Honorable Mention – Journeys & Adventures. Polar Bear 81. Hudson Bay, Canada. Bob Chiu View gallery – 20 images
Now in its eighth year, the Siena International Photo Awards has cemented its place on the crowded photo contest calendar with a variety of impressively creative shots. Spanning the usual spread of categories (Animals, Nature, Architecture, etc.) an expert jury has whittled tens of thousands of entries down, highlighting some of the best photography of 2022.
One highlight, taken by photographer Marcus Westberg in Namibia, shows a massive hippopotamus hounding tourists in a small boat.
“A territorial male hippopotamus suddenly emerges out of the Chobe River,” Westberg explained in an accompanying caption. “After his first appearance 20 seconds earlier, Chobe Princess guide Patrick wisely decided to turn the small boat around and leave the area, but the hippo nevertheless gave chase.”
Other more creatively inspired highlights include two different sports shots presenting headless athletes. One shot is impeccably composed, showing a soccer ball replacing the head of a goalkeeper, while another more playfully presents a portrait of two disabled professional swimmers in Turkey.
Perhaps one of the stranger images in this year’s contest is a portrait of Hollywood star Angelina Jolie, covered in bees. The shot was taken as part of promoting a Women’s Bee Initiative, and as photographer Dan Winters explains, the actress was covered in bees for nearly 20 minutes.
“Everyone on set had to wear a full bee suit,” said Winters. “The actual queen bee pheromone was applied on Angelina to make the bees congregate there. Angelina stood perfectly still for 18 minutes without a sting.”