatian Stalingrad, the martyred city’. The nickname originates from being devastated by Serb-dominated army forces in the early days of Croatia’s war for independence from the ex-Yugoslavia. It suffered a three-month long siege before being captured by Serb forces in November 1991 (AKA Battle of Vukovar).

Vukovar was once proud of its ethnic diversity.  In a 1990’s survey from before the war, statistics show that roughly 23 or so ethnic groups then lived in the town. Mixed couples made up 34 per cent of all marriages. From my recent online research (2018) it is a different story, it’s a divided city. Croats and Serbs now live separate social lives.  Schools, cafes, restaurants, sports clubs and even radio stations have been re-established according to their ethnicity.



Living in a mixed family.

Vukovar, Croatia,1998




Vrbanja Bridge, Sarajevo. Re- named the Suada and Olga Bridge. On April 5, 1992 two anti-war protesters, Suada Dilberović and Olga Sučić, were killed on this bridge. They are believed to be the first victims shot at the beginning of the Siege of Sarajevo.


Romeo and Juliet Bridge, Sarajevo.

On 19th May 1993, Admira Ismić and Boško, were also killed by snipers while trying to cross the Vrbanja bridge to escape the war torn city.  Boško (Bosnian Serb) was shot by sniper fire, and died immediately.  Despite being wounded, Ismić (Bosniak Muslim) managed to crawl over to Boško before dying next to his body.

Their story was told worldwide as Serbs and Muslims argued over who was responsible for shooting them and which side should venture out on to the bridge to recover them. The couple’s bodies lay side by side on the bridge for eight days, until finally the Serbian side went in under cover of night to drag the bodies away. Muslim prisoners later claimed they were tethered by their Serbian captors and forced to go out on the bridge to drag the decaying bodies back.

Snow covered cemetery, Sarajevo, 1998

Snow covered cemetery, showing mass killings in 1993, Sarajevo, 1998

Exact figures of casualties during the Siege of Sarajevo (1992-96) are still disputed, but it is estimated that approximately 19,000 people died, 10% of them children.  Some 18,000 Serbian troops, stationed in the hills surrounding city, besieged the 340,000 citizens with constant artillery, mortar, sniper and heavy machine-gun fire. Aside from the human cost of war, the cities infrastructure also suffered greatly – buildings, roads, waterworks, power supplies. A recent report suggests that the Serb forces caused an estimated $18.5billion of damage.

Workers re-cobbling the pavement near Bascarsija square in the o

During the 1992-1995 war, Grbavica was occupied early by the Army of Republika Srpska (Bosnian Serb Army) and remained under Serb control throughout the siege. From the tall residential buildings, Serb snipers targeted the Sarajevo populace along Sniper Alley. The neighbourhood was heavily looted and destroyed.

A country destryed. A man strolls by bombed out buildings near the front line, Grbavica, Sarajevo.

Grbavica, a neighbourhood of Sarajevo was one of the most traumatised neighbourhoods in the city.



Land mines were used extensively during the war by all sides in the conflict: about 1.5 million were laid across the country between 1991-95.  In 1997, more than 600,000 refugees still remained outside the country; landmines have impeded the return of many.  Those who do return often find that their land has become a minefield.  These returning refugees have little mine awareness and having been away from their communities, they do not know the location of minefields. There are thought to be still between 51,000 and 100,000 mines covering a 310-square-mile area across the country. At least 509 people have been killed and another 1,466 wounded by the devices in Croatia since the war ended.

"Danger-Mines!' Tape warns that homes are still booby trapped with mines. Many refugees have been killed by landmines and booby traps after returning to their homes in Bosnia and Herzegovina

It is feared that the minefields will never be cleared.

The view more images CLICK here

“Today we remember with sorrow, with grief, with tears” Grenfell memorial service at St Paul’s.

Remembering those who died. An emotional memorial service held a

“Today we remember with sorrow, with grief, with tears. Today we ask why warnings were not heeded, why a community was left feeling neglected, uncared for, not listened to. Today we hold out hope that the public inquiry will get to the truth of all that led up to the fire at Grenfell Tower…and we trust that the truth will bring justice.” Graham Tomlin, Bishop of Kensington,


On 14th December, exactly six months after the catastrophic fire that destroyed Grenfell Tower, mourners gathered on the steps of St Paul’s after attending a memorial service. Some held white roses, other clutched onto photographs of loved ones who had lost their lives.

Armed police outside St Paul’s Cathedral


Raymond Bernard, known as Moses to his friends, died in the fire aged 63. IMG_0227“Gone but not forgotten, you are so dearly loved by us all and will be sadly missed by many. May you rest in eternal peace, with love always” Raymond Bernard’s family



Held together in collective grief.


“In this service we come together as people of different faiths and none, as we remember before God those whose lives were lost, and pray for them to be at peace; as we are alongside brothers and sisters who have lost their homes and their community and those they love; as we commit ourselves to care for each other and to be united in the face of suffering and sorrow; as we seek each other’s help and resolve to build on our hopes for a future in which the tragedy that struck the people of Grenfell Tower will never happen again,”   David Ison, Dean of St Paul’s



Remembrance, hope and unity. Grenfell Tower fire memorial at St Paul’s.


