The annual Epson/NZIPP Iris Professional Photography Awards is New Zealand’s only professional photography competition. The aim of these print awards is to recognise and honour the best in contemporary photography from New Zealand and overseas professionals. Organised by the New Zealand Institute of Professional Photography the awards showcase cutting-edge imagery and top, creative photographic talent. The Iris Professional Photography Awards are open to all New Zealand and international professional photographers. A ‘professional photographer’ is defined as a “person who earns an income in the professional photography industry”. I always find these awards quite nerve wracking as we are putting ourselves out there to be judged, and that is a hard thing to do. You can create a beautiful image that you love and in 2 minutes it can be ripped apart and you can be left feeling not good enough. On the up side it can also leave you feeling great if you do well. It is great to see where you sit in the industry, and it is great to push yourself just that little bit harder. This year I entered 3 images – 2 in the classic wedding category and 1 in the classic portrait. I was pretty happy to come away with 1 professional standard, 1 bronze and 1 silver award.