Sunday is the deadline for 2016’s
International Photographer of the Year Contest. As the organization describes it: POTY creates new opportunities to showcase the best photographic work and introduce leading talents to the world of contemporary photography. We celebrate creativity, ambition and support artists to develop and present their work through competition. Our annual competition is open to everyone, amateurs and professionals alike. The overall winners, category winners and those that are commended will have their work showcased to a global audience by our media partners.
Below are a selection of amateur images from the 2015 competition. You can see the full amateur gallery from all categories
here, and the full professional gallery here.
Think you’ve got the chops for this year?
Better hustle. Third Place Winner, People Category, 2015: Karolina Wawrzyniak, Water. “I am photographing my children spending summer with their grandparents, enjoyng fresh air and WATER!” International Fine Art Discovery of the Year, 2015: Alexis Gonnet, Ink in Water. “This theme I explored is meant to challenge the traditional representation of photography. This image is a melting pot of abstract, surreal, and conceptual aimed to disturb the audience by masking out the main subject and blurring the reality and understanding of the basics of photography.” Third Place Winner, People Category 2015: Yuk Kong Chung, Life of the Novice Monks. “The photograph was taken during my trip to Myanmar last December. Most of the novice monks were sent to the monastery from poor families. In the monastery, they would learn and study until after the teenagers year. They liked meeting peoples and smiled just like most of the kids expressing their happy faces.” Second Place Winner, Open Category 2015 – Photojournalism/Story: Jorge Lopez Munoz, El Clot (The Hole). “This is a project of artistic documentary and portrait photography. El Clot neighborhood has virtually disappeared, with the only remains left standing on the dockworkers’ block. Its inhabitants are mostly gypsy families who have occupied the abandoned apartments in the building. Gypsies belong to Spain’s largest ethnic minority, a minority that is very heavily socially stereotyped and according to various surveys, also the group most harshly rejected by mainstream society. This work is a reflection, a way to explore the world and understand it. I am interested in the individual, their face and architectural environment. I have always worked with human beings, with real people and their real situations, with people as photographic object. I seek an unbreakable but intimate portrait, direct but sensitive, objectively powerful but full of personal emotion, the product of commitment to people and their environment.” International Nature Discovery of the Year 2015: Eddie Dangoor, Tree Series C. “I have been photographing trees for a long time. Capturing within a single image my experience of being in a wood or forest, the sense of enfoldment, has oftentimes proved elusive: branches overhead veiling light, sky and the outer world; the random disposition of trees with trunks of diverse textures of bark; the ground beneath collecting everything that trees shed – leaves, seed pods, twigs and branches dislodged by wind, and ultimately whole trees fallen at the end of life. After much experimentation, I feel I have now arrived at one way to convey my own experience of trees.” International Open Category Discovery of the Year, 2015: Shahria Sharmin, Call me Heena. “Hijra is a South Asian term with no exact match in the English language. Hijras are people designated male or intersex at birth who adopt a feminine gender identity. Often mislabeled as hermaphrodites, eunuchs, or transsexuals in literature, hijras can be considered to fall under the umbrella term transgender, but many prefer the term third gender. Transcending a biological definition, hijras are more a social phenomenon, as a minority group having a long-recorded history in South Asia. Growing up in Bangladesh, I was influenced by predominant prejudices and stereotypes about hijras. Then, I met Heena, who opened her life to me and helped me get to know the other members of her community as the mothers, daughters, friends, and lovers that they are. Call Me Heena is my attempt to show the beauty in hijra lives, despite the challenges and discrimination they face.” Third Place Winner — Nature, Landscapes, 2015: Angiolo Manetti, Ghost from the Earth. “This photo was taken in the Upper Antelope Canyon near Page (AZ) and it’s shows the amazing effect of the sand thrown in the air and struck by the rays of the sun. The idea was to represent the soul of nature as a ghost rising from the earth.” Third Place Winner – Fine Art, Conceptual 2015: Łukasz Ułanowski, Offal. “Offal – a project relating to the value of what images are nowadays, in particular the mass media images as a visible thing which attacking us from all sides. Photographs link directly to the dictionary definition of “offal”, while retaining the metaphorical aspect, which is a kind of commentary on the condition and the value represented by the contemporary use of visual forms of communication. It is an attempt to show how easily the appropriate tool of the promotion and creation of professionalism, which is only a shell of ideas and values, can cause us to consume those images. It does not matter now what, but how and where.” First Place Winner, Fine Art – Landscapes, 2015: Emil Rashkovski, Enchanted Forest. “I am attracted by photography for more than 10 years, but I have always been fascinated by nature and its beauty. Photography is just the instrument that helps me to express the way I perceive it. Photography makes me look for beauty and creativity. I love the creative process, in which I put my own interpretation of the subject trying to express my feelings about what I see. I like to focus on the fleeting but also most beautiful moments of sunrise, sunset, night lights, starry sky. These transformations are truly magical, showing the eternal cycle when the day dies but is always born again.” Second Place Winner – People, Street 2015: A. Paul Estabrook, Subway Reflection. “Caught in reflection, inside of a reflection and amid the busy metro of Seoul, South Korea. I’m an emerging photographer and artist based southwest of Seoul, South Korea. As a Korean-American, I am deeply interested in Korean identity and the forces that drive it. When I’m not investigating Korean culture, I shoot personal documentaries and street photography.” First Place Winner – People, Children 2015: Sanghamitrai Sarkar, Enjoying the Rain Together. “Little children of village playing and enjoying in the rain with Colocasia (Bengali Kochu) leaf using it as an umbrella.” Third Place Winner — Open Category, Open Theme 2015: Peter Svoboda, Come on Boys. “I was born and live in a beautiful historical city of Kosice, Slovakia. Many years ago I was studying at art school where we focused on painting on canvas. Since a teenager I have taken photographs, starting with capture on transparency at first, was using especially B&W films and developing it myself in a dark room. More recently enjoying digital capture for its benefits. I consider myself as a passionate landscape and nature photographer, searching for those special moments and mood. I am often up in mountains and this is sometimes a good opportunity to take rare scenes. I love to shoot simple, but special scenes, conveying a mood or story. These are the shots with a value for me.” First Place Winner — People, Travel 2015: Christopher Roche, Sunning the Buddha. “The highlight of the Monlam prayer festival in Amdo region of Tibet is the ‘Sunning of the Buddha’. Here in Labrang, on a crisp February morning, the monks carried out a great thangka from their monastery and then weave their way through the crowds and across the river to the hill opposite. There they unravel it – Sunning the buddha for yet another year.” First Place Winner — Fine Art, Photomanipulation 2015: Milad Safabakhsh, The Space in Between. “There is evidence to suggest that our world and everything in it-from snowflakes to maple trees to falling stars and spinning electrons-are also only ghostly images, projections from a level of reality so beyond our own it is literally beyond both space and time. We are perceivers. We are an awareness; we are not objects; we have no solidity. We are boundless. The world of objects and solidity is a way of making our passage on earth convenient. It is only a description that was created to help us. We, or rather our reason, forget that the description is only a description and thus we entrap the totality of ourselves in a vicious circle from which we rarely emerge in our Lifetime. The Space in between.”