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Our World Underwater 2014

Best of Show by SUMER
Best of Show

PHOTOGRAPHER
SUMER VERMA

CATEGORY
Wide Angle Unrestricted
1st Place

The Our World Underwater international underwater photography and video competition has become known as the "Superbowl" of underwater imaging events. The competition celebrates and highlights both art of underwater photography as well as the beauty of the ocean.


This year the  panel of judges went through thousands of images and videos taken by novice to professional photographers and videographers from around the world.


$50,000 in prizes were awarded to the winners, who represented more than 15 countries.  Congratulations to Sumer Verma who won Best of Show for his 1st place image from the Wide Angle Unrestricted category.


Winners were announced live on stage during the Our World Underwater film festival in Chicago (February 14 & 15, 2014), and will be published by supporting media partners worldwide. You can enjoy the winning images below.

Winners
Macro Traditional
Gold
I love Sonia! by Michele Davino (Italy)
Michele Davino
Italy

"I love Sonia!"
Location: Elba Island, Italy
Silver
Battle by Shane  Gross (Canada)
Shane Gross
Canada

"Battle"
Location: Eleuthera, Bahamas
Bronze
platvis by Luc Rooman ()
Luc Rooman

"platvis"
Location: Holland
Macro Unrestricted
Gold
Jellyfish Nausithoe punctata by Fabien Michenet (French Polynesia)
Fabien Michenet
French Polynesia

"Jellyfish Nausithoe punctata"
Location: 3 miles off the coast off Tahiti Island by night
Silver
Genesis  by Jeffrey de Guzman (Philippines)
Jeffrey de Guzman
Philippines

"Genesis "
Location: Anilao Batangas Philippines
Bronze
Juvenile Pike by Anders Salesjö (Sweden)
Anders Salesjö
Sweden

"Juvenile Pike"
Location: Tolken, Ulricehamn, Sweden
Honorable Mention
Molly Miller Blennies by Judy Townsend ()
Judy Townsend

"Molly Miller Blennies"
Location: Blue Heron Bridge, West Palm Beach, Florida
Wide Angle Traditional
Gold
jellyfish by hani bader (Bahrain)
hani bader
Bahrain

"jellyfish"
Location: Kingdom of Bahrain
Silver
Jellyfish dream by Adriano Morettin (Italy)
Adriano Morettin
Italy

"Jellyfish dream"
Location: Gulf of Trieste, Northern Adriatic Sea, Italy.
Bronze
Godzilla by filippo borghi ()
filippo borghi

"Godzilla"
Location: galapagos is.
Honorable Mention
SUNSET SHARK by Vincent Truchet (French Polynesia)
Vincent Truchet
French Polynesia

"SUNSET SHARK"
Location: FRENCH POLYNESIA
Wide Angle Unrestricted
Gold
A JOURNEY BEGINS by SUMER VERMA (India)
SUMER VERMA
India

"A JOURNEY BEGINS"
Location: LAKSHADEEP ISLANDS
Silver
Baitball by Todd Bretl (United States)
Todd Bretl
United States

"Baitball"
Location: Isla Mujeres, Mexico
Bronze
Rio Negro Botos #1 by David Salvatori (Italy)
David Salvatori
Italy

"Rio Negro Botos #1"
Location: Rio Negro, Amazonas - Brasil
Honorable Mention
Popeye by Sam Cahir ()
Sam Cahir

"Popeye"
Location: North Neptune Islands, South Australia
Honorable Mention
Blue whale descent by Allison Vitsky Sallmon (United States)
Allison Vitsky Sallmon
United States

"Blue whale descent"
Location: Offshore California/Mexico border
Compact Cameras
Gold
tadpoles by Bert Willaert (Belgium)
Bert Willaert
Belgium

"tadpoles"
Location: Lovendegem, Belgium
Silver
Safe haven by Patty Woo ()
Patty Woo

"Safe haven"
Location: Lembeh
Bronze
Relax by Jim Chen (Taiwan)
Jim Chen
Taiwan

"Relax"
Location: Tulamben, Bali
Commercial, Conceptual & Fashion
Gold
Temple of of the Sun by Shawn Heinrichs (United States)
Shawn Heinrichs
United States

"Temple of of the Sun"
Location: Tonga
Silver
Eagle Hunt by Conor Culver (United States)
Conor Culver
United States

"Eagle Hunt"
Location: Little Cayman
Bronze
Raining Diamonds by Shawn Heinrichs (United States)
Shawn Heinrichs
United States

"Raining Diamonds"
Location: Tonga
Categories
PHOTOS
Macro Traditional

Any underwater image of a 7x5 inch or smaller picture area. The "Traditional" divisions allow for the adjustment of brightness, contrast, color, and sharpness only. Cropping, cloning, and other digital manipulation is not allowed in this category. This restriction on digital manipulation will enable people who are not as savvy at Photoshop to compete on more-or-less even ground as those with more experience. It also highlights composition and lighting skills by not allowing cropping and cloning. Before selecting winning entries, we reserve the right to audit your original RAW or JPG files. Our judges are digital photography experts, so please do not submit cropped or manipulated entries in this category.

Macro Unrestricted

Any underwater image of a 7x5 inch or smaller picture area.The "Unrestricted" divisions have no such rules regarding digital manipulation. Anything goes, but as we are not running a digital manipulation contest, you should exercise care in the decisions that you make.

