1st Place Award in the “Nothing Is Better Than Real Life” category (Fall 2021). Photo by Julia Matthews (United States).

Julia Matthews

Award-winning photography by Julia Matthews

Have you ever found an old photograph from your childhood and been completely captivated by it? You don’t remember living that moment, but you can almost feel it. The people in the photograph are both familiar and foreign at the same time. Suddenly, you find yourself flooded with more memories, and you are inspired to sit down with a parent, a grandparent, or a sibling and relive those precious moments from long ago. That is the magic of photographs! They have the power to be conversation starters between generations. They capture things that are specific to individual people or moments in time while highlighting the similarities in our human experience. I treasure photos not just for the moments that they preserve, but for the connection they continue to inspire as they are shared.

The Documentary Family Awards is an international competition in search of the insightful and meaningful ways that documentary photographers explore the interpretation of family.