Photo © Mariana Rivera

1st classified

Abandoned Weather Station
by Dmitry Kokh

On a sailing trip to Chukotka and Wrangel Island, the photographer covered more than 1200 miles along the coast. One day, to shelter himself from the incoming storm, he approached a small island, Kolyuchin, a former meteorological station in the days of the Soviet Union. After seeing the strange movements in the windows of an abandoned village, he caught a glimpse of the faces of some polar bears through his binoculars! There were about twenty specimens, mostly males, who were wandering among the abandoned houses while the females remained on the sidelines with their puppies. Since it was too dangerous to land on the island, he decided to use a drone equipped with low-noise propellers to photograph the animals without disturbing them.

Runner up

9 Unique Shaped Buildings
by Dimitar Karanikolov

A series of aerial top-down photographs of 9 buildings around the world with unusual shape and rooftops. 1. Museo Archeologico Regionale Paolo Orsi | Siracusa. Italy 2. Church of St. George | Lalibela, Ethiopia 3. Bażilika Santwarju tal-Madonna tal-Karmnu | Valletta, Malta 4. National Palace of Culture | Sofia, Bulgaria 5. Hotel Azulik | Tulum, Mexico 6. Shwe Inn Thein Pagoda | Shan State, Myanmar 7. Basilica Santuario Madonna delle Lacrime di Siracusa | Italy 8. University of Catania | Italy 9. Dhamma Yazika Pagoda | Bagan, Myanmar

Highly commended

Water and Life
by Cao Ky Nhan

Vietnam is a country with a long and wide coastline, a very large and diverse system of rivers, streams, ponds and lakes. People's lives are always associated with the image of rivers, streams, ponds. Taking advantage of this, people have developed fisheries and agriculture. These professions have created a unique beauty of Vietnam.

Highly commended

Impressions of a Salt Lake
by Nilmini De Silva

It is the intent of this portfolio to demonstrate the abstract patterns of Lake Tyrrell in Victoria, Australia, as viewed from above. The author wanted to lose herelf here and capture this other-worldly landscape, a spiritual place for the indigenous Boorong people of Australia. On the surface it appears to be a parched landscape but when viewed from above, the colors and textures caused by wind and rain is a sight to behold.

Highly commended

Abstract Nature
by Dimitar Karanikolov

A series of top-down aerial photos of natural rock formations, rivers and pools that look like abstract paintings. Purposely there is no object / subject in the frame that could suggest the scale of the photo - a series of complex patterns and textures that could belong to both the macro and micro worlds.

Highly commended

U.S. Migrant Crossings Soar
by Adrees Latif

Migrant border arrests in the United States soared in 2022, with over 8,000 attempted crossings daily, the highest in two decades. In Roma, Texas, a small border town at center of the immigration wave, an average of 150 undocumented migrants are smuggled daily on rafts before surrendering. This series of drone images chronicles their perilous journey across the Rio Grande river into the United States from Mexico.


Blooming Endlessly
by Mike Tesselaar

Every year, around mid-April, The Netherlands is colored by its many tulip fields. Besides bright colors and good smells, these fields are organized in rows, with a line every 1,80m, creating a perspective line-play from the air. By removing the horizon from the equation, these fields and lines become endless. Twisting, turning, bending; interesting from all angles. An abstract masterpiece co-created by people and nature combined.


by Alex Visbal

This is Corabastos, Bogota's main vegetables and fruit market. It comes to life very early in the morning before sunrise with tons of colors, textures and characters. Before Covid, street food posts under colorful umbrellas used to mingle with the incredible palette of suppliers, vendors, customers, distributors, etc. Everything has changed with Covid regulations, with sanitary posts everywhere, traditional "umbrella street food posts" removed, a lot more checks, sanitation and security. It is not back yet to its full operation but chaos still reigns in Corabastos.


Trees From Above
by Dwight Hiscano

Trees From Above is a collection of black and white images of trees from an unlikely view- from directly overhead- made with a drone using snow as a white backdrop. The trees have been removed from their usual context and portrayed as if they were photographed in a giant studio. The images reveal familiar characteristics that we are used to seeing and admiring: grace, power, femininity, masculinity, symmetry and balance- but from an entirely new perspective. Additionally, some of the images bear a striking resemblance to the veins and arteries of the Human respiratory system, a fitting reminder of the importance of trees and their role as the “lungs of the Earth.”


While Standing my Ground
by Rima Maroun

2020 was the beginning of Covid-19: a time of fear, uncertainty, separation and radical change. At the start of the pandemic the photographer had to spend more than a month confined to a complex far from her home. While the world was idling with all the chaos of uncertainties around, the safest place for the author was outside, in the fresh air, where she could connect straight to earth and where she started this pictures series. In August 2020, when Beirut explosion occurred, the COVID became minimal in the face of this new disaster. The photographer ended the series with snapshots of her city, clinging to whatever was left of it and reminding herself that only the earth was her stable ground.


