World Press Photo disqualification: Photographer speaks out.

Stepan Rudik, whose series on street fighting has been disqualified from the World Press Photo yesterday, has reached out to publications such as BJP in a bid to salvage his reputation as a reportage photographer

The image submitted to World Press Photo © Stepan Rudik.

Yesterday, World Press Photo announced that "after careful consultation with the jury, [it has] determined that is was necessary to disqualify Stepan Rudik, winner of the 3rd prize story in Sports Features, due to violation of the rules of the World Press Photo Contest." Rudik won the prize for his story "Street fighting, Kiev, Ukraine".

The organisation added: "Following the announcement of the contest results, it came to the attention of World Press Photo that Rudik's story had violated a contest rule. After requesting RAW-files of the series from him, it became clear that an element had been removed from one of the original photographs."

Speaking to BJP, a spokeswoman for World Press Photo says that the photographer had removed the foot of one its subjects from a photo. Read our full report here.

Now, the photographer has reached out to explain his motives behind the "manipulation". While Rudik does't argue the decision of the jury, he tells BJP that "the photograph I submitted to the contest is a crop, and the retouched detail is the foot of a man which appears on the original photograph, but who is not a subject of the image submitted to the contest."

He adds: "I believe this explanation is important for my reputation and good name as a reportage photographer."

Rudik provided BJP with the original photo, as well as the altered one, in a bid to show that he hasn't "made any signifiant alteration nore removed any important informative detail."

Last year, World Press Photo announced it had added a new rule that states that "the content of an image must not be altered". It added that "only retouching which conforms to currently accepted standards in the industry is allowed".


The original photo © Stepan Rudik

I have been following this story since it first came to light, my first assumption being that the photographer must have removed an entire person or perhaps a dog with a limp. Seeing the evidence here does make me wonder what the World Press are playing at as all the photographer has done is crop the image and made it black and white. He's not altered the image like a crude overly political corrected advertising campaign to get us all to buy sweeties.

Maybe if the world Press dont wont any jiggery pokery in the future they should have people shooting on film and producing the negative and not a digital file.



mark page said...

Besides the fact that it's just not a very interesting picture I agree. I can't see he has done anything that a film photographer wouldn't do other than capture in mono in the first place.

marcus doyle said...

Not interesting..Its bloody crap.
I was taking pics like that when I was ten!
Hope all is well..
Stay hungry.

Boung said...

Oh, may I point out that he removed a tiny portion of the guy's feet behind the chap in red.

mark page said...

Marcus I was trying to be tactful, but yes it's crap. Saw th Don McCullin show today, brilliant, if you get the chance well worth it.

marcus doyle said...

It sometimes takes seeing a Masters work to realise just how much crap there is around.
I have seen a few Don MuCullin prints over the years and they are quite haunting as well as Untouchable..