Raindrop refresher © András Mészáros
Entries have now opened for the Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2010 competition. Entries are to be submitted via the Natural History Museum website with the deadline set for 5th March 2010. There are a total of eleven adult categories and four junior categories.
From emotive images of endangered species to awe-inspiring shots of the wildest of places on Earth, the global search for this year’s best wildlife pictures has begun.
Entries to Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year, the world’s most prestigious wildlife photography competition, open on 12 January and close on 5 March 2010. Owned by the Natural History Museum and BBC Wildlife Magazine, the Competition is now in its 46th year and showcases the very best photographic images of nature, providing an insight into the drama, beauty and importance of life on Earth.
The Competition is open to professional and amateur photographers of all ages. It includes 11 adult categories spanning everything from Creative Visions of Nature and Urban Wildlife to Animal Portraits and interesting Animal Behaviour. In addition the Competition has four special awards as well as three junior categories. The two overall winners, Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year and Veolia Environnement Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year, will be selected from the Competition category winners.
New for Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2010 is an exciting new award – Wildlife Photojournalist of the Year. This award allows photographers to submit six pictures to tell a memorable story. All subjects covered in other categories in the competition are eligible, whether featuring animal behaviour or environmental issues from a positive or negative perspective. The visual narrative must work without the aid of words and will be judged by the picture quality in tandem with the power of the story itself.
The 2009 Competition attracted a record 43,135 entries from 94 countries. Highlights from the stunning selection of successful images include András Mészáros’ Raindrop refresher, which won the Behaviour: All Other Animals category. The category celebrates photographs that highlight fascinating or seldom witnessed behaviour of animals that are not mammals or birds. This beautiful image is a perfect example of how macro-photography reveals a world the eye would otherwise never see. Danny Green’s Starling wave also shone through as a winner of the Nature in Black and White category. Photographs in this category must display an artistic use of the black and white medium, featuring a wild landscape or creature.
Photographers can enter the 2010 Competition online on the Natural History Museum
website for a flat fee of £20. All pictures must be in digital format – scans of transparencies or originally captured digital images. As well as the coveted title of Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year, adult entrants stand to win an impressive £10,000 prize or up to £1,000 for a category win. Entry is free for the three junior categories. The overall winner of the Veolia Environnement Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year title receives £500 and a day’s workshop with a professional wildlife photographer. Category winners receive £250.
All winning and commended photographers will have their images showcased in an international exhibition that debuts at the Natural History Museum, London in October 2010 before touring venues across the world. Winning images are also featured in a special supplement to the November issue of BBC Wildlife Magazine as well as a hardback commemorative portfolio.
Mark Carwardine, chair of the judging panel, zoologist, writer and photographer said, "Now in its 46th year, the Competition has become the international measure for great wildlife photography. We’ve made several exciting changes to the Competition this year, including the introduction of a brand new special award, called Wildlife Photojournalist of the Year, for the best portfolio of six striking pictures that tell a powerful story. People always ask me how you win. The answer is simple – originality. The judges are looking for something that stops them in their tracks, something really creative, fresh and surprising.
Winning images from the Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition 2009 are on display at the Natural History Museum until 11 April 2010. To cater for its increasing popularity, the exhibition is showcased in the Museum’s largest gallery, with photographs exhibited on a larger scale than ever before. New features include an audio guide allowing visitors to hear comments from photographers and judges about the images with detailed audio descriptions of 30 images and the exhibition space especially for visually impaired visitors.