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2012 Winners' Gallery

Welcome to the gallery of the 2012 winning images. We hope you enjoy them

Travel Photographer of the Year showcases the diverse world of travel photography and this is clearly evident from this year's gallery. Amongst the winners are some which are beautiful, some thought-provoking, some gritty or poignant, some controversial. All were taken by talented photographers - amateur, semi-professional and professional. And this year you can enjoy the HD videos too.

The winning images from Travel Photographer of the Year 2012 are displayed below and will be exhibited at the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) in London from 12th July to 18th August 2013.

Many of the best images do not look as good when shown as low res thumbnails. To see them in all their glory, come along to our exhibitions. But for now, to view any of the thumbnails as larger images, please click that image to open the slideshow.

Travel Photographer of the Year 2012 - The Cutty Sark Award

Winner — Craig Easton, UK

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Biography

TPOTY 2012 winner

Craig Easton

Craig Easton is very fortunate in that his work takes him all over the world shooting in some wonderful locations with great people.

Much of his work is location based, with a strong emphasis on landscape, people and cars. Recent clients include VisitBritain and the 2012 Olympics, LandRover and Barclays Bank. Personal work takes him regularly back to Scotland where he is working on a series of landscapes and portraits in the Highlands and islands and where he escapes sometimes to play a bit of golf (very badly) on the original and unique links courses around the coast.

In addition to his advertising work he has always photographed for books, travel and editorial clients. Over the past few years he has been working on the highly acclaimed '52 Weekends...' series of books with writer Brigid Benson.

What the judges thought....

The differing styles and graphic nature of Craig's two portfolios caught the judges' eyes with the stormy Scottish landscapes providing a stark contrast to the graphic images of Paris. These landscapes, from a personal project called "Dreich" (an old Scottish word to describe wet, grey, miserable, dank weather), aren't done justice when reproduced small on a screen in this gallery but the prints come alive with subtle moodiness.

Aside from being striking graphic images, the Parisian silhouettes illustrate the photographer's creativity in overcoming the restrictions faced by travel photographers. Shot into the light, the semi-silhouettes were darkened to overcome French privacy and copyright laws, when shooting in lower light was not possible because of the new restrictions on shooting the Eiffel Tower when it is illuminated.

See Cutty Sark Awards & prize page

Young Travel Photographer of the Year 2012

Winner — Samuel Fisch, USA (age 15)

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Biography

Samuel Fisch was born in New York City and has lived there his entire life. He has always been very interested in both visual and performing arts, but first became seriously focused on photography about three years ago, when he turned 12. He has taught himself about many different forms of photography by reading books and watching videos.

Although he enjoys many varieties of photography, his passion is travel photography. He loves to capture and preserve the memories of his travels and share his photographs with others. While he has been fortunate to travel outside of New York, he feels he is extremely lucky to live in New York City, as the diverse and exciting people and sights of his own backyard are a paradise for photographers.

At this point in his life he is not certain what profession he will pursue, but he knows he will always have a love for photography.

What the judges thought....

 

Samuel's images are remarkably accomplished for someone so young and inexperienced. He has captured four different elements of this story, within the Places & Faces theme, in four striking and engaging images. Again these images, shot in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, have only limited impact when viewed small online but the prints really brought them alive and they will be striking when viewed at the exhibition in 2013.

See category & prizes page

YPA Emerging Talent Award

Winners — Chase Guttman, USA (age 16)

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Biography

Despite his young age, Chase Guttman has already won several photographic awards, including the 14 years and under age group in Travel Photographer of the Year 2010. Since then his work has progressed and he is now starting to shoot photo stories rather than put together image selections from a destination.

What the judges thought....

Chase has an good eye for a picture and is showing the willingness to experiment with viewpoint and perspective which will ultimately stand him in good stead should he decide to pursue a career in photography. These images, shot in Peach Bottom, Pennsylvania at Lancaster County main horse event, show good observation and an awareness of perspective and composition. The judging panel chose him for the Emerging Talent Award as they felt this willingness to experiment would benefit from the direction, guidance and mentoring which the YPA offer.

