|Deadline: March 18th, 2011|
Now in its 47th year, the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition is an international showcase for the very best nature photography. The competition is owned by two UK institutions that pride themselves on revealing and championing the diversity of life on Earth – the Natural History Museum and BBC Wildlife Magazine.
Being accepted into this competition is something that wildlife photographers, worldwide, aspire to. Professionals win many of the prizes, but amateurs succeed, too.
Each year tens of thousands of entries are received and judged by a specially selected expert panel. The winners are announced at an awards ceremony that takes place each October at the Natural History Museum, London.
- The overall winner of the title of Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2011 will receive £10,000.
- Each adult category winner will receive £500 and each runner-up will receive £250.
- Special Award winners will receive £1,000 and each runner-up will receive £500.
- The overall winner of the title of Veolia Environnement Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year will receive £500 and attend a day’s tailored masterclass with a leading nature photographer.
- Each young category winner will receive £250 and each runner-up will receive £100.
Closing date for entries: 18 March 2011
To enter the competition, you will need:
- a valid email address
- your credit/debit card details if you are entering the Adult competition
- a broadband internet connection
How to enter
- Register for your unique entry code in the Adult or Young competition.
- Login using your unique entry code.
- Upload your images
Entry fee for the Adult competition is £20.
Entry to the Young competition is free.
1. Animals in their Environment
Images in the behaviour categories must show how the animal fits into its natural home and must convey a sense of place. Remember, the environment is as important as the animal itself, allowing you to tell a story and reveal more about your subject.
2. Behaviour: Birds
3. Behaviour: Mammals
4. Behaviour: All Other Animals
Images must capture memorable, unusual or interesting behaviour. It is crucial to show genuine behaviour: just ‘looking’ or ‘sitting’ isn’t enough. Judges will look for images with an aesthetic appeal, a unique interest value, and a dramatic action.
5. Underwater World
Images must feature marine or freshwater life taken under water. A combination of interest value and aesthetic appeal is just as important underwater as on land.
6. Animal Portraits
Portraits should capture the unique character or spirit of the animal. Images should be imaginative and convey a sense of intimacy and immediacy.
7. In Praise of Plants and Fungi
Pictures should capture the beauty and importance of plant life in its natural habitat. Judges will be looking for artistic merit and creativity rather than a simple scientific record.
8. Urban Wildlife
Pictures must show wild plants or animals in an obviously urban or suburban environment. Look for subjects on your doorstep and capture images that are unusual, poignant, beautiful or striking compositions.
9. Nature in Black and White
Judges will be looking for skilful use of the black and white medium, where pure graphic quality and a well composed image can often increase the intensity. Dodging, burning and toning are allowed. The subject can be any wild landscape, animal, plant or other living organism.
10. Creative Visions of Nature
Judges will be looking for a well-defined thought process, originality and an attempt to convey a deeper understanding of nature and wildlife through a conceptual vision of the world. Images should be surprising, artistic, perhaps even abstract or ambiguous, but nevertheless executed to exacting standards.
11. Wild Places
This is a category for landscape photographs. Judges will be looking for beautiful light, a true feeling of wildness and a sense of awe. Stitched images and panoramics are allowed.
Wildlife Photojournalist of the Year
This award is for a memorable story told in 6 images. All subjects covered by other categories in the competition are eligible, whether featuring animal behaviour or environmental issues (positive or negative). The story should work without the aid of words and will be judged on the picture quality as well as the power of the story itself.
Eric Hosking Award
This award encourages and rewards the talents of young photographers between the ages of 18 to 26. You must submit a portfolio of 10 images that you think represents your very best work.
Gerald Durrell Award for Endangered Wildlife
This important award raises awareness of endangered species through photographic excellence. Species (both animals and plants) photographed must be categorised in the 2010 IUCN Red List as critically endangered, endangered, vulnerable or near threatened at an international or national level (if the latter, please supply details). Images must be memorable and capture the unique character or spirit of the subject.
Supported by www.arkive.org
One Earth Award
Photography plays a critical role in conservation, and this award seeks to highlight conservation issues or actions. Don’t merely rely on the shock value of your subject: judges will be looking for genuine photographic merit. Don’t forget to focus on positive messages as well as negative ones. Images can be graphic or symbolic, but must be thought provoking, memorable and encourage respect or concern for our natural world.
Veolia Environnement Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year
Images must show wild animals, plants or landscapes. The judges will be looking for original, beautiful or striking shots rather than rare or exotic subjects. There are 3 age groups: 10 years and under; 11-14 years; and 15-17 years.