Getty Images
Dec 14, 2020
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The “Definition Future” Creative Bursary, which includes financial support and mentorship, helps three emerging creatives as they seek to explore current and future realities

New York — December 14, 2020: Getty Images, a world leader in visual communications celebrating its 25th year, and its subsidiary iStock, today awarded three grants of US$10,000, $7,000 and $3,000, to three young creatives as part of its latest Creative Bursary, “Definition Future.” In the wake of COVID‑19 and the countless challenges creatives continue to face, this particular bursary seeks to provide much‑needed financial support and mentorship, offering three emerging creatives the financial freedom to explore what complexities the future may hold through the lens of creative visual storytelling.

Taking first prize, Hidhir Badaruddin is a London‑based photographer and a recent graduate from the London College of Fashion, who self‑identifies as a Southeast Asian queer male from Singapore.

“With my photo series entitled ‘Younglawa,’ a play on words between English and Malay which translates to ‘(someone) that is beautiful’ or ‘the beautiful’, I hope to portray my vision for a new generation of Asian masculinity,” Badaruddin said. “I hope to challenge the stereotype of the Asian male and celebrate their youth, tenderness and soul. I want the world to know how diverse and multifaceted Asian men can be, celebrating all shades and sexualities.”

“Storytelling is essential to our survival — it’s part coping mechanism, part self‑expression and part imagination, in addition to so much more,” said Guy Merrill, Global Head of Art at Getty Images. “By supporting these three incredible creatives and helping them continue to do what inspires them, while also bringing art into the world, we’re able to collectively break boundaries, break stereotypes and confidently push our global visual language forward.”

Isabel Okoro, a photographer based in Toronto who was raised in Lagos, Nigeria, took second prize for her work around the Black youth experience which emphasizes the interactions between the motherland and the diaspora.

Third prize was awarded to Ebony Blanding, a Black woman writer and filmmaker based in Atlanta who is seeking to explore the complexities and possibilities of Black girlhood and womanhood through her film, LISTEN FOR THE SIRENS. 

Submissions, totaling more than 250, were judged by an industry‑leading panel, including:

  • Guy Merrill, UK based Head of Art, Getty Images Creative
  • Antwaun Sargent, NYC based Critic and Curator of The New Black Vanguard: Photography between Art and Fashion
  • Jimena Acosta, Mexico City‑based Curator of contemporary design and art at the Museo de Arte Moderno, Mexico City
  • Polly Irungu, NYC based multimedia journalist, digital editor, photographer and founder of Black Women Photographers
  • Henki Leung, Tokyo based Designer and Creative Director at Airside Japan
  • Deby Sucha, Tokyo and Los Angeles based, Photographer and Getty Images contributor
“These young artists submitted bright, compelling work narrating racial identity themes from the personal experience and also the political, in smart new formats including fiction film or calendar,” said Jimena Acosta, one of the judges. “It’s critical to support these up and coming voices and I’m thrilled for their brilliant futures and what’s to come.”

In addition to the grant funding, all three recipients will be given the opportunity to license their winning work on the Getty Images and iStock websites at a 100 percent royalty rate.

Note that the Getty Images and iStock Creative Bursary is part of Getty Images’ wider grants programme which, since its inception, has awarded US$1.7 million to photographers and filmmakers worldwide. Please visit Getty Images Grants to learn more.

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