Masters of photography

Posts tagged “E.U.

2011: Times staff photographers’ favorite photos

BRENDAN FITTERER (11/15/2011 HUDSON) Jim and Millie Coffey got married 70 years ago this Pearl Harbor Day (2011) in Tampa. After a one-day honeymoon on the beach, he shipped off to war. For the photo, the Coffeys are in their Hudson, FL backyard, where Jim still flies the flag.

CHRIS ZUPPA (Tampa, 03/19/2011) Florida’s Alex Tyus (23) defends against UCLA’s Reeves Nelson (22) during the 2011 NCAA Basketball tournament at the St. Petersburg Times Forum.

CHRIS ZUPPA (St. Petersburg, 07/29/2011) Aaron Sadiki, 9, of Clearwater (right) prays at the St. Petersburg Islamic Center while his grandfather, Wilmore Sadiki, who is Imam of the mosque, leads the prayer service. Some Muslims base the beginning of Ramadan on the moon sighting in Saudi Arabia. Sadiki said those attending the mosque will base it on when the moon is sighted in the United States. “If they spot the moon Sunday, then we’ll start Ramadan Monday morning,” he said. “If they spot it Saturday, then we’ll start it Sunday morning.” Ramadan is a holy month in which Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. The time is meant to strengthen Muslim’s spirituality and relationship with God.

DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD (7/30/2011, SAFETY HARBOR) Eight-month-old Taylor Allcott (CQ, mother), of Safety Harbor, plunges into a pool, a scenario created by her instructor to simulate accidentally falling into water during a self-rescue swimming lesson in Safety Harbor. Allcott, a student of the Infant Swimming Resource’s Self-Rescue Program (ISR), has taken 22 lessons over 4 weeks with instructor Cindy Horrocks, of Clearwater. ISR, founded in 1966, recently expanded in Hillsborough County, and now has 16 certified Instructors in the Tampa Bay area who provide survival swimming lessons for babies and toddlers from six months to six years old. Unlike traditional swimming lessons, ISR integrates survival skills that are developmentally appropriate for young children, teaching them to save their own lives, while building the confidence that can lead to a lifetime of fun in and around the water and have provided over 7 million lessons to infants and young children, according to their website, The technique focuses on teaching children to roll onto their back to float, rest and breathe, and to be able to maintain this life-saving position until help arrives. —With opinions swinging wide on the controversial technique, I didn’t know what to expect when Taylor, who wasn’t mature enough to hold herself up, was repeatedly plunged into the pool. I was surprised at the serenity she had at the end of each test – she was terrified, confident and serene, all in a matter of moments.

EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN (09/01/2011 Tampa) Photo illustration of classic fairy tales for Bay Magazine.

EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN (10/06/2011 Tampa) Protesters marched through downtown Tampa on October 6, 2011 to show solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street protest in New York City. The protest, named Occupy Tampa, aims to raise awareness of the disparity of wealth in the United States and peacefully protest issues such as corporate greed and political corruption.

IM DAMASKE (PALM HARBOR 6/24/11 ) Kayaking Adventure Camper Sam Jackson, 9, peers out from a spoil island during the second day of camp. Simply Kayaking, a Palm Harbor business, owned by husband and wife Dennis and Diane Peters, is teaming up with Palm Harbor Recreation to offer a 2 day Kayaking Adventure Camp. The camp is in the morning. First day involves learning technique and taking a short paddle in Sutherland Bayou becomming familiar with the boats. The second day campers paddle out from Pop Stansell Park exploring mangroves and then paddling out to a spoil island in St. Joseph Sound about a three and a half mile round trip. (The spirit of adventure and discovery captured in this boy peering out across the water serves as a reminder to not lose that sense of wonderment as we grow old and busy making this one of my favorite photos of 2011.)

LARA CERRI (07/06/2011, Tampa) Giulia Jones, 6, of Tampa, makes her way across the deep end of the pool in a game of Sharks and Minnows during the Synchronized Swimming summer camp class at the Interbay-Glover Family YMCA at 4411 S. Himes Ave. Wednesday. The summer aquatic programs for kids are very popular and fill up quickly, said membership service representative Liz DeCosta. Other classes include water sports and games, and triathlon training. For those who prefer to stay inside, chef’s school and gymnastics are available.

LARA CERRI (05/20/11, Tampa) Christina and David Pittman of Brandon were one of the last couples to leave the dance floor at the “Night in Venice”-themed Seniors’ Prom at the Brandon Recreation Center on Friday. A disc jockey played merengue, disco, 80s and Top 40 music and the Durant High School jazz band played Big Band hits, jazz and oldies for the 200 seniors that gathered from eight area senior centers. The couple met a year and a half ago at the Brandon Senior Center and were married on Tuesday. Christina, 75, said she had been fighting going to the local senior center because she thought it was a nursing home. But there, she found David giving inspirational readings. She asked him, “Are you a minister or are you doing this because you love the Lord?” He said that he loved the Lord and she was immediately taken by him. “Because I’ve been praying for a husband,” she told him. David, 80, told her he had been praying for a wife. “She’s the answer to my prayers,” he said. “We’re going to enjoy each other the rest of our lives,” said Christina. The event is part of Older American’s Month, and is put on by the Hillsborough County’s Department of Family and Aging Services.

MELISSA LYTTLE (JANUARY 15, 2011 Treasure Island, Fla.) While at the beach with his mom and grandma, Jackson Kwilecki, 13 mos., of St. Petersburg is mesmerized by all the sights and sounds at the 14th annual Treasure Island Kite Festival. About 300 kites are in the sky at any one time, including ones on display and skillfully-controlled ones in the competitor ring.

MELISSA LYTTLE (March 31, 2011, Tampa, Fla.) In November 2009, Audrey Mabrey was attacked by her husband Chris Hanney who threw gasoline on her, followed by a lit candle. Her body was badly burned but her spirit remains.

OCTAVIO JONES (12/21/2011, Tampa) Kelly Stokes,left, of Tampa a homeless woman sheds tears of emotion in the arms of Pastor Tracey Crocker of Covenant Chapel Ministries during the Homeless Persons Memorial Day candlelight service at Joe Chillura Courthouse Square in Tampa on Wednesday, December 21, 2011. Stokes lost her friend Lonnie Perkins who passed away two years ago was also homeless.

WILLIE J. ALLEN JR. (03/27/2011 JERUSALEM) A lone person runs through the Christian quarter of the Old City in Jerusalem.


Brian Soko


National Geographic Photography Contest Winners: 2011

Grand Prize Winner and Nature Winner – SPLASHING: This photo was taken when I was taking photos of other insects, as I normally did during macro photo hunting. I wasn’t actually aware of this dragonfly since I was occupied with other objects. When I was about to take a picture of it, it suddenly rained, but the lighting was just superb. I decided to take the shot regardless of the rain. The result caused me to be overjoyed, and I hope it pleases viewers. Batam, Riau Islands, Indonesia (Photo and caption by Shikhei Goh)

Nature Honorable Mention – PANIC IN THE PAN: I was leading a photographic safari in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park. It was midday and we came across a dazzle of zebra approaching a waterhole to quench their thirst. Every few minutes the zebras will enter the water to drink, just to panic and scatter out of the water again. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. (Photo and caption by Marius Coetzee)

Nature Honorable Mention – SUNRISING JELLYFISH: Jellyfish (Cotylorhiza tuberculata) drifting just beneath the surface, looking to capture the first sunrays to trigger their symbiotic algae to produce energy for it. Mar Menor coastal lagoon, Murcia province, Spain. (Photo and caption by Angel Fitor)

Nature Honorable Mention – THE HUNT – I personally believe that, beyond the formal representation of reality, mediated by the technical instruments necessary to fix an image in time, photography is made of insights. The shot is the last act of image capturing and in many ways the easiest part of the whole process. This panning effect, even in its imperfection, with the chromatic harmony of the background, with all the needless information eliminated and the luck of having the big cat’s lifted tail in symmetry with the impala horns, brings the observer inside the hunting without distractions. Kenya, Masai Mara National Reserve. (Photo and caption by Stefano Pesarelli)

Nature Honorable Mention – BLUE POND & FIRST SNOW: The blue pond of the famous tourist resort. This is a place where many tourists gather in spring, summer, and autumn. However, since this pond freezes in winter, nobody is there during that period. This photograph is the moment of the first snow of the season falling on that blue pond. We can see the first snow of the season beginning at the end of October. Why is the pond blue? Because the underground hot spring ingredient is gushing. This blue pond changes color every day. I think that mystical blue and pure white snow are beautiful. All are nature’s tints. Biei, Hokkaido, Japan. (Photo and caption by Kent Shiraishi)

People Winner – THE FJELLMAN FAMILY: One shot and the reindeer is dead. The Sámi family Fjellman, which lives in Arjeplog, northern Sweden, now have food on their table. In the early autumn they slaughter a couple of their reindeers for food during the cold winter months. Arjeplog, Lappland, Sweden. (Photo and caption by Izabelle Nordfjell)

People Honorable Mention – FROM UP HERE: Stephen “ST 2 Lettaz” Harris, and David “Yung Clova” Williams make up the Huntsville rap duo G-Side. I took this photo of them on tour, conducting a cell phone interview with a journalist on a fire escape in Manhattan. The photo speaks to the “D.I.Y.” nature of the current independent music scene. Digital technology has played a big role in G-Side’s business strategy, enabling them to use the Internet and viral word of mouth to build a diverse international fan base. G-Side released a track in 2011 called “Nat Geo.” Manhattan, NY, USA. (Photo and caption by Helen Pearson)

People Honorable Mention – AUBURN PRIDE: Young men driving into a patch of reflected light along Auburn Road. Part of a larger personal project documenting the western Sydney suburb of Auburn. The series provides a glimpse into the life of the next generation of Australians living in Auburn, peering behind the veil of this little-known side of society. Auburn is a small suburb in Sydney’s west, a landing point for many migrants and refugees when they first arrive in Australia. Sydney, Australia. (Photo and caption by George Voulgaropoulos)

People Honorable Mention – ZOMBIES, BRISBANE: A young family dressed as zombies in Brisbane, Queensland. Each year around Halloween time a gathering of people dressed as zombies walks through the city in an effort to raise money for the Brain Foundation of Australia. Brisbane, Australia. (Photo and caption by Lisa Clarke)

Places Winner – INTO THE GREEN ZONE: A beautiful rainbow after the rain, into the green zone of the Palawan Islands. Onuk island, Balabac Palawan, Philippines. (Photo and caption by George Tapan)

Places Honorable Mention – FLYING KITES: Kite battle at Santa Marta ghetto, Rio de Janeiro. For many years, the kites were used to alert the drug dealers when their enemies were coming. The place was a “war zone” controlled by traffickers that were in constant conflicts against each other to control the drug market. A few years ago, Santa Marta was occupied by the Pacifier Police Division, which released the population from the traffic domination. Santa Marta, Rio de Janeiro. (Photo and caption by Felipe Carvalho)

Places Honorable Mention – SULFURIC FIRE FESTIVAL: Once a year, Formosa fishermen’s unique sulfuric fire fishing ritual is handed down from generation to generation. Taipei, Taiwan. (Photo and caption by Hung-Hsiu Shih)

Places Honorable Mention – WATERWAY TO ORBIT: Space shuttle, Endeavour, launches into orbit toward the east, as the stars and waning crescent moon trail toward the west, leaving a beautiful reflection on the Intracoastal Waterway in Ponte Vedra, Florida. This 132-second time exposure of the final night launch of a space shuttle, from launch through SRB separation, was taken 115 miles north of Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center. Ponte Vedra, Florida. (Photo and caption by James Vernacotola)

Places Honorable Mention – CYBER MONSOON: A torrential monsoon rain in Bhaktapur. Bhaktapur, Nepal. (Photo and caption by Anuar Patjane)


International Photography Awards ( 4 )

Entry Title: ” Brothels: Living in Darkness”
Name: Miguel Candela, Spain
Category: Non-Professional, Photo Essay and Feature Story
Entry Description: It’s an unlikely place for sex: a rundown concrete building where rats run free in rural Bangladesh. Small holes in the walls allow the only supply of natural light and air into the jail-like compound. Fluorescent bulbs hesitate to light up, and turn it into the ideal background for a horror blockbuster. After countless demonstrations that stirred media interest, prostitutes now don’t have to walk barefoot when they leave the brothel, and can be buried in a separate cemetery. In 2010, radical Islamists burned down the whole compound injuring two and leaving most without anything.

