October 12th is a day every wildlife photographer dreams about at least once in their career; for it is every year on this day in October that the most prestigious wildlife contest in the world announces its awarded images. When I heard the news that I won in this years competition I was speechless; perhaps even more so when I found out that I had not one, or two, but six images taking home the Rising Star Portfolio Award at this years Wildlife Photographer of the Year in London UK.
For me the mission to one day once again stand in front of a crowd of my colleagues and peers began back in 2010. It was then that I got my first taste of victory in London; 15 years old and too shy I never got in front of the crowd to thank my family for all the work and sacrifices they have made for myself and my sister. Working tirelessly, and dreaming of having another chance at the competition, it is truly a great honor to stand in front of all of you today and say thank you. Not just to my family and friends, but also to my fellow photographers and supporters.