Wide Angle Traditional

Underwater images larger than a 7x5 inch picture area. The "Traditional" divisions allow for the adjustment of brightness, contrast, color, and sharpness only. Cropping, cloning, and other digital manipulation is not allowed in this category. This restriction on digital manipulation will enable people who are not as savvy at Photoshop to compete on more-or-less even ground as those with more experience. It also highlights composition and lighting skills by not allowing cropping and cloning. Before selecting winning entries, we reserve the right to audit your original RAW or JPG files. Our judges are digital photography experts, so please do not submit cropped or manipulated entries in this category.

Wide Angle Unrestricted

Underwater images larger than a 7x5 inch picture area. The "Unrestricted" divisions have no rules regarding digital manipulation. Anything goes, but as we are not running a digital manipulation contest, you should exercise care in the decisions that you make.

Compact Cameras

Underwater images of all kinds, taken by point 'n shoot, non-SLR digital cameras. In this category, no entries from scanned slides or digital SLRs will be accepted. Although there exist many great underwater images taken by point 'n shoot cameras, it is often difficult for them to compete with SLRs when it comes to image quality. In this category, digital manipulation is allowed, but as we are not running a digital manipulation contest, you should exercise care in the decisions that you make. Please note that any camera with interchangeable lenses is not considered a compact, and should not be submitted into this category

Commercial, Conceptual & Fashion

Non-wildlife focused underwater images of commercial, conceptual or fashion related subjects. Images can be shot in a pool or in the wild, but the primary subject should not be wildlife.

VIDEOS
General

Any film five minutes or less in duration, and at least 50% of the footage must be shot underwater.

SUMER VERMA12 Night Live Aboard Trip for 2 with Seven Seas
Fabien MichenetDive Package in Indonesia on Dive Damai
Michele Davino9 day trips to the Revillagigedo Archipelago (Socorro), aboard Solmar V
hani bader9 day trips to the Revillagigedo Archipelago (Socorro), aboard Solmar V
Shane Gross10 day Papua New Guinea live aboard trips aboard Febrina
Bert Willaert10 day Papua New Guinea live aboard trips aboard Febrina
Anders Salesjö7 Day Red Sea Live Aboard Trip with Cassiopeia and Andromeda Live Aboards
David Salvatori7 Day Red Sea Live Aboard Trip with Cassiopeia and Andromeda Live Aboards
Jeffrey de Guzman 7 nights package at Atlantis Puerto Galera or Atlantis Dumaguete
Adriano Morettin 7 nights package at Atlantis Puerto Galera or Atlantis Dumaguete
Luc Rooman7 day dive packages to Lembeh Strait with NAD-Lembeh
filippo borghi7 day dive packages to Lembeh Strait with NAD-Lembeh
Shawn HeinrichsVarious Lighting Accessories from Inon
Signed Wyland books
Todd BretlVarious Lighting Accessories from Inon
Sam CahirVarious Lighting Accessories from Inon
Vincent TruchetVarious Lighting Accessories from Inon
Competition Judges
PHOTO JUDGES
Abi Smigel Mullens

Abi Smigel Mullens is the associate editor of Wetpixel, a premiere online underwater photography community and website. She is also a freelance underwater photographer and writer that has been published in many popular scuba diving magazines.
In addition to shooting wildlife underwater, Abi specializes in children's underwater portraits and runs her own company, Sea Star Underwater Portraits. She is based in the San Francisco bay area and offers this service to clients and swim schools up and down the California coast.

Keri Wilk

Even at the age of 27, Keri has accumulated 17 years of underwater photography experience. Being formally educated as a mechanical engineer, he currently co-owns and develops products for ReefNet, has been a regular contributor to DivePhotoGuide.com since 2009, and does freelance work for several popular dive magazines.

Keri's photography has evolved to a tremendous degree since he took his first underwater shots. He began his career by shooting images to be used primarily in ReefNet's electronic marine life field guides, but soon grew bored of the monotony of clinical side-profile identification shots. Wanting more from his time underwater, he expanded his photographic horizons, hoping to capture images of interesting and unusual behaviors in the underwater world. His success in this field was impressive, winning him several international underwater photo competitions ñ while still a teenager.

Matt Weiss

Matt Weiss is the owner, publisher and editor-in-chief of DivePhotoGuide.com, a leading underwater photography media publication with over 50,000 worldwide monthly readers.  Matt has been working full time at DPG since 2009, and for years was the world’s only full time underwater photography editor.  Matt also helped found the New York Underwater Photographic Society, where he currently serves as the co-president. 

Matt spends over a third of the year in the field shooting assignments and running workshops for numerous print and digital publications.  In 2011, Matt co-founded Scuba Diver Through The Lens, the world’s first international underwater photography print magazine that will be published quarterly beginning in 2012 and distributed in New York, Munich and Singapore. 

Tony Wu

Since 1995, Tony has combined his love of visual art with his interest in the marine world through underwater photography, and he has concentrated on using his photographs and writing to encourage others to appreciate and protect the beauty of the oceans. In recent years, Tony has devoted the majority of his time to the challenging disciplines of cetacean photography and documenting mass spawning aggregations of fish.

Tony’s images have received international awards in Japan, Europe and the US, including Grand Prize in Japan’s largest marine photo contest, first place in the underwater category of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition, and the award for “Best Book of the Year” at the 28th annual Antibes Festival of Marine Images in France for his book Silent Symphony.

Keep up with Tony's activities at: http://www.tonywublog.com/journal