Abdul Rahman Al-Baria, a Saudi photographer, won third place in the "The Palm in the Eyes of the World" competition for Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Prize, which is in its 13th edition, with a shot of a palm and a silvery stream.
The contest had 1,064 photographs as entries from 363 photographers from 24 nations around the world.
In an interview with Al Arabiya net, Al-Baria explained that the winning shot was completely accidental, saying he was with his friends in Hail and did not want to take the camera as he was involved with an event. “But in the last minute, I decided to shoot it,” he added.
Al-Baria said after arriving in Hail, he used the Google map to reach his destination, but an error on the map led him to a place called Iqdah. He said he was taken aback by the beauty of the vista. “So, I snapped a photo of a palm tree with a waterfall behind it, which I thought is worthy for the Khalifa bin Zayed Prize,” Al-Baria said, adding that the shot has already proved to be a massive success.
Al-Baria enjoys photographing heritage, nature and cities and has amassed 19 local and international prizes for his work.
In addition, he said, he took part in numerous national and international exhibitions in order to emphasize “all that is beautiful about Saudi Arabia, which is distinguished by its unique landscape.”
He said had many pictures that were popular and widespread, including pictures of camels and lakes. One of his photographs of Riyadh went viral with 6 million views on his social media accounts. It was commented on by the Minister of Culture and Entertainment.
He also pointed out that the image of camels and Tuwaiq won the most expensive prize in the world, worth SR120,000, at the King Abdulaziz Festival.