Entry Title: ” lonely home in Nepal”
Name: GMB akash, Bangladesh
Category: Non-Professional, Photo Essay and Feature Story
Entry Description: The existing and increasing population of aged people is becoming one of the problems that Nepal has been facing in recent years. The Pashupati Bridhashram (old home) is the largest old home in Katmandu run by the government. There are 230 residents, 140 of them women and 90 of them are man. It has always lack of fund for food. Several old aged homes have been developed in Nepal in recent years to rehabilitate the elderly people for their welfare. Nepal

Entry Title: ” Afghan Heroin: Not for Export”
Name: Thomas Stanworth, United Kingdom
Category: Non-Professional, War/Conflict
Entry Description: The Russian Cultural Center, Kabul, Afghanistan, once showcased Soviet art and culture. The complex was destroyed during the civil war and for years has been used by Kabul’s heroin addicts. Due to persecution, they hide largely unseen within the unlit rooms and passageways within the ruined complex. Despite the billions of dollars poured into counter-narcotics programs, there are virtually no rehabilitation facilities in Kabul to help the country’s own victims, who are thought to exceed a million. Pressure from the authorities has seen many addicts forced out of the Russian Center and into even worse conditions throughout the capital.

Entry Title: ” Insomnia”
Name: Arman Zhenikeyev, Kazakhstan
Category: Non-Professional, Fine Art
Entry Description: Insomnia is a night violence against a man

Entry Title: ” Innocence”
Name: Claudio Allia, Italy
Non-Professional, Other_FA

Entry Title: ” Mirrors”
Name: David Kretschmer, Germany
Category: Non-Professional, Portrait
Entry Description: Mirrors shows the contradictory view on beauty in the modern society. Four beautiful young girls, looking very doubting and insecure. As they are almost perfect looking, they observe themselves very strict and criticize every single flaw on their body and face. The four guys are in complete contrast to the girls. They are not perfect at all but they look very confident at themselves and don’t care about any beauty ideals. They are not pristine but they are satisfied.

Entry Title: ” Birds Over Shanghai”
Name: Andre Reichmann, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Aerial
Entry Description: Waking up early for a business meeting at my Shanghai hotel I saw these birds flying in circles and I worked furiously to get my camera and was able to get off only this shot. Very lucky indeed.

Entry Title: ” Namibia Abstract”
Name: Drora Bashan, Israel
Category: Non-Professional, Aerial
Entry Description: Namibia Abstract. Flying over Namibia (small aircraft, two-seater) offers most spectacular otherworldly sights! The amazing and bizarre landscape of the huge red sand-dunes is spread in front of your eyes. You can enjoy the diversity of shapes, earth colors, shades and even textures of the untouched earth. From the concrete up to abstract it’s a unique, aesthetic and sensual experience that takes you to fantasy world. Taken November, 2007.

Entry Title: ” Nightflowers”
Name: David Leaser, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Flowers
Entry Description: Inspired by a trip to the Amazon, author and photographer David Leaser has created a limited edition collection of dramatic botanicals with such detail, you’ll see flowers like you’ve never seen them before. You can literally see the pollen on the stamens of these flowers.

Entry Title: ” Calm night on the Lofoten”
Name: Maciej Nowacki, Poland
Category: Non-Professional, Landscapes

Entry Title: ” Desert Dreams”
Name: Anil Rao, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Other_N

Entry Title: ” Reflections of Autumn”
Name: Raghav Krishna, Germany
Category: Non-Professional, Seasons
Entry Description: I took this photograph, while walking on a hiking trail in a natural park. I looked down at a puddle of water and saw these amazing reflections with the fallen leaves and the trees.

Entry Title: ” Tales of Tolkien: Walking Ent”
Name: Alexander Kitsenko, Ukraine
Category: Non-Professional, Trees
Entry Description: A misty morning in the woods

Entry Title: ” Paper Boat
Name: Katerina Lomonosov, Israel
Category: Non-Professional, Children
Entry Description: A 7-year-old-boy is sitting in a room corner. His mother just washed his clothes and put them on the rope in the middle of the room because they have no other place to dry them. The eliminate drops from his clothes she put a bowel. The boy has no toys to play with so he tries to find something to do within those endless moments. That’s why he took a piece of paper and folded a paper boat to play with in the bowel.

Entry Title: ” Evening”
Name: Richard Vdovjak, Slovakia (Slovak Republic)
Category: Non-Professional, Children
Entry Description: A young boy dances in evening at a family reunion. Himalayas, Nepal.

Entry Title: ” Isolation”
Name: Luke Smith, United Kingdom
Category: Non-Professional, Culture
Entry Description: For this series I wanted to address the issue of isolation within the elderly by its symbolic representation. With each image the elderly person faces away from the viewer, revealing the subjects absorption, so denying the presence of the viewer, with no ability towards identification, in doing so themselves becoming severed from the image and isolated from the activity being observed. I wanted to summon a confrontational experience from the viewer based on fragments and contradictions in the images systematic order. By violating spatial logic I have attempted to load each image with the symbolic representation of isolation.

Entry Title: ” Faith”
Name: Richard Vdovjak, Slovakia (Slovak Republic)
Category: Non-Professional, Culture
Entry Description: Buddhist monks on their way to the monastery. Himalayas, Nepal.

Entry Title: Naga Babas”
Name: Brock Rhone, Canada
Category: Non-Professional, Travel/Tourism
Entry Description: Naga Babas of the Juna Akhara at the 2010 Kumbh Mela, Haridwar, India.

Entry Title: ” Island Hvar “
Name: Maciej Nowacki, Poland
Category: Non-Professional, Sunset


International Photography Awards ( 3 )

Entry Title: ” Plasticity of Life”
Name: Martin Oeggerli, Switzerland
Category: Professional, Micro
Entry Description: Armed with a scanning-electron-microscope, the author has collected and catalogued insect eggs from every corner of the earth over many years. Single portraits showcase the diverse forms and patterns which invite a comparison with man-made constructions that have been produced during the industrial age or even today as elements of modern architecture.


Entry Title: ” Russian Adventures”
Name: Sue Flood, United Kingdom
Category: Professional, Travel/Tourism
Entry Description: I took this series of photographs in the Russian Arctic, when travelling as on tourist trips to Franz Josef Land and Kamchatka and the Kuril Islands. The dramatic light made for a stunning trip.

Entry Title: ” cello girl”
Name: Shu Li- Chuan, Taiwan
Category: Non-Professional, Music
Entry Description: Let the melody to be as the wind.

Entry Title: ” Lovelace Boudoir”
Name: Jordi Bourbaki, Spain
Category: Non-Professional, Other_AD
Entry Description: Series for Bibian Blue’s ‘Lovelace Boudoir’ collection.

Entry Title: ” Remote Control”
Name: Claudio Allia, Italy
Category: Non-Professional, Self-Promotion
Entry Description: Mathare Valley Slum (Nairobi) A.D. 2010.

Entry Title: ” The worshippes”
Name: Marcin Bera, United Kingdom
Category: Non-Professional, Self-Promotion
Entry Description: Dense fog over the southwest coast of the Jurassic Coast in the United Kingdom.

Entry Title: ” Simplicity”
Name: Marcin Bera, United Kingdom
Category: Non-Professional, Self-Promotion
Entry Description: These photos are showing my favourite places in the United Kingdom. Somber mood and depth of the ocean literally radiates from them. As long as I can, ll always come back there.

Entry Title: ” Calatrava – Valencia”
Name: Carlos Esguerra, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Bridges
Entry Description: Images of works by Spanish master architect Santiago Calatrava at Ciudad de las Artes y de las Ciencias in Valencia, Spain.

Entry Title: ” Docklands”
Name: Rafal Krol, Ireland
Category: Non-Professional, Buildings

Entry Title: ” stealth bomber”
Name: Kevin Kwok, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Buildings
Entry Description: Taken over a period of three years, these images are the architectural intersections of corner offices when viewed straight upwards. By standing right next to the corners and photographing these buildings at such severe angles, the lines and geometry are accentuated and the buildings become abstracts allowing the viewer to provide their own context to the images.

Entry Title: ” Frozen Music”
Name: Joel Tjintjelaar, Netherlands
Category: Non-Professional, Buildings
Entry Description: A series of architectural objects that in some way represents the idea that beauty can be found in mathematics. Goethe once said that architecture is frozen music. Both architecture and music are based on mathematics so I’ve tried to find architectural objects that in some way also can be associated with music by their form, their rhythm and flow and recurring patterns. This is an ongoing series.

Entry Title: ” Untitled”
Name: Caitlin Kovac, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Historic

Entry Title: Where Ships Were Born [Revisited]“
Name: Paul Alexander Knox, United Kingdom
Category: Non-Professional, Industrial
Entry Description: Sunderland has a proud 600 year history of shipbuilding, which in the early 1900′s employed 12,000 men; over a third of the town’s adult population. Now the workforce is a mere half dozen and their future is uncertain. The once opulent offices that stood like Mary Celeste style shrine for over 20 years have now been demolished. The Dry dock still functions but now only as a demolition site. The industry is in it’s final years. I left my home town of Sunderland a few years after the industry was all but closed down to find employment. I returned over 13 years later to begin the journey to document this, the last working shipyard in Sunderland.

Entry Title: ” Along The River Rouge: Detroit’s Industrial Mecca”
Name: Jeff Gaydash, United States
Category: Non-Professional, Industrial
Entry Description: Photographing Along The River Rouge: Detroit’s Industrial Mecca An ongoing series of images taken around Detroit’s heavily industrialized River Rouge area, including Zug Island, Delray, The Marathon Oil Refinery and Ford’s Rouge Plant.

Entry Title: ” Priests in Ethiopia”
Name: Grzegorz Sowa, Poland
Category: Non-Professional, Personality
Entry Description: Priest in region Tigray in Ethiopia, where stone churches are located


International Photography Awards ( 2 )

Entry Title: ” impression”
Name: Shinji Ichikawa, Japan
Category: Professional, Abstract
Entry Description: The impression that I felt from space and the thing of the place.

Entry Title: ” Fabricate”
Name: Dean West, Canada
Category: Professional, Collage
Entry Description: A contemporary appropriation of Greek & Roman mythology

Entry Title: ” Been in the Storm Too Long (Tentative Title)”
Name: Shane Lavalette, United States
Category: Professional, Landscape
Entry Description: from a series commissioned by the High Museum of Art (Atlanta, GA) for the 2012 exhibition “Picturing the South”

Entry Title: ” Post Arcadia “
Name: Florence Iff, Switzerland
Category: Professional, Landscape
Entry Description: Landscape in its self is in its origin a concept, which roots in the beginning of industrialization and renaissance painting. Seen as a concept, landscape therefore represents an image of an idea. We declare what an ideal landscape looks like and represent it e.g. in a photographic reproduction. In everyday life simulations of landscape and nature in relation of educative, scientific, recreational-oriented or economical contexts are ubiquitous. They not only influence our notion of nature in its derivation but also enhance implicitness of a designed environment. The differentiation between image, copy, representation, simulation and finally simulacrum is increasingly more difficult.

