Travel Photography Competition 2012 Winners

Winner of the Insight Guides Travel Photography Competition 2012, (photo by Dominic Burdon)
Winner of the Insight Guides Travel Photography Competition 2012

We have our winners!  

This is the 9th year of the Insight Guides Travel Photography Competition in conjuction with the Independent on Sunday, and every year the quality and quantity of the entries increases and every year the selection process gets trickier. The entries were carefully narrowed down by our panel of judges to the winning submissions featured below. Thanks and congratulations to all of you who entered – there was a fantastic assortment of destinations and subjects and some stunning photographs. 

First prize: Dominic Burdon

A primary school teacher from Witney, Domimic won the commission worth £3,000 to photograph a forthcoming guidebook, plus an Olympus PEN Lite (E-PL3) kit. Judges were looking for three outstanding images from each entrant that captured the essence of their chosen destinations.
Dominic bought his first DSLR about two years ago and knew little about how it worked or what settings he should be using. The more he practiced, the better his photos became. He started reading photography tips online and has been gradually developing his knowledge of how best to use his camera. His dedication has clearly paid off.  Dominic says he’s ecstatic to have won. One of his dreams is to be able to sell some of his photographs to finance his travels.

Dominic comments, “Winning this competition will give me the opportunity to experience just how demanding a travel photographer's job is and it will hopefully enable me to develop my skills further, whilst experiencing an interesting, new place.”  

“Like so many people I know, I love to travel. The world is full of so many amazing things and, bit by bit, I'm trying to see as many as I can. There are many reasons why I love travel and why I choose to visit some places before others, but one of the most important for me is its visual impact. When you see a beautiful scene that leaves you in awe it's incredible.”
His winning set of photographs were all of Burma and show the beauty of the country under natural lighting, at sunrise and sunset.  

Dominic’s winning images

Dominic Burdon

"The first picture was taken at U-Bein's bridge, in Amarapura; an icon in the area. It is the longest teak bridge in the world and provides a stunning, silhouetted backdrop as the sun goes down. I saw this fisherman net-fishing in the shallow lake surrounding the bridge and managed to take a few shots of him in action before he moved on."

"The second picture shows Bagan's numerous pagodas, silhouetted amongst the morning mist. Hot air balloons rise over the pagodas, providing a surreal mix of old and new. This is possibly my favourite place in the world."

"The final picture is of locals herding goats as the sun drops for the day, near Bagan. The dusty road is typical of Burmese countryside. I was drawn to this spot by the light streaming through the trees and just waited patiently for someone to come along."

Second prize: Lauri Hytti

Lauri, from Kingston-upon-Thames, won an Olympus E-PM1 kit.  Lauri works as a college administrator and enjoys photography as a hobby, having bought his first DSLR camera three years ago 

Above: mosque interior, Istanbul

Above: Seven Coloured Earths, Mauritius

Above: Tio Pepe Bodega, Jerez, Spain


Third prize: Dr Steve Fabes

An Olympus XZ-1 goes to Dr Steve Fabes from Oxford, thanks to his images taken this summer on the Salar De Uyuni in Bolivia. Dr Fabes is currently on an epic bicycle journey that will trace a route through regions affected by neglected tropical diseases, witnessing at first hand their effect on local populations.      


The under-18 prize: Luke Faulkner

Luke of Ilfracombe in Devon was chosen as the winner of the under-18 category, winning an Olympus Tough camera TG-820 for his images of Canary Wharf, taken when he was visiting family in London.  Luke, who has a passion for photography, is in the middle of a two-year National Diploma in Art and Design at Petroc College in Barnstaple.      


Once again, a huge thanks to all who entered.

The winners and their partners were invited to spend the night at London’s Corinthia Hotel and to join a celebration dinner at the Hotel’s Northall restaurant and receive their prizes from Olympus and Insight Guides.  

This year's judging panel comprised of:

Sophie Batterbury, Independent on Sunday picture editor

Kevin Cummins, legendary music and portrait photographer

Katharine Leck, managing director at Insight Guides    

Michael Pritchard, director-general of the Royal Photographic Society

For more inspiration, why not download our free travel photography app?

With the free Insight Guides Travel Photography app, each day you get a new inspiring picture from our extensive range of travel guides, which cover over 200 destinations in 90 countries across the world. Find out more...

... or check out our Insight Guide to Travel Photography...

If you wish to learn more about the art of taking fantastic travel shots, why not take a look at Insight Guide Travel Photography? The book has been designed to provide an inspirational and practical guide for all keen travelling photographers, catering to both point-and-shoot and DSLR users and providing information that even professionals will find useful. Created by experts, the lavishly illustrated guide explores all the aspects of photographic technique, giving plenty of examples. Chapters cover the history of travel photography, the digital age and the importance of 'telling the story'; the key elements of light and composition, and the camera itself; the practical application of technical know how in eight main areas of travel photography, including landscapes, people and the built environment; a destination calendar; and what preparations to make before you go and what happens when you get back: organising, processing, sharing and selling. Find out more about Insight Guides Travel Photography...