Digital Cameras

The world's finest underwater photography in the Through Your Lens photo contest

The world's finest underwater ...
This image, the Grand Prize winner, is an upside down composition of a whale calf made to appear as if it is floating above the surface of the water
This image, the Grand Prize winner, is an upside down composition of a whale calf made to appear as if it is floating above the surface of the water
View 33 Images
This image, the Grand Prize winner, is an upside down composition of a whale calf made to appear as if it is floating above the surface of the water
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This image, the Grand Prize winner, is an upside down composition of a whale calf made to appear as if it is floating above the surface of the water
First place in the Compact Camera category went to Jamie Hall's shot of a curious giant moray eel
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First place in the Compact Camera category went to Jamie Hall's shot of a curious giant moray eel
First place in the Wide Angle category, a sunken anti-aircraft tank off the coast of Jordan
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First place in the Wide Angle category, a sunken anti-aircraft tank off the coast of Jordan
First place in the Conceptual category is a surreal collage featuring a coconut octopus
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First place in the Conceptual category is a surreal collage featuring a coconut octopus
The top winner in the Macro category is a gorgeously colorful snap of a blanket octopus
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The top winner in the Macro category is a gorgeously colorful snap of a blanket octopus
Karen Smith's stunning shot of freedivers practicing in an underwater cave took the 2nd place award in the Wide Angle category
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Karen Smith's stunning shot of freedivers practicing in an underwater cave took the 2nd place award in the Wide Angle category
Third place winner in Wide Angle is a shot taken following heavy rainfall where the tannic runoff results in an amazing orange hue to the water
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Third place winner in Wide Angle is a shot taken following heavy rainfall where the tannic runoff results in an amazing orange hue to the water
Lucie Drlikova took 2nd place in the Conceptual category with this clever composition entitled "What Matters Most Is How You See Yourself"
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Lucie Drlikova took 2nd place in the Conceptual category with this clever composition entitled "What Matters Most Is How You See Yourself"
Third place in Conceptual is another image shot from underwater that turns the surface into a magnificently alien portal to another dimension
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Third place in Conceptual is another image shot from underwater that turns the surface into a magnificently alien portal to another dimension
Second place in the Compact Camera category is this tiny snap of a coconut octopus, less than two inches long
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Second place in the Compact Camera category is this tiny snap of a coconut octopus, less than two inches long
This cute snap of a grouper with its mouth wide open took third place in the Compact Camera category
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This cute snap of a grouper with its mouth wide open took third place in the Compact Camera category
A perfectly timed snap of a beautiful maroon clownfish is 2nd place winner in the Macro category
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A perfectly timed snap of a beautiful maroon clownfish is 2nd place winner in the Macro category
Third place winner in Macro. Rafael Fernandez Caballero waited weeks for these clingfish eggs to develop eyes and then snapped a psychedelic image of a mother taking care of her oncoming offsping
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Third place winner in Macro. Rafael Fernandez Caballero waited weeks for these clingfish eggs to develop eyes and then snapped a psychedelic image of a mother taking care of her oncoming offsping
Honorable Mention. A friendly calamari squid taken on Australia's Mornington Peninsula
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Honorable Mention. A friendly calamari squid taken on Australia's Mornington Peninsula
An honorable mention, this photomontage mischievously places two frogs mating in front of a perfect sunrise snap
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An honorable mention, this photomontage mischievously places two frogs mating in front of a perfect sunrise snap
Honorable mention. A porcelain crab in front of a blue tunicate just moments before its eggs hatched. 
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Honorable mention. A porcelain crab in front of a blue tunicate just moments before its eggs hatched. 
Honorable mention. A humpback whale calf.
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Honorable mention. A humpback whale calf.
Honorable mention. Skittery silvery fish under bright pink plants from Christian Vizl
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Honorable mention. Skittery silvery fish under bright pink plants from Christian Vizl
Honorable mention. Tianhong Wang saw this crab while diving and notes that it reminded him of a bride in a wedding dress
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Honorable mention. Tianhong Wang saw this crab while diving and notes that it reminded him of a bride in a wedding dress
Honorable mention. It took Lorenzo Mittiga three hours and 100 tries to get this image of an underwater surfer right
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Honorable mention. It took Lorenzo Mittiga three hours and 100 tries to get this image of an underwater surfer right
Honorable mention. An extreme wide angle lens turns the wreck of the USAT Liberty in Bali into an inventive image recalling our own planet Earth
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Honorable mention. An extreme wide angle lens turns the wreck of the USAT Liberty in Bali into an inventive image recalling our own planet Earth
Honorable mention. A yellow pygmy goby obviously quite shocked to be photographed
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Honorable mention. A yellow pygmy goby obviously quite shocked to be photographed
Honorable mention. A toothy snap of a great white shark
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Honorable mention. A toothy snap of a great white shark
Honorable mention. A composite conceptual image that is titled, you guessed, E.T: Extra Turtle
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Honorable mention. A composite conceptual image that is titled, you guessed, E.T: Extra Turtle
Honorable mention. A school of bigeye jacks off the coast of Indonesia
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Honorable mention. A school of bigeye jacks off the coast of Indonesia
Honorable mention. Another beautiful surreal composition from Lucie Drlikova entitled "FLORA – the flower fairy"
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Honorable mention. Another beautiful surreal composition from Lucie Drlikova entitled "FLORA – the flower fairy"
Honorable mention. A jellyfish appropriately named Lion's mane jellyfish
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Honorable mention. A jellyfish appropriately named Lion's mane jellyfish
Honorable mention. Another incredibly appropriately named fish, this is a red devil scorpionfish
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Honorable mention. Another incredibly appropriately named fish, this is a red devil scorpionfish
Honorable mention. An inspiring image featuring Greek Paralympian Antonis Tsapatakis
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Honorable mention. An inspiring image featuring Greek Paralympian Antonis Tsapatakis
Honorable mention. Creative lighting makes this underwater dive snap from Becky Kagan Schott really stand out 
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Honorable mention. Creative lighting makes this underwater dive snap from Becky Kagan Schott really stand out 
Honorable mention. A pregnant male pygmy seahorse
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Honorable mention. A pregnant male pygmy seahorse
Honorable mention. A disorientating yet fascinating shot from Rune Rasmussen
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Honorable mention. A disorientating yet fascinating shot from Rune Rasmussen
Honorable mention. A hairy frogfish living up to its name
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Honorable mention. A hairy frogfish living up to its name