Young Travel Photographer - 15 to 18 years old - Places & Faces

Winner — Matthew Gillooley, USA (age 18)

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Biography

Matthew Gillooley originally got into photography because his older brother loved riding mountain bikes. Three years ago Matthew's parents got him an SLR for his birthday and he's been learning ever since. Although he generally photographs weddings and portraits, he had the chance to go to Kilgoris, Kenya over the summer. He was struck by the poverty that he found there, as it was his first time going to a third world country. This trip caused his perspective to completely change. It was no longer him trying to make a 'pretty picture'; rather, he tried making photographs that resonate with the viewer.

He loves photography because he believes that photographs can tell a story. It is for this reason that he wants to work as a photojournalist; he wants to help those in need by raising awareness with his photographs.

What the judges thought....

Photographers are often reticent to interact with the people in their photographs but Matthew has obviously taken the time to communicate with the children in his pictures, taken in Kilgoris in Kenya's Rift Valley, and the results are evident. He has not only given us an insight into these people but also an insight into their lives and the environment in which they live.

Runner Up — Felicia Simion, Romania (age 18)

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Young Travel Photographer - 14 years old & under - Places & Faces

Winner — Michael Theodric, Indonesia (age 10)

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Michael Theodric is a young photographer from Tangerang, Banten Province, Indonesia. He started seriously capturing picture when he was 8 years old. "I asked my parent to buy me DSLR for my 8th birthday, and then I started to take photographs, and learn from my Daddy and his friends. I also joined a photography community and attended many workshops by local and international photographers, such as Tyler Stableford. I like photography very much because I can tell story from my pictures and make a lot of friends. I want to be a professional photographer someday."

What the judges thought....

Michael had two portfolios shortlisted in this category but this one really captured the attention of the judging panel. For a young photographer it is accomplished, for a 10 year old it is exceptionally strong, inviting you into the lives of these fishermen on Bagendit Lake in Indonesia and making you a part of their daily ritual.

Runner Up — Rebecca Deckmyn, Belgium (age 13)

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Young Travel Photographer - Places & Faces

Special Mention — Mateusz Piesiak, Poland (age 15)

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Special Mention — Nasser Albahrani, Abu Dhabi (age 18)

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Portfolio - People Watching

Winner — Philip Lee Harvey, UK

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Biography

Philip Lee Harvey completed his design degree and did his apprenticeship as a photographer before turning professional. Since then, he has worked in over 100 countries, ranging from Antarctica to the Sahara. His journeys have taken him to some of the world’s most inhospitable and demanding destinations.

He has previously featured amongst the shortlisted and runner ups in the Travel Photographer of the Year awards but this is the first time he has won a category.

Philip refers to a Robert Louis Stevenson quote that he feels neatly encapsulates his attitude to his work. “For my part I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” But more than that, Philip feels that it captures why most of us choose to travel. “It’s as much about the feeling as the destination itself. People want to have amazing experiences, want to stand in awe-inspiring places, regardless of where that experience is to be found.”

What the judges thought....

Philip has captured the groundnut harvest near Bagan in Myanmar in a set of beautiful, atmospheric images, combining his observational skills with an ability to do much more than simply document what he sees. The images draw you in and give you a sense of being part of the hard work, but also the celebration of the fruits of a year's labour and of sharing the day with these people as they return home contentedly at the end of the day.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Jan Schlegel, Germany

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Highly Commended — Anders Ryman, Sweden

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Commended — Jordi Cohen, Spain

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Best Single Image in a Portfolio - People Watching

Winner — Timothy Allen, UK

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Special Mention — Jino Lee, Malaysia

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Special Mention — Timothy Allen, UK

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Portfolio - Wild Planet

Winner — Marsel van Oosten, Netherlands

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Biography

Marsel van Oosten started his professional life working in the advertising industry. As an Art Director at various renowned agencies, he won numerous awards for his work, including one silver and two gold Lions at the International Advertising Festival in Cannes. Taking photographs began as a way for him to escape from life in the fast lane, but after a trip to Tanzania, things started getting more serious. Close encounters with the animals of the Serengeti fuelled his passion for wildlife photography, which soon became his speciality. Five years later he took the plunge and swapped his established advertising career for the precarious life of a nature photographer.

