Meet the Winners of Format Picks June

Get to know the work of Chris Penso and Iggy Smalls, the winners of June's edition of Format Picks.

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For the latest edition of Format Picks, our monthly contest, we asked artists to submit images themed around travel. We received hundreds of incredible photos and artworks depicting locations all around the world.

Our June contest winners are Iggy Smalls and Chris Penso. We selected Smalls as a winner for her photo of a trip to southern Spain. Our guest judge, travel photographer Mio Monasch, selected Penso as his pick for winner for his photo of a young boy playing in Nepal. Both winners will receive a $250 grant towards their creative work.

Format Picks is an ongoing project in which we ask artists to submit work around a different monthly theme for a chance to win a prize and publication in the magazine. Entry is always free and open to anyone. Last month, our winners were Anastasia Samoylova and Evangelia Aktipi, who won for their images exploring the environment around them.

For July’s contest, we’ve teamed up with Newspaper Club to give away a $500 voucher to help one winner print their work. The theme is print’s not dead, and we’re excited to see how people interpret it. Head here to submit your work to Format Picks July.


Iggy Smalls

About the artist:

“Fiction, concepts of territories and how environments influence feelings of identity are recurrent themes in my image-based work. I graduated with a bachelor degree in Photography & Imaging from Ringling College of Art + Design in 2015 and received Adobe Rising Stars of Photography award in 2017. My work has been featured/selected by Millennium Images, British Journal of Photography, AI-AP, Feature Shoot, Redux, Humble Arts Foundation and Der Greif, among others.”

About the work:

“This image was taken in La Laguna Rosa, in south Spain, during a three day car drive back from a work trip. We had a tight schedule so we did not stop much on the way—fortunately we passed this lagoon around noon and had lunch (bread and discount cheese) on the edge after swimming. For me this image reminds me of one of the most amazing days I have ever had and furthermore that the journey can be as important as the destination when it comes to enjoy travel.”


Chris Penso

About the artist:

“I am a visual artist utilizing photography and graphic design as a means of expression. The storytelling aspect of photography is what inspires me most about the medium, and I wish to explore that further through traveling and meeting new faces. The more I travel, the more I realize how similar humans are across borders. Photography is a language in and of itself, which many people can understand.”

About the work:

“While traveling in Nepal, I visited the Kathmandu Durbar Square. There were dozens of pigeons in the area, and I knew that I wanted to capture photos of them in motion. When I arrived at the location, there was a boy and who I assumed to be his grandfather, in the area. The boy was playfully running amongst the pigeons, and I didn’t think anything of it until I captured him in my frame. Looking at the image afterward, I felt that I had captured something special. This photo was taken shortly after the earthquakes in 2015, and I feel that it encapsulates the human spirit among tragedy. The child in the frame appears free and joyful. It is a reminder to myself, and hopefully others, that life is meant to be lived.”

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