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News & Insight

National Geographic Travel Photographer Of The Year 2017 Winners Are Moving

By Holly Roa on August 2nd 2017

Many an aspiring photographer has dreamt of the day they could see their work in the pages of a National Geographic magazine. Being 2017, the concept of a ‘page’ isn’t necessarily physical, and National Geographic presents photographers the chance for a dream come true every year with their Travel Photography Of The Year competition. They have just revealed the winners for 2017 and there are some stunners in there. Here are some of our favorites:


This image is such a perfect collision of preparedness and circumstance that it’s almost unfair to the rest of the competitors. About his true once-in-a-lifetime shot, entitled “The Power Of Nature,” the grand prize winning photographer Sergio Tapiro Velasco says:

“A powerful eruption illuminates the slopes of Mexico’s Colima Volcano on December 13, 2015. I was in the town of Comala when I suddenly saw incandescence above the volcano’s crater and started shooting. Seconds later, a powerful volcanic explosion expelled a cloud of ash particles and a massive lightning bolt illuminated most of the dark scene. It was one of the most exciting moments of my life.”


Another volcano shot, “Mt, Bromo,” made the honorable mentions with its interesting color palette and light, this one by Reynold Dewantra

“Mount Bromo is a small but active volcano on East Java, Indonesia. On January 17, 2016, I was nearby when an increase in seismic activity triggered an alert. This photo was taken from the patio of a local hotel, where I was waiting with my camera. Just as the volcano erupted, the ashes seemed to glow with light. This photo is very special to me—a rare eruption of Mount Bromo with excellent lighting.”

Taking third place in the “people” category, Rodney Burseil captured this unexpected underwater surfing image entitled “Under The Wave.”

“I recently traveled to Tavarua, Fiji, with professional surfer Donavon Frankenreiter and captured this image at Cloudbreak. The usual surf shots have all been done, so we decided to get creative and looked for new angles and perspectives.”

Receiving an honorable mention in “people,” “Bridging Generation” by Jobit George has composition and color palette working in its favor on top of being a sweet moment.

“A father and son dressed in traditional white clothing sit at a mosque in New Delhi, India, under a blue sky on Eid al-Fitr, the conclusion of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. This photo shows the beautiful bond between two generations.”

Norbert Fritz expertly positioned himself to capture the colors and lines in a massive German library in “Levels Of Reading” and took first place in the “cities” category.

“Natural light fills the modern interior of the city library in Stuttgart, Germany. With its stark white floors, open spaces, and large windows, it provides a unique atmosphere to broaden your knowledge.”


In second place in that same category, Andy Yeung’s “Walled City #8” gives us an interesting aerial perspective.

“An aerial view of Whampoa Garden, Hong Kong, reveals its densely packed buildings. I drew inspiration from the Kowloon Walled City—once the densest place on Earth–which was demolished nearly three decades ago. Hundreds of houses were stacked on top of each other and there was very little open space. The Kowloon Walled City may be gone, but its legacy remains. It exists in Hong Kong’s modern architecture and stacked apartments, which have been built to accommodate the masses.”

On top of the winners and honorable mentions, there is quite a collection of imagery that’s worth a look, like Sina Falker’s colorful “Floating Market.”

“Early in the morning before sunrise, up to a hundred boats meet at the Lok Baintan Floating Market in Indonesia. It is one of the oldest markets in Asia, where the inhabitants of the region still keep up their 500-year-old tradition of trading from wooden boats. The female traders sell products like fresh fruit, vegetables, cakes and meat to other women for later resale while their non-motorized boats are floating down the river.”

Have a look for yourself at all of the photos on National Geographic’s Photographer Of The Year 2017 feature!


Seattle based photographer with a side of videography, specializing in work involving animals, but basically a Jill of all trades.
Instagram: @HJRphotos

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Koma Thornton

    where are they moving to?

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  2. Mircea Blanaru

    Some image are really nice and others (the ones with the volcanic eruptions) are just impressive. I found nothing nice in taking photos of the disasters… It is like the footage from the Rogue One where the Death Stars is destroying the own Imperial base in a massive and really impressive explosion and not thinking about the Star Dust and her companion awaiting the certain death after completing their mission…

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