Today, exactly six months after the fatal fire, a memorial service at St Paul’s Cathedral was held.  About 1,500 people attended including the survivors and the relatives of those who died, local faith groups, and members of the emergency services who were there on that devastating night.


“Our community was devastated on the 14 June 2017. Months on, uncertainty and distress are still what we feel above anything else. Nothing significant has yet changed for the bereaved families and survivors of the fire. However, we hope that by gathering together to remember the tragedy we can begin to heal our community with the support of the whole country. United together, we can help light the way for what will undoubtedly be a long road ahead.  Shahin Sadafi, the chair of Grenfell United

On 16 November, following months of forensic investigations inside the burnt out shell of the tower, the death toll was confirmed at 71. This included Logan Gomes, who was stillborn on the day of the fire. Her heavily pregnant mother, escaped from the 21st floor, but suffered severe smoke inhalation on her way down.


 The Westway sports and fitness centre became one of the focal points for clothing donations. 


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The slide show above documents the scenes immediately after the fire.  Donations had been pouring in non-stop for about 24 hours. Volunteers sorted the clothing – boxed them up and loaded them on to awaiting vans. However the vans had nowhere to take them as warehouse space was in short supply and none of the local community centres had capacity to take any more donations.


Mixed emotions of the community – shock, grief, anger but most of all resilience.

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United in grief, all faiths gathered to pray for those who had perished, on that catastrophic day.  Two outdoor services occurred on Sunday 18th June in temperatures above 30C.  One, underneath the blackened shell of the tower block, conducted in both English and Arabic and despite being in the middle of Ramadan, Muslims came out to honour the dead. The second, a Christian gospel service, underneath the Westway, took the form of thunderous singing and praying and the release of balloons into the cloudless summer skies.


On a final note…. Homeless for Christmas

Recent figures just released acknowledge that dozens of families who survived the fire will be forced to spend Christmas in B&Bs. To put it simply, that means that whilst we are enjoying Christmas morning with our family and friends many survivors of Grenfell are facing their Christmas without a family home, cooking facilities, and loved ones. 

Kensington and Chelsea Council blame the lack of available housing as the reason why the process of finding permanent new homes for survivors has been “desperately slow” But without a permanent home how can they even start to rebuild there lives?

Six months after the catastrophic fire only 42 out of 208 families have been moved into permanent homes. Forty-eight are in temporary housing, eleven in serviced apartments, four living with loved ones and one hundred and three are still in hotels. This means that on Christmas day dozens of children will wake up in temporary shelter.

A sobering thought as we all enjoy the festive season……





Refugee Week 2017 – ‘In Transit’ photography exhibition on until 6th July

‘The destruction of the Calais ‘Jungle’ in October 2016, and the Dunkirk Grande-Synthe in April 2017, returned close to 10,000 people to homelessness. Despite the prominence of the camps in liberal and reactionary media alike, the fate of their one-time inhabitants is now slipping from public consciousness with all too predictable ease. In Transit, is pitched against precisely this collective amnesia. Bringing together some two hundred photographs, taken by Jacky Chapman and Janine Wiedel across 2016, the exhibition offers an urgent reminder of the camps’ existence, and a poignant testament to the people now moving ever more precariously to the edges of political agendas’.  Review by Rosa Zimmermann for Photomonitor

“Refugee Week takes place every year across the world in the week around World Refugee Day on the 20 June. In the UK, Refugee Week is a nationwide programme of arts, cultural and educational events that celebrate the contribution of refugees to the UK, and encourages a better understanding between communities.

Refugee Week started in 1998 as a direct reaction to hostility in the media and society in general towards refugees and asylum seekers. An established part of the UK’s cultural calendar, Refugee Week is now one of the leading national initiatives working to counter this negative climate, defending the importance of sanctuary and the benefits it can bring to both refugees and host communities”. Refugee Week

Salvation Army International HQ

Gallery 101
101 Queen Victoria Street

Mon – Fri 8:30am – 4:30pm

Free admission. Between St Pauls and the Tate Modern.

‘In Transit’ Photos

In Transit. A photographic exhibition focusing on the daily experience of refugees living in the ‘Calais Jungle’ and the ‘Grande-Synthe’ camp in Dunkirk.

Last week I was truly delighted to have my image of  ‘Shop Keeper in The Calais Jungle’ nominated in the portrait section of the International Color Awards. This has prompted me to post some images from the actual exhibition.

Over the 6 months prior to the final eviction in October 2016, fellow photographer  Janine Wiedel and I documented daily life in the Calais Jungle as well as the Grande-Synthe refugee camp in Northern France.


The resulting exhibition ‘In Transit’ had its initial viewing at The James Caird Hall at Dulwich College, London.


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Sue Mulholland Director of Art, Dulwich College, records:

In Transit provided us with a platform to engage students across the curriculum in a debate about wider cultural, social and most importantly humanitarian issues that are too often skewed by social media and the press. Jacky and Janine’s sensitive and extremely well observed photos engaged our students from Year 6 to Year 13 in discussions about our national, and their own, responsibility for global problems. 