Entry Title: ” Normandy from above”
Name: Vincent Mathieu, France
Category: Professional, Aerial

Entry Title: ” Butterfly”
Name: Tom D. Jones, Belgium
Category: Professional, Flowers
Entry Description: It took 8 months to make those images, you only see 5 of a whole series. All butterflies were alive while session and they all flew away when they had enough of it! I say this because I had several questions from people who think it’s not real. There’s nothing tricky about it! Only a lot of patience! see more on

Entry Title: ” Storms 2010″
Name: Mitch Dobrowner, United States
Category: Professional, Landscapes
Entry Description: Series of images taken between July and August 2010

Entry Title: ” Inner Peace”
Name: Peter Lik, United States
Category: Professional, Landscapes
Entry Description: Standing beneath the canopy of this Japanese Maple tree was an incredible feeling – I was in awe as the late afternoon light backlit the delicate leaves. Every branch told its own story, and I felt this special tree had so much to tell. I truly felt an indescribable energy – a total connection with Mother Earth. I used a really wide-angle lens to reach out to as much of the tree as possible. I put my camera on the ground to give me a strong perspective to shoot up into the skies. As the sun sunk toward the horizon, the tree came to life with an incredible display of color, shape and texture – its rays burst into a star within the tree. It was a magical moment when I pressed the shutter – one I’ll never forget. I hope I can bring to you the rush of emotions I experienced. 

Entry Title: “ New Life”
Name: Richard W J Koh, Singapore
Category: Professional, Other_N
Entry Description: A day or two after a heavy downpour, I found fungus growing from an old log left in the garden. At night, I was preparing to photograph it when I smelt something unusual coming from it. Under careful lighting, I discovered that the fungus was smoldering with what I guess must be its spores! It was a rare amazing display of new life. Richard W J Koh, Amaranthine Photos, Singapore

Entry Title: ” “Expressions of Autumn””
Name: John Scanlan, United States
Category: Professional, Seasons

Entry Title: ” Sunrise”
Name: Ertugrul Kilic, Suriname
Category: Professional, Sunset
Entry Description: Sunrise over Suriname River through barber shop window.

Entry Title: ” Chicago”
Name: – Ball & Albanese, United States
Category: Professional, Sunset
Entry Description: Chicago, observed from the 103rd-floor Willis Tower Skydeck

Entry Title: ” Leopard Seal”
Name: Bartosz Strozynski, Poland
Category: Professional, Underwater
Entry Description: Probably the most spectacular Antarctic subject for wildlife photographer is the Leopard Seal. Antarctica and surrounding waters is the only place in the world where this mammal can be met. It is called a leopard seal due its characteristic spots on skin, but after spending some time with the animal, I found it to be more similar to a dog than to a leopard. There are numerous leopard seals around Antarctica seaside areas, and you may often see them sleeping on small icebergs. They seem to be very lazy and uninterested in jumping into the water to help us in our photographic endeavours, but as soon as they get in, they transform into extremely fast moving and scary monster. However it sounds, with a bit of luck though, you can meet the leopard seal while diving and play with it, making spectacular pictures. To give you some feeling how close I was, making these pictures, they were made with 14mm lens, in distance of 0-30 cm from teeth of 3 meters long and 500 kgs heavy animal!

Entry Title: ” Life Aquatic”
Name: Chuck Bradley, Australia
Category: Professional, Underwater
Entry Description: This a series of water creatures inspired by my daily ride from my island home in my tinny to the mainland. I wanted to capture the animals grace in it’s water surrounding, but beautifully light in the studio.

Entry Title: ” Working Children of Dhaka
Name: Larry Louie, Canada
Category: Professional, Children
Entry Description: In recent years, the prevalence of child labor has become a serious problem in many poor developing countries. Bangladesh, being one of the poorest and one of the most densely populated countries in the world; the problem of child labor is huge. It is estimated that there are 4.9 million working children between the ages of 5-15 in Bangladesh. That is 13.4% of the total work force in the country. Most of these children have no other options. Some are orphans growing up on the streets while others are forces to work due the economic hardships of their family.

Entry Title: ” Libya”
Name: Marsel van Oosten, Netherlands
Category: Professional, Culture
Entry Description: These images were shot in and around Ghat, Libya, during the Ghat festival. Many different desert tribes from Libya and neighbouring countries visit this festival to sing, dance and give demonstrations of their traditions.

Entry Title: ” Pride of Beauty”
Name: Giordano Cipriani, Italy
Category: Professional, Culture
Entry Description: The tribe of the Surma, in the Valley of the Omo of Ethiopia, have developed forms of art with great capacity for artistic expression, and an important social function and ornament. They use everything that nature can offer to adorn their bodies. Using the body paint to accessories such as bracelets, beads, feathers, leather and women use the famous lip-circular plate, a sign of elegance and prestige.

Entry Title: ” I AM LEGEND”
Name: Antonio Faccilongo, Italy
Category: Professional, Other_P
Entry Description: Ugo Sansonetti was born in Rome January 10, 1919, son of Admiral Louis Sansonetti. He currently lives in Rome, has ten children, 25 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren, a law degree and was a pioneer in Chile and a cavalry officer. Always been passionate about sports, since the nineties, professionally dedicated to athletics, winning over 92 medals, of which 60% of gold. He is the athlete who has won more Masters titles at the European Indoor Athletics, with 13 gold medals. Also in the month of March 2011 has also won the gold medal in springboard diving from the Italian league and is preparing for the World dives in August in Sacramento. In 2005 at the age of 86 years participated in the project Sansonetti “SpaceLand”, a space mission. Took off from Bordeaux, was the first parabolic flight to accommodate ordinary citizens, and the first to bring on board an octogenarian.

Entry Title: ” Landmine victims “
Name: Majid Saeedi, Iran (Islamic Republic of)
Category: Professional, Portrait_P
Entry Description: landmine victims and those with limb related deformities of during war in Afghanistan. The UN mine information network estimates still after the 30 years war there are approximately 62 people killed or injured by mines each month in the country.

Entry Title: ” The Personal Series”
Name: Brandy Eve Allen, United States
Category: Professional, Self-Portrait
Entry Description: Photos from the book CIAO L.A.- A photographic memoir of my journey through language, love, culture, art and the ways it fucks with the heart.

Entry Title: ” Korean Nuptials”
Name: Robert Swiderski, United States
Category: Professional, Wedding
Entry Description: Centuries old Korean wedding tradition is being observed and honored through customary demeanor and body language.


International Photography Awards ( 1 )

Entry Title: “ Our oceans aren’t the only ones in danger”

Name: Adam Taylor, United States

Category: Professional, Advertising

Entry Description: “Our oceans aren’t the only ones in danger” Commissioned for the Surfrider Foundation – - A series displaying the metaphorical results of humans washed up on the beach, the victims of the products we as a society carelessly discard and that end up in our oceans.

Entry Title: ” Hyperspace Audi A8″

Name: Igor Omulecki, Poland

Category: Professional, Automotive

Entry Description: Hyperspace campaign introduce new Audi A8 on polish market. The photographs were presented during 4 exclusive events/exhibitions in Poland. Moreover, a limited edition album of only 1000 copies has been published. Several publications in art and lifestyle magazines. Finally, a website has been created

Entry Title: ” The Look”

Name: Yulia Gorbachenko, United States

Category: Professional, Beauty

Entry Description: I think that beauty is inseparable from the character. I found both in Grace. She was the main reason to create these photographs.

Entry Title: ” ‘Let them eat cake’ “

Name: John Wright, United Kingdom

Category: Professional, Fashion

Entry Description: Series shot for Leica S2 promotional images and featured on GQ Style online.

Entry Title: ” Women of History”

Name: Peter Lippmann, France

Category: Professional, Fashion

Entry Description: These images are the result of a collaboration with Christian Louboutin

Entry Title: ” Heinz”

Name: Maurice Heesen, Netherlands

Category: Professional, Food

Entry Title: ” Hurray”

Name: Poras Chaudhary, India

Category: Professional, Music

Entry Description: The Portuguese band “The Gift” during the holi celebration in India.

Entry Title: ” Magic World”

Name: Adam Balcerek, Poland

Category: Professional, Product

Entry Title: ” Tibetan monastery kitchens”

Name: Marrigje de Maar, Netherlands

Category: Professional, Interiors

Entry Description: Kitchens of Tibetan monasteries in N.Yunnan and Sichuan province, China. In these kitchens tea and food is prepared for 3 – 3000 monks.

Entry Title: ” Taxidermy”

Name: Marcus Peel, United Kingdom

Category: Professional, Interiors

Entry Title: ” African Arenas”

Name: Thomas Hoeffgen, United States

Category: Professional, Documentary

Entry Description: I was amazed at the creative use of space in Lagos, Nigeria: In a city crammed with more than 15 million residents, football was played on practically every block, with fields shoehorned into even the tiniest open areas. Empty football pitches—with their infinite possibilities—have always had a particular fascination for me. Over the next ten years, I would shoot football pitches in Nigeria, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Malawi, and South Africa. And though the focus always remained on the pitches—thus the title African Arenas, encompassing everything from sand lots to stadiums built for the 2010 World Cup—my initial concept quickly evolved.

Entry Title: ” chernobyl the hidden legacy”

Name: Pierpaolo Mittica, Italy

Category: Professional, Documentary

Entry Description: On April 26, 1986 at 1:24 a.m. a disastrous event occurred, the worst technological catastrophe of the modern age, which blighted the lives of millions of people. That night reactor number four of the Chernobyl nuclear power station exploded. I worked for this project for 5 years from 2002 till 2007 with several trips on the contaminated lands around Belarus and Ukraine. The book is a collection of 81 black and white photographs with texts that explain the actual and real situation on the contaminated territories by Chernobyl.

Entry Title: ” Yangtze – The Long River “

Name: Nadav Kander, United Kingdom

Category: Professional, Fine Art

Entry Description: Photo book published in 2010 by Hatje Cantz. The series follows a journey upstream along China’s Yangtze River.

Entry Title: Polar World”

Name: Thorsten Milse, Germany

Category: Professional, Nature

Entry Description: vegetation, endless winters and unimaginable cold (down to as low as minus 89 degrees) make them inhospitable and virtually uninhabitable. The fascination they exert has much to do with these extremes: nature shows herself at her wildest, most monumental and unspoilt – a statement of pure beauty.

Entry Title: ” Wild Africa”

Name: Alex Bernasconi, Italy

Category: Professional, Nature

Entry Description: A sumptuous visual record of one of the last natural paradises on earth, Wild Africa is a unique first-hand photographic encounter with the wildlife of the continent in all its spectacular grandeur From a totally fresh perspective, with unique access to some of the remotest regions and species living beyond the confines of captivity, Wild Africa is a contemporary photographic record that takes you into the heart of one of the world’s last natural paradises. The result of painstaking expeditions across the continent, Alex Bernasconi’s photographic document contains some of the most novel, surprising and spectacular images of Africa and its wildlife. This is an off-road Africa, with moments of true beauty and natural delicacy that shows the full splendour of wildlife at one with the landscape, whilst preserving its raw immediacy. In the one thousand eight hundred images a week that Bernasconi takes of some of nature’s finest and most endangered animals, wildlife photography is embodied at its most honest and creative. Wild Africa depicts some of Africa’s most voluptuous vistas alongside the world’s most treasured wildlife discovered off-guard, at its most powerful and endearing. These are unique images by a photographer motivated to preserve for posterity the most exceptional panoramas of wildlife in its true habitat that we have today. This is a visual testament of the best of our planet. It is an enduring legacy to inspire the ecological generation.

