Daniel Berehulak, Reportage by Getty Images, recently won first place photographer of the year in the 71st Annual Pictures of the Year International awards
We spoke with him about the awards and his recent work
What do you feel is the most important story that you worked on this year?
One of the most important stories that I covered this year was the worsening hunger crisis in Afghanistan. I accompanied New York Times journalist Rod Nordland to Helmand province and also to Kabul to document the large increase in malnutrition amongst children.
It was harrowing photographing so many children that were so malnourished, crying in hospitals sometimes four to a bed, others laying on the floor. Hospitals like the Bost hospital in Lashkar Gah, the capital of war-torn Helmand province, had been registering significant increases in severe malnutrition among children. Countrywide, such cases had increased 50 percent or more compared with 2012, according to U.N. figures. Reasons for the increase were uncertain, and in dispute. Most doctors and aid workers agreed that the continuing war and refugee displacement were contributing factors. Some believed that a growing number of child patients may be at least partly a good sign, as it meant that more poor Afghans were hearing about treatment available to them.
How often do you experiment with different formats and what made you decide to shoot Kumbh Mela in panoramic?
I try to approach things differently, especially if the event lends itself to a different format. I am quite active on Instagram, filing pictures of daily life and outtakes from assignments or news events, such as when I covered Nelson Mandela’s farewell.
With the Kumbh Mela I wanted to show the scale and magnitude of the event – this was believed to be the largest gathering of people on the planet; over 100 million people visited the area over a 55 day period. It was difficult on the ground and attempts to cover the story with a drone were not an option due to safety risks. I experimented with my iPhone and an app that had a 17x 6 format, which I felt lent itself to the Kumbh Mela. Along with the daily coverage that I filed to Getty I shot on the side with my iPhone, framing the incredible scenes with the panoramic app.
What does this award mean to you?
To be recognised by one’s peers is a huge honour, especially by Pictures of the Year International which is one of the only awards that has a photographer of the year award, and in a time when competition is so fierce with so many great photographers working as freelancers. I am glad to have covered important stories this year which bring some light to the issues.
View his winning portfolioSee more images
Daniel Berehulak is an award-winning photojournalist based in New Delhi, India.
A native of Sydney, Australia, Daniel has visited over 40 countries, covering history-shaping events including the Iraq war, the trial of Saddam Hussein, child labour in India, elections in Afghanistan, the return of Benazir Bhutto to Pakistan, and communities coping with the aftermaths of the Japanese tsunami and Chernobyl disaster.
His coverage of the 2010 Pakistan floods was recognized with a Pulitzer Prize nomination, one of several honours his photography has earned, including three World Press Photo awards and the prestigious John Faber award from the Overseas Press Club.
Born to immigrant parents, Daniel grew up on a farm outside of Sydney. After graduating from university his career as a photographer started humbly, shooting sports matches for a small local photo startup. In 2002, he started freelancing at Getty Images in Sydney, mainly shooting sport.
From 2005 to 2009, Daniel was based in London as a staff news photographer with Getty Images. He then relocated to New Delhi to advance the agency’s coverage of the Indian subcontinent, with a focus on the social and political instability of Pakistan and its neighbours.
As of July 2013, Daniel left his staff role and joined Reportage by Getty Images as a key freelance represented photographer, to focus on a combination of long term personal projects, breaking news, and client assignments.
He is a regular contributor to TIME Magazine and Der Spiegel in particular, and his work appears internationally in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, The Sunday Times of London, Neon Magazine, Stern, The Financial Times Magazine among others.
Commercial clients he has worked with include Nike, Aviva and Panasonic.