One of the most fascinating and largely unexplored places in the world also happens to be a place difficult for most people to visit—the depths of the ocean. But, for seasoned scuba divers, this contest is a chance to capture underwater wonders most will never see in person.
Now in its 14th year, Through Your Lens is an underwater photography competition focusing on the marvels of undersea worlds. Developed and produced by Scuba Diving Magazine, the competition drew more than 2,100 incredible entries from across the globe. This year’s winners were chosen from four categories:
- Compact Camera
Collectively they showcase a wide variety of underwater photography styles and skill. If your looking to try for next year, entries can be submitted from November 1st, 2018 until May 31st, 2019. But first, take a look at this year’s winning underwater photographs below.
Grand prize winner
The incredible US$1,000 Grand Prize-winning shot was awarded to Rodney Bursie. The photo is a stunning upside down composition of a whale calf that appears as if it’s floating above the surface of the water.
The photographer reveals, “I hope the image shares with others my take on the mystical world I find myself in each time I dip below the surface.”
The Wide-Angle category offers up some perspective-twisting treats. Alex Dawson‘s first place-winning photograph, taken off the coast of Tala Bay in Jordon, shows a diver exploring the sunken wreck of an anti-aircraft tank. After 20 years underwater the tank has been slowly colonized by a number of undersea organisms turning what was previously a weapon of war into a new foundation for incubating life. Check out second and third place below.
“At the time, it amazed me that all the necessary elements for a wonderful shot seemed to come together: Colours were vibrant, the reflections alluring, and the octopus very cooperative, as if striking a pose.”
Here’s a look at the second and third place winners for Macro.
This category has no restrictions on post-processing, but does require some kind of element to be photographed in water. The winner here went to Conor Culver who took a snap of a coconut octopus and them imagined it in a home made out of a small bottle that was found diving off the coast of Florida. While I found it interesting, I much prefer the second place winning underwater concept by Lucie Drlikova.
A newer category in the underwater competition is a focus on compact cameras. Established in 2015, this category was added in response to the growing influx of small, non-SLR digital cameras. First place in this category went to Jamie Hall‘s striking portrait of a terrifying moray eel lurking in a dark lagoon. Take a look at the second and third place winners below.