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第50回公益社団法人日本広告写真家協会公募展(APAアワード2022)によせて

AAPAアワード2022にご応募を頂きありがとうございました。
昨年はコロナ禍という前代未聞の影響で残念ながら公募を中止いたしましたが、本年は一昨年比で広告作品部門、写真作品部門ともに150%あまりの応募の増加もあって大変嬉しく思っております。

私達APAは広告写真家の親睦団体として1958年に生まれました。広告は右肩上がりの高度成長の波に乗り、多くの著名な写真家が輩出された時代でした。1989年に社団法人、2012年に公益社団法人となり、創立64年を迎えます。当初は優秀な新人広告写真家を発掘するために始められた公募展ですが、2006年より協会の主幹事業として、公益的観点からその年の優れた写真を中心とした広告写真をアーカイブ化するプロジェクトも担う事になり「APAアワード」として新たにスタートいたしました。それまでに別々に開催していた写真作品部門と広告作品部門を併合し、写真表現の質的向上を図ると共に、その時代を代表する広告作品を歴史的遺産として後世に残す役割を果たしております。そして公募展の頃より多くの写真家が、この賞をステップボードとして広告写真家の世界に華々しくデビューしてきた歴史があります。

今世紀に入り、急速なデジタル化の波に乗り、写真を見せる媒体も大きく変わって来ました。今までの新聞・雑誌・ポスター等の紙媒体からデジタルサイネージやWEBを中心とした広告が増えております。また、カメラもフィルムカメラからデジタルカメラやスマートフォン等、撮るツールも大きな変化が見られます。そういった時代に広告写真家の団体であるAPAも敏感でなければなりません。昨年からのコロナの影響でテレワークが増加した方々も多くおられると思いますが、これらをむしろ逆境とはせず、APAも組織的なDX(デジタルトランスフォーメーション)化に取り組み始めました。

その一貫として今回初めてWEBでの公募をし、審査もオンラインでという初めて尽くしの試みですが、今後もシステムとしてポリッシュアップをしつつ、これらの方法で続けていく所存です。プロばかりではなく、一般の人々もスマートフォンで驚く程の素晴らしい写真が出来上がりますが、人々に感動を起こさせるものはその写真の中に見える魂だと思います。どうかこれからの表現者としてプロ、アマチュアの枠を越えてサムシングを捉えて下さい。

最後に今年も「APAアワード2022」にご応募頂きました皆様、並びに本事業にご賛同頂きご後援賜りました、経済産業省、文化庁、ご協力頂きました関係企業各位に深く感謝の意を表します。

Commemorating the 50th Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association Exhibition (APA Awards 2022)

Firstly, I would like to extend a big thank-you to everyone who submitted works to the 2022 APA Awards. Though we were forced to cancel the Awards last year due to the unprecedented crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic, this year saw an increase of 150% on works submitted in the Photography and Advertising Sections, which was a very welcome development.

The Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association (APA) was established in 1958—during the nation’s super-growth period—when the advertising sector was expanding exponentially in tandem. This was also a time when many famous photographers rose to prominence. APA became an Incorporated Association in 1989, a Public Interest Incorporated Association in 2012, and this year the Association will be celebrating its 64th anniversary. As of 2006, a project was launched to archive advertising photography—particularly the excellent photography submitted to the contest (originally launched with a view to acknowledging talented new advertising photographers) each year—as a major project of the Association as well as the idea of benefiting the public. In conjunction with this project, the Awards were re-launched combining the original photo contest and advertising contest as the Photography and Advertising Sections. Today, the APA Awards assume a key role in boosting the quality of photographic expression as well as preserving advertising photography typical of our times as the legacy of the advertising business for future generations. The award has also proved a valuable stepping stone, as many individuals who won or placed in the contest subsequently made noteworthy debuts in the advertising sector.

As of the turn of the current century—along with a rapid trend toward digitalization—there has been a dramatic shift away from the traditional media chosen to showcase photography. More and more advertising is accomplished with digital signage or on the web, instead of in conventional media such as newspapers, magazines, and posters. Meanwhile, the way photos are taken has also changed greatly, moving away from film cameras to digital cameras, smart phones, and more. In these times, we at APA must be more adaptable in our position as an association of advertising photographers. Last year, many more people were forced to engage in telework due to the impact of the pandemic, but we should not take these recent developments as adversity. Instead, we at APA have begun the process of digital transformation throughout our organization.

As part of this process, as of this year we will be accepting applications on the web—and screening will also be online—for the very first time. APA will continue with these new options as we polish the systems that make them possible. Today, not only professionals but laypeople can take incredible photographs even with just a smartphone. We believe it is the spirit of a photograph that inspires the viewer, and therefore it is important that the photographer try to capture that intangible something. It is entirely unrelated to whether they are a professional or an amateur.

In conclusion, I would like to once again extend my deepest appreciation to those who submitted works to the APA Awards 2022 contest, as well as to our sponsors, including the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry; the Agency for Cultural Affairs; the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, and to all associated companies.

白鳥真太郎

白鳥 真太郎

公益社団法人日本広告写真家協会 会長

Shiratori Shintaro

Chairman, Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association