Digital Cameras

Agora's spectacular top 50 photographs of 2019

Long exposure sunset shot in the District in the city of Groningen, Netherlands
Long exposure sunset shot in the District in the city of Groningen, Netherlands
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"Motherly love" captured at the Tenerife zoo
1/50
"Motherly love". More than 2-hour wait for this photographer to capture this photo at the Tenerife zoo
2/50
"Reitdiephaven". Long exposure sunset shot in the District in the city of Groningen, Netherlands
3/50
"Wild look". Lynx spotted in the Cábarceno Natural Park
4/50
"Alone in the desert". The shot was taken from a high dune in Morocco, where Nomads are moving through the Sahara desert
5/50
"Among the white umbrellas". A woman makes traditional umbrellas at a factory in Mandalay, Myanmar. The production of a traditional umbrella cannot be done by a single person or within a day: there is a division of labor in the making of a single umbrella. Each worker is responsible for different parts to finish one umbrella.
It took the photographer 4 hours to take this shot of an ant carrying water drops spreaded on a piece of thread
6/50
"Ant balancing the earth". It took the photographer 4 hours to take this shot of an ant carrying water drops spread on a piece of thread
7/50
"Colors of life". Women fishing in West Bengal before heading to the market
8/50
9/50
"Diamond Ring Total Solar Eclipse". Snapshot of the 2017 total solar eclipse, seen from Nebraska
10/50
"Dark Disneyland". Vertical panorama of the Neuschwanstein Castle
11/50
"East Java". Taking this shot without getting his lenses soaked was a hard exercise for this photographer in Tumpak Sewu Waterfall, East Java
The Eid prayer is celebrated on the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal, after the fasting during the holy month of Ramadan
12/50
The Eid prayer is celebrated on the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal, after the fasting during the holy month of Ramadan
13/50
"Snow Horsman". Winter shot from Mongolia
14/50
"Farming". Shot of the rice fields in northern Vietnam, where workers plant the rice seedlings for the upcoming harvest
15/50
"Fire Fighter". Locals and firemen work as a team to fight a fire caused by a power incident in Bangladesh
16/50
"Blue eye". The photographer pictured his son running through the City of Arts and Science, in Valencia
17/50
"In retrospect". Lonely man looking at the horizon in Kobe, Japan
18/50
"La mujer que espera". Pictured in a salami shop in Rome, Piazza de la Rotonda
19/50
"L’espurna que fa que tot comenci". Correfocs during traditional Catalan festival, where groups dressed as devils light firework in the crowd
20/50
"Mother's goodness". Perfect timing for this shot of an Hoopoe bird feeding its chicks
21/50
"Incense Work". In Vietnam, incense is known to connect living people with ancestors and gods. When you burn incense, you're communicating with the gods
22/50
"Nature always wins". Shipwreck graves in Brittany, France. Some boats have been there for more than 100 years
23/50
"Preparing for 1000 Takjil Iftar Ramadan Kareem". Three volunteers serve 1000 plates of chicken and rice prepared for the Iftar, an evening meal in which Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset
24/50
"Rain". Beautiful portrait of the photographer's father under the rain
25/50
"Rainy day". Red-Eyed Tree Frog in West Java
26/50
"Oeil de zèbre". Shot taken at the Madrid safari
27/50
"Run and Fun". Young monks having fun in Hsinbyume Pagoda
28/50
"Hearts on the sea". Aerial photos of fishing nets in Vietnam
29/50
"Reaching for Heaven". The Mont Saint Michel, France, lost in the middle of the fog
30/50
"Sea of Ice". The professional wildlife photographer took this photo in Antarctica, where crabeater seals use the ice to rest after their meals
31/50
"Rainbow Reine". Double rainbow spotted as the photographer was crossing a bridge in the Lofoten islands
32/50
"Sand wasp with prey". This wasp is on a mission to bring its prey home
33/50
"Strawberry greenhouses". Young women working in a strawberry field located in the Aegean region
34/50
"Six feet under". Foggy morning in Ukraine, where the photographer spotted a man digging a grave with his bare hands in a little cemetery
35/50
"Echoes of the Unknown". The photographer wanted to display the cordial relationship between a man and a beast
36/50
"The Best Friends". A lizard and a snail sharing a cute moment
37/50
"The most beautiful roundabout in the world!" Vertical panorama of Paris' Arc de Triumph, where 12 avenues come together
38/50
"Throwing Nets". Fisherman in action at the Situ Patenggang lake
39/50
"Undefined". Snapshot taken during a road trip in California,Todos Santos. The photographer was lucky to snorkel with the animals afterwards
40/50
"Dancer". Taken at the Peace and Friendship stadium in Athens
41/50
"Expressions". Saint met in a shrine by portrait photographer
42/50
"Songs of Freedom". More than a photo - an unspoken struggle for freedom and belonging
43/50
"Striving". The shot was taken near the Nias islands, an internationally famous surfing destination
44/50
"The lights of life". Early morning shot of the Cirahong Bridge, located on the border of Tasikmalaya Regency and Ciamis Regency. The bridge was built in 1893 by the Dutch colons
45/50
"The road and the farm have been flooded". Floods in Gorgan city, northern Iran
46/50
47/50
"Boys". The photographer wanted to portray the equality between two human beings
48/50
"Veins of Earth". The Amazon-like shot was taken in East Sussex, where the Cuckmere river divides the grasslands
49/50
"Water is Life". Although typhoons are pretty common in The Philippines, the citizens still worship the life giving element of water
50/50
"When the buffalo comes back". Buffalos bathing in Pleiku, central Vietnam

Global photography social network Agora has revealed its top 50 shots of 2019, with an impressive US$25,000 grand prize awarded to the image receiving the most votes from the general public. Open to images from any genre, this unique collection of photographs spans everything from stunning drone snaps to incredible macro shots of insects.

Agora presents itself as a social network, similar to Instagram or Flickr, but with a particular focus on HD images, protected by watermarks. Different themed mini-contests appear on the platform every week, but the overall “Best of 2019” photograph is open to anyone, and any kind of shot.

It took the photographer 4 hours to take this shot of an ant carrying water drops spreaded on a piece of thread
It took the photographer 4 hours to take this shot of an ant carrying water drops spreaded on a piece of thread

This year’s top 50 shortlist has been whittled down by the Agora community from 130,000 entries, and across the month of September users will vote on the best image, to be revealed in early November and take out a $25,000 prize.

"The AGORA Awards 2019 is an international show that anyone, anywhere, can join in,” explains Octavi Royo, Agora’s CEO and founder. “We're proposing something completely new and unseen; we want everyone to participate in this creative revolution because we believe everyone's point of view is important. Watching, participating, voting: together we can change the course of photography."

"Motherly love" captured at the Tenerife zoo
"Motherly love" captured at the Tenerife zoo

It’s certainly an unconventional model for a photography competition, but judging by the quality of the shortlisted top 50, it seems to be working. As well as featuring several well-known shots already celebrated in other recent contests, the democratic nature of the platform uncovers some spectacular photographs that will be new even to avid followers of photo competitions.

The Eid prayer is celebrated on the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal, after the fasting during the holy month of Ramadan
The Eid prayer is celebrated on the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal, after the fasting during the holy month of Ramadan

Particular highlights include a profoundly touching shot of a great ape mother cradling her child, a mind-bending macro snap of an ant balancing a drop of water on its head, and a perfectly composed drone shot of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris.

Take a look through our gallery to see all the top 50 shots.

Source: Agora Awards 2019

1 comment
guzmanchinky
The Ant! Amazing...