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There’s something truly magical about the art of photography. It has the power to freeze moments in time, tell compelling stories, and evoke emotions that words alone could never convey. When talented photographers come together to showcase their skills, the result is nothing short of breathtaking.

Today, we are thrilled to announce and celebrate the winners of our 2023 Wild Photo Contest, a showcase of creativity, passion, and unparalleled talent, and a celebration of all things wild.

What sets our contest apart is not just the sheer talent of the participants but the rigorous scrutiny they faced at the hands of our judging panel, which was made up of renowned photographers who we are lucky to have onboard select expeditions.

Read on to see the winning entries and what the judges had to say about them.

Winning entry in the 'Wild Places' category: Simon Wiltshire from the UK

As the sun sets over the Dolomites in late Summer, the sun breaks through the cloud to light the wild, dramatic peaks before night falls. ~ Simon Wiltshire

Here’s what judge Richard I’Anson had to say

There were many excellent images in the Wild Places Category, so selecting one winner was not an easy task.

Sunset over the Dolomites is a striking image. The wild landscape is made even more dramatic thanks to the perfect combination of stormy conditions and warm, late light, creating an atmospheric image with an underlying tension between its natural beauty and foreboding mood.

Winning entry in the 'Wild Souls' category: Don West from Australia

Taken Namib-Nauklaft National Park, Namibia. My friend walking down Dune 45 in the dawn light. ~ Don West

Here’s what judge Pia Harboure had to say

When I look at photos, I´m looking out for a feeling of satisfaction and at the same time, I need to find “hints” that would keep me in the photograph at an interrogative level. I find it here representing the “Wild Souls” spirit. I am emotionally taken to a state of wonder, exploration and engagement towards the natural world. The light is expressive and invigorating, the frame is also neat at technical levels but what really happens here is a conversation between man and its environment that goes beyond exploration and adventure. We are invited to delve into interpretations on the tree of life which connects all forms of creation, a reflexive thought we can emphasize with, a constant existential need that pushes us to go outside and experience the world.

Winning entry in the 'Wild Animals' category: Greg Raymond from Canada

I was photographing Short-eared owls in Delta, BC. Canada when I locked focus on the owl but also saw hawk flying after it so I started shooting then they came together for a brief instance. ~ Greg Raymond

Here’s what judge Matt Horspool had to say

When judging this category, I was looking for an image that went beyond simply a creature in a beautiful environment. I wanted to see the animal interacting with or within its environment, and bonus points if I could feel some sort of emotion when looking at the image.

Greg’s image stood out to me for several reasons. Not only was it visually stunning, but technically, it was a difficult shot to capture. Bird photographers spend years sitting and waiting for a scene like this to play out. Without the right skills, it’s nearly impossible to get the birds in focus, let alone in a compositionally pleasing position.

Greg has perfectly encapsulated the ‘WILD’ aspect of wildlife here, with two of nature’s finest predators going toe to toe, midair! The lighting and composition are excellent, with the hawk maintaining a dominant position higher in the frame. I love the colour contrast between both birds; it’s almost like a good-vs-evil scene.

Winner of the People's Choice Award: Andrew Tan from the US

This was an absolutely magical morning. Heavy snow kept us from making the landing we had hoped for, in Orne Harbor, however this inquisitive Minke whale more than made up for it. He circled our ship for hours, repeatedly turning sideways to look up at all the gawkers on the decks. I felt while we looked directly at each other, that he had an intelligence, and beauty, and soul, which I hoped someday we would better understand. A zodiac was launched and "Mike the Minke" as he was named by our on-board marine biologist, quickly swam over to say hello. The entirely wind less conditions, and unbelievably clear water, allowed me to capture this meeting of creatures from two different existences, who are yet part of the same World. What a morning. I will never forget it. ~ Andrew Tan

The people have spoken! Congratulations to Andrew Tan, whose entry captured the hearts of people across the globe and received a staggering 1,522 votes. Andrew captured this powerful image on an Antarctica expedition with Aurora. We hope to see him onboard again soon, to capture more incredible moments like this!

 

Find out how to improve your photography with the world’s best

Find out more about Photography onboard our expeditions, our expert Photography Guides, and some top photography tips by downloading our mini brochure below. 

Photography Mini Brochure​

With a Photography Guide on each expedition, every expeditioner from smartphone user to semi-professional shooter can benefit from our experts’ deep professional knowledge. Find out more in our Photography Mini Brochure.

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