What the judges thought....

The sky is often overlooked when thinking about the wildness of this planet but what better example is there than the sky at night and the heavens filled with stars? Marsel's images were shot using small flashlights and he natural starlight to illuminate quiver trees in the Namibian desert.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Uli Kunz, Germany

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Highly Commended — Arne Strømme, Norway

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Commended — Michal Jastrzebski, Poland

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Best Single Image in a Portfolio - Wild Planet

Winner — Michal Jastrzebski, Poland

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Special Mention — Theo Bosboom, Netherlands

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Special Mention — Sebastian Beun, Belgium

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Special Mention — Sue Flood, UK

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Special Mention — Daisy Gilardini, Switzerland

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Special Mention — Chris McLennan, New Zealand

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Portfolio - Journeys

Winner — Lung Liu, Canada

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Biography

Lung Liu is a documentary and portrait photographer based in Vancouver, Canada. His work is influenced by his early childhood experiences as a refugee, when his family fled Vietnam on a small wooden boat and his subsequent experiences in a refugee camp in Macau. The sudden move to Canada at an early age has left him with a sense of wonder at how different the world can be from one place to the next.

Although he started his life in the sciences after receiving his degree in microbiology, his true calling was always in the arts. He started his journey in photography on his first road trip and, in a few short years, has won many awards and competitions as well as being published and exhibited widely.

What the judges thought....

Burning Man has been photographed many times before yet Lung has managed to produce a beautiful and artistic interpretation in four very different, yet uniquely engaging images. Burning Man is an unusual festival in which art features heavily. Lung has captured this with equally artistic imagery.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Jason Edwards, Australia

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Highly Commended — Timothy Allen, UK

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Commended — Tom McLaughlan, UK

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Commended — Rupert Sagar-Musgrave, UK

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Best Single Image in a Portfolio - Journeys

Winner — Andrew Newey, UK

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Special Mention — David Lazar, Australia

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Special Mention — Jonathan Munshi, USA

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Special Mention — Carlos Esteves, Portugal

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Special Mention — Jason Edwards, Australia

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New Talent Portfolio - Another World

Winner — Alessandra Meniconzi, Switzerland

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Biography

Alessandra Meniconzi is a graphic designer and teacher, and self-taught photographer, who has been a semi-professional photographer for some years.

"When I was twenty years old, I took my first long-distance journey. It was in Kenya. And that is where I discovered how fascinated I was with travel. And like any other traveller, I carried a camera with me in order to share my feelings as a traveller with the friends I left behind in Ticino. I pedal, walk and move alone with my equipment for months on end in the most remote locations of the world. Photography is another way to express my personality. Pressing the shutter release of the camera materializes my feelings, my sensibilities, my character, and the way I see the world. The camera is not the issue; the true factor is who’s behind it. In my images, mankind still belongs to its landscape but in a few years, those same men will be expelled from their own habitat. The modern world has even encroached into the most remote areas of our globe. My work is an invitation to reflect, which is perhaps nostalgic but it does not matter. Some of my photographs have been published in magazines, cards and calendars, and there are books featuring my work, and my dream is one day to work full-time as a photographer... "

What the judges thought....

Alessandra has captured the main elements of life for Siberia's Nenets, a nomadic people whose life is based around the reindeer herds - an often harsh environment - in a portfolio which offers pace, perspective and a personal view into the lives of these people. This portfolio mixes the gritty reality with great beauty.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Giorgio Bianchi, Italy

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Highly Commended — Catherine Sales, UK

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Commended — Dmitry Miroshnikov, Russia

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One Shot - Water

Winner — Hilde Foss, Norway

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Biography

Hilde Foss lives in Oslo, Norway, and makes a living as an independent consultant in IT and telecoms. Travelling and photography have been her favourite hobbies for more than a decade, and she tries to get a few months off to travel every year. The last few years her favourite destinations have been the polar regions, such as Svalbard and Antarctica, but she likes to look for amazing motives and situations on all continents. Her interest in photography has developed from holiday snaps to more focussed work, and most travelling is now done specifically for photography. After a few very inspiring photography workshops, she has recently started studying photography at The Open Collage of Arts in the UK.

