20 powerful, award-winning photos that will change the way you see the world

David Nam Lip Lee/Siena International Photo Awards‘Kid With Hand Crafts’ by David Nam Lip Lee.

Every year, the Siena International Photo Awards brings together the best photographers from around the world to share their images of some of the most beautiful, striking settings on Earth. The winner receives €1,500 (about $US1,750) worth of photography equipment and the esteemed Pangea Prize.

The images range from stunning landscapes to subtle portraits and dramatic encounters in the animal kingdom in categories such as “Splash of Colours,” “Sports in Action,” and “Fascinating Faces and Characters.”

The 2018 contest received 48,000 submissions from 156 countries. Here are 20 of the winners.

Third place, Splash of Colours: “Playground” by Ugo Galassi

“The art of regeneration is an urban renewal project through public art and design. ‘Playground’ is a public basketball court located in Alessandria (Italy) designed by the Italian artist GUE. Public art is a response to urban degeneration. It can contribute to civic identity, has educational value, promotes social change, and encourages economic development. It is a way to transform a space into a place.”

Second place, Splash of Colours: “Game of Colours” by Anurag Kumar

Anurag Kumar/Siena International Photo AwardsNandgaon, Uttar Pradesh, Indoa.

“The Holi Festival is a yearly Indian celebration announcing the arrival of spring, with a colourful atmosphere that radiates love and happiness.”

First place, Splash of Colours: “Floating Market” by Sina Falker

“Early in the morning before sunrise up to a hundred boats meet at the colourful Lok Baintan Floating Market in Indonesia. It is one of the oldest markets in Asia where the inhabitants still trade from traditional wooden boats.”

Third place, Fascinating Faces and Characters: “Yi Ethnic Elder” by Xuejun Xia

Xuejun Xia/Siena International Photo AwardsMeigu Village, Sichuan Province China.

“Wuqi Manuo is a respected elder who lives in the village of Meigu in the mountainous area of Dalaing. He is the head of the Yi ethnic community and occupies a prominent position in his community.”

Second place, Fascinating Faces and Characters: “Yamea” by Tariq Zaidi

Tariq Zaidi/Siena International Photo AwardsBrazzaville, Republic of the Congo.

“Yamea, 58, who has been a ‘Sapeur’ for half a century, brings colour and joie de vivre to his community. He has nine children and works as a bricklayer. His favourite item of clothing is his hat. La Sape, Société des Ambianceurs et des Personnes Élégantes (Society of Ambiance Makers & Elegant People) is a fashion subculture in the cities of Kinshasa (DRC) and Brazzaville (Republic of the Congo). Someone who follows La Sape is known as a Sapeur.”

First place, Fascinating Faces and Characters: “Kid With Hand Crafts” by David Nam Lip Lee

“In Ethiopia, the kids of the Suri tribe are being over-protected by their families. Imagine these metal handcrafts as a jail with a Suri kid locked inside. Young kids are the hope and inheritors of the Suri culture, but the over protection will marginalize the new generation from the world.”

Third place, The Beauty of Nature: “Travellers” by Mariusz Potock

“A group of Chinstrap Penguins (Pygoscelis Antarctica) is resting on an iceberg. When sailing Antarctic waters you will often see different types of icebergs. Some of these floating islands are great resting places for hunting penguins who can travel many kilometers, before jumping back into the icy water.”

Second place, The Beauty of Nature: “Migration” by Khalid Alsabt

Khalid Alsabt/Siena International Photo AwardsDesert of Dahana, Saudi Arabia.

“In the desert of Dahana, in the center of Saudi Arabia, Bedouins migrate with camels from place to place, searching for food and water. I took this picture while a group of nomads was passing us with their camels, creating beautiful shadows in a peaceful atmosphere.”

First place, The Beauty of Nature: “El Calbuco” by Francisco Negroni

“This photograph was taken during a violent night eruption of the Calbuco volcano in the Lagos region, Chile. An incredible dirt storm wraps the fumarole of the erupting volcano.”

