The beginning of February was a landmark for us…after five years of international competition; we were both awarded the distinction of AFIAP – not one to share, but one each! It stands for (at least the English translation from the French) “Artist of the International Federation of Photographic Art”.
FIAP was established after WW2 to affiliate countries through their photographic organisations – a sort of artistic version of the League of Nations, with hopefully more success. There are now over 80 countries affiliated and the FIAP awards are internationally recognised.
The requirements for AFIAP are to succeed in attaining a given number of acceptances in international exhibitions supported by FIAP, for a five-year period, including receiving a minimum of two awards. Five years ago it all seemed a bit difficult but…with no great hope of success, we embarked on the unattainable…
Mike was first to receive an award – (a certificate) in his first Exhibition – the Scottish. Chris, feeling a little left out had to wait another 4 months for her two gold medals in the Austrian Super Circuit, where Mike also received a gold medal. So, after about 9 months we both had enough points and awards to qualify for AFIAP. It seemed so unfair to have to wait almost another 5 years to collect. But we didn’t just sit around and let it happen. Both received several more ribbons, bronze, silver and gold awards and hundreds of images shown in exhibitions around the world, from Australia to Austria, Italy to Cuba and some place Chris hadn’t even heard of. The whole process becomes a little addictive. Perhaps that’s why FIAP make it a 5 year period…because with addiction comes entry fees…or am I just a teensy weensy bit jaundiced?
Anyhow, on Chris’s birthday, the notifications arrived and it all seemed a little bit of an anti-climax. So why have we already started to embark upon the next stage? A three-year hike to the EFIAP (excellence), with different images and more acceptances and awards to achieve?
Why indeed? 😉