Now in its 14th year, Through Your Lens is an underwater photography competition focusing on the marvels of undersea worlds. The incredible Grand Prize-winning shot this year (pictured above) was awarded to a stunning upside down composition of a whale calf made to appear as if it is floating above the surface of the water.

The contest is run by Scuba Diving magazine and this year attracted over 2,100 entries from both amateur and professional photographers all over the globe. As well as a single Grand Prize winner, awards are handed out to three impressive images in each of the four categories: Wide-Angle, Macro, Conceptual and Compact Camera.

The Wide-Angle category offers up some perspective-twisting treats and Alex Dawson's first place-winning photograph perfectly fits the bill. The image (below), taken off the coast of Tala Bay in Jordon, shows a diver exploring the sunken wreck of an anti-aircraft tank. After 20 years underwater the tank has been slowly colonized by a number of undersea organisms turning what was previously a weapon of war into a new foundation for incubating life.

First place in the Wide Angle category, a sunken anti-aircraft tank off the coast of Jordan
First place in the Wide Angle category, a sunken anti-aircraft tank off the coast of Jordan

A newer category in the competition is a focus on compact cameras. Established in 2015, this category was added in response to the growing influx of small, non-SLR digital cameras. First place in this category went to Jamie Hall's striking portrait of a giant moray eel (below). This amazing image, taken with a Canon PowerShot G16 in a Fantasea housing, manages to traverse a magical tightrope between hypnotic and frightening.

First place in the Compact Camera category went to Jamie Hall's shot of a curious giant moray eel
First place in the Compact Camera category went to Jamie Hall's shot of a curious giant moray eel

Another recently added category covers conceptual photo submissions, inspired by the increasing volume of surreal images being submitted to the competition. This category has no restrictions on post-processing but does require some kind of element to be photographed in a body of water. The winner here went to Conor Culver who took a snap of a coconut octopus and them imagined it in a home made out of a small bottle that was found diving off the coast of Florida.

Lucie Drlikova took 2nd place in the Conceptual category with this clever composition entitled "What Matters Most Is How You See Yourself"
Lucie Drlikova took 2nd place in the Conceptual category with this clever composition entitled "What Matters Most Is How You See Yourself"

Other mind-bending winners include Lucie Drlikova's second place-winning photograph (above) in the Conceptual category, which rotated an underwater shot of a woman into a composition evoking a science fiction-like stargate. Second place in the Wide-Angle category, from Karen Smith, also delivered a surreal spectacle of free divers practicing in an underwater cave in Tulum, Mexico.

Take a look through the gallery to see more of the terrific winners from the 2018 Through Your Lens underwater photo contest.

Source: Scuba Diving Magazine

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