Third place, Sports in Action: “Too Many Skaters” by Dean Mouhtaropoulos

“Sverre Lunde Pedersen of Norway competes in the 10,000m Men’s All-around Race, on day three of the ISU European Speed Skating Championships 2017, held at the Thialf Stadium in Heerenveen, Netherlands.”

Third place, Sports in Action (tied): “The Light Fantastic” by Alex Livesey

“Athletes compete in the Men’s 10,000 meters final at Hampden Park during day nine of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.”

Second place, Sports in Action: “Matador de Toros” by Luis Henry Agudelo Cano

“The Spanish ‘rejoneador’ (bullfighter on horseback), Andy Cartagena, in La Macarena de Medellín ‘Plaza de Toros’, is being run over by a bull.”

First place, Sports in Action: “Reflection Pole Vault” by Ajuriaguerra Saiz Pedro Luis

“The pole vaulter makes his final jump, decisive to proclaim himself the winner of the event. The moment is captured in the reflection generated by the intense rains on the ground.”

Third place, Animals in their Environment: “Sperm Whale Herd” by Tony Wu

“The sperm whales pictured here had just emerged from milling around in a gigantic cluster, with many of the whales defecating to such an extent that the water was opaque with secretions. This scene was part of a large, multi-day aggregation comprising hundreds, perhaps thousands of whales.”

Second place, Animals in their Environment: “The Hunt” by Shivang Mehta

Shivang Mehta/Siena International Photo AwardsRanthambore National Park, India.

“A young and inexperienced tiger cub attempts to hunt a chital (spotted deer) in Ranthambore National Park, India; but the chital turned out to be too big for this young cub. I captured the moment when the tiger cub was struggling to get the prey down, as his siblings and mother were watching from a distance.”

First place, Animals in their Environment: “Facing Reality” by Amos Nachoum

Amos Nachoum/Siena International Photo AwardsPleneau Island, Antarctic Peninsula.

“A leopard seal got into a lagoon just before low tide. The seal was hiding, waiting to ambush young penguins as they got closer. When a penguin got close enough, the seal moved extremely fast and caught the penguin by its feet dragging it to the open water. I was following parallel to the action. The seal released the penguin twice and the terrified penguin succeeded in escaping, but the seal continued chasing after it, and on the third attempt, drowned the penguin and devoured it.”

Third place, Architecture and Urban Spaces: “Prada” by Matt Portch

“This picture is from the ‘Lost America series’ and shows a quiet stillness in a forgotten landscape that is somehow ‘on-pause.’ Spaces appear frozen in time, their inhabitants, absent or long since departed. Ardently stagnant in their appearance, the images aim to unlock a moment of reflective contemplation and instill a melancholic feeling of familiarity.”

Second place, Architecture and Urban Spaces: “Henningsvær Football Field” by Misha De-Stroyev

Misha De-Stroyev/Siena International Photo AwardsHenningsvær, Lofoten Islands, Norway.

“The football field of Henningsvær, in the beautiful Lofoten Islands in Norway, is considered to be one of the most amazing football fields in Europe, and maybe even in the world.”

First place, Architecture and Urban Spaces: “Toy Houses” by Fyodor Savintsev

“This picture of some Russian dachas near the city of Arkhangelsk is interesting thanks to the intense contrast between the colours of the houses and the white snow covering the Russian town.”

PHOTO OF THE YEAR: “Battle Victim” by K M Asad

“In Cox’s Bazar, Asmat Ara looks clearly traumatized after the recent violence which took place in Myanmar, on September 6th, 2017. The previous night she had entered Tenkhali Rohingya refugee camp with her family from Kumar Khali, Myanmar Rohingya state. According to the UNHCR, more than 646,000 Rohingya refugees have fled from Myanmar since August 25th, 2017, most of them trying to cross the border to reach Bangladesh.”

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