The exhibition brings the migrant crisis to our doorstep; the powerful visuals evoke and provoke a reaction. These are insights and detail we are not used to seeing, the day to day living in the camps, the true reality of a refugee’s situation. The exhibition opens the door to wider conversations and deeper understanding.  As well as invaluable educational stimulus across many subject areas (Geography, History, PSHE, RT, Art, Architecture, English), it teaches our students about their places in the world.  

The Calais Jungle. All photographs by ©Jacky Chapman

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‘La Linière’ camp, in Grande-Synthe, Dunkirk.  All photographs by ©Jacky Chapman

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I recently returned to ‘The Jungle’ to see what had become of it. The containers are still there…..the rest razed to the ground. Local aid agencies are now reporting that some 400 refugees/migrants are returning to Calais (approx. 15 per day) mainly teenagers and young adults. Police are still patrolling the jungle to prevent its resurgence. According to recent reports the mayor of Calais has banned the distribution of meals by aid agencies in an attempt to stop a new refugee camp starting up again.

Water carrier, The Jungle, Calais, Northern France

The remains of The jungle, 24th December 2016

All that remains of the once famous Calais Jungle. The containers are all that’s now visible.




NOMINEE ANNOUNCEMENT – 10th Annual International Color Awards

Beyond providing basic supplies the ‘High Street’ shops were

Beyond providing basic supplies the ‘High Street’ shops were important meeting points, and provided emergency accommodation, free meals, schooling and asylum advice. They were the lifeline for The Jungle’s 10,000 inhabitants.

Delighted with today’s email!  The image forms part of a series of photographs covering the 6 months prior to the final eviction of the Calais Jungle, Northern France.


LOS ANGELES March 2017 – Professional photographer Jacky Chapman was presented with the 10th Annual International Color Awards Nominee title in the category of Portrait at a prestigious Nomination & Winners Photoshow streamed Saturday, March 4, 2017.

The live online gala was attended by 9,575 photography fans around the globe who logged on to watch the climax of the industry’s most important event for color photography.

10th Annual Jury members included captains of the industry from Christie’s, New York; Contemporary Art Society, London; Sotheby’s, Paris; ING Collection, Netherlands; Y&R, Malaysia; Preus Museum, Norway; Art Beatus, Hong Kong; Ogilvy & Mather, Amsterdam; Whitechapel Gallery, London; and J. Walter Thompson, New York who honored Color Masters with 723 title awards and 792 nominees in 33 categories.

“It is an incredible achievement to be selected among the best from the 6,178 entries we received this year,” said Basil O’Brien, the awards Creative Director. “Jacky Chapman’s ‘Shop keeper – The Calais Jungle, refugee and migrant camp, Northern  France’,” is an exceptional image entered in the Portrait category, represents contemporary color photography at its finest, and we’re pleased to present her with the title of Nominee.”

INTERNATIONAL COLOR AWARDS is the leading international award honoring excellence in color photography. This celebrated event shines a spotlight on the best professional and amateur photographers worldwide and honors the finest images with the highest achievements in color photography. International Color Awards

Time to party, party!

Notting Hill Carnival, London UK

Notting Hill Carnival, London UK

You know that the summer’s almost at an end when the Notting Hill Carnival appears in the calendar! These years seem to fly by! This year, however, I found myself unable to attend Britain’s Biggest Street Party… hoo…there’s something about the way all five senses seem to explode all at once…..the BBQ corn-on-the-cob, the pounding music forcing its way out through the oversized loud speakers making your heart literally pond in your chest, that crushing feeling as you find yourself unable to move in any direction so all you can do is lift the camera over your head, click the shutter and hope you get a good pic!
Notting Hill Carnival, London UK

Notting Hill Carnival, London UK

With the darker nights and wet, windy days upon us, I thought I’d share a small collection of past images (2010-2014) from Europe’s largest street fest . Here’s to happy viewing…of shaking limbs, chocolate smeared faces, jiving policemen-  I still have pink paint embedded both on my back pack and my lenses!

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The carnival began in 1964 as a way for Afro-Caribbean communities to celebrate their own cultures and traditions. The following is an extract from the Notting Hill Carnival website and sums up its history wonderfully.

"At the roots of the Notting Hill Carnival are the Caribbean carnivals of the early 19th century – a particularly strong tradition in Trinidad – which were all about celebrating the abolition of slavery and the slave trade. The very first carnival was an attempt to showcase the steel band musicians who played in the Earls Court of London every Weekend. When the bands paraded through the streets of Notting Hill, they drew black residents out on to the streets, reminding them of the Caribbean homes they had left behind.
In the days of abolition, there was a strong element of parody in the songs and dances Trinidadians performed. Having been forbidden to hold festivals of their own during the period of slavery, they now took full advantage of the relative new freedoms the ending of slavery brought them. Dressing up in costumes that mimicked the European fashions of their former masters, even whitening their faces with flour or wearing white masks, they established a tradition that continues in the costume-making of today’s Notting Hill Carnival. The proper name for this aspect of the Carnival is Mas (derived from Masquerade)"

CLICK TO SEE MORE IMAGESNotting Hill Carnival, London UK