Travel Photographer of the Year 2019


Travel Photographer of the Year

Travel Photographer of the Year

Deadline: October 15, 2019
Entry fee: from £8 to £30, Young TPOTY – Free
Prizes: £100, £500, £1,000, £4,000, valuable prizes

The Travel Photographer of the Year (TPOTY) awards are run by photographers for photographers. Wherever you live in the world and whether you are amateur or professional, beginner or expert, young or old, Travel Photographer of the Year is for you!

This prestigious award offers massive exposure for your work through our media activities, books, photographer profiles and exhibitions.

TPOTY-winning photographers have had their work showcased around the world: established photographic careers received a huge boost, new careers were kick-started, and people who never thought they’d see their photographs in print have had a happy surprise!


  • TPOTY Overall Winner
    This is the Big One! The Travel Photographer of the Year 2019 award will be presented to the photographer who is judged to have submitted the best eight images across the portfolio categories.
  • Portfolio – Art of Travel
    This eight-image portfolio category is a chance to show the very best of your fine art travel photography. This portfolio must be travel images but the choice of subject(s) and the places where the images are taken is yours.
  • Portfolio – People & Cultures
    Show us the people, the cultures – old or new – which you encounter on your travels around the world and celebrate them in a portfolio of four images.
  • Portfolio – Endangered Planet
    This category is about the endangered world we inhabit, the threats it faces and its non-human inhabitants, the measures being taken to conserve, restore or protect, whether it’s environment, wildlife, sea life, plant life, trees, insects, mammals, birds, fish, any other living organism.
  • Portfolio – Thrills & Adventures
    This four-image portfolio category is about the excitement of travel, the thrills and spills, the adventure and the exhilaration.
  • TAPSA Travel Documentaries
    The Timothy Allen Photography Scholarship Award (TAPSA) recognises and rewards original travel documentary photography. This scholarship, run in conjunction with the Sharjah Government Media Bureau, will be awarded to one photographer based on a portfolio of up to 10 images.
  • One Shot – Street Life
    There are many stories on the streets of our cities, towns, villages and hamlets. In a single image capture a moment on the street and start to tell one of these stories.
  • One Shot – Oceans, Seas, Rivers, Lakes
    Over 70% of our planet is covered in water, from the great oceans to the smallest puddle.
  • One Shot – Dusk to Dawn
    Low light and night photography presents the photographer with a different set of challenges but also with wonderful opportunities to capture the world differently.
  • Smart Shot – iTravelled
    Mobile phone and tablet photography is increasingly popular among travellers. Show us your best travel shot captured on your smartphone or tablet.
  • Young TPOTY
    If you’re aged 18 or under, through your eyes and through your lens show us your journey or journeys, whether it’s a trip or holiday in your own country or somewhere further away.


Prizes include £5,000 TPOTY cash bursaries, Fujifilm XT-3 cameras with 18-55mm lenses, Swarovski CL Companion 8×30 binoculars, a WILDFOOT Travel Northern Lights and Whale sailing ship expedition in Northern Norway, a 10-day trip to Sharjah and the Xposure Festival of Photography including a five-day photo workshop with the 2013 Travel Photographer of the Year Timothy Allen, a TravelLight Secret Venice Immersive Photo Workshop with photographers Chris Weston and Simon Weir, Paràmo outdoor clothing, Plastic Sandwich leather portfolio books and iFolios, a full set of the stunning ‘Remembering Wildlife’ books, Photo Iconic mentoring and critiques, exhibition-quality prints from Genesis Imaging and Royal Photographic Society (RPS) memberships.


Travel Photographer of the Year 2018 Winners

© Stefano Pensotti, Italy
Overall Winner

Overall Winner, © Stefano Pensotti, Italy, Travel Photographer of the Year

Stefano Pensotti started taking photo when he was a child, stealing the camera of his older brother. At the age of 14, he began to learn the techniques of the darkroom, exploring the alchemy of the process of development and printing in black and white. There followed years of assiduous attendance of the photographic environments of Milan, stories, authors and galleries that deeply mark his photography as both linguistic and conceptual. Photography has become the reason for traveling, his second big passion. After exploring all aspects of photography and traveling he started to deal with geographic reportage.