Entry Title: ” Cold Places”

Name: Sue Flood, United Kingdom

Category: Professional, Nature

Entry Title: ” The Julie Project, 1993-2010

Name: Darcy Padilla, United States

Category: Professional, Deeper Perspective

Story: I first met Julie on February 28, 1993. Julie, 18, stood in the lobby of the Ambassador Hotel, barefoot, pants unzipped, and an 8 day-old infant in her arms. She lived in San Francisco’s SRO district, a neighborhood of soup kitchens and cheap rooms. Her room was piled with clothes, overfull ashtrays and trash. She lived with Jack, father of her first baby Rachael, and who had given her AIDS. She left him months later to stop using drugs. Her first memory of her mother is getting drunk with her at 6 and then being sexually abused by her stepfather. She ran away at 14 and became drug addict at 15. Living in alleys, crack dens, and bunked with more dirty old men than she cared to count. For 18 years I have photographed Julie Baird’s story of multiple homes, AIDS, drug abuse, abusive relationships, poverty, births, deaths, loss and reunion. Following Julie from the streets of San Francisco to the woods of Alaska. By 2003, Julie had given birth to five children – all taken by the State of California. In 2005, I found a posting online looking for Julie. Soon she was living in Alaska reunited with her father after 31 years. In 2008, Julie gave birth to her sixth child and moved to her latest home in “the bush.” On September 5, 2010, Julie was sent home from the hospital and told, “Prepare for the end of life…” Julie died on September 27th. She was 36.

Entry Title: ” CONDEMNED – mental illness in Uganda”

Name: Robin Hammond, South Africa

Category: Professional, Deeper Perspective

Story: Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army no longer terrorise the inhabitants of northern Uganda. The war may be over but decades of unspeakable violence has left deep scars – a legacy of Ugandans suffering with mental illness. To most Ugandans mental illness has little to do with the brain and more to do with demons and witchcraft. Traditional beliefs as well as modern imported ones explain the unexplainable. Prayer and exorcism are often sought before conventional medicine. If that doesn’t work, hope is lost, then comes neglect or abandonment. In a basement under a church I strained my eyes to see men and women chained to their beds, mumbling and groaning – awaiting salvation. A humble home on the shores of Lake Victoria housed 15 children abandoned by families that couldn’t cope with the child that they believed cursed. Outside the capital Kampala an impoverished mother sells her bed to buy food for her paralyzed daughter. Her husband has left her and taken their other 5 children. In northern Uganda a mother ties her psychotic son to a tree and prays that God will help him, she does not believe the drugs available at the hospital only one kilometre away can. This is the reality of mental illness in Uganda. These are the condemned.

Entry Title: ” Agent Orange”

Name: Ed Kashi, United States

Category: Professional, War/Conflict

Entry Description: May 2010, marked the 35th anniversary of the Vietnam War’s end. However, U.S. military use of dioxin-containing defoliant chemicals including Agent Orange continued until 1971. Estimated to have affected 3,000,000+ people, 150,000 Vietnamese living today are coping with the genetic consequences and resultant health impact of Agent Orange. The chemical’s legacy remains an ongoing medical, social, and political issue for the people in Vietnam. Decades after the U.S. military sprayed the Vietnamese jungles, the long-acting toxin, which is passed down genetically, continues to damage lives and remind new generations everywhere of the devastating aftermath of war.

Entry Title: ” Egypt Uprise”

Name: Jorge Dirkx, Belgium

Category: Professional, War/Conflict

Entry Description: On friday january 28th, anti-government demonstrations started after the friday prayer in Cairo, Egypt. As security forces shoot live ammunition and teargas grenades, the man I photographed is yelling at other protestors not to flee but to continue the protest.


TIME Photos of 2011

Yuri Kozyrev. Ras Lanuf, Libya

With photography, it’s always a moment. You get it, or you miss it. This was on the front lines near Ras Lanuf, Libya. It was near an oil refinery factory that was important for both sides—both the rebels and government. I took this picture on March 11, when Gaddafi’s military could still fly, and they were flying around, dropping bombs on the rebels. It was really scary for everybody on the front lines—suddenly, you could hear the plane coming and the bombs hitting their targets. These men were the shabab, young people who weren’t professional fighters and didn’t have weapons or training. They’re not rebels, but eager to be on the front lines. They’re jumping because they heard the planes coming, so they’re running around trying to find any place to hide, which is hard because everything is flat and exposed. You can see from the picture that none of them have any weapons—they were scared—and it was just an incredible experience to be there.

Adam Ferguson. Paktika Province, Afghanistan.

I was patrolling with Charlie Company, 2-28 Infantry, 172nd Infantry Brigade 5 km from the Afghanistan-Pakistan border when we were ambushed. The Captain had just made the call to head back to base when bullets seared the still tree leaves around us. Sergeant Daniel Quintana was shot in the first minute of fighting and as the fighting intensified, then waned, the Army Medics worked tirelessly to stabilize him, but it was a losing battle. This was the first time Charlie Company had seen a one their own injured since being recently deployed to Afghanistan, and it felt like it. Soldiers on the periphery of where the Medics worked on Quintana had wired excited stares focused on the surrounding tree lines that provided cover for their enemy. Closer to the Medics soldiers crouched stunned, some cried, others talked to Quintana hoping to stimulate a fading life. Specialist Michael Miller, age 23 from Melbourne, Florida, sat at the feet of Sergeant Quintana, silent, with a glassy haunted stare. I saw Specialist Miller through the drama and crouched my way around to him. I tapped him on the shoulder and when he turned and gazed into my lens I not only saw an image from Afghanistan, but an image that could have been made in Vietnam. His expression wreaked of the same senselessness and confusion, the same futility of a life lost under equivocal circumstances.

James Nachtwey. Kesennuma, Japan.

The house was not destroyed; it was gutted, left like a ravaged beast in a water hole, its entrails exposed. The banal construction materials we all take for granted – insulation, ductwork, posts and beams, became emblems of dread, brutally revealing the fragility of our existence in the face of nature. Below the surface of the river the roof of a car slowly materialized, like a phantom tomb. Four days after a tsunami violently obliterated the north east coast of Japan, the silence and the calm were eerie. Fires from broken gas lines were still burning. The earth and sky were merged, and the floating house appeared as a mirage, taunting one’s sense of reality. How might the world end? During the Cold War, with the threat of nuclear annihilation, we feared it might end in fire. With the melting of the glaciers, the floods in Asia and two major tsunamis in the first decade of the current millennium, perhaps we’ve had a preview of an apocalypse by water.

Chris Hondros. Misrata, Libya

To bring visual order to a chaotic scene. Chris Hondros excelled at this, especially in conflict zones. His composition of the rebel leaning forward, striding up the stairs, the machine gun firmly in his grasp. The fire smoldering on the stairs. There is purpose in this rebel soldier as there was in Chris that day. This is a moment that exists but for a brief millisecond and Chris, like the very best of photographers, had the ability to capture that fleeting instance and make a picture that becomes greater than the sum of its parts. Chris was killed by a mortar round later that same day and I will never be able to tell him how much I admired the picture he made that morning in Misrata.

Dominic Nahr. Mogadishu, Somalia

I have never watched children die in front of me before. Watching their last breath as their chest slowly and with long pauses slightly expand and then deflate again. Until, it suddenly stops. The children who arrived at the Banadir hospital in Mogadishu were in bad shape, but they were the lucky ones. Some of them who made it to the hospital early enough managed to pull through, even with limited medical supplies and overworked, unpaid, and tired nurses. However, for most, it was a place they came to die. Almost all the children I photographed on the second floor in the children’s wing ended up dying. With some I did not even have a chance to know their names or ages. I would return to the room a couple of hours later and the bed the child was lying in before was either empty, or full again with a new child and mother.

Pedro Pardo. Acapulco, Mexico

In this picture, we see the relatives of a person who was kidnapped at dawn from a disco in Acapulco and later killed by being thrown from a bridge in the town of La Cima at the entrance of this tourist destination. As a conflict photographer in the war of the drug cartels, I have learned how to be like a doctor when I look at a violent scene, separating my emotions and observing the deed in an objective way in order to come up with a good image that can inform without being morbid or sensational.

Stefanie Gordon. Shuttle launch

The photo was an unexpected hit that I took from almost 35,000 ft. over Florida, flying from New York City to Palm Beach with—of all things my—iPhone 3GS, and tweeted it out upon landing. I didn’t realize the impact of the photo or the rounds it was making in social media until a few hours later when I looked at my Twitter mentions and all the personal messages I was receiving on Facebook. Next thing I knew, I was being interviewed by media outlets from all over the world, and my photo was on almost every evening news program. I am still in search for that perfect job that many thought would be offered to me after the photo caught fire

Yuri Kozyrev. Tahrir Square, Cairo, Egypt.

It was my first day in Cairo. I was lucky to find the right place to stay at the hotel, which was facing Tahrir Square—it was my first impression of it. From the balcony, I saw the overcrowded space—thousands and thousands of people—and some of them were helping a man who had lost consciousness. I never had a chance to see what happened with him, but I’m pretty sure that people who were around helped him. That was the atmosphere on the ground; people really took care of each other even if they had different views about Egypt, about Cairo, about revolution. If you could see the picture in detail, you would see more than just young revolutionaries. You see old people, you see really religious people. Everyone was together, and that day was very, very special.


Top 10 photos of 2011, National Geographic

Joel Sartore

Rift in Paradise
Albertine Rift, Uganda

A tree-climbing lion stirs in Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park.

“This photograph is so beautifully executed. The color is magnificent, with the cobalt blue sky in the background and the warm light on the lion. The composition is perfect. Yet underneath all that beauty is a message: Lions are in trouble. Joel Sartore has devoted himself to photographing animals out of balance, endangered, crying for a voice.”
Chris Johns, Editor in Chief

Stephanie Sinclair

Too Young to Wed
Herat, Afghanistan

A veil of gauze protects a patient named Zahara from flies in a burn ward in Herat, Afghanistan. Afghan women who set themselves on fire may do so to escape abuse at home, believing they will die instantly. Yet many linger on with terrible injuries.

“This dreamlike photo belies tragedy. Under the soft gauze is the hard reality of a burn ward in Afghanistan; child brides sometimes set themselves on fire to escape arranged marriages. Stephanie Sinclair’s poignant photograph speaks to her commitment to give a voice to those young women.”

Lynsey Addario

Baghdad After the Storm

Moviegoers at Baghdad’s first 4-D cinema get an extra thrill from shaking seats and wind machines during a 3-D sci-fi film. During the worst years of violence, families stayed home to watch TV or DVDs. Most cinemas closed, as did this one, though it has plans to expand and reopen.

“Not only did Lynsey Addario gain access to an undiscovered part of Baghdad; she did it with such flair. The blue light, the projector in the background, the people’s expressions, those crazy-looking 3-D glasses. But you can also see this is a temporary structure, tentlike, and you think, with all they’ve been through, now they can enjoy life, have some fun.”

Vincent J. Musi

Taming the Wild
Novosibirsk, Russia

This brown rat’s angry display at the photographer reflects 73 generations of breeding for hostility to humans. Scientists at Novosibirsk and in Germany are comparing the aggressive rat genome to that of rats selected for friendliness, attempting to untangle connections between DNA and behavior.

“It looks like a prison cell with a bunch of mad prisoners, ready to lash out at each other, which is basically what these rats are doing. And the whole frame, the way it moves from not just the aggressive rat but to how the other rats are reacting to him, is a moment that is absolutely unforgettable.”

Michael Nichols

Orphans No More
Nairobi Elephant Nursery, Kenya

Dedicated keepers at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Nairobi Elephant Nursery in Kenya protect baby Shukuru from the cold and rain, and the risk of pneumonia, with a custom-made raincoat.