Blok Beograd
by Sebastian Bühler

Novi Beograd is considered one of Serbia’s most ambitious large-scale urban development projects in the post-war era. On an area of approximately 4,000 hectares, the redesign of this Belgrade district provided an opportunity for developing a constructed urban morphology which wasn't constrained by an already existing naturally developed urban core. The district was to be designed in a modern way, which is why Brutalism, that had been emerging since the 1950s, was chosen for both the representative government buildings and the residential homes. Thus, the architectural cityscape of Novi Beograd is characterized by rough, gray concrete walls, that push themselves like massive walls in front of one’s eyes and rise seemingly endless into the air.


Hidden Patterns in Arctic Ice
by Tom Schonhoff

The springtime breakup of fast ice opens up a maze of passages that give small ships access to Svalbard's deep fjords. The pattern only reveals itself from high above, a blend of textures and shapes completely hidden from view at sea level. These are the hunting grounds where polar bear finds the unsuspecting seals they depend upon as food. Slipping silently under the water to swim beneath a floating sheet of ice, they emerge a little closer to their prey and dive again, using the pattern of broken ice like stepping stones until they burst from the water right next to the unsuspecting seal. This frozen seascape is key to the survival of polar bears, and stunningly beautiful when seen from high above.


Ice Universes
by Gabriel Gumucio

A series of aerial views of fleeting ice. Each picture triggers different images, thoughts and emotions in the viewer. In a painterly effort to mimic the night sky, the melting ice on a lake takes the shape of inverted constellations, nebulae and black holes. A drifting skiff trapped in the ice seems to float in weightlessness.


The Power of Lava
by Fran Arnau

It was 3:10 pm on September 19, 2021 on La Isla Bonita. A loud noise gave way to an explosion and thus began what would have been the longest volcanic eruption. The Palmeros had to stay more than 90 days with their hearts in a fist waiting for the end of the eruption. As of today, the volcano is considered to be at a standstill, but nothing is totally certain. There were many houses and material properties lost, memories of life and family histories. At least, no human life was lost because of the eruption. This serie tries to summarize what has meant the volcano eruption in La Palma, focusing on El Paso village.


Rare Earth
by Henrique Murta

This series is a collection of visions. They are mostly “super” panoramas, some of which composed of more than 100 photos. One of the main character is the light, reflected from the surface of a certain planet. It is a rare one, one you could only dream of: the planet Earth. The lands look elegant, the water assumes multiple forms: it floats as cotton-like flakes under the plain blue sky, or it elegantly slides down over the ground surface. It can also fall free, endlessly. And when it finally finds a way to rest, it creates a blue or greenish paradise. All around it, that strange thing called life is flourishing. This one beautiful planet is quite alive itself: it changes shapes, colours, temperatures. You look around, you see motion. You close your eyes, motion is what you hear.


Drone Portraits
by Dimitar Karanikolov

A series of aerial "portraits". Naturally, when the photographer first started doing aerial photography he wanted to ”fly” as high as possible and capture majestic landscape panoramic views. Then, he realized that flying even several meters above ground is enough to give you a completely unorthodox perspective of the object/subject to be photographed. Nature or urban patterns sometimes look so abstract from above that you need a person in the frame in order to have a sense of scale. Even a very little figure - "2 pixels" - in the centre of a vast landscape would make the photo much more exciting.


Cranberries Harvest
by Paolo Nigris

This is a series of images captured from a drone during the harvest of cranberries in October, in Cape Cod. The cranberry harvest typically falls in September and October. It's during this time that the bogs are flooded to aid in the process. The growers then use water reels, nicknamed “eggbeaters”, to churn the water and loosen the cranberries from the vine. Because cranberries contain air chambers, they float, making them much easier to collect. From there, they’re corralled together, and then loaded into trucks.


La Palma Eruption: Aftermath
by Enrico Pescantini

The impressive eruption of volcano Cumbre Vieja hit the island of La Palma at the end of 2021. For 3 months the lava river destroyed over 3000 buildings, 90 kilometers of roads and endless hectares of banana plantations, leaving more than 2000 people homeless. The landscape was completely changed by a 15-meters layer of lava rock, and by thousands of tons of volcanic ash, that covered the land with a grey blanket. The houses that survived are often cut off from the rest of the island, leaving them isolated in a black smoking desert. A breathtaking and terrible show of strength of Mother Nature.


4 m2 Freedom
by Andrius Repsys

Even though in our society usually prison represents a place of deprivation of liberty, it seems to correspond to a desire for flight and symbolize freedom in this series of photographs taken from above. Notwithstanding prisons, as institutions, are usually regarded as means of public protection where prisoners are to be treated as misfits, in this series the axiom is overturned. Indeed, we can see small human figures that make up only the smallest part of the picture and are followed by elongated titanic shadows - their souls that are larger than themselves. The shadows depict their desire to be free and show prisoners’ thoughts of freedom that cannot be imprisoned between walls or in people's bodies.


Ukraine, a Tragic New Skyline
by Claudio Locatelli

February 24, 2022 Ukrainian normality is disrupted by a large-scale war. The skies are closed, the airspace becomes military: taking a photo from above becomes an exception. Vehicles pass by destroyed buildings, scattered ammunition, corpses... The new city skylines are pain and destruction. A series extract from 88 days of reportage along the north-northeast front, over the areas and villages of Kiev, Chernihiv and Kharkiv.