A Masters in Business Training brought him collaboration with a corporate training company and the tools to understand cultures and people, essential skills for reportage photography. He is a semi-professional photographer, his involvement with the training company allowing him time for photography and traveling. He has travelled in over 50 countries in Europe, Africa and Asia.


Young Travel Photographer of the Year

© Isabella Smith (age 14), United States

Young Winner, © Isabella Smith (age 14), United States, Travel Photographer of the Year

14 year-old Isabella Smith lives in Collierville, a small town in Tennessee. Throughout her life, she has always had a problem doing well in school because she has a hard time focusing in any subject. But since the first time she held a camera when she was about 8, she discovered it is one of the only things she could concentrate on for a long time. She can even read about photography for a long time.

Isabella  was recently diagnosed with ADD with some dyslexia and realised that, while she had a hard time using words to tell stories, she could do a much better job telling a story with photos. She was lucky enough to go to Morocco last year and wanted to tell stories of the places she visited through her photography.


Young TPOTY 14 and under

© Daniel Kurian, Australia

Young TPOTY 14 and under - Winner, © Daniel Kurian, Australia, Travel Photographer of the Year

Daniel Kurian is a 12 year-old who lives in Perth, Western Australia. He currently attends Year 6 in primary school in Harrisdale, WA. He started taking an interest in photography when he was around 7 years old, though his parents admit that they didn’t give it much attention until 2017, when they noticed that he was capturing subjects which neither of them would have even thought of. Later that year, he was fortunate to attend a photography workshop conducted at school by a teacher and a member of office staff who are photography enthusiasts. That kick-started his drive for photography, and he loves experimenting with manual mode, different shutter speeds and different light.


Young TPOTY 15-18

© Fardin Oyan (age 16), Bangladesh

Young TPOTY 15-18 - Winner, © Fardin Oyan (age 16), Bangladesh, Travel Photographer of the Year

16 year-old Fardin Oyan lives in Bangladesh and is currently studying in 11th grade at college. He had a keen interest in technical gadgets since his early childhood, and was particularly interested in cameras because photography never grew old as computer games did. When he was in 7th grade, he convinced his father to buy him a compact camera which was worth a little above a hundred USD. He can clearly remember the first snap he took – two sparrows just outside his window: “I was so happy that I can’t describe that moment in words. The camera felt like a magical box to me. After that moment, I decided to take the path of photography seriously and now photography has become the part and parcel of my life.”


Faces, People, Cultures

© Marinka Masséus, Netherlands

Faces, People, Cultures, © Marinka Masséus, Netherlands, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

After finishing her MBA, the Photo Academy in Amsterdam stimulated Masséus to channel her concepts and feelings into images.

Marinka’s photography revolves around people. Especially topics concerning injustice and inequality are a driving force behind her work.

Her work has been exhibited and published around the world.


© Danny Yen Sin Wong, Malaysia
Winner, Best Single Image

Faces, People, Cultures, © Danny Yen Sin Wong, Malaysia, Winner, Best Single Image, Travel Photographer of the Year


Natural World

© Javier Herranz Casellas, Spain

Natural World, © Javier Herranz Casellas, Spain, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

“So I just take pictures and enjoy it. I lose myself in travelling and exploring new countries with their mountains, peoples and customs, exploring new natural settings and discovering the unknown, letting myself go, capturing whatever I come across that catches my eye, whether it be flora, fauna or a charming setting, which I then interpret through my own experience and mood and I frame to immortalise in a small fragment that I can share with everybody else.”


© Florent Mamelle, France
Winner, Best Single Image

Natural World, © Florent Mamelle, France, Winner, Best Single Image, Travel Photographer of the Year


Travel Portfolio

© Matjaz Krivic, Slovenia

Travel Portfolio, © Matjaz Krivic, Slovenia, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Matjaz Krivic is a documentary photographer capturing stories of people and places. For 25  years he has covered the face of the earth in his intense, personal and aesthetically moving style that has won him several prestigious awards, including World Press Photo in 2016.

He has portrayed poor parts of the world characterised by traditions, social unrest and religious devotion. His photographs sensitively reflect the images of the marginal word – the voices of the neglected. Because of the artist’s directness and respect for individuals, the people photographed are spontaneous, natural and open.Their ‘soul’ is captured and the viewer is encouraged to observe and think.



