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San­dra is a two-time win­ner of the Ger­man So­ci­ety of Pho­tog­ra­phy 100 Im­ages of the Year con­test and a cat­e­gory win­ner of the 2011 Wildlife Pho­tog­ra­pher of the Year. She has also served as com­pe­ti­tion judge.

How im­por­tant are com­pe­ti­tions to mak­ing a suc­cess­ful ca­reer as a pho­tog­ra­pher?

I think it de­pends on the com­pe­ti­tion. The Wildlife Pho­tog­ra­pher of the Year is, of course, one when it comes to na­ture pho­tog­ra­phy. The im­ages are ex­hib­ited through­out the world and the me­dia cov­er­age is amaz­ing; it helps to get you no­ticed. But I also think it de­pends on the im­age you win with – whether it is a spe­cial im­age or one that blends in with the 99 oth­ers dis­played to­gether. For me, com­pe­ti­tions are a fun thing. I don’t take them too se­ri­ously. I take part and if I win with an im­age I like a lot then I’m re­ally happy. They bring some ex­po­sure, but they are not the ba­sis of my ca­reer plan.

Sno wdrop s Nikon D700, Meyer Gör­litz Tri­o­plan 100mm f/2, 1/50 sec, f/2, ISO200

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