“This picture means so much to me because it eloquently addresses the powerful connection between the men who have devoted their lives to caring for these elephants and the vulnerable animals that share the strong bond with those men. The orange blanket; the green uniforms of the men; their hands silhouetted, holding the umbrellas. Those delicate raindrops on the elephant’s head. Everything in this photograph works together and has a powerful, emotional message.”

Paul Nicklen

Spirit Bear
Great Bear Rainforest, British Columbia

In a moss-draped rain forest in British Columbia, towering red cedars live a thousand years, and black bears are born with white fur.

“Paul Nicklen is a master at getting closer. He gets close enough to take this beautiful forest with this beautiful bear, eating a salmon, and make it all come together in a photograph that captures your imagination. I feel like I’m there. I can almost smell that forest, the bear. This is Paul’s home. This looks like a photo he took in his backyard of a dear friend.”

Erika Larsen

Gällivare, Sweden

Sven Skaltje was saddened to find the carcasses of two female reindeer whose antlers had become entangled during a dominance struggle in northern Sweden. He estimates it took three days for them to die of starvation. After separating the bodies, he saw from the ear markings that one belonged to him and the other to his cousin. Skaltje is much admired by the younger Sami in his herding group, but he is unsure whether the skills he teaches them will endure.

“There’s a timeless quality to this photograph. The deep connection between Sami herders and the reindeer is hundreds of years old. You can see the expression on the man’s face as he pauses in reverence for these magnificent animals. The snow, the dusting across his shoulders: It all works together in a quiet, reflective way that is true to the Sami people.”

Pascal Maitre

Rift in Paradise
North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Rule of the gun prevails in North Kivu, a conflict-ravaged province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Mai-Mai Kifuafua, one of many local militias, flaunts its power on a road where it extorts money from villagers and travelers. For almost 20 years near-constant fighting over land, mining riches, and power has terrorized the people.

“Pascal Maitre has an absolutely remarkable ability to go into the most dangerous, volatile situations and return with powerful images. In places where a civilization is literally coming unraveled, he sees human behavior that needs to be documented, because the suffering is unbelievable. This photograph in Central Africa conveys a sense of energy and immediacy—and it’s also frightening.”

Kitra Cahana

Beautiful Teenage Brains
Austin, Texas

No elbows, no knees. Their “fight club” had rules. At least one Friday a month, boys gathered after school in the backyard of Bryan Campbell (at far left) to wrestle and box. Campbell’s mother made sure they kept it safe; a bloody nose was the worst injury. The boys often used phones to film their contests, posting the videos to a private Facebook group so more friends could admire their prowess. The rush of a headlock, a bond between friends—their fights delivered both excitement and social rewards.

“To make a memorable picture of teenagers, the picture has to speak across generations and be one of those photographs that when you see it, you go, Aha! Here are two boys wrestling down at the bottom of the frame, beautifully composed. And these two other guys, using their devices to record the two guys down there wrestling. Here they are, absorbed, as they’re participating in complete and absolute horseplay.”

Carsten Peter

Conquering an Infinite Cave
Minh Hoa, Vietnam

A giant cave column swagged in flowstone towers over explorers swimming through the depths of Hang Ken, one of 20 new caves discovered last year in Vietnam.

“Carsten Peter thrives on adventure. The more difficult the place, the more he wants to go. What’s special about this photograph is its otherworldliness. It truly looks like another planet, because no one’s ever seen it before. And the way the light is balanced between the divers and the stalagmites and stalactites in this huge space—absolutely flawless.


Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 9 )


“Hundreds of people had gathered for a book signing of Ricky Martin’s autobiography and were standing in a long line outside a shopping center in the south of Mexico City. It was sunny when I arrived but many had been waiting since early morning when it was still cold. It was a mixed crowd; I was particularly impressed by a man who was holding Martin’s book, he was holding it tightly and singing passionately to Martin’s music sounding in the background.
When Ricky Martin arrived, he greeted the waiting fans and sat down to sign the books. A woman who was standing in the front row and who was visibly excited at being so close to the performer suddenly took a leap trying to get onto the stage but a bodyguard jumped in and swiftly picked her up and carried her away.
Ricky Martin laughed, he looked half amused, half nervous, but he continued to sign the books as if nothing had happened.”


“Lighting conditions were perfect, as from test times outside the abbey, the exact minute the couple were due to appear. When I had checked out the position two days before in bright sunlight, a huge shadow would have been cast from a nearby building diagonally across them. A white dress would have been totally blown out and shadow detail gone black, rendering the image virtually unusable – especially for magazine clients. The rain that was also forecast in London, which would have given a flat and soft looking frame, never materialized either…so bright even shade was perfect…as nearly every wedding photographer will tell you!
Having Best Man Prince Harry behind, and his interaction with Kate’s sister, the Chief Bridesmaid, Pippa Middleton, was just a spot of luck really, but a wee bonus on the day. Apart from six months of logistical planning by the UK Pictures Desk team and IT support guys for picture transmission and editing in almost real time via under road cabled broadband lines from the media centre to my cameras and laptop, the only other hurdle to jump on the day was crossing my legs from 5.30 in the morning to 1pm in the afternoon as there was no toilet available in our ‘secured, sterile’ photo position opposite the Abbey!”

DAVID GRAY, South Korea

“This picture of Nikki Hamblin of New Zealand laying on the track after falling during a heat of the women’s 1,500 meters was taken during the IAAF World Championships in Daegu, South Korea, on August 28. This front-on slightly raised position at the end of the straight is where I have photographed athletics from for the last decade. As usual, I was watching the runners complete their laps, always ready for someone to be pushed or bumped by a fellow competitor, which can lead to someone, very occasionally, falling and not finishing the race. The final turn leading into the straight is where the most action happens, and it is here you must be ready and alert. I saw Nikki start being bumped by the runners at the top of the straight, and so I focused on her, even though she was in the middle of the field. Then, she disappeared behind the front-runners, and I knew that she had gone down. Now, I had a conflict, as I needed to not only get her lying on the track, but also capture the winners of the heat. So, I quickly focused on her, and then straight after I took this picture, I went back to the runners crossing the line. When I saw that the winners did not react in any way to their victory, I went straight back to Nikki and took some shots of her getting up, and walking off the track crying. Athletics can be a cruel sport, as I am sure she, like all the athletes, put many, many hours into reaching this level.”


“Several UN agencies (OCHA, UNHCR, FAO and UNICEF) and UNAMID were participating in an aid operation in Kuma Garadayat, a remote village located in North Darfur (Sudan), when some straw huts were set on fire accidentally. During the summer, the dryness and the heat frequently cause these kinds of accidents in Darfur. When the first signs of smoke alerted the population, each villager knew their role to play. Men and boys armed themselves with branches to extinguish the fire, while women and girls went to the houses to collect their belongings and tried to move everything out of the way of the fire. This image shows how a frightened girl escaped from the flames. Fortunately, nothing very bad happened. Just part of the village was completely burnt.”

PETE SOUZA for the White House, United States

“This photo was taken in the Situation Room as the President and most of his national security team monitored in real time the mission against Osama bin Laden. The Situation Room is actually comprised of several conference rooms. Most of the pictures that the public has seen inside the Situation Room are from the large conference room. This was in a smaller conference room, which is why everyone was kind of jammed into the room. I made about 100 exposures during the 40 or so minutes they were in this room.”


“While riding through the streets of Guatemala City, I came across this pair of security guards, weapons drawn, struggling with a suspected assassin who had pulled a gun on a public bus. It was a tense situation. I photographed them from a few feet away even as one security guard dropped his pistol and all three fought for it. A crowd of passengers from the bus gathered around us screaming for the stripped-shirt man to be lynched, but the guards called the police and tried to settle the crowd. The police finally did show up and loaded the beaten and bleeding suspect into a pickup truck. The by-standers were angrily protesting, fearing the man would be let off easy, when suddenly my taxi driver grabbed the back of my shirt, letting me know it was time to make a quick exit as the frustrated crowd looked for someone else to turn their anger on.”


“This was the day that most of the journalists left Benghazi. It was when coalition forces were bombing Gaddafi tanks. I heard a lot of noise from the house where I was staying. There were people shooting into the air as the rebels had come across a tank captured from Gaddafi forces. After each bombardment, the rebels got happier and happier.“


“I captured this photo when an oil tanker, carrying fuel for NATO-led forces in Afghanistan, was attacked along the Pak-Afghan highway in Landikotal Khyber Agency. A contact from the anti-narcotics force called to say a powerful bomb had exploded around an oil tanker on the highway near Landikotal Bazar. I rushed there by taxi and travelled some four miles to the spot.
After arriving at the scene, I saw oil tankers and private vehicles, all set ablaze. Local residents and some children were trying to strip vehicles of metal on the spot. I started capturing the scene from a nearby hill. After photographing the scene I went back to my office. Due to frequent power outages, electricity was not available and I used a generator to send the photos.”

BAZ RATNER, Afghanistan

“My assignment in Afghanistan in June and July 2011 was to cover the last days of the Canadian army’s combat role, as they prepare to depart after 10 years in Afghanistan as one of the contributing forces. The unit I was embedded with was the Canadian 22nd royal regiment, or Van Doos as it is known in Canada. They were based in Seprwan Ghar forward operating base (FOB) in the Panjwai district, Kandahar province southern Afghanistan. I was going out on patrols with them for a while. On June 12 the container I was staying in started shaking from shelling blasts. I went to see what was happening. U.S. soldiers from 2nd Platoon, B battery 2-8 field artillery were firing their howitzers about 200 meters from where I was trying to sleep.
I took some pictures of them shooting it and as they repositioned the piece and fired, the cannon recoiled back and the gravel surrounding it was flung into the air. I managed to get a picture where the gravel seems suspended around the cannon and specialist Lucas Couvaras from Phoenix Arizona, who was there to reloaded the cannon, surprising both him and me.”


“It was early in the morning when I went to Iskola Bulisiya square in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu where many people were waiting for a public execution. Suddenly a convoy with two blindfolded men arrived. After a few minutes a group of soldiers started the preparations and opened fire on the two men. Then a Somali government soldier with an AK47 shot at close range to execute two former soldiers Abdi Sankus Abdi (R) and Abdullahi Jinow Guure (L) as they cried loudly saying “forgive us, we never, ever kill humankind”. After they died their relatives came and covered them with white clothes and they were buried near the square. The two men were found guilty of killing another soldier and a civilian on the basis of witness testimony, the Chairman of the Military Court Hassan Mohamed Hussein Mungab said.”

Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 7 )


“It was three years ago that I photographed a childbirth room at Escuela hospital, the largest in Honduras. Time seems to have stood still. Now there are different doctors, mothers and children, but the poverty is the same. Rooms full of valiant women who bleed and wrap their children with old sheets adorn the poverty of this place where shame is not a valid issue. I walk freely between the birthing rooms, rest area, caesarean section and reception, but I have no permission to enter the pediatrics area until a new medical chief authorizes me. There are healthy and sick babies. One of them is this baby who got my attention because it moves non-stop. Next to him is a lamp that provides heat to stay alive. I expect that he will continue to play with his hands, making the image more aesthetic or photographic. After five minutes this happens and I shoot photos. I recognized that I have a “beautiful picture”, but I do not see that the position of his fingers shows a number seven. It is a picture of a baby like so many others who were born, many of the 7 billion that live on our planet today. It hits me as it begins to emerge as poetry of life in Honduras where thousands of human beings are born, but where thousands are killed without completing their natural cycle; dramatically murdered every day.”


“Drugs are a big problem in Thailand and often we see pictures from press conferences where police display confiscated narcotics and detained suspects after a raid. So, the normal reaction after seeing those was to try to join the police on one of their raids and see them in action. The action I followed took us early in the morning to a slum in Bangkok’s suburbs. It was not a spectacular operation with lots of drugs found and suspects trying to avoid the detention. But, the real personal drama of the man detained was exposed when he hugged his son and cried as he was taken away. A small drug dealer crime – although petty if compared with those from the press conferences with tons of narcotics seized – can take a criminal to jail for a long time. When he comes out his son could be an adult man. Growing up in Bangkok’s slums without a father is not the best way to avoid all the dangers and possible misery.”


