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Norfolk Tourism Awards

Norwich photographer wins acclaim for picture of rescued chicken

PUBLISHED: 16:05 25 April 2018 | UPDATED: 16:17 25 April 2018

Murray Laidlaw's photograph of a chicken, which was simply labelled Rescued, has been acclaimed in the Politics of Food category at the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year 2018 awards.
Photo: Murray Laidlaw

Murray Laidlaw's photograph of a chicken, which was simply labelled Rescued, has been acclaimed in the Politics of Food category at the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year 2018 awards. Photo: Murray Laidlaw

Murray Laidlaw

A Norwich photographer’s picture of a rescued chicken has been hailed one of the world’s best in an international competition.

Murray Laidlaw's photograph of a chicken, which was simply labelled Rescued, has been acclaimed in the Politics of Food category at the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year 2018 awards.
Photo: supplied by Murray LaidlawMurray Laidlaw's photograph of a chicken, which was simply labelled Rescued, has been acclaimed in the Politics of Food category at the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year 2018 awards. Photo: supplied by Murray Laidlaw

Murray Laidlaw’s photograph, which was simply labelled Rescued, has been acclaimed in the Politics of Food category at the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year 2018 awards.

The image was among those unveiled in a finalists’ exhibition at the Mall Galleries, in London, on Tuesday.

“The competition was fierce. There were 8000 images entered from 60 countries and the standard was exceptional,” said Andy Macdonald, who heads up Pink Lady in the UK and is headline sponsor of the awards.

“Murray’s shot stood out, however, for the way in which he made the subject matter so thought-provoking in a category showing the realities of food production.”

A photo of a rescue chicken by Norwich photographer Murray Laidlaw.
Photo: Murray LaidlawA photo of a rescue chicken by Norwich photographer Murray Laidlaw. Photo: Murray Laidlaw

About receiving acclaim for his photograph, Mr Laidlaw said: “It’s nice to be recognised. It’s the first time I’ve entered the competition and it was nice to get a picture in the final selection.”

He explained that the picture showed a chicken rescued from the slaughterhouse, deemed unfit for human consumption, and that it was one of a series of photos of rescued chickens he had taken at a friend’s house in Drayton.

He said: “I went along and had a look at the hens at their house and we set up a white backdrop and set the chickens up one at a time on the table.

“The difficulty with hens that have been rescued is that they are very nervous, and getting them to stay on the table required corn or feed to keep them there. In some images the corn has been painted out, in some it’s been left there.”

A photo of a rescue chicken by Norwich photographer Murray Laidlaw.
Photo: Murray LaidlawA photo of a rescue chicken by Norwich photographer Murray Laidlaw. Photo: Murray Laidlaw

He said he found chickens fascinating characters to photograph, and that he was interested in photographing more in the future and keen to hear from local organisations which rescue hens and which would like to be involved in his project.

Mr Laidlaw, who had a career in television with the BBC and Anglia before focussing full-time on photography, took his acclaimed photograph with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera and used an EF 100mm F/2.8 macro USM lens. The image was processed in Capture One Pro software.

Organisations wanting to be involved in Mr Laidlaw’s project should get in touch with him via his website www.murraylaidlaw.com

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