The Seattle Times wins national visual journalism awards

For Immediate Release — Apr. 7, 2017
Lindsay Taylor, Consumer Marketing Manager

ATHENS, OHIO — Seattle Times staffers nabbed eight National Press Photographers Association 2017 Best of Photojournalism awards in the photography, video, multimedia and picture editing contests.

“This is a fantastic confirmation of the hard work our staff does every day to create compelling visual journalism for Seattle,” said Danny Gawlowski, Director of Digital Imagery and Innovation.

In the individual multimedia portfolio category, Erika Schultz and Corinne Chin placed second for their combined photo and video contributions to “Family Pot Farm,” “Seattle’s Vanishing Black Community,” “Quest to Wipe Out AIDS in South Africa,” “South Africa Home for AIDS Positive Mothers” and “Online Dating.”

“It's thanks to Erika's strong Seattle connections, forged through a decade of dedicated community storytelling, that we were able to tell video stories like these,” said Chin.

In these bodies of work and in their general approach to journalism, Chin and Schultz have championed highlighting Seattle’s diverse and underreported communities through powerful visual storytelling.

For her documentation of gentrification in Seattle’s Central District, Schultz received a Cliff Edom’s “New America Award” category honorable mention. The prestigious Cliff Edom Award “recognizes an individual in the tradition of Cliff Edom to inspire and motivate members of the photojournalism community to reach new heights.”

Schultz has been consistently recognized by the NPPA, bringing home a 2010 first place in sports video, a 2012 honorable mention in environment photography and a 2013 first place in the pictorial category. Schultz also received premiere honors this year from the Pictures of the Year International, earning an Award of Excellence for a portfolio of “strong content” demonstrated with a “personal artistry.”

For the “30 Days” project, The Seattle Times won second place in the documentary multimedia package category. “30 Days” chronicles a Bhutanese refugee family’s first month in Seattle using inviting photographs, videos, maps and fresh web application design.

“30 Days” also placed second — along with “Under Our Skin,” “Cuba Rediscovered” and “The Evolution of King Felix” — in the multimedia portfolio large market (team) category.

“Under Our Skin” launched nationwide conversations about race and race-related issues when it debuted in June 2016. Edited down to about 70 minutes of rich content from 31 hours of raw footage, “Under Our Skin” has garnered critical acclaim from local and national news organizations and has been deployed in sensitivity training for private and public entities. More than 13 staff members, including videographers, developers, editors, reporters, photographers and designers contributed to the project.

The “Cuba Rediscovered” three-part series followed staff reporter Ángel González to Cuba, where he dove headlong into the future of his ancestral homeland with staff photographer Bettina Hansen.

“This was a daunting project to take on, but the teamwork between Ángel and me on the ground, video guidance and editing by Lauren and innovative development and design made this a comprehensive package with heart that readers seemed to appreciate in-depth,” said Hansen.

“The Evolution of King Felix,” shot by Hansen and Katie G. Cotterill, celebrates Seattle Mariners pitcher Felix Hernandez’s thirtieth birthday with a multimedia project that included videos, graphs and gifs that centered on his various pitches.

After much begging, Hansen recalled, the Mariners allowed her to place a camera behind the catcher to record Hernandez’s pitching in slow motion.

Chin took third place in the photo essay category for her editing of “Not a Death Sentence,” which details the lives of HIV-positive women coping and finding acceptance at Nkosi’s Haven, a nonprofit in Johannesburg, South Africa. “Not a Death Sentence” was filmed by Schultz.

Chin also placed third in the sports category for her exemplary editing of “For Carson Pickett, First Glance May Be Deceiving,” a profile of Seattle Reign soccer player Carson Pickett shot by Hansen.

The Seattle Times Pacific NW Magazine’s Fred Nelson, David Miller and Kathy Andrisevic earned an honorable mention in the magazine picture editor of the year category. The magazine also placed third in the magazine cover (individual) category.

The NPPA is comprised of over 6,000 journalists, editors, students and other industry representatives  committed to the advancement of photojournalism and the general welfare of press photographers. Lauded as one of the largest photo contests for visual journalists in the world, The NPPA Best of Photojournalism contest draws thousands of entries from news photographers. Judges evaluate entries based on quality of content, narration, interactive execution and visual presentation. Winners were announced on a rolling basis throughout March.