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Formerly Insect-Phobic Photographer Wins Bug Photographer of the Year

Over the weekend, Luminar (yes, that Luminar) unveiled the winners of the first annual Bug Photography Awards: a contest that the photo sharing software came up with in association with Buglife, Europe’s leading invertebrate charity.

Normally, a first attempt at creating a photo contest would fall pretty flat, but Luminar and Buglife pulled off an impressive call for entries. Over 5,000 images were submitted, and the winners of all 10 categories—plus the 2020 Bug Photographer of the Year, and 2020 Young Bug Photographer of the Year—are stunning.

The first grand prize and title of Bug Photographer of the Year went to Saudi Arabian photographer Mofeed Abu Shalwa who, astonishingly enough, started photographing invertebrates as a way of overcoming a childhood insect phobia. His images showed a combination of “technical skill, creativity, and dedication to his craft” that “wowed the judges,” earning him £2,500 in cash (~$3,150), and additional prizes worth £2,000 (~$2,600).

Red Palm Weevil by Mofeed Abu Shalwa | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020
Crab Spider by Mofeed Abu Shalwa | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020
Ladybug Inside a Flower by Mofeed Abu Shalwa | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020
Blue Longhorn Beetle Mofeed Abu Shalwa | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

The title of Young Bug Photographer of the Year went to 17-year-old Jamie Spensley from Solihull in the UK. Currently in his second year at college studying Creative Media, he earned the accolade (and £1,200 in prize money) by submitting this beautiful shot of a carder bee.

The image is composed of 41 separate photographs that have been focus-stacked to overcome the depth-of-field challenges inherent in extreme macro photography:

Carder Bee by Jamie Spensley | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

The two overall winners are, of course, just the tip of the iceberg. Each of the contest categories recognized a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner, with some additional Honorable Mentions thrown in for good measure.

Scroll down to see all of the 1st place finishers in the remaining 10 categories, and if you want to explore the full shortlist or learn more about the contest, head over to the Luminar Bug Photography Awards website at this link.

Arachnids

Microspur 1 by Lung-Tsai Wang | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Beetles

3…2…1.. Take off! by Christian Brockes | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Butterflies and Months

Swallowtail by Sara Jazbar | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Flies, Bess, Wasps and Dragonflies

Three Mayfly on Crested Dogstail by Peter Orr | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Snails and Slugs

Snail by David Lain | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Bug Homes

Home Sweet Home by Lee Frost | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Extreme Close-Up

Potter Wasp by Riyad Hamzi | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Aquatic Bugs

Diamond Squid by Galice Hoarau | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

All the Other Bugs

Tug of War by Reynante Martinez | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Mobile Phone

Duo by Fabio Sartori | Luminar Bug Photography Awards 2020

Image credits: All photos credited individually, used courtesy of the Luminar Bug Photography Awards

Source
PetaPixel

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