Italian photographer Cristiano Vendramin has the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People’s Choice Award won with a photo of a frozen lake. “The statue symbolizes the positive influence nature can have on our well-being and our lives,” said the director of the Natural History Museum in London.
The Natural History Museum organizes an annual photo competition for both amateur and professional nature photographers, in which it searches for the most unique images from nature. More than 31,800 nature and photography enthusiasts voted for this photo by the Italian photographer.
Cristiano Vendramin photographed the frozen lake in Belluno in northern Italy in the winter of 2019. The high water level combined with the willow plants created a play of light and reflections on the water surface, which reminded him of a dear deceased friend who loved from the lake, the photographer tells the museum.
comfort and hope
“I hope my photography will encourage people to understand that the beauty of nature is all around us, and that we can be pleasantly surprised by the many landscapes so close to home,” he said. “I believe that having a daily relationship with nature is becoming more and more necessary to have a serene and healthy life. Nature photography is therefore important to remind us of this bond, which we must preserve and in whose memory we can take refuge.”
According to Douglas Gurr, the director of the Natural History Museum, Vendramin’s photo symbolizes what is really important in life, which has become clear again since the corona pandemic. “Cristiano’s poignant image symbolizes the positive influence nature can have on our well-being and our lives. It can provide comfort and space to think about the past and even give hope for the future,” he says.
The winning photo will be featured along with the full top 5 entries in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit at the Natural History Museum in London until June 5.
In total, more than 50,000 photos from 95 different countries were submitted in 2021. The public could ultimately choose from a shortlist of 25 photos, selected by the museum. Also in the top 5 is this tender photo of two male lions in the rain, photographed by American Ashleigh McCord in Kenya’s Masaai Mara National Park.
This striking portrait of a kangaroo with her cub was captured by Canadian Jo-Anne McArthur. She worked as a volunteer in early 2020 after the devastating bushfires in Australia. She titled the image ‘hope in a burned plantation (hope in a burned down plantation).
This entry by the Dutchman Jeroen Hoekendijk also ended up in the top 5. In the Canadian forests he was able to capture a bear cub and an eagle in one image. The young brown bear rests high in the trees, under the watchful eye of an adult eagle.
The top 5 breathtaking wildlife images are rounded off with this photo of two male golden pheasants. The Chinese Qiang Guo photographed the dance of these beautiful birds in the Lishan National Park in northeast China.
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