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The Malta Institute of Professional Photography (MIPP) officially came into being during a meeting held on the 2nd of October 1996. This first meeting, open to all those with an interest in Professional Photography, was held at the Grosvenor Hotel, in Balzan, and was the outcome of a group of individuals who had long been discussing ways to better the standard, respect and recognition of the Maltese Photographer.


The idea to form the MIPP was first discussed by Colin Pilling and Kevin Casha on the 16th of July 1996 at the Coach and Horses, in Birkirkara. A subsequent meeting (1st August) saw Konrad Agius joining the first two. Further meetings where held with several interested persons contributing.  These where Walter Barbara, Joe P. Borg, Martin Abela, Anthony Portelli, and Charles Calleja.


After these initial informal meetings, arrangements where made to continue these gatherings at the Grosvenor Hotel in Balzan. In fact, an interim Committee was established and the first official MIPP Minutes started being recorded on the 10th of September 1996.


This Interim Committee consisted of Kevin Casha, Konrad Agius, Colin Pilling, Anthony Portelli, and Charles Calleja. These preparatory meetings under the Interim Committee progressed till the first MIPP General Meeting on the 29th of April 1997, again at the Grosvenor Hotel. There, the first official Committee was voted in and was made up of  Kevin Casha, Hon. Chairman, Colin Pilling, Hon. PRO; Konrad Agius, Hon. Secretary, Charles Calleja, Hon. Treasurer, Anthony Portelli as members and Joe Farrugia as representative for the Student section.




The First Major MIPP Seminar


That day in October has now become history and from then on the MIPP has gone from strength to strength, becoming an authoritative voice for the local professional photographic community as well as being the official Government-recognized body where legislation and regulation of the local Photographic Industry is concerned.


The Institute has been run with a view of upgrading and regulating the Industry, getting Photographers to help each other, teaching and formulating guidelines on various important issues that the working Photographer faces. It has also its Code of Conduct as well as an official Statute. Its Executive Committee is voted in by its members at an Annual General Meeting usually held in February. A President and six Committee Members run it on democratic lines. These all offer their services voluntarily.





Action During An MIPP Workshop



The MIPP also has gone beyond the shores of Malta by establishing close ties with various international organizations. This has helped the local photographic community to widen its horizons and streamline its operations. In fact, one of the highlights of the MIPP’s brief, but important history, was the Photography Seminar held in Rabat in 2001 where no less than five of the top Master Photographers’ Association’s (MPA) officials came over from Great Britain to help sharpen the skills of the MIPP members.


Another milestone for the MIPP was “PHOTOFEST – 2000” held at the Malta International Trade Fair. This was the first purely Photographic Fair that has ever been purposely organized by the MIPP to try and instill further interest and generate more business in Photography on the island. The huge interest shown by the public really made this a memorable event.


One must not forget the first real Convention put up by the MIPP, with the substantial help of Attard & Company, way back in March l997. This had helped to get local photographers together and add to the MIPP membership ranks. Another event held in 1998, the Photo Training Overseas, further helped to enhance the Institute’s standing. This was made possible again by the close ties the MIPP has with United Kingdom Photographic Associations.



An MIPP-AGFA Seminar At Palazzo Nobile



The MIPP also forms part of the FEP, or Federation of European Photographers, an organization that groups together all the top European Photographic Associations in an effort to work more closely and uniformly together.


The Institute has also been instrumental in lobbying the Government when amending the Copyright laws as well as to get more recognition for the local professional Photographer.

A judge examining a qualifications panel

The setting up of the MIPP’s own system of “Qualifications” was also a very important step in the History of Maltese photography. From then onwards, members could conditionally submit a panel of their works with the possibility of gaining Distinctions. These Distinctions are considered as benchmarks to high photographic capabilities and are usually held once a year, during the MIPP International Convention. Prior to the set up of the MIPP Qualifications, local photographers had no alternative but to try and gain their Qualifications abroad.


Members can currently opt to apply for three different categories: The Licentiate (LMIPP), the Associateship (AMIPP) and the Fellowship (FMIPP).


The recent strong ties established with the Societies (formerly known as the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers, SWPP) has more then borne the desired fruit with regular international seminars in Malta and with top MIPP members lecturing and co-operating with this top United Kingdom Association at Conventions and Roadshows.


Since 2003, the MIPP also runs its prestigious “Photographer of the Year” Competition.


In 2010, the Institute became a formerly recognized non-Governmental organization.


Today, the Malta Institute of Professional Photography regularly promotes photography both locally and abroad, pushing always to better the standard and levels of Maltese Photographers as well as facilitating networking and co-operation with other international associations and groups.

In this short period of time, the MIPP has come a long way, evolving in the process, but its main objective still remains the “Furtherance of the local Professional Photographic Industry in all its aspects.” Testimony to this are the numerous hobbyists who started in the MIPP ranks and who today have managed to carve a career in professional Photography.


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P.O.Box 8, Birkirkara BKR 1000 - Malta

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