Recognition and Awards

In late 1938, Alfred Watson began submitting his prints to galleries and in September 1941, he received his first acceptance from the Handsworth Photographic Society in Birmingham, England.

Serving as a volunteer photographer with the American Red Cross during World War II, Watson took photographs of the families and nurses participating in the Visiting Nurse Program. His image of a Red Cross nurse bathing a baby was awarded a Certificate of Merit Award in 1942.

In 1945, Watson was selected by the Photographic Society of America to exhibit his photography on the Western European Circuit from Paris to to Scandinavia, an honor he was proud to have received.

One year later, the American Annual of Photography published Fascinator, a portrait of Watson’s eldest daughter, Barbara, and Checkered was featured in the 1948 edition. Three additional images: Boat Pattern, Boat Design, and Speedboat, were published by the PSA between 1946 and 1948.

A Five-Star Exhibitor Award

Watson continued to submit his prints for exhibition and, by the end of 1951, he had received over 1000 print acceptances from galleries worldwide. In recognition of this accomplishment, , he was awarded five-star exhibitor status from the Photographic Society of America.

A lifelong goal had been achieved, and for over 10 years Alfred Watson submitted no further prints for exhibition, preferring instead to study the art of Color Photography.

In 1966 he began to submit his color prints to galleries and, on November 15, 1968, received a First Prize Award for his image ‘Twins’ in the Best Color Print amateur division at the Chicago Midwest Cultural Show.

Over 35 additional acceptances would follow and, on November 15, 1968, Watson was awarded first prize for his color photograph “Twins.” That same year, he received a Best Color award for ‘Exodus.’

From 1970-73, Watson continued to submit his color prints to galleries with his last known exhibit the Seattle’s International Exhibition of Photography.

Final Thoughts

Alfred Watson spoke little about his photographic accomplishments during his lifetime and had few of his photographs on display in his home.

He never sold his photographs although he did give away many of his prints to family and friends. His private thoughts about his work are unknown.