TPF Social Documentary Photography Awards

The 2022 Award Winners

The TPF Social Documentary Photography Awards is supported by and Photobook Cafe.

Single Image - Amateur Category

The winner and two highly commended entries from the Amateur Single Image category:


WINNER – Yingqian (Sahara) Huang for their picture entitled ‘HOPE’. Follow Sahara’s instagram link for more.

Highly Commended

HIGHLY COMMENDED – Enno Knuth for their picture of Young SBK in Brixton. See more of Enno’s work here.

Highly Commended

HIGHLY COMMENDED – A. Bediah for their picture “Building Blocks”. See Bediah’s instagram here.

Single Image - Professional Category

The winner and two highly commended entries from the Professional Single Image category:


WINNER – Image by Toma Gerzha. See more of Toma’s work here.

Highly Commended

HIGHLY COMMENDED – John Ferguson for their picture “Insomnia”. See more of John’s work at his website.

Highly Commended

HIGHLY COMMENDED – Josh Brady for their picture “Little Fish Big Pond”. See more of Josh’s work here.

The Photography Foundation

The TPF Photography Awards 2023

Photography SERIES WINNER - Amateur Category


Where there's a will, there's a way, is a body of work centred around a physical and emotional battle with trauma while visiting family in a town called Trenton. Through careful exploration of the everyday, Toor combines historical accounts of past and present alongside notions of self, fantasy and community to question if Trauma could be a gateway into fantasy. Toor’s thoughts and conversations are mirrored alongside Images in a non-linear fashion to uphold a diaristic narrative placing emphasis on the intricacies of picturing the invisible. The photographic journey through the streets of Trenton became a manifestation of externalising the unholiness left behind by members of his family.

Photography SERIES Highly Commended - Amateur Category


The series Cognitive Dissonance investigates the distorted perception of life and violence in our food culture.
The photos were taken on a 35mm film camera at the Athens meat market in June 2022. The market is a as popular to locals as it is to tourists who wander around stall and shops to appreciate local delicacies.

What is striking about the market is that the brutality and violence behind the meat industry is openly accessible. Dead bodies are hung up with their heads, bones and organs. They get cut into pieces and wrapped up to be sold at the moment.
What is perceived as “fresh” is actually dead. What is perceived as “delicacy” is exploitation and death.

As climate change pushes us to switch to plant based diets for the obvious detrimental environment impact of the meat and dairy industry, we also need to address the common cognitive dissonance when it comes to the public’s perception of what is in their plates.


"White Hart Lane"

Tottenham was my home. It was the council house on Nursery Street my mum was raised in by her grandparents. The same roof she would later raise my Sister and me under.

It was where I could hear a goal in the spurs ground from the living room window, before seeing it on live TV. It was where I spent hours on my bike in the street and where I was knocked off it by a car. It was where I went trick or treating on Halloween and where our family car was stolen and destroyed after a joyride. It was where my great-granddad, Stan, would get away with taking a three-year-old me into the bookies, which is illegal because they knew and liked him so much. It’s also where he spent his final moments.

Like all these memories, Tottenham is a neighbourhood of complexity.

Areas of poverty are surrounded by prosperity. Council homes are next door to million-dollar penthouse apartments. Food banks and £6 craft pints are on the same street. The presence of the new billion-dollar football stadium and the wealth that it brings to the area cannot be understated. This development has caused a dramatic increase in high-rise building projects and ‘new money’ residents. The periphery of this glass colosseum, however, does not reflect this economic change. Instead, the blocks of flats, locally named ‘Love Lane’, and the neighbouring high street are completely overshadowed by the stadium with no so-called trickle-down effect, but rather a clear divide. Tottenham has some of the highest rates of knife crime and unemployment in London, however many longtime residents now also fear the loss of their homes and businesses as they get priced out of the community.

It is this community that I have chosen to focus on. The people that make Tottenham one of the most culturally rich and interesting areas in the country.

Photography SERIES WINNER - Professional Category


Funfairs appear in parks and town squares across the country every year. But where do these loud and brightly coloured attractions come from? And who keeps the punters hurtling around the white-knucle rides? The answer is a unique and sometimes misunderstood community, quite out of step with modern Britain: "Travelling Showmen".

At a time when most people change jobs more frequently than ever but stay in the same place, Showmen move home as little as every few days, yet work the same trade their families have followed for centuries. Most Showmen can go as far back as at least fifth-generation and trace their family histories back well into the 19th century. Showmen have their own traditions, customs and even their own language, Paylaree.

The life of a showman is permanently temporary. Every time a child is born to a showman family, the assumption is that they will become a showman too, carrying the family vocation to the next generation. There’s pressure not to leave. When showmen marry, they’re often given their first ride, from which they are expected to build their own travelling family business empires.

