Lonely Planet Writer

See the stunning finalists of the 15th annual Smithsonian Photography Competition

The final 60 images in the 15th Annual Smithsonian.com Photo Contest have been revealed, with the impressive selection showcasing diverse talent from all over the world.

“Joy”. A seal pup enjoys the morning breeze on Düne Island in Germany. Image by © Erika Valkovicova. All rights reserved

This year, the competition received 48,000 submissions from photographers in 155 countries and territories, from dynamic portraits to breath-taking landscapes and examples of captivating photojournalism at its very best. The competition was broken up into six categories; Natural World, The American Experience, Travel, People, Altered Images and Mobile.

“Boatman”. A boatman enjoys the leisure of reading a newspaper on his boat. Image by © Debashis Mukherjee. All rights reserved

Stunning images in the running include a photograph of a seemingly smiling seal pup enjoying the morning breeze on Düne Island in Germany, a boatman in India lying back and relaxing on green waters, a bustling Vietnamese marketplace, a nomadic Iranian girl in the rain and vibrant red chilli peppers being picked in Bangladesh.

A wave captured in California.
“Pinnacle of Existence”. A wave captured in California. Image by © Oreon Strusinski. All rights reserved

The final selection comprises of images taken in diverse places around the world, including Cuba, Nicaragua, Poland, England, Italy, Turkey, India, China, Australia and across the United States of America.

"Red Chili Pepper Pickers". Countless chili peppers surround laborers in the Bogra district in the north of Bangladesh.
“Red Chili Pepper Pickers”. Countless chili peppers surround laborers in the Bogra district in the north of Bangladesh. Image by © Azim Khan Ronnie. All rights reserved

Voting is now open for the Reader’s Choice category, running until 26 March, with the winner of the Grand Prize being announced at the competition on 27 March. The six category winners will also be announced at this time, with the 16th Annual Photo Contest opening for submissions on the same day.

“Shadow Highlight”. A couple of ladies passing in front of graffiti. Image by © mohammad mohsenifar. All rights reserved

More information on the competition as well as the full list of finalists is available at the official Smithsonian website.