Get to hear the stories behind winning shots

Mr Tan Chuan-Jin chatting with retiree Ngai Hin Kwok (right), whose impressive "human flag" move was captured by ST photojournalist Ng Sor Luan for a feature on active ageing. With them is ST editor Warren Fernandez. Visitors at the launch of the 201
Visitors at the launch of the 2016 World Press Photo exhibition yesterday. Presented by The Straits Times, it showcases 145 award-winning photos from the 2016 WPP competition and 30 photos by ST photojournalists.ST PHOTOS: DESMOND WEE
Mr Tan Chuan-Jin chatting with retiree Ngai Hin Kwok (right), whose impressive "human flag" move was captured by ST photojournalist Ng Sor Luan for a feature on active ageing. With them is ST editor Warren Fernandez. Visitors at the launch of the 201
Mr Tan Chuan-Jin chatting with retiree Ngai Hin Kwok (right), whose impressive "human flag" move was captured by ST photojournalist Ng Sor Luan for a feature on active ageing. With them is ST editor Warren Fernandez. ST PHOTOS: DESMOND WEE

Retiree Ngai Hin Kwok held his pose for a mere one to two seconds for a photo taken in Toa Payoh last November - of him performing an advanced calisthenics move, the human flag.

But it took one to two years of training for him to succeed at it.

"I saw young people doing the move, so I decided to try to achieve it as well," said Mr Ngai, 68.

The photo of him was taken by Straits Times photojournalist Ng Sor Luan for a feature in December on active ageing, and is among the images displayed in conjunction with the 2016 World Press Photo (WPP) exhibition being held at the National Museum of Singapore.

At the launch last night, the 2016 WPP award winners Warren Richardson and Kazuma Obara shared stories of the journeys behind their shots. For instance, Mr Richardson revealed how he brought refugees into his home when he was based in Eastern Europe to build rapport.

Mr Obara quit his job in finance days after the 2011 tsunami in Fukushima, kick-starting his photography work.

The exhibition, which is on from today to March 26, was launched by Minister for Social and Family Development Tan Chuan-Jin, who described the role of journalists and trained visual storytellers as "vitally important".

"There is a significant responsibility to not just snap an image but understand the context and what is actually happening," he said.

Presented by The Straits Times, the exhibition comprises 145 award-winning photos from the 2016 WPP competition and 30 photos by ST photojournalists.

Straits Times editor Warren Fernandez said: "I am extremely proud of the ST Photo Desk that we have - they strive to do great work day in and day out.

"My job is quite simply to showcase their work to best effect across all our platforms, as well as at events like this," said Mr Fernandez, who is also editor-in-chief of Singapore Press Holdings' English, Malay and Tamil Media Group.

Besides the exhibition, there will also be a panel discussion and talks. Admission is free, but registration is required for the talks.

The panel - comprising Mr Richardson, Mr Obara and 2017 WPP judge Yumi Goto - will discuss "Photojournalism in the Age of New Media" at 6.30pm today.

Tomorrow, Mr Richardson, who won the 2016 World Press Photo of the Year, will speak on the topic of refugees at 11am, while Mr Obara, who won the first prize in the "People" category, will speak on visual storytelling at 1pm.

ST photojournalists Caroline Chia, Mark Cheong, Neo Xiaobin and Kevin Lim will also share their experiences at talks on March 12, March 19 and March 25.

Find out more here.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 03, 2017, with the headline 'Get to hear the stories behind winning shots'. Print Edition | Subscribe