Back in April, we had a night of joy and celebration at the club as members marked the success of Morgan O’Neill in the recent 9th International Emirates Photography Competition (EPC) whose awards event he was invited to attend! Apologies for the delayed report.

His shot of his cousin ‘Kim’ was awarded a gold medal in the open colour section in this highly prestigious event. The fact that there were entries from 90 countries showed the level of competition Morgan was facing. His and other award winning shots are now on display until July in Abu Dhabi at the country’s arts and culture centre, the Manarat Al Saadiyat (the place of Enlightenment). Thousands are expected to see the prints!

Morgan says:

“Recently I had the privilege of being invited to the Emirates Photography Competition Awards ceremony to receive the biggest award I have ever dreamed of. I met and made friends with the nicest people I could ever have imagined.
On top of all these beautiful experiences I had the opportunity to play my AV presentation on a cinema size screen. It contained some of my favorite images and also my favorite music stretching back as far as my childhood. Thanks to Bill Power for giving up a lot of his time to help me put this AV together.”

Morgan, of course, is no stranger to success. One of the country’s foremost and finest photographers he has many awards and accreditations to his credit. In 2010, at his first attempt, he was awarded his Fellowship of the IPF. Only a handful of photographers achieve the award each year. His panel of 20 images featuring old, unoccupied houses, was hailed by the judges as an outstanding for its technical ability and emotional impact. He also has Associateship from the Royal Photographic Society (RPS) and EFIAP/silver distinction from FIAP (International Federation of Photographic Art).
In 2013 his shot of Indian children was included in the Irish panel which competed against teams from all over the world in the 27th FIAP Projected Images biennial competition in Luxembourg. It was awarded a coveted silver medal.

Typically Morgan, who received a standing ovation from club members was very modest about his latest success, saying that it was a complete surprise to him. But, of course, it wasn’t to members who have long appreciated and admired his work and valued his encouragement and support.
Indeed that was the theme of his address: “If I can help others to achieve what I have achieved I certainly will”.

The highlight of his latest triumph was the announcement of his win, meeting with some of the most accomplished photographers in the world and the welcome home he received from club members when he arrived back in Cork after his flight home when several members turned up with their cameras in the guise of the paparazzi to greet the star of the Emirates off the bus!

The homecoming he received from daughter Kailan and son Morgan was also particularly memorable.

From Ballyphehane Morgan pays huge tribute to his wife Siobhan for her unwavering support and encouragement over the years. But for her he wouldn’t have been able to make the journey to the awards ceremony, he said. It was she who bought him his first camera magazines and encouraged him to join a camera club. His first was Carrigaline, then Mallow where he lived for several years and for the last few years a highly valued and esteemed member of CCG.

There was also a thank-you for cousin Kim for being his model and Etihad Airways for their part in ensuring that Siobhan was also able to attend the event. The link-up with Etihad was made through his very good friend John Doheny of Mallow Camera Club. His son Declan is social media manager with the airline while John’s other son, Niall is a pilot with the airline.

Even more pictures over on our Facebook page!