“During a trip to cover the aftermath of ethnic violence in the remote city of Kashgar, in western China, I noticed this quiet moment at the end of a long, hot day. I had arrived in the city around noon, after a six hour flight from Shanghai, and I spent the afternoon rushing from one spot to the next looking for a way to show how the Chinese authorities were cracking down on the city. The situation was tense and the police were keeping an eye on me, but I managed to file a few pictures of soldiers patrolling the streets. As I was transmitting my pictures, hotel staff knocked on the door of a room I was sharing with colleagues and instructed us to leave. Police officers then directed us to another hotel— one that didn’t have a view of the central plaza we had hoped to monitor. We were disappointed to lose our vantage point, but as I walked out into the hallway in our new hotel, I saw the sun was setting off a balcony nearby and I found this peaceful moment.”


“Three days after the massive earthquake and tsunami hit northern Japan, I was at an evacuation center in Kawamata town, Fukushima, northern Japan, where residents who fled from areas nearby the Fukushima nuclear power plant were staying. The evacuation center, about 25-30 miles from the plant, was set up in a gymnasium of an elementary school where the floor was hard and the fluorescent light seemed to intensify the bitterness. Earlier in the day there was another explosion at the nuclear power plant, which added more burden and worries to those who had already lost their homes, families and their hometown.
In this sort of environment, I wanted to be as inconspicuous as possible, so I used no flash and used a silent mode on my camera as I photographed.
At the evacuation center, many people were quietly eating their small portion of distributed food, reading the papers, sleeping or just gazing. Some people broke in to tears as they told me their stories, or even offered me snacks as they were very compassionate despite their situation. As I walked through the packed room, I encountered a small boy playing with a blue balloon with his father. There were smiles on both of their faces. Obviously, the child didn’t understand the situation nor was worried about the future, but was enjoying that very moment, slowly bouncing the balloon back and forth with his father. Such a scene of daily life seemed so precious as their smiles stood out while others sat and slept among crumpled blankets.”


“One day after the morning editorial meeting I was asked to illustrate a story on the country’s high inflation and economic indicators. I first went to different stores along the street in search of an appropriate image, and entered a small supermarket where I found this woman shopping with a sad face, walking along the aisles, comparing prices and complaining out loud about how expensive everything was. I followed her for a few minutes until she appeared alone, carrying on with her difficult task of buying food.”


“The boy’s name is Wang Gengxiang, known as the “Masked Boy” among Chinese Netizens. He is currently living in Mijiazhuang village on the outskirts of Fenyang, northwest China’s Shanxi province. Wang was severely burned in an accident involving a pile of burning straw last winter, causing most of the skin on his head to be burned off. Since then, he is required to wear a full surgical mask to prevent the scars from becoming infected. I first saw his pictures on the Internet, and luckily I got in touch with his father who granted me an opportunity to photograph. This picture was taken as Wang played on his bed in the morning before going to school. I was very surprised to see that he lived a happy and relaxing life, though the mask he was wearing made him itchy and it was difficult to breathe all the time. Thanks to Chinese Netizens on Weibo (Chinese Twitter), the family received many donations and support from all over the country. From this they were able to afford the necessary surgeries and medication. I hope my pictures can bring more help to them. After all, helping those in need is always part of my obligation as a photojournalist.”

LUCAS JACKSON, United States

“On the date this image was taken the Occupy Wall Street movement had been going on for just shy of a month in the financial district of Manhattan. What started as a couple of dozen kids sleeping on the ground in a park has evolved into a nationwide grassroots movement and it has been fascinating to watch that evolution take place. It seems that every day I go down there the campsite has changed. One of the challenges is to be aware of the little things that are happening on any given day that will never happen again as the movement morphs. I was initially drawn into this scene because it was different than any I had seen before and was a more graphic “slice of life” than people sitting around their tents or discussing politics. I had to wait for a number of people to stop by for a free shave in order to add the little bit of information that the Guy Fawkes mask puts in the frame. One of the most interesting parts of the image is actually the information that is contained in the background. By the status of the campsites you can tell that this picture was taken before the NYPD allowed tents or structures attached to the trees. Shortly after this image tents began to appear in the park until the entire park was filled with small camping tents that have begun to evolve into large army style tents meant to last the winter. One of the most fascinating things about the Occupy movement in New York is not only seeing how long it lasts and what sort of dialogue it spurs but to watch the physical transition of the park. The freezing of a very finite part of its evolution is what I find most interesting about this image.”


“I went to my house to pick up another camera and I went back to the protests. There were barricades and stone throwing. It wasn’t safe. I was looking into the sky all the time to see what was coming towards me. I had a helmet and a gas mask. Some people were taking pictures of me with my helmet and gas mask but I was prepared. I was shooting for hours and hours.”


“I was doing some paperwork in my office which is located a few meters away from the bank. At some point I heard someone yelling, I looked out of my window and I saw the man protesting outside the bank while it was obvious that he was threatening to set himself on fire. I picked a camera and ran out. When I arrived I saw him pouring gasoline on himself and after a few seconds he set himself ablaze. Police, who had already been watching him, rushed to extinguish the fire. The man survived but with serious injuries”.


“Can a politician be a politician 24 hours a day? I think not. Election campaigns are for me the best moments to take pictures of politicians. During election campaigns, politicians are more accessible. They exploit their charisma and are at their friendliest. But there’s always a moment that is not set in the script. I look for these moments when I work with political candidates.
In this photo, we see the Portuguese Popular Party leader Paulo Portas on the campaign trail for the last general elections, specifically at a rally in Coimbra. It was a long rally and Paulo Portas went out to the cafeteria to drink a coffee, suddenly he was grabbed by a supporter from behind. The candidate’s reaction was unusual for a politician on an election campaign.”

Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 6 )


“It was a very hot and dry day in Hadado village in the Wajir district in Kenya. I was in Hadado village, to cover the drought situation in the area for the Danish Red Cross. There was not many picture stories, at that stage about the drought situation, but the NGO tried to get the public’s attention to the situation that worsened every day.
When I came into Hadado it was like a nightmare for the people living there. There was very little water and small fights over the resources broke out around the borehole. The village population was normally 400 families but now people had to flee to get some of the water and food from the WFP, so the population was more then 1200 families and people was still coming from far away.
The two elderly women in this picture were new arrivals and weren’t registered to get food, so they were dependent on other families to give them just a little food to survive. The woman in red stood up in front of me, so I could take her picture and show their hopeless situation out here in what has become a desert.”


“I waited several weeks for this frame. The floods had been the story in Thailand for some time but we all knew that the big frame would come when the water came into the capital. This picture has an urban look, a calmness of the end of the day and of a religious man caught in the big story. It was shot with very little light available and one would expect pictures to be shaken and blurred. But, no – despite the object moving and the lens wide open – frame by frame was in focus. I guess some of the monk’s calmness helped.”


“After travelling about 3 hours from Abuja to Niger State, northern Nigeria, on my way to cover the National Assembly elections in 3 states, I noticed a huge smoke cloud in the distance. I thought election violence had broken out and decided to investigate further. It turned out after a 15-20 minute drive that the smoke was not from election violence, rather a vandalised pipeline conveying petroleum had caught fire. Before the vote there had been concerns as to violence during the Nigeria elections. However to see that the smoke was from pipeline vandalization, which has been a recurrent incidence in the Niger delta region of Nigeria; and now was happening in Dadanbili, Niger State, was a deviation from the normal. So for me this was news. My plan to travel around 3 states for the election that day finally paid off with these pictures after the cancellation of the National Assembly elections.”


“It was a normal morning on May 2, 2011 until I turned on my television and noticed the flashing red screen breaking news that al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has been killed near Islamabad.
I was anxious and paused for a moment to reflect on how this was the news the world, especially the United States, had been waiting for ever since the war against Al-Qaeda was declared in 2001 and Osama Bin Laden became the most wanted man in the world for his role in 9/11 tragedy. I reflected on how things had changed globally after 9/11 and how it also affected the common Pakistani people from all walks of life.
My first response was to check-in with Islamabad based photographerMian Khursheed. Before asking anything about the news he said, “Please prepare yourself if we need you here – please check flights.” The next day I was in Abbottabad, just northwest of Islamabad. The road leading to the compound, where bin Laden was reportedly killed, was packed with local and international media vehicles waiting to get in. At the location, large crowds of local residents and media personnel had gathered. Everyone was curious to get close to the residential compound to have a look at the place where bin Laden had been killed.
Vegetable fields surrounded the compound and I noticed local children gathered and were collecting debris left by a heavy firefight. Residents were asking questions of the media to confirm if the incident really occurred. They could not believe that Osama bin Laden had been their neighbor.
Even though the compound area was cordoned off, the city of Abbottabad felt normal as people still were going to work and children to school. The shops were still open. Outside the compound area, no one was really concerned about what had happened or what was happening now.
On the morning of May 5, I visited the compound in a quest to find any good picture and suddenly noticed a boy playing with a tennis ball just in front of the compound. It gave me a sense of hope, that things could finally go back to being normal after all that had changed after 9/11.
As I was thinking of it and taking photos – again questions started floating through my mind. Would the ‘War on Terror’ end after the killing of Osama bin Laden? I thought about 9/11 and how it had changed Pakistan. September 11 in Pakistan was previously recognized as the day Pakistan’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah died. In Pakistan now the 9/11 attacks get more attention. In these ten years, I feel Pakistan has suffered the most. It has faced hundreds of suicide bombings that have led to thousands of deaths and injuries and caused tremendous losses.
I stayed in Abbottabad until May 22 until I received a call in the middle of the night from the Islamabad office. “There has been an attack on an air base in Karachi. Prepare yourself, we may need you there,” the voice of my editor said. And the next afternoon I was back in Karachi.”


“This photo was taken at Israel’s Qalandiya checkpoint between Jerusalem and Ramallah during the holiday of the holy month of Ramadan. The Palestinian boy was looking at an Israeli soldier as he took part in a protest against the Israeli checkpoint and the conditions placed on Palestinians wanting to cross to Jerusalem from the West Bank. The Israeli authorities usually place an age restriction for Palestinians wanting to cross into Jerusalem, such that only men over the age of 55 and women over the age of 45 can cross whereas others need special permission to cross. After this photo was taken clashes between Israeli soldiers and the protesters erupted.”


“It was in Sanaa two months into the uprising against President Ali Abdullah Saleh. An ambulance driver carried the injured protester into a mosque converted to a field hospital, where worshippers prayed alongside the wounded, as the protests outside intensified.”


“I took this picture when I was with the rebels fighting Gaddafi’s troops, about two miles from the city of Sirte. I was mindful of what was happening, when I saw a man carrying an RPG. I was surprised by the courage of the man which insisted on fighting to win his freedom.”


“After observing activities that go on under some of the numerous bridges in Sao Paulo, one day I came across a boxing academy whose goal was to give a chance to poor people to exercise and practice boxing. After beginning the story, one day I was photographing different boxers punching a discarded refrigerator. Two of them, Gorila and Chibata, were ones who I had been following before in their training. The owner of the academy has a dog that was watching them train. I decided to include it in the photo as one of the gym’s permanent residents.”


“Whether you’re a top professional golfer or a weekend hacker, all golfers feel the frustration of a backup on the course. As Phil Mickelson approached the 15th tee at the U.S. Open in Bethesda, Maryland, it was clear that he was in for a long wait before teeing off. Instead of swinging his club for 10 minutes or looking through his bag to nervously kill time, Mickelson simply used the moment to take a break in a marshal’s chair and enjoy a snack. It was a very warm day, and the shade and the chair must have seemed too good to pass up. It is always difficult to get a different golf picture, but this was one of those off moments that provided a departure from the standard golf image.”


