The Stunning Photos of The Sony World Photography Award Winners

Three winners were announced for ‘India National Award’ of the Sony World Photography Competition.

1st Place- Nikunj Rathod
2nd Place- Avishek Das
3rd Place- Prabha Jayesh

The three stunning black and white photographs were selected among more than 4,000 entries from India.

Nikunj Rathod

“Reckless Kids” (Photo: Nikunj Rathod/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Rathod's winning image "Reckless Kids" is an action filled image of kids playing, captured on at the Mahim bay in Mumbai.

Rathod (age 29) is an independent filmmaker and an award-winning photographer based in Mumbai. He enjoys working within the mediums of film and photography, and was awarded 1st place in the 2016 India National Award.

Talking about his winning image, Rathod says:

This image was taken in March 2016 at Mahim bay which is in Mumbai. I was wandering around that area and was waiting for the evening to come to take some silhouette photographs. After a while, some noise nearby by caught my attention. The noise was quite chaotic. From a distance, I saw a group of kids playing around some junkyard cars, screaming, throwing bottles at each other, fighting. It's only when I went closer that I realised how reckless they were!

Commenting about his success, Rathod continues:

Last year's achievements in the Sony World Photography Awards [2nd place India National Award and shortlisted in Open People category] not only opened up new opportunities, but has also put me on the map of the photographic world. This year's achievement came like an unexpected surprise!! I'm grateful to World Photography Organisation and Sony for believing in my work and giving me such life changing experiences!

Avishek Das

“The Faith of Life” (Photo: Avishek Das/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Das’ photo was part of a documentary based on an Indian Culture / Ritual called ‘Gajan’. The Hindu festival is celebrated mostly in the rural parts of West Bengal. The festival spans around a week, starting at the last week of Chaitra and continuing till the end of the Bengali year until mid-April.

In different parts of West Bengal, the rituals are celebrated with different traditions like playing with dead bodies and human skulls. According to the villagers, the rituals have been performed for more than a hundred years.

Prabha Jayesh

Untitled (Photo: ©Prabha Jayesh/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Motion and emotion go hand in hand to me while I'm shooting on the streets. With every action, I see a reaction and it engulfs me in a blanket of varied emotions. I spotted this and wanted to capture an in-between shot, so that it creates a mystery around the moment.

The Sony World Photography Awards is the world’s largest photography competition, and the National Awards is a global program open to photographers of all abilities. It aims to find the best single photograph taken by a local photographer in 66 countries.

Here are 10 of the best of them, spanning themes of portraits, wildlife and scenery

Alessandra Meniconzi- Switzerland

“Flamingoes” (Photo: Alessandra Meniconzi/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Wildlife

Meniconzi captured the stunning image of a flock of flamingoes in the shallow water of Walvis Bay on the Namibian Coast, in the Summer of 2016.

Alexander Vinogradov- Russia

“Mathilda” (Photo: Alexander Vinogradov/ Sony World Photography Awards)

1st Place, Open, Portraits

Inspired by the film Leon the Professional, the image tries to recapture the wonder of the performance by the lead actor, Natalie Portman. Model Anastasiya Marinina.

Camilo Diaz- Colombia

“Submerged Field” (Photo: Camilo Diaz/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Motion

Everyday aims towards a collective goal. The Colombian national team is immersed in white, grey, and black, fighting together for the ultimate position. With accredited prestige, an invitation was sent to participate in the European Junior Championship as a guest team. Ana Maria and her team are constantly fighting, pushing their lungs to the limit, and transforming their everyday lack of resources to an idea of opportunity. The volume of water suggests a calm, while the surface gives constant chaos. It is in this scenario that the South American team is named youth world champion winners in Norway.

Constatinos Sofikitis- Greece

“Halloween Protagonists” (Photo: Constantinos Sofikitis/World Photographer Awards)

Winner: Open, Street Photography

Sofikitis captures an image of a man dressed as The Joker from the Batman film franchise, on Halloween in New York City.

Hiroshi Tanita- Japan

(Photo ©Hiroshi Tanita/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Nature

The boundary line between blue and white, ice and snow which appeared in the pond in winter.

Jianguo Gong- China

“Tai Chi” (Photo: Jianguo Gong/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Culture

Wuhan city in Hubei Province, the Yangtze River, where more than 1,300 people practicing taijiquan.

Lise Johansson- Denmark

(Photo: Lise Johansson/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Enhanced

The series ‘Hearth’ explores what it means to be at home. The inspiration for the work came from the personal experience of Johansson returning home after many years of living abroad and realising that he had lost the warm sense of belonging he once had.

Ralph Gräf- Germany

“Gassing up at Roys” (Photo: Ralph Gräf/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Travel

Roy's Cafe, gas station and motel in Amboy, California. Part of the series Roadside America. This photo was taken at the Historic Route 66.

Sergey Dibtsev- Russia

(Photo: Sergey Dibtsev/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Still Life

Using paper and fabric, Dibtsev created this set and photographed it in Black and White. Dibtsev won first place in the ‘Still Life’ category.

Tim Cornbill- UK

“Concrete Circle” (Photo: Tim Cornbill/ Sony World Photography Awards)

Winner: Open, Architecture

Having just arrived in Berlin on a bright summer day, my wife and I decided to take a morning walk along the River Spree. We soon came across a large concrete building, and I was immediately struck by its geometry and scale. Across the river, I positioned myself for a single point perspective and waited for the right moment to capture it. A couple came into the viewfinder and I noticed the cyclist out of the corner of my eye. I waited for them to move into the frame and hit the shutter to try and balance the composition.