2019 Sony World Photography Awards reveal shortlist of finalists

Shortlisted candidates will compete to become the winners of Open and Youth categories

This year’s Sony World Photography Awards saw a record-breaking number of submissions. In total there were 326,000 entries in the four categories, which makes it the busiest year so far.

Hosted by the World Photography Organisation, the Awards consist of four competitions — Open, Youth, Student, and Professional. The finalists of the Open and Youth competitions were announced on Tuesday, 5 February.

The highest volume of submissions came from photographers from the UK, Italy, and the US. The UK, India, Mexico, and Korea saw the biggest increase in entry numbers.

The Open shortlist features works from ten diverse categories. The subject matter of the selected works varies greatly from portraits through landscapes to underwater shots. Apart from winning the title of Open Photographer of the Year, the winner will receive $5,000.

Untitled by Lauren Hook is in the Open Travel category — Lauren Hook / World Photography Organisation 2019 Sony World Photography Awards reveal shortlist of finalists
Untitled by Lauren Hook is in the Open Travel category — Lauren Hook / World Photography Organisation

The Youth competition is open to photographers between the ages of 12 and 19. The shortlist comprises of eight single shots reflecting the theme of Diversity. The best photographer will become Youth Photographer of the Year.

“I was astonished with the diversity of work that was entered into the Open and Youth competitions. The award represents a very democratic appreciation of photography, from tradition to emergent trends across all genres from nature to fashion,” said Rebecca McClelland, the chairwoman of this year’s Open and Youth competitions.

“The competition allows the broadest demographic to have a platform.”

Ilya Bugaev's Young Shepherd was shortlisted for the Youth Competition — Ilya Bugaev / World Photography Organisation 2019 Sony World Photography Awards reveal shortlist of finalists
Ilya Bugaev’s Young Shepherd was shortlisted for the Youth Competition — Ilya Bugaev / World Photography Organisation

The Awards are hosted by the World Photography Organisation, whose aim is to raise the level of awareness and dialogue around photography by celebrating exceptional photographers and imagery.

“The Sony World Photography Awards were created as a global platform for photographers of all abilities to showcase their work,” said Scott Gray, CEO of the World Photography Organisation.

The overall winners of the 2019 Awards will be announced in London on 17 April. All the shortlisted and winning photographs will be displayed as part of the 2019 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House in London.