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GOLD WINNER, PEOPLE: Well of Death by Siddharth Kaneria. Kaneria writes, “The photograph is of Daredevil Stuntmen at “Well Of Death” performing in their car. Hundreds of spectators crowded around a circular pit to witness daredevil drivers in cars and motorcycles performing stunts in a vertical pit known as the “Well of Death.” Once a sight at festivals across northern India, the practice is now waning but that doesn’t stop festivalgoers and stuntmen from capitalizing on the few remaining Wells of Death in the country. The Photograph is one of the biggest “Well of death” which exist in India. It is said that only 6 of this kind is in practice.

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GOLD WINNER, NATURE: Extreme Panoramic Landscapes by Alex Wides. Wildes writes, “Since 2008 I’m traveling around the world looking for inspiration. It’s hard to create something unique in the infinite world of photography, there are many talents that emerge every day; that’s why I chose to customise my landscape vision with Extreme Panoramic Photography, I capture the world all around me, with fields of view like 180, 270 and 360 degrees. By the way, I constantly study new shooting and editing techniques. Today I bring photography enthusiasts with me on my photographic tours, in my workshops, and on my extreme adventures.”

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GOLD WINNER, NATURE: Extreme Panoramic Landscapes by Alex Wides. Wildes writes, “Since 2008 I’m traveling around the world looking for inspiration. It’s hard to create something unique in the infinite world of photography, there are many talents that emerge every day; that’s why I chose to customise my landscape vision with Extreme Panoramic Photography, I capture the world all around me, with fields of view like 180, 270 and 360 degrees. By the way, I constantly study new shooting and editing techniques. Today I bring photography enthusiasts with me on my photographic tours, in my workshops, and on my extreme adventures.”

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PLATINUM WINNER, NATURE: The offer by Andrea Izzotti. Izzotti writes, “While diving in Cortez Sea (Mexico) I was approached by a young sea lion bringing a sea star and inviting me to play with him.”

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PLATINUM WINNER, NATURE: Rim Ice by Jaka Ivancic. Ivancic writes, “A combination of fog, wind and freezing temperatures makes this nature art on the trees of Javostnik hill in Slovenia. It’s typical for this weather phenomenon that the ground remains brown, but the trees are totally embraced with linear ice formations.”

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PLATINUM, FINE ART: The Fisherman At Dawn by Scott Kelby. Kelby writes, “This was taken just after dawn in Guilin, China. These Coromat fisherman (as they’re known) fished these waters for many years, using the birds to retrieve the fish, until the fish in the river literally ran out.”

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PLATINUM, FINE ART: An Office With A View by Christiaan van Heijst. Van Heijst writes, “Wide angle shots taken from the cockpit of a 747, flying high above the face of the earth. Suspended between the stars and the world below.”

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OVERALL WINNER, PROFESSIONAL: Lídia Vives by Kintsugi-19. “Inspired by the millenial Kintsugi technique, this photograph represents the fragility of the human body, covering it with the traditional patterns of ancient Chinese porcelain and coating the broken pieces with gold. This gold emerges from the mask and spreads through the body, drawing lungs with its cracks. With this, it is implied that the mask protects our respiratory system to face the current threat that coronavirus represents.”

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WINNER, PEOPLE: Free Falling by Hersley-Ven Casero, Foundation University. Casero writes, “A photograph of a group of friends cooling off from the blistering sun by leaping into the ocean at Bantayan Beach, Dumaguete City, Philippines.”

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GOLD WINNER, FINE ART: Wapusk Polar Bears by Dorota Senechal. Senechal writes, “Wapusk means Polar Bear in Cree language (North American native nation). This is in North Manitoba, in winter, that I went for a unique and rare experience, when mom Polar Bears were emerging from their den for the very first time, with their young ones. This expedition in extreme cold conditions (-57° Celsius) was as difficult for the photographer as for the photography equipment. But it was also in the same time, one of the most emotional experiences of my whole life.”

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GOLD WINNER, NATURE: The Circle of Life by Ron Magill. Magill writes, “The Brazilian Pantanal is full of wildlife that thrive in its wetland environment. This caiman grabbed a fish and was in the process of repositioning it to make it easier to swallow. As he lifted his head out of the water, I hit the burst mode on my camera to capture this frame where the fish is suspended between the jaws as biting flies surround the caiman’s head while creating a nice reflection in the calm water. This happens incredibly fast and needed to be captured at a very fast shutter speed of 1/4000th of a second in order for it to be sharp while having a fast burst rate of 9 frames per second in order to catch the precise moment seen in the image.”

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GOLD WINNER, FINE ART: Arctic Treasure by Irene Amiet. Amiet writes, “Polar bears are known to be endangered due to melting sea-ice and the resulting disappearance of hunting grounds for their most important prey, bearded- and ringed- seals which give them the fat resources they need. It’s less known, however, that the most immediate threat to polar bears comes from legal hunting quota in Canada whose numbers aren’t sustainable. Inspired by the work of Ole J Liodden (Polar Bears and Humans), I took an opportunity last August to travel to Svalbard on the expedition ship MS Origo to take photos of the bears on the sea-ice to show their beauty in this melting habitat.”

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WINNER, NATURE: Beauté de Camargue by Camille Briottet. Briottet writes, “La Camargue is the region of horses. It is a very old breed whose origins are being lost. Although it is said down there that these horses were born from the foam of the sea. Unfortunately there are fewer and fewer, just a handful raised by enthusiasts. I wanted to pay tribute to these magnificent little horses in their region, in their environment.”

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PLATINUM AWARDS, SPECIAL: Alien World by Craig Bill. Bill writes, “Slightly South of Bisti Wilderness Area in New Mexico, an ancient remnant of lush, wetlands and forests in the age of dinosaurs lies desiccated and broken – The Valley Of Dreams. These are small areas were the skin of the land is torn open from erosion to reveal geologic and out of place structures and formations. And just like Bisti, it completely lacks trails and directions. On this adventure, the plan was to find and photograph the Alien Throne and surrounding features as the planet flipped the sun from one side of the horizon to the other. Even though waterfalls, rain forests, glaciers and mountains are obvious places to soak in the Earth’s energy, I have always returned to the desert – seeking the company of her more primal and subtle soul. The stoic features of the Valley of Dreams is a perfect meeting place of such a search. “Alien World” was the planned headline shot of this hike, culminating in over 442 exposures, 25 seconds each for 60 megapixel images over 6 hours to capture. The moon promised to set early setting the stage for the anticipated project. And nature did not disappoint! Truly and alien landscape.”

Source: New York Post