“I was staying in the Rixos Hotel, part of the official Libyan Government foreign press core. We would be taken out most days to photograph things the Libyan Government were keen to show the world. We were taken to a house in Tripoli which had been bombed by NATO. There were a couple of buildings very close together which had been flattened. The officials who were accompanying us on the tour of the buildings pointed out that one of the buildings had been some kind of medical storage facility. We stayed for about 45 minutes walking around the buildings. After about 20 minutes I looked around and saw a gazelle standing in the ruins of one of the buildings. It looked very scared and I thought I would be lucky to get a picture because I assumed it would bolt at any second. I took a couple of pictures as quickly as possible and then tried to get myself into a better position. To my surprise the animal didn’t run and I moved as close as possible.”

POOL, United States (Entertainment editor Sam Mircovich’s account)

“The opening minutes of Dr. Conrad Murray’s trial in the death of pop star Michael Jackson provided the most startling image of the proceedings. Deputy District Attorney’s David Walgren’s opening statement featured before and after pictures of Jackson taken 24 hours apart; one onstage during rehearsals for his sold out shows at the O2 arena, and the other, lying dead on a hospital gurney.
The image sent shockwaves around the world, as no one had seen an image of Jackson after his untimely death. As photo editor for Reuters, I was responsible for filing the pool images to the Singapore Photo Desk. I had a sinking suspicion the prosecution would open the trial with a bang and I was right.
I knew that if a graphic image of Jackson was shown, it would be at least 90 minutes before the pool photographer would be able to send it to us. Since the video feed was also pool, I quickly chatted with Reuters TV producer Lindsay Claiborn that we might need to frame grab from the video if warranted.
I was watching a web feed on my computer, and once the image was broadcast I shouted to Lindsay that we need to act quickly. She dropped what she was doing and moved to video editing software to grab the incoming images. Within a couple of minutes we had the images and I moved back to my desk to size the image and caption it. Once filed, the Singapore photo desk turned them around quickly for the world to see. Total filing time; 10 minutes.
Our competition ended up moving their own frame grabs at the end of the day, along with images shot by the pool photographer. It was a nice beat on a top story that week.”

Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 5 )


“I had become severely ill in the days target killings in Karachi hit their peak. Covering breaking news is my passion. I figured the best way to get over my illness was to rejoin news coverage on August 23. The same day a source called to inform me that a dead body, found in a sack, was being shifted to a hospital. I rushed to the hospital where I found that the victim was Imran Ali. He was not dead, but in fact only injured.
Ali ,who was shot by gunmen three times during a months long wave of political and ethnic violence in Karachi, was lying on a stretcher while medics tended to his wounds. I was preparing to shoot some frames when I saw a family, including Ali’s eight-year-old niece, approach his stretcher.
I disengaged with everything and kept my focus on the girl, Sumayya, as she stood next to her uncle’s bed. As Ali opened his eyes to look towards his family, Sumayya’s mouth dropped. It was the moment I was waiting for.”

BRIAN SNYDER, United States

“At its most basic, and least cynical, political campaigns are about politicians trying to connect with voters, and voters connecting with a particular candidate. As a photographer covering a political event, I want to try to show that in my photographs, which means getting beyond a photograph of a politician speaking at a podium. Oftentimes it takes the form of politicians shaking hands with voters. But in this case, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin was clearly determined to keep her distance from the crowd. She shook no hands as she made her way onstage, and as it turned out, none at the end of her speech. After making some photographs of Palin speaking, I positioned myself at the edge of the stage near the girl reflected in her iPad, thinking if Palin was going to shake some hands or sign some autographs, she would come over to the girl. The girl was taking photographs and videos of Palin with her iPad during the speech, so the reflection was right there for me to see as I stood there. The rest was figuring out how much depth of field I wanted in the image and lining up the girl’s reflection in the iPad’s screen.”


“Antonio Banderas is a prophet in his homeland.
He was elected to deliver the traditional speech known as the “Pregon” to declare the year’s Malaga Holy Week open at Cervantes Theatre in Malaga. He arrived at the theatre very happy accompanied by his wife Melanie Griffith and their daughter Estela del Carmen.
I like taking pictures of him, because he knows what the photographers want of him. He is a lover of his city and a latin lover in the world. He loves the Holy Week and takes part as a penitent in the “Esperanza”, “Lagrimas y Favores” and “Fusionadas” brotherhoods. During this week it is very difficult to take pictures of him, but during the “Pregon” all is easier.
While Banderas was delivering his speech, I decided to send the first photos for the wire, but my 3G modem had no signal inside the theatre, so I had to go outside to send them. Many people were watching Banderas’ speech on a live screen TV outside the theatre very excited, like these two lovers… of Banderas.”


”It was very early in the morning that I was on my way to shoot some daily life pictures as there were no big events happening in Kathmandu during that day. I was planning to visit the ancient city of Patan to shoot some pictures. On my way to Patan, my eyes fell on these two small children sitting on top of their luggage waiting to be fetched in Lalitpur, likely to leave the city. I was on my motor bike looking at them from the other side while I was driving. I immediately turned my bike and knew that this would make a good picture so I parked my bike and went close. I took out my camera and took a couple of shots of the boys. Their parents were close by watching me while I took the pictures. For the glowing effect on the boy’s face I waited for a vehicle to pass by, that created the mood in the picture. After taking a couple of pictures I thanked the boys and their parents and headed back for Patan. I was fortunate that I was at the right time, right place and right moment to get an opportunity to shoot the pictures of these boys.”


“You know how some days will stay with your forever? Well on February 11, 2011 I could tell you what I had for breakfast and what socks I was wearing (and not just because I am a creature of habit). What a day and what a night that was. I had been in Egypt for a couple of wonderful, stressful, beautiful and crazy weeks and was out shooting when our editor Steve Crisp called saying there were more rumors that President Hosni Mubarak was actually about to quit and I should hurry to Tahrir Square. Lucky, lucky, lucky me, I was only a couple of minutes away. What was not so lucky was when I arrived in Cairo custom officials had confiscated most of my kit – leaving me with a small camera and a 50mm lens. Steve had graciously lent me a couple of bodies and lenses but between us we had no flash gun.
Anyway as most of the world was waiting for Mubarak to step down I watched nervously as the light disappeared faster than a neutrino in a Swiss lab. So when the news finally broke that Mubarak had gone I had to find light – there was none. A temporary power cut made the street lights (my savior on many a previous night) redundant. I watched as all these jubilant protestors jumped and hugged and kissed and prayed and there was nothing I could do except weep as I shot too many unusable muzzy images. I was living my recurring nightmare. Thankfully, soon the power came back and patches of light appeared. I saw this guy holding a computer aloft like it was the World Cup and chanting “internet, internet…” I took a lot of frames that night but this one seems to tell the story of what had become known as the “facebook revolution”.”


“On May 26, the opposition refused to stop the rally in front of the Parliament building in Tbilisi in spite of the offer from the authorities, after which riot police appeared on Rustaveli Avenue. It was raining heavily so for me there was no sense to use flash. When the rally was dispersed and the smoke from tear gas disappeared I saw a person in handcuffs, there was blood on his face asking for help. I immediately shot his face which was begging for help without words. Then I asked a nearby police officer for a doctor’s help. The detained man was later taken to hospital.”


“I was in Chechnya when the airport bomber’s name, Magomed Yevloyev, was announced. His family lived in the nearby republic of Ingushetia. I had no contacts or real understanding of where his family lived. A colleague at Reuters warned me that another journalist and a photographer had been arrested for trying to get into Yevloyev’s home for an interview. I decided to wait a day before driving there. I left from Grozny very early in the morning and parked my car far from her home. It is incredibly difficult to operate in the North Caucasus, there’s an insurgency taking place in the region. This situation was especially intense because the family’s home was closely monitored by federal security forces.
I was lucky to make it into her home and was the first to interview and photograph the suicide bomber’s mother. She sat on her dead son’s bed during the conversation. I took her portrait right away and hid the camera’s memory card in my shoe, just in case I was stopped. It took me about an hour to get back to the city where I transmitted the images back to the bureau in Moscow.”


“After spending days in the terrible earthquake and tsunami hit area, I was dispatched to Tokyo to cover stock markets and other reactions. I felt it was time to prepare to return to my home base, Seoul. Then I got an assignment to watch evacuations in Saitama, near Tokyo. It was nine days after the disaster. The previous day about 2,300 people mainly from Futaba area, a city near the quake-stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, arrived in the evacuees’ new shelter Saitama Super Arena to evacuate after radiation leakage warnings. When I arrived at the sports complex, I saw many people carrying relief goods and waiting in lines to donate it. I took pictures of the scene. Then I entered the building to see the evacuees’ lives. The large-scale arena was already crowded with lots of evacuees. In every hallway there were tired people who had to leave their hometown. The Saitama arena was located about 250 km (155 miles) away from Futaba.
This elderly man and woman who seemed to be a married couple rested in a hallway of the arena. They built their new house in a space cordoned off with cardboard in a hallway. Maybe six or seven cardboard boxes were used to make their own space. There was a small gate too. They surely brought almost nothing when they left suddenly from their home. The couple had only about-three-square-meters of space and some relief supplies like blankets, bread, cup noodles and water bottles. The cardboard house would be their home for a while until they could go back home. As it turned out, most media, maybe all journalists except me, couldn’t cover the evacuees in the arena. Because I couldn’t read Japanese, I just passed the warning sign, ‘No media access (in Japanese)’, it read at the entrance to the arena.”

LUCAS JACKSON, United States

“This image was part of a collection that we photographed in collaboration with the National September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York before the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. Fellow staff photographer Mike Segar had built a really great working relationship with the people from the Museum and we had been going in periodically to photograph both the construction of the new towers and the museum as it planned out their exhibits and acquired artifacts related to the disaster. We photographed around 20 different artifacts that had been donated to the museum that had a direct connection to September 11th as a special package we coordinated with text, video, and stills. Most of the items that we photographed that day were donated by the people who had either worn the items or had some connection to them, including these shoes. Seeing the hardened blood on the side of these was a rather poignant detail and I decided that for this image I wanted to isolate that piece of the story. Most of the other items were photographed with a soft box and at a very high aperture in order to preserve as much detail as possible but I really felt that the isolation helped this image.”


“It was a very hot and dry day in Hadado village in the Wajir district in Kenya. I was in Hadado village, to cover the drought situation in the area for the Danish Red Cross. There was not many picture stories, at that stage about the drought situation, but the NGO tried to get the public’s attention to the situation that worsened every day.
When I came into Hadado it was like a nightmare for the people living there. There was very little water and small fights over the resources broke out around the borehole. The village population was normally 400 families but now people had to flee to get some of the water and food from the WFP, so the population was more then 1200 families and people was still coming from far away.
The two elderly women in this picture were new arrivals and weren’t registered to get food, so they were dependent on other families to give them just a little food to survive. The woman in red stood up in front of me, so I could take her picture and show their hopeless situation out here in what has become a desert.”

Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 3 )



“I meet them in the basement of a pool hall located in a dangerous neighborhood of Tegucigalpa. There, along narrow and dark stairways, are several rooms where Bessy, Patricia and Tiffany, are.
Tiffany, 19, an accountant who also studies cosmetology, tells me, “Our clients are all types. I’ve had some famous ones. There are mechanics, taxi drivers, young, old, poor, rich.” Tiffany practiced prostitution but left it after being run over, threatened with death, and finally stabbed in the back. “I thank God for the support of my family, of my parents. They don’t want to see me on the street. They accept my condition and don’t want to hide it. They want to see me as a young, gay, decent professional. My father is going to help me open a beauty parlor. Nevertheless, the situation on the streets is terrible, and we don’t have to be prostituting ourselves to be attacked. They throw stones at us, ice cubes, beer bottles, and even darts with blood on them.”
With bras and pants adjusted they parade inside the tiny rooms converted into a runway, a fashion runway filled with laughter and horror stories. We spend the next two hours in what becomes a backstage for what was to come. I can feel only praise for the way they hide their repressed fear. In spite of their photogenic looks and elicited empathy, it’s still difficult for me to work. There’s almost no room to stand, it’s nighttime and the room light is dim.
Before we leave, Bessy pauses in front of religious icons adorning a wall. Patricia crosses herself, but Tiffany decides to stay home…”


“On January 14, anti-government protests that had been spreading through Tunisia reached the capital. A huge crowd gathered outside the interior ministry to demand that President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali step down. I had just arrived from an assignment in Sudan and was impressed by the number of protesters. I would never have imagined that a demonstration like this could happen in a tightly-controlled state like Tunisia. Suddenly, police fired tear gas rounds into the crowd and the people started running. I ran with them, into the lanes and alleyways leading away from the interior ministry. There, the protesters regrouped and began throwing stones at police, who responded with more tear gas. It was at this point I took this shot.
Tunisian soldiers were standing in the middle, between the police and protesters, trying to persuade the two sides to calm down. I could not believe my eyes. For the first time in the Arab world I was seeing soldiers who were not taking the side of the government against the people. I directed my lens towards one of the soldiers, who was screaming at the police and protesters to stop. I have to confess I had tears in my eyes because it was such a moving moment. Later, it turned out this was the crucial factor in ousting Ben Ali. When the army refused his requests to use force against the protesters in the capital, he realized his power had evaporated. It is wonderful that I had the opportunity to be present at this historic moment.”

DWI OBLO, Indonesia

“I had been waiting for more than an hour, yet I hadn’t made the strongest picture. There I was, on the edge of Mount Bromo’s crater (2,329 meters from ground level), in East Java, Indonesia, where the ceremony of Javanese Hindu “Yadya Kasada” was held. All of a sudden, about 50 yards from where I stood, I saw a middle-aged man carrying a few chickens. To photograph the man’s offering I needed to pass some people standing on the crater’s edge, which meant that I only had about an 11 inch wide space to walk, with chasms on my right and left side. For a few moments I hesitated, wondering if I would be able to catch up with him in time, since I was not sure if the path was safe enough to walk. Within those few seconds, my eyes caught hold of some women wearing kebayas (traditional outfits) and I saw they were able to walk on the path. “What makes me think I can’t do it? They can! In school, I used to be a climber, and I faced even riskier situations,” I thought to myself. Yes! Carefully running on the sandy crater’s edge towards this man, I successfully made some strong pictures of local people throwing away offerings to the crater. While also on the other side some people trying to catch the offerings. This is my strongest picture from that day that tells the story of the traditional ceremony which is believed to lead their life to a better future.”


“I was maybe between 150-200 meters from the explosion. It’s pretty much full frame. This picture was really easy, just point and shoot. It didn’t take much imagination. Sometimes you need to get creative and shoot it this way, or that way but this one; it just happened. Before the explosion, I didn’t hear anything and I don’t know how the rebels reacted after the explosion as they were behind me. Sometimes I looked around and saw them shouting.
I didn’t know when I took it that this picture would be used everywhere. I knew it was going to be used, because of a story like this but I like more some of the other pictures I took on the same day, with the rebels in the frame. It’s a very simple picture which is why I am surprised it was used so widely.“

DAVID ANGELL, United States

“The Selfridge Air Show is a bi-annual event I’ve been covering for well over 15 years. Like all military air shows it features everything from antique war planes to modern jet aircraft demonstrations. This year the featured events included simulated bombing runs and dog fights. I covered both days and one of the featured events was Todd Green, a second generation wingwalker. Green performed a stunt in which he would transfer from a 1930′s Stearman to a helicopter. On Saturday the stunt was performed without any problems, on Sunday however there were very high non-directional winds. Green and the pilots made two practice runs and decided to try to circumvent the winds by climbing from 150 feet to 200 feet. As the group flew past the trees and over the runway Green attempted the transfer from the plane to the helicopter. Due to an unknown cause the helicopter pulled up and out about 8 inches, this was just enough for Green to lose his balance and fall out of the plane.”


“For the first time, this year I covered the Grande Odyssee sled dogs race close to the French Italian border for five days. On two occasions the mushers had to spend a night out sleeping in a tent next to their dogs, without the help of their handlers. I was offered by organizers to stay for the night in a hotel-restaurant some 500 yards away from the Polar Base as the lift would close at 9pm. I thought of the different pictures I could take than the usual action. On my second visit I was unable to connect to a mobile phone network to send my images so I decided to try from an overlooking point nearby. I was bewildered by the scene that was now light by a near full moon. I stayed nearly an hour as the temperature was not extreme. I sent my pictures but cherish that moment of sitting in the snow watching the clouds move; a nice experience of being “within” the landscape.“

JIM URQUHART, United States

“It was my second night with the cowboys after the first full day on one of the last real horse drives in America. I had spent the day focusing on making art of wranglers gathering about 400 horses from their winter range outside Three Forks, Montana. After a frigid spring day in Montana, which included snow and rain, we had settled in for another cold night. About 30 people sat around a large fire for a chuck wagon dinner before heading to our canvas wall tents for the night. I made many frames of wranglers lit by fire light and even played with some time exposures but as I made my way around the fire I saw Dale Wetz dozing in and out of sleep but never dropping his beer. We were all beat, but these guys had spent the day working really hard. I just ran around with cameras while they wrestled horses. The fire was beginning to fade so I rested my lens on the stump of a log to steady it for a slow exposure and discreetly made as many frames as possible. Many of these guys are very humble and a bit camera shy. Later in the night Wetz was a bit shocked when I asked for his name for the caption. But that was just how many of the wranglers were. This is their work and they weren’t doing anything special; just going about their lives working under the western sky.”

Best photos of the year 2011, Reuters ( 1 )


“I was in south Sudan covering the referendum when I found out that there were going to be protests in Egypt. I felt that there could be big troubles, so I returned to Egypt. I arrived at 8am and dropped my bags at home and then went to the office. Later in the afternoon clashes began in Cairo. People were shouting and the police came out on the streets. There were protesters, riot police and also plainclothes police. The plainclothes police started chasing people around: kicking them, beating them. I had to shoot quickly. I saw a lot of plainclothes police standing in a line like soldiers. There were some street battles with civilians. The next day we knew it was going to be a big protest so I took my camera downtown to look for possible trouble. We went to a couple of neighborhoods but people were walking through the small streets heading towards the city center. One moment we witnessed some clashes. Police started to fight and the protesters fought back.”


“Reuters photographers in Portugal use an expression when we go out to take pictures of the economic crisis: “trekking and fishing” as they are often long days spent walking with our eyes wide open. The crisis in Portugal is difficult to photograph because there is nothing special happening on the streets. It is a crisis behind closed doors that for the time being the Portuguese live in intimacy. Our work must be subtle. We must always be attentive to looks, gestures or actions which allow us to guess the situation of the protagonists in our pictures. This photo was taken during a day of “trekking and fishing” in the neighborhood of Alfama. I was searching for a photo when I saw a woman talking to another leaning out of the window. In the middle of the conversation the woman in the street raised her arm. That was the picture of crisis.”


“I took this photo just around the corner from my flat, in Clarence road in Hackney, on the third night of rioting and looting in the British capital. I’d heard of photographers being mugged for their gear and assaulted during the riots so I arranged to meet up with some other snappers when I arrived. At the top of the street there was a burning car, lines of riot police with dogs and hooded men throwing bottles, sticks and stones.
Suddenly the police withdrew, leaving the rioters to it. I could see people climbing in and out of a shop with smashed windows, so I went to have a look. There were a lot of men and women looting the shop and at first no one noticed me. I started to shoot and, like you do, with every frame I took another step into the shop and away from a safe exit. The shop had been trashed inside and a couple of men were filling their bags with bottles of spirits and cigarettes. Another checked the till. I kept shooting until one of them noticed me. The last frame I have is of him looking at me as he pulls himself up onto the counter.
I left the shop but two large looters came over and accused me of being police. There was a bit of pushing and pulling as they tried to take my cameras. Luckily some of the other photographers who had been with me when I arrived came over and pulled me away. It was a lesson, not only in not overstaying your welcome, but also how important your colleagues are.”


“There was a planned protest march against a parliamentary vote on Greece’s five-year austerity plan that included tax hikes and government spending cuts, which degenerated into a violent clash between protesters and riot police.
I was standing on the elevated entrance of a central hotel on Syntagma square with other photographers covering the clashes. The police had just pushed back protesters with the use of teargas. Suddenly, through a cloud of teargas, a group of frightened tourists appeared, with luggage in hand and covering their noses, and started running towards us. The scene was totally surreal: In the middle of a stone war and teargas, tourists visiting Athens on their summer holidays were trying to reach their hotel.
I didn’t think twice, I lifted my camera and followed their agonizing effort until they reached the hotel entrance where we were standing. The door opened and they vanished behind it, safe and into a reality much different from the one that was evolving before me.”


”The murder of 12 children in a Rio de Janeiro school was the most difficult story I’ve done. An unprecedented story in Brazil, it shocked the entire society and for us journalists, it was no different. On the day after the massacre we were covering the victims’ funerals and the strong emotions of the families and friends. As I reached the cemetery the first scene I came across was one of a fainted mother being carried, after having suffered a crisis at the child’s wake. I took a few shots, and while they went in search of medical assistance I tried to understand what was happening around me. As I observed what was happening all around, l was also thinking of how to work surrounded by so much pain, including the pain that I felt myself.”


“I shot this picture in North Korea while waiting to board a ship for a 24-hour cruise to the resort of Mount Kumgang, on the border with South Korea. Local North Korean authorities were preparing a departure ceremony for us, and this woman began laying down a red carpet while a soldier looked on.”


“I’m from England, and remember watching the wedding of Charles and Diana on TV as a child, so I wanted to watch this year’s Royal Wedding. It was due to start at 3am Los Angeles time, but I imagined there would be at least a few other expats who would feel enough nostalgia to want to watch it live.
I called around the handful of LA British pubs and found one that was hosting a “tiaras and pajamas” live viewing party. It sounded promising visually, so I decided to photograph it. The pub courtyard was full of people sitting at tables, facing a couple of large-screen televisions. A lot of them had coats over their pajamas, and they were either very genteel, or very sleepy. The atmosphere was a lot less raucous than I had imagined it would be. It was also very dark. Worse still, there was no difference in luminance between the people and the background – the photos just looked muddy and cluttered.

I put a flash on the camera. I was standing next to one of the TV screens facing the crowd. So I had to limit how many times I could blast the sleepy people with strong light as they watched the wedding. I saw a woman with her hair in rollers, a half-smoked cigarette in her hand, and deliberately smudged lipstick. She had easily the best costume.
I shot a few frames of her, but there were too many people in the background staring into the photo. So I crouched down, and set the camera to a longer exposure – 1/15 second – and the flash to rear curtain sync, which freezes motion at the end of an exposure. I then swiped the camera left to right as I pressed the shutter. The party lights, which had been tiny specks in the previous photos, became swishes of light. In a fortunate accident, the only things in the background which were visible were the Union Jack flag on a man’s t-shirt and a sliver of another woman’s tiara.”

E.O. Hoppé


Sam Hessamian


Ron Garan

Brice Bischoff

Brice Bischoff

Melvin Sokolsky




Jeff Bark


Mónica Denevan, Portraits from Burma


Glen Luchford



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