The European Union Delegate in Cambodia announced last week the winners of this year’s photo competition in line with the celebration of the European Year of Cultural Heritage.
Leang Willy, who took the winning picture, was awarded USD700. Willy’s picture depicts the well-loved traditional delicacy Kralan, made of stick rice with red beans molded in a bamboo shoot.
“The judges admired the composition and mood of the photo, as well as the creative depiction of food – a key component of Cambodian cultural heritage,” said EU Ambassador George Edgar at the awarding ceremony.
Two other winners were selected for the second and third prizes. Aside from the top three photographers, other ten entries shortlisted by the judges received prizes and certificates for their outstanding outputs.
Willy, though, was not able to personally accept his prizes.
Meanwhile, second prize winner, Keo Dane, couldn’t contain happiness after learning about his feat. The 39-year-old restaurant manager in Siem Reap said it was his friends who encouraged him to submit photos. He was not really into photography and didn’t hope to win any in photography competition.
“I submitted around seven photos. I don’t really have any photography skills but I like to take photos when I’m travelling. So these photos I took from my old camera were just really for fun,” said Dane, adding that he will use his prize to update his camera.
Dane’s pictures were of statues and sculptures that were left abandoned. He initially planned to print out the photo and post it on their house, but his mother did not allow him to do such.
“My mother said the photo looks sad so she told me not to decorate it in our house. But when I posted the photo in my Facebook account, some of my friends told me to submit it. So there, I submitted it to the EU contest.”
Third prize winner, Roeun Roum, 26, also from Siem Reap, also shared his winning pictures. Roum took still images of people joining the Boh Bay Ben during Pchum Ben. He said that he started his passion in photography two years ago.
“I just like to take photos of the natural environment in my province. My photos are mostly of people who joined the Pchum Ben festivity in my province and I thought that it fits to the competition. I really didn’t expect to win, I just want to share my photos because they depict Cambodian culture,” shared Roum, a travel agent.
He added, “for those who like photography, they should submit their photos to competitions. It doesn’t really matter if they win or not. At least they tried and they’re sharing what they are passionate about.”