What the judges thought....

This category was very difficult to judge because of the diversity of imagery but Hilde's image eventually came out on top because of its energy and dynamism, capturing a moment of man battling with water to great effect and leaving us uncertain as to which won. The image of this kayaker was shot at the Voss Extreme Sports Week on the Branseth River in Norway.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Timothy Allen, UK

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Highly Commended — Joshua Holko, Australia

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Commended — Kimberley Coole, UK

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Commended — Timothy Allen, UK

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Condé Nast Traveller Award - Celebration

Winner — Enrique López-Tapia, Spain

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Biography

Specializing in travel and nature photography, Enrique Lopez-Tapia has traveled to the farthest reaches of our planet. Deserts, jungles, volcanoes and mountains are among his preferences when making travel arrangements.

His work has been published in a wide range of travel and lifestyle magazines, as well as in many guidebooks and large format books. Enrique has worked with international organizations such as UNESCO and done photo shoots for various NGOs such as ActionAid and Médecins du Monde.

What the judges thought....

Enrique's portfolio of images has a lovely story telling quality combined with great emotion, drawing the viewer into the heart of the action at this Spanish festival, the "Rapa das Bestas" (Shearing of the Beasts) in Sabucedo, Spain. The portfolio gives the viewer a real sense of the action, the dynamism and buzz of this event.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Alessandra Meniconzi, Switzerland

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Commended — Lung Liu, Canada

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First Shot - Big City

Winner — Anka Sliwa, UK

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Anka Sliwa studied pedagogy and social work in Poland and also graduated with an MBA from the American InterContinental University. She currently works at the same university in London. She has been a photographic enthusiast since she was 16, when she first got to use her father’s Zenith on a trip to Italy - where she ruined five film-rolls worth of pictures! This experience triggered off a wish to learn about the correct parameters and exposition. Since then she has been taking pictures experimentally, but over the past year she attended a few photography workshops and courses. Photography is her passion; so is travelling. She likes observing people, their behaviour, emotions, expressions and everyday life activities. Anka believes that the street can be a very inspiring place for a photographer and photography allows us to creatively engage with the world around us.

What the judges thought....

How do you sum up a Big City in one shot? It's not an easy task as cities have so many characteristics. The judges chose Anka's image because it sums up the isolation amongst all the bustle and noise in a striking image which makes you stop and look.

See category & prizes page

Runner Up — Natasha Semmence, UK

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Runner Up — Nadia Townshend, UK

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Commended — Monica Chien, Taiwan

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Commended — Agne Subelyte, Switzerland

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HD Video - Travel Shorts

Joint Winner — James Morgan, UK

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Joint Winner — Marsel van Oosten, Netherlands

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Biography - James Morgan

James Morgan is a photojournalist and filmmaker. The majority of his work is focused around providing supplementary narratives to environmental and human rights policy. His images have led campaigns for The World Wildlife Fund, United States Agency for International Development and the United Nations Refugee Agency.

He is also interested in wider ethnographic work, particularly concerning the meeting of indigenous cosmologies and the natural world; typically merging funding sources in order to tackle subjects beyond the scope of conventional editorial assignments.

Biography - Marsel van Oosten

See "Wild Planet" above.

What the judges thought....

These two short films illustrate perfectly the contrasting approaches to producing an HD video with a digital stills camera. James' video is all about the concept and the story, which he has executed brilliantly. Marsel's film presented altogether different challenges and shooting a time-lapse sequence with pans and zooms is much more technically challenging. Both winners have executed these differing crafts beautifully in their engaging 60-second winning entries.

See category & prizes page

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