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Underwater rugby, Isis conflicts, freezing landscapes: this year’s Sony World Photography Awards winners

Written by
Matt Breen

Everyone might be a photographer these days, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s a good photographer. If you need convincing, go visit the Sony World Photography Awards at Somerset House. Each year, it consistently blows us away with its selection of jaw-dropping images taken across the world. Here are a few of this year’s winners.

Photographer of the Year – Frederik Buyckx, ‘Whiteout’ series

© Frederik Buyckx, Belgium, Photographer of the Year, Professional, Landscape, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards.

The Belgian photographer’s snowy landscape series ‘Whiteout’ bagged him the Photographer of the Year gong. This picture of a lone shepherd, taken in northern Montenegro, is enough to get you turning up the thermostat.

Architecture – Dongni, ‘Overlap - Freeway’

© Dongni, China, 1st Place, Professional, Architecture, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards.

Chinese photographer Dongni’s image of a sprawling motorway junction perfectly sums up the craziness of rapid urban growth, somehow both calm and chaotic at once.

Motion – Camilo Diaz, ‘Submerged Field’

© Camilo Diaz, Colombia, 1st Place, Open, Motion, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards.

Who knew underwater rugby was big in Colombia? Diaz’s image of the national team playing in the Junior European Championships offers a thrilling glimpse into what looks like a pretty visceral sport. 

Current Affairs & News – Alessio Romenzi, ‘We Are Taking no Prisoners’

© Alessio Romenzi, Italy, 1st Place, Professional, Current Affairs & News, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards.

Italian photographer Romenzi’s image captures a clash between Libyan fighters and Isis militants in the coastal town of Sirte, which has since been liberated from the so-called Islamic State.

Youth Photographer of the Year – Katelyn Wang, ‘On Top of the World’

© Katelyn Wang, United States of America, Youth Photographer of the Year, Youth, Beauty, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards.

Sixteen-year-old Wang took this spectacular picture while beside Lake Pehoé in Chile, saying that standing over this astounding view made her feel ‘invincible’. 

Outstanding Contribution to Photography – Martin Parr

© Martin Parr, ‘Venice, Italy, 2005’, Magnum Photos, Rocket Gallery.

It was the much-celebrated British photographer who bagged the achievement award this year for his contributions to the field. The picture above, taken in Venice, has his characteristic mixture of warmth, quirkiness and humanity. Eew, though. 

The Sony World Photography Awards exhibition runs at Somerset House until May 7.

Feeling snap-curious? Take a look at our top photography exhibitions in London

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