Despite a nomadic existence, showmen are a tight-knit community bound together by tradition, family bonds and a strong culture of self-sufficiency. Each year showmen follow a well-trodden path around the country, setting up at fairs, many of which date back centuries, like the Nottingham Goose Fair, which was inaugurated by Royal Charter in 1279.

Hull Fair is Europe's largest travelling funfair but also one of the annual opportunities for private social events for the showman community. Some extended families only meet all together once a year, at Hull. Showmen dances are where young showmen often meet their future partners. It is rare for showmen to marry outside the community, due to its insularity but also because ‘flatties’ (non-showmen) often don’t understand and can’t adapt to the challenges of showman life.

In a moment that Britain is particularly unsure of its place in the world, showmen have centuries of tradition to steady and guide them. Dating back to 1889, The Showmen's Guild of Great Britain represents showmen and fights for their commercial and cultural rights. Yet, tradition and togetherness only offer partial answers to the big questions and huge challenges of the present – and into the future.

Showmen have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic and cost of living crisis. After nearly two years unable to make a living, now punters have less in their pockets to spend on entertainment. Rocketing fuel costs make moving more and more expensive, so showmen are trying to travel within ever-smaller areas. Adaptable businesspeople, many showmen are multi-millionaires but growing financial pressures have forced others out of the industry.

My project, Showmen, follows several different travelling funfairs up and down the country - turning the lens on the Showman themselves and aiming to portray this clandestine and close-knit community and, in the face of adversity, to portray how they adapt to modern Britain.

Photography SERIES Highly Commended - Professional Category



Cemetery: Entrance to the city. (Norilsk, Russia)

Bus stop: Polina, waiting for the first bus in the morning. Polina is 13 years old. It's summer vacation and she spends most of her time outside with friends, learning about the adult world. (Shapurovo, Belarus)

Tenderness: Anya and Ilya study in Kiev. On weekends they drive together to Vinnytsia to visit their parents. In the summer they live with Ilya's parents. Often they can't get any privacy, they don't have their own room in the house. So they spend a lot of time outside. (Vinnytsia, Ukraine)

Gostinka: A "guesthouse/gostinka" is a type of living quarters that is either a small formally separate one-room apartment without a kitchen, or a room with a kitchen alcove and a bathroom. Gostinikas are the most affordable housing in the city. Several apartments are occupied by teenagers. (Norilsk, Russia)

WHSD: The Western High-Speed Diameter is the most popular road in Russia with more than 380,000 payments per day. Often drugs are hidden underneath this bridge. (St. Petersburg, Russia)


“The Art of Seeing, The Art of Remembering” is a series of images I made across Armenia between December 2020 and April 2020. Working with two distinct Armenian (a former republic of the U.S.S.R.) communities, traditional border villages which are representative defenders of their ancestral land. The images explore understanding of Identity, Memory, and Self and what Hope & Opportunities exist for the Youth. The juxtaposition highlights the imbalance of wishing to stay close to home versus fulfilling their own dreams and aspirations, in a country that is landlocked between Turkey and Azerbaijan, and bordering Iran in the south.

It is noteworthy, that the body of work explores the memory of Village Elders of the time pre-Perestroika and Glasnost (1990) and it is contrasted with images of kids and teenagers who grapple with the conflict and challenges ahead, trying to find their own identity.

The selected images show the evolution from the 'Boys Looking Out' (why are they locked-in?), uncertain what awaits them. 'Voskan', a regional box champion, joined the army only two weeks after this images was made and has since been at the frontline of the conflict, focusing on supporting Armenia's military effort to defeat hostile Azerbaijan in the Nagorno-Karabackh (Artsakh) conflict. It is only fitting, that 'Emma' is thoughtful as she reviews her own story at the time pre-1990 and her relationship with her then friendly Azeri neighbours. I included 'Ready' to show that the Border Villages live under constant threat of attack. What looks like a peaceful bedroom image on the one hand, could also be interpreted as the owner of this room having his army bags by his bedside, making this image more uncomfortable to look at. Lastly, I had to include 'Friends observing Mount Ararat'. Historically, Mount Ararat (famous for the landing of Noahs Ark), was part of Armenia's ancestral land. During the Genocide (1915-1923), Turkey killed 1.5m Armenians and took that land away. Two Armenian friends at sunset, overlooking Ararat sitting in the distance, contemplating the eternal 'What if...". An image loaded with potential for discourse, anger, frustration but also for reflection. It appears peaceful yet the fighting takes place mere a couple of hundred meters away.

As I write these notes, the conflict in Armenia has just flared up again. The world is not looking, listening or acting.