© Philip Lee Harvey, United Kingdom
Winner, Best Single Image

Travel, © Philip Lee Harvey, United Kingdom, Winner, Best Single Image, Travel Photographer of the Year



© Philip Lee Harvey, United Kingdom
Joint Winner

Hot/Cold, © Philip Lee Harvey, United Kingdom, Joint Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Philip was born in Canterbury, England in 1969. Since completing a Graphic Design degree at the Norwich School of Art and Design, he has worked in over 120 countries, in environments ranging from Antarctica to the Sahara desert. He is a contributing photographer for both Conde Nast Traveller and Lonely Planet Traveller magazines. He believes photography should convey the emotion of places and people rather than functioning simply as a descriptive guide. He has spent the past 20 years perfecting his art, researching and preparing shoots and then working spontaneously to capture a moment. His images focus on the character of people and places and are acclaimed for their graphic quality, use of light and composition. For Philip, photography acts as a physical and emotional journey

Philip has received numerous awards, including being the overall winner of Travel Photographer of the Year in 2014,  alongside others given by AOP, Creative Circle, Royal Photographic Society, John Kobal, LPA, ICA, Travel Press Awards and is listed in Lurzer’s Archive, top 200 advertising photographers worldwide.


© Andrew James, United Kingdom
Joint Winner

Hot/Cold, © Andrew James, United Kingdom, Joint Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Andrew James has worked on and edited various specialist magazines during a 26 year career in publishing but says that he found the best use of his combined skills during a 15 year shift on Practical Photography. When he finally left to become a freelance photographer, writer and tutor, he was the editor-in-chief of Practical Photography, Digital Photo and Photo Answers. Now, as a freelance journalist and photographer, he writes regularly for market-leading magazines like Digital Camera and Photo Plus, as well as being a partner in FotoBuzz – an exciting online community for photographers. He also leads and assists in photography workshops and holidays in the UK and abroad, takes on assorted publishing and photography tasks, and most importantly of all – enjoys life!



© Simon Morris, United Kingdom

Tranquillity, © Simon Morris, United Kingdom, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Simon Morris is a semi-professional travel photographer who has been taking serious travel images for around 15 years. His love of photography first started around the time when he had a trip to New York City – armed with a little point-and-shoot camera he attempted to capture anything that moved! As time went on he visited many countries that have rich histories and cultures. At present however he has a yearning to take pictures in cold snowbound countries like Arctic Siberia in Russia and West and Northern Mongolia. For Simon great travel images have a narrative or tell stories… that’s what he strives to do; create stories that have an impact on the viewer.


New Talent, Festivals & Events

© Jose Antonio Rosas, Peru

New Talent, Festivals & Events, © Jose Antonio Rosas, Peru, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Jose Antonio Rosas was born and raised in Lima, Peru. Photography became a serious pursuit for him in 2007, when he first traveled to Antarctica and fell in love with its wildlife and landscapes. During the next eight years, he combined his love of photography and the outdoors with a career in finance. In 2015, he made the decision to take a year off from his career and enrolled in the Online Low Residency Program at the International Center of Photography. During this program, he was encouraged to expand the range of his interests, and started photographing people.  After the program, he decided to dedicate more of his time to photography and is currently enrolled in the One-Year, Full Time Creative Practices program at ICP.


Smart Shot

©Nicola Young, United Kingdom

Smart Shot, ©Nicola Young, United Kingdom, Winner, Travel Photographer of the Year

Nicola feels very privileged to live in a creative and adventurous world. As Communications Director for the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry she loves being able to explore her creativity and capture what’s happening on stage; then escaping in her spare time to explore the world and record what she sees  – no matter if it’s on an iPhone or full frame DSLR. Capturing that unique moment, seeing beauty in the most surprising places, observing how nature’s elements change a scene – all these things make life more enriching.  Photography has been an important part of her life since her schooldays, when she experimented in the school’s unused darkroom.


Travel Photographer of the Year 2017 Winners


Animals Prospectus & Entry – Colors of Humanity Art Gallery
Animals Prospectus & Entry - Colors of Humanity Art Gallery